Are Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies Healthy

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Pumpkin oatmeal cookiesOne might easily consider pumpkin oatmeal cookies as healthy. Especially since pumpkins – one of the key ingredients is fast turning out to be a rage among dieters, with everything about it being turned into a health food. Moreover, oatmeal has been famously considered as an elixir to health by the diet watchers’ club. However, a cookie is not just about oatmeal and pumpkins; it needs other ingredients, which may not be all that healthy. So, let us probe further into these baked delights to find out if healthy pumpkin oatmeal cookies actually exist…


 


Nutritional composition of pumpkin oatmeal cookies


 


Pumpkin oatmeal cookies are a favorite during the fall holidays. In fact, it is a tradition in several households to serve these cookies for Thanksgiving breakfast. As a result, one will find tons of home baked recipe versions for this cookie. Here is the typical nutritional composition of a pumpkin and oatmeal cookies, however, the values might change according to the recipe used.  


Total calories – 140kcal


Total fat – 6 gm


Saturated fat – 1 gm


Total carbohydrates – 21 gm


Sugar – 12 gm


Dietary fiber – 1 gm


Protein – 1 gm


Sodium – 100 mg


 


These cookies can provide up to 25% of RDA values for Vitamin A and 4% of RDA values for Iron.


 


Health benefits of pumpkin oatmeal cookies:


 


  • Pumpkins are one of the richest sources of carotenoids, especially Beta carotein – the precursor of Vitamin A. Adding pumpkin mash to oat cookies increases the vitamin A content of the cookies many times.


 


 


  • Both oats and pumpkins are a rich source of antioxidant compounds like phyto-nutrients, flavanoids, and B complex Vitamins. These together help prevent an assortment of ailments caused by free radical damage of the cells, including cancers, CVDs, arthritis, etc.


 


 


  • Pumpkin mash and oatmealAgain, both oatmeal and pumpkin flesh are low in calories and high in fiber content. This fiber acts to improve gut motility and provides higher satiety value to the dish, making the person feel full for a longer time.


 


 


Disadvantages of eating pumpkins oatmeal cookies:


 


Pumpkins and oatmeal sure are two healthful ingredients. But, cookies are not made of just these, there are other not so fit adjuncts including butter or shortening, white flour, and sugar. These add unnecessary calories to the baked dish. Although, the key ingredients help reduce cholesterol, fat used to prepare the cookies add direct cholesterol to the diet. Sugar and white flour cause a sudden peak in blood sugar levels, which negates the presence of dietary fibers in oats and pumpkins.


Apart from the additives added the processing that the key ingredients endure ends up damaging several of their virtues. Most antioxidants are heat labile and so are the vitamins present in these foods. Unless fortified, the cookies may not provide any of the antioxidant and vitamin benefits of the raw ingredients.


 


Thus, one cannot just call pumpkin oatmeal cookies healthy or junk food. Several factors like the type of adjunct ingredients used (whole grain or refined, molasses or sugar), amount of ingredients used, and baking process determine the healthiness of these cookies. Even though, there is no denying that these cookies are way more nutritious and lighter than other cookies like chocolate chip cookies or butter cookies; a pumpkin oatmeal cookie is not fit enough to be indulged into regularly. It must be treated as a sugary goodie and consumed occasionally, preferably for the breakfast.


 


Image credits: pbfingers.com, freeeatsfood.com

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