Pattypan squash is a heart-healthy vegetable, packed with vitamins and minerals such as potassium and magnesium that offer cardio-protective effects. Pattypan squash originates from the region between Mexico and Guatemala, and is a relative of the cucumber and melon, members of the Cucurbitaceae family.
Pattypan squash, otherwise known as scallop squash, is a small, round, saucer-shaped vegetable that grows during summer months. This variety of squash displays a pale green, white or rich yellow skin, with a white, fleshy interior.
Pattypan squash is low in saturated fat and sodium and contains no cholesterol. It provides an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. One cup of cooked pattypan squash provides 38 calories and 43 percent of your daily value of Vitamin C, 13 percent of your daily value of folate, and substantial amounts of vitamin B-6, magnesium, potassium and Vitamin A. Additionally, one serving of pattypan squash provides 5 grams of fiber.
Pattypan squash is a healthful addition to any diet, especially for people on a low sodium diet. Pattypan squash is low in calories, sodium, cholesterol and fat and can be blanched, frozen, cooked or steamed. Enjoy pattypan squash in your favorite casserole, stir-fry or even muffins or bread.
Pattypan squash has many disease-fighting elements. Its fiber content helps reduce the risk of colon cancer and reduce dietary cholesterol. The vitamin C found in pattypan squash can also help prevent oxidation of cholesterol in the blood vessels, which in turn can decrease risk for atherosclerosis. Pattypan squash's potassium and magnesium content work to lower blood pressure. Magnesium also reduces the risk for heart attack and stroke.
Pattypan squash contains oxalate. Persons with underlying kidney or gallbladder health conditions should consider avoiding this food. Studies have shown that oxalates interfere with calcium absorption, and high concentrations of oxalates can accumulate and crystallize within the body.