Fact Check: Can pumpkin seeds kill worms and parasites in the body?

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Quick Take

Multiple social media posts claim that cucurbitin in pumpkin seeds can kill worms and parasites. We fact-checked and found the claim to be Half True.

The Claim

“Pumpkin seeds contain a substance called cucurbitin that treats worms and other parasites by paralysing them so they can be expelled from your body” reads a social media post. The post can be found here.

Fact Check

What is Cucurbitin?

Cucurbitin is an intermediate or end product of metabolism produced by the Cucurbitaceae family. Cucurbitin gives a bitter taste and prevents a plant from being eaten by animals. Pumpkin seeds produce cucurbitin as they belong to the Cucurbitaceae family.

Can cucurbitin kill worms and parasites in the body?

No. There is no scientific evidence that suggests an intermediate or end product of metabolism from the Cucurbitaceae family can kill worms and parasites in the body.

Can pumpkin seeds kill worms and parasites in the body?

Pumpkin seeds can kill parasitic worms to treat gastrointestinal nematode infections in human beings. Pumpkin seeds (i.e., Cucurbita moschata or Cucurbita maxima) have been reported to possess anthelmintic properties when used in humans and livestock. But Such studies are still few in number, and reports of the efficacy of pumpkin seed extract against nematodes still leave many aspects to be resolved. However, studies have shown that the pumpkin seeds are also beneficial in combination with another compound such as with areca nut extract.

What are other benefits of pumpkin seeds?

Regular consumption of pumpkin seeds can cure many diseases. The Healthy Indian Project (THIP) has shown that pumpkin seeds are a great source of potassium that helps in preventing depression. The study can be found here.

Dr. S Krishna Prasanthi
Dr S Krishna Prasanthi

Dr S Krishna Prasanthi, MBBS, MD (PGIMER) says, “Pumpkin is a great source of iron and can cure anaemia. However, curing anaemia based on diet is not always recommended. If the person is pregnant or is suffering from severe anaemia, diet alone cannot help. Medication is important.”

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer
Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can further read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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