‘Tis The Season of Pumpkins!
Updated: Aug 14, 2019
As leaves turn golden, and vibrant hues of yellows, russet browns and oranges to warm up their surroundings; the air is getting crisp, and nights drawing - nothing screams Autumn quite like pumpkins!
Although pumpkins have now become synonymous to Halloween (which we don’t celebrate due to its pagan roots) they are in fact of great value in prophetic medicine. Yes, they are a powerhouse of nutrition and this post will discuss how truly amazing this BIG beauty of a vegetable really is!!!
The prophet Muhammad (may the peace and salutations of Allah be upon him) loved the taste of pumpkin,
Anas bin Malik (radiy Allah anhu) said; a tailor invited the messenger of Allah (salal Allahu aleyhi wa sallam) to a meal which he had prepared. Anas said: I went along with the messenger of Allah (salal Allahu aleyhi wa sallam) to that feast. He presented to Allah’s messenger barley bread and soup containing pumpkin, and sliced pieces of meat. Anas said: I saw Allah’s messenger going after the pumpkin round the dish, so I have always liked the pumpkin since that day.”
[Sahin Muslim: 2041]
In addition, it is said to be the plant which Allah specifically caused to grow for Yunus (aleyhi salaam) when he was cast out onto a barren shore, for sustenance and healing.
Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):
"And, verily, Yunus was one of the Messengers … Then a (big) fish swallowed him and he had done an act worthy of blame. Had he not been of those who glorify Allah, he would have indeed remained inside its belly until the Day of Resurrection. But We cast him forth on the naked shore while he was sick, and We caused a plant of gourd to grow over him."
[al-Saffat 37:139, 142-146]
The Mufassirin (commentators) said: The gourd (al-Yaqtin) is a kind of pumpkin. Some of them described the benefits of the pumpkin, such as: it grows quickly, it provides shade, it has large, smooth leaves, it keeps flies away and its fruit provides good nourishment: it can be eaten raw or cooked, and its skin may be eaten too. It is known that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) liked this kind of pumpkin and used to look for it on the plate of food. (Tafsir ibn Kathir)
Pumpkin has a fantastic range of health benefits, it is one of the best known sources for beta-carotene: a powerful antioxidant which gives those juicy orange vegetable and fruits their vibrant orange colour. From among it’s benefits is that it reduces the risk of developing certain types of cancer, decreases the risk of obesity and is an absolutely great source of fibre!
It’s leaves have an abundance of vitamins A and C, as well as calcium and iron which not only helps heal wounds but maintains healthy skin and teeth.
It’s seeds are excellent for prostrate and one of the the richest plant sources of zinc - which is essential for men’s reproductive health.
Rich in vitamin A and C, which is so vital for immune health; it’s amazing how Allah provides us with pumpkin just when we’re heading into cold and flu season!
So, change your life, a Sunnah at a time; eat pumpkin, and get your wee little ones involved in the whole process of preparing. For most, the fame of Pumpkins sadly start and abruptly end at Halloween, but Muslims must go above and beyond that, and really make it a part of our diets, truly realising that our beloved prophet Muhammad (may the peace and salutations of Allah be upon him) liked this veg and how it is said to be the plant that Allah specifically grew for Yunus (aleyhi salaam).
With being so versatile a vegetable you really can go all out and creative. Make a hearty pumpkin soup, or pumpkin-spice latte or even a scrumptiously divine American pumpkin cheesecake like we did (see below)- there really are no ends to what one can make!!
Oh, and yes keep your eyes peeled for some lovely FREE pumpkin related printable!