Pumpkins are a staple in the fall, but have you ever stopped to think about what those seeds might be doing for your diet?
Keto-dieters may not realize that pumpkin seeds can be an important part of their food intake.
Pumpkin seeds in the keto diet
In this blog post, we will explore whether or not pumpkin seeds fit into keto and how they can help you maintain a healthy diet.
Everyone knows that pumpkin seeds are a friendly snack, but not everyone realizes that they can be keto-friendly food if you’re eating a low carb diet.
The good news is pumpkin seeds are high in protein, healthy fats, fiber and essential nutrients like magnesium.
They also have many health benefits including reducing risk of digestive diseases.
Pumpkin seeds are rich in magnesium and zinc, which help regulate hormone levels for women who suffer from PMS symptoms or endometriosis pain during menstruation cycles.
What is a keto diet
The parameters of the keto diet are a high-fat, moderate amount of protein and extremely low carb way of eating.
The goal of the ketogenic diet is to force your body into a state of ketosis by getting rid of carbs.
Why? To simply put it, because when you deprive your body of carbs, it starts breaking down fat for energy (also known as ketosis) which turns the body into a fat-burning machine.
Ketosis is a natural metabolic state that occurs when you don’t have enough carbohydrates in your diet to use your body’s supply of glucose and glycogen stores for energy and because of this, the body needs to turn to an alternate fuel source: fats.
When you deprive the body of glucose (sugar), it starts breaking down fat instead, which produces ketones and thus the keto diet is born.
The standard keto diet macronutrients are 70-75% fat, 20-25% protein and 5-10% carbohydrate.
What are Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds, also known as pepitas when hulled, are flat green seed kernels that grow in small clusters inside the pumpkin.
They are popular snacks all by themselves when roasted with a little bit of salt and pepper added to them.
Pumpkin seeds can also be used in combination with other seeds such as sunflower seeds to make a delicious homemade trail mix.
Are popular because they’re tasty, crunchy and packed with nutrients.
Pumpkin seeds are also a good source of zinc, protein and essential minerals that support the overall health of your bones, teeth and help control high blood sugar levels.
What do pumpkin seeds taste like?
Pumpkin seeds have a rich, nutty taste that’s very delicious with plenty of crunch! Taste like sunflower seeds, only with a slightly stronger flavor.
They’re delicious roasted, and salted.
Pumpkin seed nutrition facts and nutritional information
Pumpkin seeds are a good source of fiber, protein and essential minerals.
Also contain a variety of nutrients including magnesium, manganese, vitamin k, phosphorus, and a great source of zinc.
Pumpkin seeds are rich in tryptophan (helps to regulate serotonin levels) which is why they’re commonly used as a natural sleep aid.
Pumpkin seeds contain phytic acid, linoleic acid, amino acids, and fatty acids.
Also, antioxidants that help to protect the body from oxidative stress.
The high Vitamin E content found in pumpkin seeds helps promote healing, reduces wrinkles by strengthening the outer layer of your skin.
The nutritional value of pumpkin seeds makes it a great source of energy. A one-ounce serving of pumpkin seeds yields approximately 150 calories, 5 grams carbohydrates and 7 grams protein.
Moreover, it is a good source of dietary fiber and magnesium.
Are pumpkin seeds Keto friendly?
Pumpkin seeds are naturally high in fat, which makes it a good fit for the ketogenic diet.
It have an abundance of vitamins and minerals while being relatively low in carbs.
However, despite its benefits, pumpkin seeds should be consumed sparingly while you are on the keto diet.
Pumpkin seeds are also ideal for anyone who’s on a plant-based diet.
How Many Pumpkin Seeds Can I Eat On Keto?
Although pumpkin seeds are tasty and keto-friendly, you should be careful with how much of it you consume.
High consumption can slow down your body’s ketone production and intake should be monitored.
There is no set limit but 1-2 servings per day is recommended .
Remember, it may take up to 2 weeks for your body to adjust to this diet so do not overcompensate with snacking.
How to roast pumpkin seeds
Roasting pumpkin seeds at home is very easy.
The following steps will produce roasted pumpkin seeds that are flavorful and crunchy:
Step 1: To begin, rinse the raw pumpkin seeds under cool water until they appear clean.
Step 2: Drain off excess water using a colander; pat dry with paper towels, if necessary.
Step 3: Spread the seeds out in a single layer on a baking sheet or baking tray lined with parchment paper.
Step 4: Pour the seeds into a bowl, add salt to taste and mix well. Add any additional seasonings that you may desire (such as chili powder for Mexican-flavored pumpkin seeds).
Step 5: Preheat the oven to 300 °F.
Step 6: Transfer the seasoned seeds back to the foil-lined pan, and put them on the oven for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown, stirring frequently.
Step 7: Remove from the oven and let cool.
Note: Do not let them turn brown or else they will be burnt and taste like charcoal.
Also, make sure to clean the seeds well before roasting, and do not use any oil because it will produce a burned taste.
How to store pumpkin seeds roasted
Once you’ve toasted the pumpkin seeds, you should let them cool completely.
Then you transfer them to an airtight container.
You can store them at room temperature for up to a month.
How to use Pumpkin Seeds
It is very easy to eat pumpkin seeds on keto because they are a nutritious food and can be used in many different dishes, from salads to baked goods.
Pumpkin seeds are a great low-carbohydrate food to add to your keto diet. They’re full of healthy fat and protein which helps you stay satiated between meals.
You can eat them raw or roasted, and they’re also a fantastic addition to salads with a touch of olive oil, oatmeal , trail mix, etc.
If you want, you can season them with black pepper, chili powder or garlic salt to your liking.
Also, they can be added to many dishes for an extra-nutty texture including keto bars, keto pancakes and even healthy coffee drinks!
Pumpkin seeds can be mixed into baked goods such as cakes, cookies and breads.
In Chinese cuisine, pumpkin seeds are sometimes incorporated into dishes such as stir fried vegetables and fish.
In Mexico it is used as a topping for tostadas, tacos and other dishes.
Where to buy pumpkin seeds
There are several places where you can get pumpkin seeds.
You can get them in any grocery store.
Some even have their own brands of pumpkin seeds and some have organic options.
Another option for getting pumpkin seeds is at local health food stores.
They will generally be located in the same area where you find similar products as sesame seeds and chia seeds, for example.
In the event that you do not get them in your locality, you can always resort to the internet, where you will surely get a lot of options to choose from.
If you want to enjoy pumpkin seeds on your keto diet, it is possible.
But, as long as you’re mindful of your intake and stay within your net carb count, they can be part of a balanced diet, and a delicious snack for those following the low carb, high fat eating plan!
In fact, pumpkin seeds provide healthy fats and protein which will help keep hunger at bay so it’s easy to stick with your weight loss plan!