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Pumpkin Seed Oil
Bottom line up front:
Pumpkin seed oil may help lower cholesterol levels due its phytosterol content.
It may help with enlarged prostate symptoms due to its zinc content.
It is likely safe and is a great candidate to be added into existing recipes.
What is it?
It is the oil that is extracted from pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seed oil is known to contain phytosterols and high levels of zinc. Phytosterols are found in plants and have a structure that is similar to cholesterol. When present in our food, our bowels are more likely to absorb the phytosterols and less likely to absorb cholesterol. Ultimately, activing like a cholesterol blocker in our bowels. Zinc is important for healthy prostate tissue. Healthy prostates have one of the highest concentrations of zinc in the body.
What does that mean?
Eating pumpkin seed oil and the phytosterols in it might lead to lower cholesterol levels. In the Blue Zones, where people are more likely to live to 90 plus years old, they eat a very plant heavy diet. The phytosterols in that diet might lead to the improved cardiovascular health the people in those zones experience. Also, the zinc in pumpkin seed oil may help support prostate health. Some small studies have shown an improvement in prostate symptoms when study participants took pumpkin seed oil.
Why might you take it?
To lower cholesterol.
To help with enlarged prostate symptoms.
How much can I take?
No set amount is recommended.
Supplements range from 100mg to 2000mg per day.
As an oil, about 2 teaspoons per day.
What happens if I don’t get enough?
What happens if I take in too much?
Too much pumpkin seed oil could cause gastrointestinal discomfort for some people.
What can I eat?
Pumpkin seed oil (cold pressed)
I know I look forward to my yearly dose of baked pumpkin seeds around Halloween.
I have not previously taken and pumpkin seed oil supplement and I probably won’t. Would I consider trying pumpkin seed oil on salads? Yes. Would I consider using it to flavor other foods? Absolutely. Will I continue to eat baked pumpkin seeds? Yup. I suspect the main benefits of pumpkin seeds are the phytosterols and zinc which can be found in a plant slanted diet. And ultimately the plant slanted diet appears the way to go long term.