The Herbs of Smoothie Essentials: Pumpkin Seeds


Add a Boost with Green Blend, feature Pumpkin Seeds

Pepita (from Mexican Spanish: pepita de calabaza, “little seed of squash”) is a Spanish culinary term for the pumpkin seed, the edible seed of a pumpkin or other cultivar of squash (genus Cucurbita). The seeds are typically rather flat and asymmetrically oval, and light green in color inside a whitehull. The word can refer either to the hulled kernel or unhulled whole seed, and most commonly refers to the roasted end product. The pressed oil of the roasted seeds of a specific pumpkin variety is also used in Central and Eastern European cuisine (see Pumpkin seed oil).

According to the USDA,[1] one gram of roasted pepita contain 5.69 mg L-tryptophan and one gram of pepita protein contains 17.2 mg[2] of L-tryptophan. One cup of milk contains 183 mg. This high tryptophan content makes pepita of interest to researchers studying the treatment of anxiety disorders.[3] Some eat the seeds as preventative measure against onset of anxiety attacks, clinical depression and other mood disorders.

Some studies[which?] have also found pumpkin seeds to prevent arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and to regulate cholesterol levels in the body.

A 2011 Egyptian study found that in rats, pumpkin seed oil has anti-hypertensive and cardio-protective properties.[4]

A 2009 double-blind, placebo-controlled Korean study found that in men suffering from benign prostatic hyperplasia (n=47), pumpkin seed oil is an effective treatment

[1] “Search the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference”. Retrieved 2011-05-25.

[2] This second number was obtained by dividing the quantity of L-Tryptophan published by the USDA in dried pumpkin seed by the total of the quantities of all the amino acids, and then multiplying by 1000 mg/g.

[3] Hudson, C; Hudson, S; MacKenzie, J (2007). “Protein-source tryptophan as an efficacious treatment for social anxiety disorder: A pilot study”. Canadian journal of physiology and pharmacology 85 (9): 928–32. doi:10.1139/Y07-082. PMID 18066139.

[4] El-Mosallamy, AE; Sleem, AA; Abdel-Salam, OM; Shaffie, N; Kenawy, SA (2011). “Antihypertensive and Cardioprotective Effects of Pumpkin Seed Oil”. Journal of medicinal food 15 (2): 111114095452002. doi:10.1089/jmf.2010.0299. PMID 22082068.



About Smoothie Essentials - ShelleRae

Welcome! I am ShelleRae and I am very excited you are here. I joined the Smoothie Essentials team about 5 years ago now. Always health conscious and into prevention versus medication it seemed natural when the opportunity came up to take on the creation of this blog and the MatchaGT blog as well. As mother to three and surrogate to many more I've practiced much of what I write on sometimes with great success and other times with a bit less. My friends and family are my test kitchen and my facts are most often from WebMD - they seem to have a fairly accurate and conservative approach. The Smoothie Essentials product is a line of boosts that add functionality to one's daily foods without adding flavor or colors. (except for MatchaGT and green blend) making it easy to "hide" them from the finicky eaters we all know and love. From stirring them into yogurts, smoothies, frappes and even juice drinks it all come out with the original flavor being center star.. My inspiration comes from others who also are striving to live a better life through lifestyle changes. More information is available at or by emailing

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