Well….if you’re consuming your pumpkin spice in latte form, it’s probably not so nice because of all the added sugar. BUT, you might be surprised to see how these fall flavors are celebrated in Chinese medicine and can be good for your health.
Take pumpkin for instance. Now, we’re talking real pumpkin here (not just the flavor), but pumpkin has some real health benefits and may be prescribed even by Chinese medicine doctors for certain health conditions including diabetes. Pumpkin is a good source of beta-carotene, fiber, vitamin B, C, and E, iron, and potassium. Sounds pretty good right? There is also scientific research to show that pumpkin intake can improve insulin levels and lower blood sugar, which is what makes it a good recommendation for a diabetic or pre-diabetic patient.
Another key ingredient that goes along with pumpkin in pumpkin spice, is of course the cinnamon. Cinnamon can also help control blood sugar, making it useful in the management of diabetes. In Chinese medicine, it is often used to increase vitality, treat abdominal pain, reduced appetite, diarrhea, and to alleviate other pain as well.
Check out recipes using pumpkin, cinnamon, and more in Pacific College of Oriental Medicine Faculty Member Yuan Wang’s book titled: Ancient Wisdom, Modern Kitchen.