5 Amazing Health Benefits Of Yellow Squash

5 Amazing Health Benefits Of Yellow Squash

It’s a yellow zucchini, right? Yellow squash is actually much less popular than zucchini, despite the fact that it is just as nutritious. Yellow squash is a form of summer squash that includes a few straight-neck and crookneck varieties. You can find these varieties at farmers markets and grocery stores during the summer, which is when they are in season. 

What Is Yellow Squash?

Yellow squash is a type of summer squash within the Cucurbita plant family. It has thin yellow skin and pale flesh and small edible seeds inside. It looks similar to zucchini, but the seeds are bigger and it grows in less uniform, cylindrical shapes. The primary difference between yellow squash and winter squashes is that winter squashes are more mature because they have more time to grow before harvest time. That means that winter squashes tend to have richer nutrient profiles, whereas summer squashes tend to have higher water content. 

Yellow Squash Nutrition Facts

Yellow squash is a non-starchy vegetable that is not a carb or starch like potatoes or winter squashes. Many of the antioxidants and nutrients exist in the skin, which is why nutritionists encourage people to eat this veggie with the skin on. Below, you’ll find the nutrition facts for one medium, raw yellow squash:

  • Calories: 38
  • Carbohydrates: 8 grams (g)
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Fat: 2 g
  • Protein: 2 g
  • Potassium: 15% of daily value (DV)
  • Vitamin C: 56% of DV
  • Phosphorus: 7% of DV
  • Vitamin K: 11% of DV
  • Iron: 9% of DV
  • Folate: 14% of DV
  • Magnesium: 8% of DV
  • Vitamin B6: 10% of DV

Full Of Fiber

One of the primary benefits of increasing your fiber intake is that you can help fight constipation. One cup of squash contains over a gram of fiber, which may help improve digestion and reduce the risk of gastrointestinal problems, including hemorrhoids and diverticulitis. Several studies concluded that fiber-rich foods may also help manage blood sugar levels. This helps you avoid energy dips that result in overeating or unhealthy cravings later in the day. 

Rich In Antioxidants

Although the flesh of yellow squash contains antioxidants, the peel is where they are primarily concentrated. The antioxidants in yellow squash include carotenoids and phenolic compounds, including lutein, dehydroascorbic acid, beta-carotene, and zeaxanthin. Many of these compounds exhibit pro-apoptotic activity, meaning they may be able to fight cancer. Beta-carotene, for example, converts to vitamin A in the body and supports healthy vision, skin renewal, and immune health. Lutein and zeaxanthin may protect the eyes from age-related diseases and vision loss, reducing the risk of macular degeneration and glaucoma. 

Improved Immune Health

As an excellent source of vitamin C, yellow squash is a great immune-boosting food. Vitamin C acts like an antioxidant and works to defend the body against free radicals and oxidative stress. Experts concluded that vitamin C stimulates neutrophil migration to the site of infection. It may also enhance microbial killing and oxidant generation, protecting host tissues from excessive damage. Vitamin C also increases your body’s ability to absorb iron in the digestive tract, which may help protect you against anemia. 

Better Heart Health

Calling back to the first benefit of yellow squash, the fiber content may help reduce bad LDL cholesterol levels. Preventing LDL cholesterol from oxidizing can help reduce your risk of clogged arteries. Additionally, the vitamin K in yellow squash works to protect your heart against atherosclerosis. It does this by inhibiting calcium build-up inside your blood vessels. This can prevent them from bursting or tearing, which may cause life-threatening illnesses like heart attack, kidney failure, and stroke. 

Low In Carbs And Calories

With approximately 20 calories in a small yellow squash or 40 in a medium-sized one, yellow squash is great for people watching their waistline. The few calories in this vegetable come from the low carb content. One cup of yellow squash only contains about four grams of carbs, meaning it is a great replacement for higher carb foods like potatoes and corn. Even though it has fewer calories and carbs than other foods, yellow squash contains fiber, which helps you feel full. Substitute this veggie for high-calorie and high-carb boxed noodles by spiralizing it!

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