Squash is one of the healthy vegetables people eat today. Also known as cucurbita, it is a fruit of the herbaceous vine in the Cucurbitaceae or gourd family. The following are the health benefits of potatoes, along with a sample recipe.

Health Benefits

Vitamin A

One health benefit of squash is vitamin A. The vitamin, also referred to as retinol, is popular for promoting clear vision. It also helps maintain the integrity of the skin and the mucus membranes. Without vitamin A, a person is prone to having blurred vision or difficulty seeing in the dark or at night. To add, the condition of the skin appears glowy or radiant with vitamin A. Moreover, vitamin A acts as an antioxidant, helping the body get rid of unwanted agents like toxins and free radicals, which cause diseases like heart disorders and cancer.

Fiber

Another health benefit of potatoes is fiber. Fiber acts as a sweep, helping the body get rid of unwanted agents like toxins and free radicals; this way, the body will be free from diseases like cancer and cardiovascular disease. Also, fiber improves digestion through enhancing the peristaltic movement of the intestines. With fiber, conditions like constipation, hemorrhoids, and diverticulitis will be prevented. Furthermore, fiber also helps reduce blood cholesterol levels, preventing heart diseases like hypertension, coronary artery disease, and stroke.

Anti-Inflammatory

Squash also helps prevent inflammation and infection. According to Organic Facts, squash contains omega-3 fatty acids and carotenoids like beta-carotene, zeaxanthin, and lutein. Squash also has anti-inflammatory polysacharides called homogalacturonan. This way, squash can help decrease inflammatory diseases of the cardiovascular system and digestive system. In line with infection, the publication noted that squash seeds have direct correlation to antimicrobial, antiparasitic, and antifungal activities, protecting the body from infections like colds, tinea, and tapeworms.

Anti-Cancer

Another reason to eat squash is its anti-cancer effects. According to Best Health Magazine, cancer cells are blocked from communicating and acting independently. As per trials at the Cancer Research Center – Hawaii, as cited by the publication, cellular communication facilitates tranfer of growth-inhibiting signals from normal to abnormal cells. The carotenoids and beta carotene are the ones responsible for this communication.

Respiratory Benefits

Squash also helps promote respiratory health. According to Live Strong, researchers have found that lack of vitamin A secondary to a carcinogen in cigarette smoke may result to emphysema. Thus, the vitamin A, as well as the carotenoid beta-cryptoxanthin, present in squash helps reduce the incidence of lung carcinoma. As per the publication, this reveals why some smokers do not develop lung cancer while other smokers do.

Sample Recipe

One recipe that has squash as its ingredients is Easy Cajun Grilled Veggies. According to All Recipes, the ingredients are one-fourth cup of light olive oil, one teaspoon of Cajun seasoning, half teaspoon salt, half teaspoon cayenne pepper, one tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, two zucchinis (cut into half-inch wedges), and two yellow squash (cut into half-inch slices).

To prepare, as per the publication, the Cajun seasoning salt, olive oil, Worcestershire sauce, and cayenne pepper are mixed together in a small bowl. Next, the white onions, zucchinis, and yellow squash are placed in a bowl and covered with the olive oil mixture. Then, the bowl is covered and the vegetables are marinated in the refrigerator at least 30 minutes. After that, an outdoor grill is preheated for high heat and is mildly oil grated. Finally, the marinated vegetables are placed on skewers or on the grill and cooked for five minutes or to desired doneness.

Squash is nutritious because it has many health benefits. Thus, it can be easily added to various meal recipes at home, at work, or at school to promote people’s health and wellness.

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