Watermelon is a juicy and refreshing fruit that is a favourite among many people, especially during the hot summer months. Not only is it delicious, but it also has numerous health benefits. In this article, we will explore the nutritional value and health benefits of watermelon, as well as some ways to enjoy it. We will also find out how many calories in watermelon and how to pick a good watermelon
Nutritional Value of Watermelon
Watermelon is a low-calorie fruit that is high in water content. One cup of diced watermelon (152 grams) contains:
- 46 calories
- 1 gram of protein
- 0.5 grams of fat
- 12 grams of carbohydrates
- 0.6 grams of fibre
- 17% of the recommended daily intake (RDI) of vitamin A
- 21% of the RDI of vitamin C
- 2% of the RDI of calcium
- 2% of the RDI of iron
Watermelon is also a good source of antioxidants, such as lycopene and beta-carotene, which are believed to have anti-inflammatory and cancer-fighting properties.
Health Benefits of Watermelon
Watermelon is high in water content, which makes it a great food to eat during the summer months or after exercise. Consuming water-rich foods like watermelon can help to keep you hydrated and prevent dehydration.
- Improved Heart Health
Watermelon contains lycopene, which has been linked to improved heart health. Lycopene is an antioxidant that can help to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, both of which are risk factors for heart disease.
- Lowered Blood Pressure
Watermelon is also high in potassium, which can help to lower blood pressure. Potassium helps to balance out the effects of sodium in the body, which is important for maintaining healthy blood pressure levels.
- Improved Digestive Health
Watermelon is high in fibre, which is important for maintaining good digestive health. Fibre helps to regulate bowel movements and prevent constipation. Additionally, the water content in watermelon can help to keep the digestive system moving smoothly.
- Cancer Prevention
Watermelon contains antioxidants, such as lycopene and beta-carotene, which may help to prevent cancer. Studies have shown that consuming these antioxidants can reduce the risk of certain types of cancer, such as prostate and lung cancer.
Ways to Enjoy Watermelon
- Fresh Watermelon
Fresh watermelon is a delicious and easy way to enjoy this fruit. Simply cut the watermelon into slices or cubes and serve chilled. You can also add a sprinkle of salt or a squeeze of lime juice for extra flavour.
- Watermelon Salad
Watermelon salad is a refreshing and colourful dish that is perfect for summer picnics or barbecues. Simply chop the watermelon into cubes and mix it with feta cheese, mint, and a dressing made of olive oil, lemon juice, and honey.
- Watermelon Smoothie
Watermelon smoothies are a great way to enjoy the benefits of watermelon in a refreshing and hydrating beverage. Simply blend diced watermelon with ice, coconut water, and a splash of lime juice for a delicious and healthy treat.
- Grilled Watermelon
Grilled watermelon is a unique and delicious way to enjoy this fruit. Simply slice the watermelon into thick slices, brush with olive oil, and grill for a few minutes on each side. Serve with a sprinkle of sea salt and a dollop of Greek yogurt for a tasty and healthy snack.
How to pick a Good Watermelon
Picking a good watermelon can be a bit of a challenge, but with these tips, you’ll be able to choose the perfect one every time:
- Look for a uniform shape: Choose a watermelon that has a consistent, symmetrical shape without any lumps or irregularities. This indicates that it has grown evenly and is more likely to be ripe.
- Check the field spot: The field spot is the area of the watermelon that was resting on the ground. Look for a creamy yellow spot, which indicates that the watermelon is ripe. If the field spot is white or green, the watermelon may not be fully ripe.
- Tap it: Gently tap the watermelon with your knuckles. A ripe watermelon will produce a deep, hollow sound. If the sound is dull or flat, it may be underripe or overripe.
- Check the stripes: Look for a watermelon with dark, rich stripes. The stripes should be well-defined and evenly spaced.
- Pick it up: A ripe watermelon should feel heavy for its size. This is because watermelons are mostly water, so a heavier watermelon indicates that it is juicier and more flavourful.
By following these tips, you’ll be able to choose a ripe and delicious watermelon every time.
Watermelon is a delicious and healthy fruit that is packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It is high in water content, making it a great food to eat during the summer months or after exercise. Additionally, it has been linked to numerous health benefits, including improved heart health