Watermelon seeds are the small, black, or white seeds found in the flesh of a watermelon. Although often discarded, these seeds are actually edible and offer numerous health benefits. In this article, we will explore watermelon seeds nutrition facts and 4 proven health benefits.
Nutritional Value of Watermelon Seeds
Watermelon seeds are a rich source of nutrients, including protein, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. One ounce (28 grams) of watermelon seeds contains:
- 158 calories
- 5 grams of protein
- 14 grams of fat
- 2 grams of carbohydrates
- 2 grams of fibre
- 43% of the recommended daily intake (RDI) of magnesium
- 139% of the RDI of phosphorus
- 19% of the RDI of iron
- 10% of the RDI of zinc
- 8% of the RDI of potassium
4 Proven Health Benefits of Watermelon Seeds
- High in Nutrients
Watermelon seeds are a great source of protein, healthy fats, and essential minerals such as magnesium, phosphorus, and iron. Consuming watermelon seeds can help to meet your daily nutritional needs and support overall health.
- Improved Heart Health
Watermelon seeds contain healthy fats, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, which have been linked to improved heart health. These fats can help to lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
- Improved Digestive Health
Watermelon seeds are a good source of fibre, which is important for maintaining good digestive health. Fibre helps to regulate bowel movements and prevent constipation. Additionally, the magnesium content in watermelon seeds can help to relax the muscles in the digestive tract and promote healthy digestion.
- Boosted Immune System
Watermelon seeds contain zinc, which is an essential mineral for maintaining a healthy immune system. Zinc plays a key role in the development and function of immune cells, and consuming watermelon seeds can help to support immune function.
Ways to Enjoy Watermelon Seeds
- Roasted Watermelon Seeds
Roasted watermelon seeds are a delicious and crunchy snack that can be enjoyed on their own or added to trail mix. Simply rinse the seeds, pat them dry, and roast them in the oven with a sprinkle of salt or your favourite seasoning.
- Watermelon Seed Butter
Watermelon seed butter is a healthy and delicious alternative to peanut butter. Simply blend roasted watermelon seeds in a food processor until smooth, and add a pinch of salt and sweetener to taste.
- Sprinkle on Salads
Watermelon seeds can add a crunchy texture and nutty flavour to salads. Simply sprinkle roasted or raw seeds on top of your favourite salad for an added nutritional boost.
- Add to Smoothies
Watermelon seeds can also be added to smoothies for an extra boost of protein and healthy fats. Simply blend roasted or raw seeds with your favourite smoothie ingredients for a nutritious and satisfying beverage.
Potential Side Effects of Watermelon Seeds
Watermelon seeds are generally safe to consume and are considered a nutritious snack, but consuming large amounts may have some potential side effects.
- Upset stomach: Eating too many watermelon seeds can lead to digestive issues such as bloating, gas, and upset stomach.
- Tooth damage: Watermelon seeds are hard and can potentially damage teeth, especially if they are consumed in large quantities or bitten down on too hard.
- Kidney problems: Some people believe that watermelon seeds can cause kidney problems, but there is no scientific evidence to support this claim. However, people with kidney problems should avoid consuming large amounts of watermelon seeds as they contain oxalates, which can contribute to the formation of kidney stones.
- Allergies: People with allergies to nuts or seeds may have an allergic reaction to watermelon seeds, which can cause symptoms such as itching, swelling, and difficulty breathing.
- Cyanide poisoning: Watermelon seeds contain a small amount of cyanide, which is a toxic substance. However, the amount of cyanide in watermelon seeds is not enough to cause harm to most people, and the body can easily detoxify it.
While watermelon seeds are generally safe to consume, it is important to consume them in moderation and be aware of potential side effects. If you have any concerns or experience any adverse reactions, you should consult with a healthcare professional.
Watermelon seeds are a nutritious and flavorful food that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. They are a great source of protein, healthy fats, and essential minerals, and offer numerous health benefits. Whether roasted, blended into butter, or sprinkled on top of salads, watermelon seeds are a delicious and healthy addition to any diet.