We consume squash all the time but know little about it. We have refreshing drinks made of a squash or eat delicious foods made of it, without giving much thought to the enigmatic taste and healthfulness that the food offers. Commonly thought of as vegetable for cooking, but botanically defined as fruit, squash belongs to Cucurbita family of plants and can be classified into several types of squashes. There are summer squash and winter squash, which further branch out into yellow squash, orange squash and green squash. It may not be easy to identify squash; here's a lowdown on the most commonly used squash around us to help us gain more perspective on the wonder food.
Most Popular Types Of Squash -
We bet many of you didn't know this - yes, zucchini is a kind of squash. It is a green summer squash that has fast gained popularity for its proven nutritive properties. It is low in carbohydrates and calories and contains healthy fats.
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Negative calorie foods for weight loss: Zucchini squash promotes weight loss
It is a winter squash that is slightly sweet in taste. It is used both in savouries and desserts, including its kernels. Pumpkin has towering antioxidant properties due to the presence of alpha and beta carotenes.
It is an oval-shaped, yellow or orange-coloured winter variety. After cooking, it can be separated into long, thin strands that look somewhat like spaghetti. That's why, it is often used as a low-cal, healthy substitute to conventional spaghetti.
This is also a winter squash and is relatively bigger in size. The whole fruit, with its seeds and rind, is usually roasted and made into appetisers, snacks or light meals. It is recognised for its high content of vitamin, beta carotene, antioxidant, which protect from heart ailments and other chronic illnesses.
Patty Pan -
Also known as scallop squash due its scalloped edges, patty pan squash is a small, yellow, summer variety. It is a good source of folate, manganese and vitamin C, and ranks extremely low in calorie count.
(Also Read: Litchi Squash Recipe)
Pumpkin squash is full of antioxidants
Health Benefits Of Squash
- Squash is an astoundingly versatile, flavourful and healthful food. All kinds of squashes - both winter and summer - are low in calories but rich in fibre, vitamins and many other nutrients.
- Summer squash varieties contain high water content and that's why, they are often used to prepare summer drinks. They boast of super low-calorie count and are an ideal addition to weight loss diet. They are also rich in vitamin B and vitamin C. These kinds can be baked, roasted or grilled to make desserts or can be spiralised to be used as a healthy alternative to pasta.
- Winter squashes are denser with nutrients like fibre and vitamin A, which make them a good food for healthy digestion and overall health. Winter squash is commonly boiled, steamed or roasted for soups and salads.
All the above information will give you a good enough reason to bring home some squash and adopt the nutritious food in your regular diet.