Although pumpkin seeds are small, they pack a major punch—especially if you’re following a plant-based diet. Many vegetarians are faced with the same question almost every day, “Where do you get your protein?” While the best sources of plant-based protein comes from nuts and seeds, one seed stands above the rest: pumpkin seeds.
Two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds provide a whopping 9 grams of complete protein, which means that it contains all 9 essential amino acids. Pumpkin seeds also contain 23% of your daily dose of iron and 14% of your daily zinc. This makes pumpkin seeds the ideal snack for vegans and vegetarians who are at a higher risk of protein, iron, and zinc deficiencies. But pumpkin seeds aren’t just great for vegetarians—they’re also great for athletes and anyone seeking a clean, healthy lifestyle.
Pumpkin seeds contain an abundance of minerals that are essential to optimal health. Two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds provides 19% of your daily copper and 42% of your daily manganese, a powerful antioxidant. Both of these minerals work synergistically to maintain healthy, glowing skin and strong bones.
These seeds also contain 37% of your daily magnesium and 33% of your daily phosphorus, two mineral that play critical roles in energy production. Magnesium cannot be found in sufficient quantities from meat or dairy, which means that we must rely on plant-based sources to obtain it. Luckily, pumpkin seeds contain more magnesium than any other common whole food.
No other nut or seed packs this much nutrition per ounce, which is why pumpkin seeds should become a staple in everyone’s diet. They’re a great addition to oatmeal, salads, or your latest baking project!