Can pumpkin seeds help you stay healthy? Maybe — they’re a good source of zinc, at least. Zinc deficiency is believed to have a negative effect your immune system, so make sure you’re getting enough. One ounce of pumpkin seeds has more than 2 mg of zinc, which is about 20 to 25 percent of your daily recommended intake, depending on gender.
Pumpkin seeds are loaded with vitamins and minerals, including vitamins B, E, and K, magnesium, and iron.
Nuts and seeds (pumpkin seeds included) are a great source of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are important for heart health and regulating cholesterol.
Pumpkin seeds also contain tryptophan (which your body converts into serotonin and then into melatonin, aka “the sleep hormone”). Eating pumpkin seeds a few hours before bed could help you get a restful night’s sleep.
Most importantly, they’re delicious. Whether you sprinkle raw pumpkin seeds on your salad or roast your pumpkin seeds in the oven with salt and cinnamon, they’re a tasty and satisfying snack.
Kristie Collado is The Daily Meal’s Cook Editor. Follow her on Twitter @KColladoCook.