Most people know that they should be incorporating plenty of healthy foods into their diets, but sometimes fruit gets a bad reputation for its natural sweetness, which causes some to avoid it for fear of consuming too much sugar. The truth is, keeping fruit out of your diet is depriving your body of a wealth of health benefits and nutrients. One such nutrient-rich fruit that you should be integrating into your diet is watermelon. Below are several health benefits and nutritional facts about melon as well as its main uses so that you can start including it into your routine right away.
Health Benefits of Watermelon
To start, you may be asking what are the health benefits of watermelon? As humble as it may be, watermelon is actually surprisingly beneficial for your health. Here just a few of the numerous health benefits of this delicious fruit:
As its name might suggest, watermelon is made up primarily of water, which makes it a naturally hydrating fruit. You can prevent dehydration by reaching for this fruit when it’s hot outside or as a post-workout snack. Due to the other nutrients that occur naturally in melons, it can be more effective than just water alone in keeping you hydrated.
Eases muscle soreness
Another reason to include this fruit as a part of your post-workout snack is that it helps ease muscle soreness, reducing your recovery time so that you can get right back at it again the next day.
Lowers blood pressure and protects heart health
Studies have shown that a diet rich in watermelon helps keep your blood pressure low and your heart healthier. This is most likely due to the fact that one of the key ingredients is lycopene, a nutrient that is known for helping prevent heart disease.
Melon is a rich source of antioxidants, which target cancer-causing free radicals in the body and stop them from spreading.
Promotes healthy skin
Consuming this fruit helps promote clear, healthy skin because it hydrates the skin and provides important nutrients such as vitamins A and C.
This fruit has a high fiber content, which helps regulate your digestion and prevent constipation.
Decreases risk of obesity
Many of these factors combine to lower your risk of obesity and help you lose weight. The hydration and reduced muscle soreness help you stay active and the improved digestion ensures that your body is absorbing the nutrients it needs to keep you healthy and fit.
In short, the health benefits of melon are that it helps you live longer.
Melons are a surprising source of many different nutrients. So what is the nutritional value of watermelons? Below are a few nutrition facts:
When most people think of lycopene, they tend to think of tomatoes. But tomatoes aren’t the only sources of lycopene—melons are actually great sources of this nutrient. It is what gives them their red color. Lycopene is important because, as stated above, it keeps your heart healthy and may even assist in preventing cancer.
Vitamin C isn’t just the domain of citrus fruits—it can also be found in melons. Other vitamins that occur naturally in watermelons are vitamin A and several B vitamins. These keep your skin healthy, fight cancer, and keep your energy levels high.
Another surprising ingredient that can be found in melons is potassium. Although most people think only of bananas as being a rich source of potassium, watermelon is also considered to be rich in this mineral. Potassium is integral to a healthy life because it keeps your whole body working properly including your heart, muscles, and digestive system.
This fruit is also a great source of antioxidants. When most people think of foods that help fight cancer, they think of foods rich in antioxidants, and with good reason. One of the main causes of cancer is the formation of free radicals in the body. Antioxidants block these free radicals from forming in the first place.
High in fiber
Many people know that a key component of a healthy life is a diet with a high fiber intake. Most fruits and vegetables are high in fiber, and watermelon is no exception.
Low in calories
One ingredient that you won’t find very much of in melons is calories.
As you can see, melon’s nutritional value is immense. It is rich in many important nutrients while still being low in calories, making it a perfect addition to a healthy lifestyle.
Now that you have read some health benefits and nutritional facts about melon, you may now be asking what is melon used for? Below are some examples of its possible uses:
Sliced and Diced
One of the most popular uses of watermelon is to eat it raw. Just take a sturdy kitchen knife, slice open the rind, and dig in. Some prefer to avoid the rind and remove the seeds, but they are perfectly safe to eat, so it’s just a matter of personal preference. You can sprinkle on a dash of salt or sugar to change up the flavor.
You can also incorporate watermelon into various raw recipes. Below are just two of the most popular ways you can consume watermelon, besides eating it as is.
If you prefer not to eat raw watermelon all by itself, one option is to juice it. That way you can also incorporate the rind and seeds and get the extra fiber.
You can also add it to a salad or fruit salad, toss it into your yogurt or cereal with breakfast, freeze it into a popsicle, or add it to a fruit smoothie. Melon is a versatile fruit, so the options are endless.
Melon tastes great on its own, but don’t be afraid to experiment and find the variation that you like best.
Watermelon has many health benefits and nutrients, making it a valuable inclusion to anyone’s diet. Its many nutrients such as water, antioxidants, lycopene, potassium, and fiber help fight cancer, keep your body hydrated and energized, your heart and skin healthy, and your digestion regular. These are all key components to having a long and healthy life. Since it can be eaten raw or added to any meal, it’s also easy to incorporate into your diet which means that there is no reason not to get started today.