Pumpkins are great decorations and definitely a staple of the Halloween holiday. Houses are lined with jack-o-lanterns, painted pumpkins, glittery pumpkins, and other varieties of this tradition. Shortly after the spooky night though, they end up in the garbage, or in some cases, are left out on porches to rot until someone gets around to throwing them away, or little critters decide to feast on them. So what are people to do with pumpkins when Halloween is over? There are actually quite a few ideas, and some have amazing health benefits.
A pumpkin, typically thought of as a vegetable, is in reality a fruit, and it is packed with vitamins. There are hundreds of recipes for this tasty fruit, but any way it is prepared and consumed, the nutrients are readily available. A half a cup of cooked pumpkin provides roughly three times the amount of vitamins, and about ten percent of iron recommended in the diet daily. Not only are pumpkins healthy, but they are low fat as well. A half a cup of pumpkin is equivalent to only 40 calories. Pumpkin also contains the antioxidant zeaxanthin. Zeaxanthin helps protect eyes from the dangerous ultraviolet sun rays. Those interested in using the meat of the pumpkin in recipes should make sure to thoroughly wash their hands, scoop out the innards with a clean spoon and set it aside in the refrigerator before any additional hands begin to touch the pumpkin for carving preparations. Once a pumpkin has been used as a jack-o-lantern, it is not safe to consume.
People are constantly looking for skin products that do not cost a fortune, which they usually do. The rind of a pumpkin can actually be turned into a face mask that can be used to exfoliate skin. Pumpkin contains enyzymes, vitamins A, C and E, zinc, essential fatty acids, as well as several others that might be beneficial to the skin when ingested. According to Science Daily, pumpkin skin can inhibit microbes that can cause skin infections.
There are of course other ideas about what to do with pumpkins when Halloween is over. For example, donating them to a local zoo or farm is an amazing way to recycle these fruits. Some zoos and farms actually reach out to the public asking for donations, as their animals love the tasty treats. People who are interested in doing so should call ahead of time to ensure that the zoo or farm is in need of pumpkins, and remember that the pumpkins need to be in good condition, not rotting, in order for the animals to eat them.
Pumpkins can also be used in gardens. They can be hollowed out and used as a holder for plants. When they begin to rot, simply dig a hole and shove it into the ground. The pumpkin will naturally compose and turn into spectacular fertilizer. When spring arrives, the garden will be healthy and ready for new plants with an amazing nutrient-packed fertilizer already in the ground.
Many have wondered what they should do with pumpkins after Halloween is over. Many just never knew that they can be incredibly useful body health, skin health and even the health of a garden. Perhaps these healthy fruits will help prepare everyone for the madness of the next holiday season that will surely ensue.
By: Rebecca Savastio