Watermelon is by far, one of my best fruits. It is a sweet, juicy fruit that has a smooth hard rind, usually green with reddish/pinkish interior flesh with many seeds. It is made up of about 92% water.
Today, there are several varieties of watermelon ranging from the seeded watermelon, to the seedless watermelon to watermelons with orange or yellow flesh.
The watermelon is usually popular in summer because of its highly refreshing and thirst-quenching quality. Taking fruits regularly is good for your health and it is important for you to know why you should add watermelon to your “to-eat” fruit list this season.
Most of the health benefits accrued to watermelons are mainly derived from its unique array of nutrients, minerals, and organic compounds. Some of which are : Vitamins A, B6 and C, potassium, lots of lycopene, antioxidants, citrulline, phenolic compounds like flavonoids, carotenoids, and tripterpenoids etc. All these contribute to its impact on health.
Some of the health benefits of watermelon are :
1. Prevents Dehydration / Heat Stroke: Watermelon is made up of 92% water, thus, it comes in handy during summer when the heat level is high. It is believed that the high amount of water contained in watermelon helps to stimulate a release of excess liquid in the form of sweat, which cools your body further during hot summer days.
2. Prevents Cancer: Lycopene is a powerful carotenoid antioxidant that gives fruits and vegetables a pink or red color. Studies have shown that Lycopene intake helps to reduce the risk of prostrate, lung and stomach cancers. Watermelon is a great source of Lycopene, hence, it helps to prevent cancer.
3. Reduces Muscle Soreness: Watermelon can help to reduce soreness in the muscles and also help to improve recovery time. This is believed to be due to the amino acid called l-citrulline contained in watermelon.
4. Prevents Constipation and Aids Digestion: Due to its high water and fiber content, watermelon can help prevent constipation and also aid food digestion .
5. Reduces Blood Pressure: Research has shown how intake of watermelon can result in significant reduction in blood pressure. This is due to citrulline in watermelon which is converted to L-arginine, a precursor to nitric oxide.
Adequate nitric oxide in the body, helps to enable the blood vessels to stay relaxed and open for blood flow, which is one reason why it may help lower blood pressure.
There are indeed lots of goodness resident in this big round-shaped fruit. Since watermelon is mostly water, it can be consumed without the guilt of adding much calories to the body. It is indeed a tasty way to stay hydrated. However, it should not be used as a substitute for drinking water.
It is important to know that the whole part of a watermelon is edible. Although many people avoid eating the rind, it can be blended or used as vegetable. Also, the seeds can be ground into flour or dried and roasted.