One of our favorite reasons to smile this season is the abundance of fresh, colorful and did-we-mention delicious fall produce.
A number of nutritional rock stars from September will remain ripe this month and next -- we're looking at you, apples -- but there are some healthy picks unique to October, too.
Why we love them: October's signature gourd is good for more than just that Jack-O-Lantern. A cup of mashed pumpkin packs more than 200 percent of your daily recommended vitamin A, crucial for healthy vision and immune system functioning, among other things.
Pumpkin is also rich in alpha- and beta-carotene, two nutrients that have been associated with longevity, says Dr. Steven G. Pratt, M.D., author of several books on nutrition, including "Superfoods Rx: Fourteen Foods that Will Change Your Life."
Pumpkin is also rich in fiber, which can help keep you feeling full longer. And did we mention it tastes good in practically everything?
We also love pumpkin seeds, which you can buy or roast yourself for a dose of healthy fats and a tasty crunch.
How to enjoy: Roast the seeds on a baking sheet and eat 'em whole. Try the "meat" of the pumpkin in a soup, on pizza, in lasagna and other un ideas like these recipes from Shape.com.
You can even cheat a little and eat the canned stuff, says Pratt, as long as the label says 100 percent pumpkin.