Orange-fleshed squash offers
protection against lung
cancer, and is particularly
rich in vitamins C and E.
Squashes are related to pumpkin, cucumber, and melon, and have a lightly nutty flavor that is ideal in both sweet and savory cooking. The orange-fleshed varieties, such as butternut, tend to contain the highest levels of beneficial nutrients. Butternut squash is one of our richest sources of beta-cryptoxanthin, a carotene that is linked with protection from lung cancer. The other carotenes it contains reduce the risk of colon cancer and prostate problems in men. They may also help reduce inflammation associated with conditions such as asthma and arthritis. The vegetable is also a very good source of several vitamins and minerals, including antioxidant vitamins C and E, calcium, iron, and magnesium.
- Contains protective chemicals against lung and colon cancers.
- Rich in a range of vitamins and minerals.
- High fiber source of complex carbohydrates.
All winter squashes can be stored for up to six months in a cool, dry, dark, airy, frostfree place. To prepare, cut in half with a sharp knife and scoop out the seeds. Squashes can be stuffed and baked, or skinned, sliced, and roasted as an alternative to potatoes. Roast squash makes an excellent soup. The carotenes in squash are better absorbed if you eat them with a little oil.
DID YOU KNOW?
Don’t throw away nutritious squash seeds—they can be dried in an oven on a low heat and eaten in the same way as pumpkin seeds.