Spaghetti squash benefits a lot. Spaghetti squash is a winter vegetable rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Due to its low-calorie content and high fiber content, it may aid weight loss and digestive health. Try roasted spaghetti squash as a low-carb alternative to pasta, combined with veggies, protein, whole grains, and healthy fats.
Spaghetti Squash Benefits
Supports Strong Bones
Spaghetti squash provides several minerals that contribute to bone health, including manganese. Manganese helps your body to maintain proper bone structure, supports bone metabolism, and may help to prevent osteoporosis, although research investigating the role of the mineral in osteoporosis prevention has yielded mixed results. The vitamins and minerals in spaghetti squash work together synergistically. Getting nutrients through food (as opposed to via dietary supplements) is usually recommended.
The vitamin A and vitamin E in spaghetti squash are beneficial for protecting the eyes from oxidative damage that leads to age-related macular degeneration. Obtaining these nutrients from food rather than from supplements provides health benefits and minimizes the toxicity risk posed by supplementation.
May Help Prevent Cancer
Components in spaghetti squash and other related plants, called cucurbitacins, have been shown to kill cancer cells in preliminary in vitro studies, suggesting the need for further investigation.8 Additionally, vitamin C and vitamin A are well known for their antioxidant effects.
May Support Bladder Health
Some studies have suggested that a seed extract derived from spaghetti squash may help manage urinary stress incontinence—a condition that occurs when the pelvic muscles that support the bladder and the sphincter muscle, which controls the urinary flow, become weak. However, studies investigating this benefit involved a supplement derived from spaghetti squash and other plant sources.
Components derived from spaghetti squash may also aid in the management of overactive bladder syndrome—the frequent urge to urinate followed by an involuntary loss of urine. But again, studies so far, have involved supplements made using compounds from spaghetti squash and other plant sources.
May Enhance Memory
The B vitamins found in spaghetti squash and other foods enable the brain to communicate memories and messages from one area to another. Furthermore, uncontrolled diabetes is a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease. The impact of high blood sugar on the development of Alzheimer’s has led to the disease being coined “type 3 diabetes” by some health professionals. Several varieties of winter squash have been shown to prevent blood sugar from rising after eating in animal studies.
Spaghetti squash is a low-calorie food. Its fiber content makes it filling. Since people use it as a substitute for high-calorie foods, it can be a valuable part of a weight-control regimen. Maintaining a healthy weight can improve many conditions, including diabetes and heart disease. To get the maximum value from vegetables, eat them without added oils.
Because of the appearance of spaghetti squash, you might assume that it is rich in fiber. It has over 2 grams per serving, which is more than regular pasta but not as much as many other vegetables. The fiber in the diet contributes to colon health by increasing the regularity of bowel movements. Good bowel function means a lower risk of hemorrhoids, diverticulitis, and colorectal cancer. People need between 21 and 38 grams of fiber per day.
Vitamins A and C are vital for good dental health. Vitamin C is necessary for healthy gums, and a lack of it can lead to tooth loss. Vitamin A contributes to the health of the salivary glands and tissues in the mouth. A deficiency can cause brittle teeth. Winter squash varieties contain good quantities of Vitamin A and Vitamin C. As a low-calorie food, spaghetti squash is also less likely to promote tooth decay than starchy or sweet foods.
Spaghetti Squash Nutrition Facts
One cup (155g) of boiled or baked spaghetti squash prepared without added fat or sodium provides 42 calories, 1g of protein, 10g of carbohydrates, and 0.4g of fat. Spaghetti squash is a good source of vitamin A and also provides vitamin C, B vitamins, and manganese. The following nutrition information is provided by the USDA.
- Calories: 42
- Fat: 0.4g
- Sodium: 412mg
- Carbohydrates: 10g
- Fiber: 2.2g
- Sugars: 3.9g
- Protein: 1g
- Manganese: 0.2mg
- Vitamin A: 9.3mcg
- Vitamin B6: 0.2mg
- Vitamin C: 5.4mg
Spaghetti Squash Side Effects
Some people may be allergic to spaghetti squash. It’s not a well-known allergy, but reactions to related foods, such as pumpkin, have been documented. Food allergy symptoms vary and can include hives, itching, swelling, and digestive issues.
Is Spaghetti Squash Good for Weight Loss?
Plus, because it has only 42 calories per cup (155 grams), using spaghetti squash as a low-calorie alternative in recipes such as gratin, casseroles, lasagna, or pasta dishes may help promote weight loss. Spaghetti squash is low in calories and high in fiber, making it a great addition to a weight loss diet.