Nutrition Questions and Answers
Vital Health Zone is proud to announce Lesa Rusher, who is our resident naturopathic expert and who is available to answer questions about nutrition and health.
Lesa Rusher is a qualified naturopath with a thriving business in Canberra, Australia and has a wealth of experience treating clients on a variety of health issues. Lesa Rusher's full credentials can be found in our experts area.
Lesa Rusher will answer your nutrition-related questions.
Q: I am almost 150kg. I am trying to lose weight and reduce my cigarette habit at the same time.
I eat around 200 grams of roasted pumpkin seeds every day. What do you think about pumpkin seeds. Can they help me in this quantity? Should I continue eating them, reduce or stop?
I have diverticular disease which was discovered when I had a colonoscopy last month.
A: Congratulations on your decision to try to lose weight and kick your cigarette habit. It may be difficult to try to do both at the same time, so you may need some support to help you achieve your goals in both areas. Feel comfortable in seeking assistance if you need it.
There no evidence to suggest that eating pumpkin seeds in high quantity can assist in weight loss. In fact, all seeds are high in fat (albeit the "good fats", the polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids), which means if you eat them in such high amounts, they can contribute to weight gain.
The calorie content of pumpkin seeds are: 25g = 155 calories and 200g = 1240 calories
For an average male, the daily recommended calories is between around 2000 - 2500 calories, so you can see if you look at the calorie content of 200g of pumpkin seeds, you are eating half your daily calories just in a snack.
Pumpkin seeds are a really great source of zinc, magnesium, betacarotene, iron and phosphorus and they are also an excellent source of the amino acids alanine, glycine and glutamic acid. Pumpkin seeds also provide fibre into the diet.
Pumpkin seeds are especially beneficial for men (due to their zinc content), they can assist with helping to provide some protection against the development of prostate cancer and any issues with prostate health. Just ensure you eat the pumpkin seeds unsalted and plain (not roasted), to provide you with the most benefits.
You should eat 1-2 tablespoons of pumpkin seeds a day at most, to get the most nutritional benefits without the excessive calorie load.
Please note that the information provided is for educational purposes only and is not meant to diagnose or treat medical conditions. Consult with your medical physician regarding appropriateness of using supplements in your healing process.
Enjoy better health!