Pumpkin flour: the benefits and harm
Pumpkin is the most useful vegetable, rich in many vitamins and minerals. Absolutely all of its parts are used as food by a person as an independent product or ingredient of some dishes, with the exception of the rind that is fed to livestock. Today pumpkin seed flour has also gained wide popularity. What is the reason for this? Consider the properties of the product in more detail.
Geography and history of appearance
People knew about the beneficial properties of pumpkin back in the times of ancient Egypt, which is confirmed by many archaeological finds. Then this product was used exclusively by noble families. After the spread of knowledge about the benefits of pumpkin vegetable gained popularity as a healing product in Europe, but most often there only pumpkin oil was used. It was in the Middle Ages, when its popularity was at its peak, the residues of seeds after pressing learned to grind into flour. Pumpkin powder then became widely used in medicine and cooking.
Only in the 16th century, the product was introduced to Asia, where it received further maximum distribution. The benefit of pumpkin flour was appreciated not only by Oriental healers, but also by the cook. The product is now widely used as a component of many national dishes of the countries of the East and until now it is in the Asian regions that most of the vegetables are grown for seeds for making flour.
Among modern nutritionists, flour has become widespread recently, but already many experts from European and American countries recommend eating it for the prevention of many diseases and as a component of complex treatment. Pumpkin meal is often found in the menu of healthy food and vegetarians.
The quality of the product depends largely on the pumpkin variety, from which the seeds were taken for processing into flour. Also many properties of the product are affected by the processing and grinding method. It is best to buy flour from gymnosperms of pumpkin, it is she who enjoys maximum demand due to the pronounced taste.
Of course, only a high-quality product can give an aroma and a pleasant golden hue to the dish. Flour is often used as a separate dish, added to sauces, cereals, dressings and pastries.Pumpkin flour bread or cake acquires a pleasant golden color, unique aroma and flavor. Absolutely all pastries with the addition of this product are distinguished by their pomp and softness. Flour helps to increase the shelf life, baking made with it does not spoil for a long time and does not get stale.
Pumpkin flour is produced from the seeds of the plant by grinding. To ensure that the product is of the highest quality, only certain varieties of vegetables are used. Gymnosperm types of pumpkin are best suited, but large-fruited or hard-tipped ones with good quality indicators can be used. Each batch is produced only from a certain sort of pumpkin, which is subsequently the determinant of the variety of the final product.
Flour from gymnosperms is more popular among consumers because it has pronounced properties of the product. Also for producers such vegetables are more acceptable, because their seeds are easily processed.
It is important to note that pumpkin flour is not low grades. Regardless of the pumpkin variety, all products from vegetable seeds are classified as “premium” and can be marketed as stand-alone products or as part of special baking mixes.
The benefits of processed pumpkin seeds are largely identical to the benefits of the “mother” product - the pumpkin itself. Flour has a unique composition, enriched with a variety of vitamins, minerals and amino acids, which are very rare in nature. The final product of processing keeps in itself:
- vitamins of groups B, A, C, K, H, PP and F;
- vegetable proteins;
- alimentary fiber;
- mineral compounds of zinc, calcium, phosphorus, and so on;
- bioflavonoids and amino acids (about 50 items).
Among the products of the same type, pumpkin flour is a champion in the content of zinc, potassium and magnesium. Among the amino acids in its composition, a special place is occupied by arginine, lysine, glycine, glutamine and many others that positively affect the functioning of the immune system. The composition rich with useful substances allows to prevent the development of such illnesses as hypertension, diabetes mellitus and obesity.
Useful properties of flour
The product rich with arginin interferes with early aging of an organism, being the strongest natural antioxidant. Also, amino acids help strengthen the body's immunity, have anti-inflammatory, bactericidal and anti-allergic effects.It is believed that pumpkin flour can even prevent the development of tumors in the body.Arginine in the composition of the product reduces blood sugar levels.
Zinc in the composition of flour controls and normalizes the metabolism in the body, is involved in the process of blood formation and the formation of immunity. This element is indispensable for men's health, as it occupies an important place in the functioning of the reproductive system, stimulating testosterone production and improving spermatogenesis. The product also stimulates potency and has a beneficial effect on the work of the prostate gland as a whole. A lack of zinc in any organism, including the female one, can provoke the development of infertility, impaired memory, vision and mental abilities. Zinc is also important in the work of the nervous system and prevents the development of depressions and delays in the development of children. One can talk endlessly about the beneficial properties of all substances contained in flour, for good reason this product is considered to be a real source of health.
Recommendations for use
Pumpkin flour, the benefits and harms of which are incompatible with each other, can be safely used along with any drugs. It has a beneficial effect on the liver, healing it and removing the toxic load.For those suffering from problems with the digestive system, the product will be an excellent alternative to other, more severe types of flour.As part of complex therapy, pumpkin flour can be taken for treatment and prevention:
- type 2 diabetes;
- diseases of the excretory and genital systems of men and women;
- skin diseases (acne, diathesis, eczema, urticaria, herpes, psoriasis, etc.);
- liver disease;
- cardiovascular ailments;
- skin lesions (cuts, bedsores, burns);
- allergic reactions;
- chronic inflammatory diseases.
Also, the product ideally cleanses the body of toxins and slags, improves the functioning of the nervous system and the entire psycho-emotional state of the person as a whole. Pumpkin flour perfectly strengthens the immune system, helps prevent the occurrence of tumors, proctological diseases, respiratory diseases, throat, mouth and eyes. Also, the product will be an excellent solution in the prevention of seasonal avitaminosis, an additional source of nutrients for athletes.
Bans on use
It is important that flour can be eaten nursing and pregnant women, children, as well as people weakened after illnesses or operations.This product is prohibited only to those who have an individual intolerance to this vegetable, or to patients with gallstone disease and cholecystitis.
For dieters, you should know that the nutritional value of 100 grams of the product is 305 kilocalories.
Use in cooking
Recipes with pumpkin flour can be found on many culinary sites. It is used mainly as a thickener for sauces, dressings or first courses and as a component that improves the taste, enriches the dish with vitamins and prolongs shelf life. It is important to know that directly from the pumpkin flour alone no dishes are prepared, the product is only added to the wheat flour in the amount of 2 spoons per kilogram of the main powder.
In a complex with spices, the product from pumpkin seeds can be used for breading meat products. This flour goes well with wheat, as well as with any dried fruits, nuts, cereals and vegetables. Most often, the product is an auxiliary component in recipes for bread, pies, sweet bars and halva.
Use in cosmetology
To heal and rejuvenate the skin, pumpkin seed flour can be used as part of various masks and creams. The composition of the product is rich in amino acids involved in the synthesis of collagen.Zinc helps to normalize the sebaceous glands and prevent the formation of acne. To achieve the maximum cosmetic effect, it is recommended to use flour simultaneously as an external agent, and as part of food.
How to take pumpkin flour? You can simply dilute 1-2 teaspoons of the product in water or another drink and drink this mixture twice a day. Course duration is 2-4 weeks. It is advisable to repeat the procedure every season.
Regular use of flour will help prevent hair loss and dandruff, as well as strengthen hair and nails.