The clocks have gone back in the UK and suddenly it's time to enjoy what's become one of our most popular celebrations, Halloween. 

The star of the show for many is the humble pumpkin. An estimated 10 million pumpkins are grown in the UK each year, with 95% of these being used to create ghoulish lanterns. Naturally there are concerns around food waste, with environmental charity, Hubbub, estimating that some 18,000 tonnes of pumpkin are thrown away each Halloween, which is the equivalent of 360 million portions of pumpkin pie...

Now we may not all fancy a slice of pumpkin pie, but what are the nutritional benefits of this popular orange squash that we could be missing out on? Pumpkin is in fact an extremely versatile nutrient-rich superfood, high in fibre, vitamins and minerals, while low in calories, it’s a great source of beta carotene, with an average cup of cooked pumpkin providing 245% of the RDA of Vitamin A.

The list goes on. High levels of antioxidants can protect the body against damage by free radicals. High levels of Vitamin A, C and E, plus Iron and Folate can benefit the immune system. Nutrients such as Lutein and Zeaxanthin can help promote eye health and healthy skin. High levels of carotenoids can potentially lower rates of stomach, throat, pancreas and breast cancers. Potassium, Vitamin C, fibre and antioxidants may well benefit heart health.

The good news is that for anyone wanting to take advantage of the health benefits, pumpkin is an extremely versatile food, given it can be roasted, baked and pureed. So before you throw your pumpkin onto the compost heap this year, why not give one of these delicious recipes a try …

Pumpkin humous

Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin & Lentil Soup

Certainly don't waste the seeds – simply wash, dry and roast for 10 minutes on a baking tray with a little salt & maple syrup ...

Halloween comes but once a year. For the rest of the year, maintaining vitamin supplementation to support immunity can be an important part of your daily routine. Please contact Opalbond for all your effervescent tablet, Fastmelt Powders & Drinking Powder enquiries.