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Natural Theater The nutritional and anticancer properties of pumpkin and an innovative method of ...

The nutritional and anticancer properties of the pumpkin and an innovative seasoning method

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The conference took place in the Conference Room of the Medical Surgical Society of Bologna. The institutional greetings were held by Prof. Giorgio Cantelli Forti, President of the National Academy of Agriculture, by Prof. Claudio Borghi, President of the Medical Surgical Society and by Prof. Rosanna Scipioni, Scientific Coordinator of the review. The speakers were Moreno Morisi, agricultural entrepreneur, production manager of Morisi company, Dr. Cecilia Prata, Professor of Applied Biochemistry and Biochemistry of Nutrition - University of Bologna, Prof. Cristina Bragaglia, Deputy Delegate of Bologna - Italian Academy of the Kitchen. At the end of the interventions Francesco, a young budding 12-year-old farmer, told of his passion for agriculture and the cultivation of pumpkin that he is developing on the family farm in Pavullo sul Frignano (MO), with the help of his father .

An innovative seasoning method.

"For 3 years we have been using a brand new seasoning system for pumpkins that is giving us excellent results in terms of product quality - began Moreno Morisi - It is a precise coordinated control of temperature and humidity, in cold rooms for ripening from 15 at 18 degrees and with 65% humidity, which through cycles of raising and lowering the temperature causes a reduction in humidity in a short time, with a consequent increase in the sugar content. In this way the pumpkin is sweeter and above all it avoids the proliferation of diseases and fungi given by the excessive humidity present at the time of harvest. Once the pumpkins were dried in the sun in a long and delicate process, today thanks to this method, the times are reduced and the product is better. We use this treatment both for the edible ones, such as the Delica and the long Violin, but also for the ornamental ones so that they can last longer and be even more aesthetically beautiful ".

Pumpkin (Nikhita Singhalby unsplash.com)

Useful as an antioxidant and can also be consumed by diabetics.

"Belonging to the Cucurbitaceae family, it was part of popular medicine and represented one of the livelihoods of the poorest populations - says Dr. Cecilia Prata - in recent years it has been gaining considerable interest thanks to the identification of the nutritional and phytochemical composition, to which the various properties attributed to it are correlated, such as antimicrobial, antioxidant and anticancer, thanks to the phytoestrogens present in the pulp that counteract the onset of neoplasms caused by hormones, especially in the breast and prostate, while the oily extract of the seeds reduces the symptoms of benign prostate tumors. The belief that the consumption of pumpkin can bring problems in case of diabetes is completely false.

Known by the Romans and praised by Charles Perrault.

“The pumpkin was not unknown to the Romans, but they were small cucurbits, which, emptied, were used as containers for objects. The pumpkin we eat today is one of the many vegetables that Columbus brought us from his trip across the ocean. He discovered it in Cuba on December 3, 1492, but it was originally from Mexico and Peru - continues Prof. Cristina Bragaglia - but it had spread towards the North, until it became a fundamental element of the nutrition of the Amerindian peoples. Since the end of the fifteenth century, pumpkin has been grown in Europe until it was two centuries later at the center of many peasant preparations. Literature mentions it and praises it: at the end of the 600th century Charles Perrault made it Cinderella's carriage, three centuries after the famous Disney film made it a media icon. Today the pumpkin is inextricably linked to Halloween, a postmodern transformation of an ancient Celtic tradition ".

The passion of young people towards agriculture.

“The first step of the agri-food supply chains, that is production, has always been an expression of a true passion. Francesco, a budding farmer, is a twelve-year-old boy who since the age of 6 has cultivated a spontaneous and boundless passion for agriculture - concluded Prof. Rosanna Scipioni - The sachets of seeds were the gifts he preferred to receive instead of toys, and cultivation (including pumpkin) his favorite activity after school commitments. It is for passions like this, and for that of many young people who make similar choices, that we have a duty to respect and support agriculture, the effort of those who practice it and the wealth that it is able to represent for many geographical and cultural realities. . "

The food industry needs to do more to support healthy eating

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