Surprising Health Benefits of Watermelon

Some foods are fun to eat, and watermelon is definitely one of them.  That triangular wedge of bright red/white/green, sweet juiciness forbids us to take life too seriously and shouts, “SUMMER!!!” As if that weren’t enough, watermelon is packed full of nutrition, hydrates and is low-fat. While many of us think of watermelon as a great snack option, when you tally up its nutritive value, you might consider making this all-star a feature player in your cuisine.

Watermelons are an excellent source of several vitamins: vitamin A, which helps maintain eye health and is an antioxidant; vitamin C, which helps strengthen immunity, heal wounds, prevent cell damage, promote healthy teeth and gums; and vitamin B6, which helps brain function and helps convert protein to energy.

Tomatoes have been highly touted as a great source for lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that helps fight heart disease and several types of cancer — prostate cancer in particular.  Watermelon, however, has the highest concentrations of lycopene of any fresh fruit or vegetable.

If your little ones don’t dig into their swiss chard, lima beans or spinach — all great sources of potassium — consider offering them a serving of watermelon instead.  It is a great source of potassium, which helps muscle and nerve function, helps maintain the body’s proper electrolyte and acid-base balance, and helps lower the risk of high blood pressure.

Watermelon also contains the amino acids citrulline and arginine, which can help maintain arteries, blood flow and overall cardiovascular function.

Alone or in a fruit salad are the most common ways many of us eat watermelon. While eating the meat of the fruit is the best way to take advantage of all of its nutrients, this is one of my favorite bits of summer refreshment. I get a version of this from my local burrito truck. The key to making this great: don’t oversweeten it. With just a touch of sweetness, it’s heavenly.

Watermelon Agua Fresca (Fresh Water)

  • 3 cups cubed, seeded watermelon
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • juice from 2-3 limes
  • natural sweetner, to taste

In a blender, puree the watermelon, then strain it through a fine sieve. In a pitcher, mix the strained juice with water. Add lime juice and natural sweetener to taste. Serve cold over ice.

Related:
Watermelon Mint Smoothie
Watermelon Rose-Punch
Secrets of Cutting a Watermelon

274 comments

Tanvir Hasan
Tanvir Hasan5 months ago

Watermelon is an excellent source of the strong antioxidant vitamin C as well as other antioxidants, which helps to reduce the risk of cancer. According to the National Cancer Institute lycopene intake has been linked to decrease the prostate cancer cell proliferation.
http://www.agrihealthcare.com/health-benefits-of-watermelon/

Ganaisha Calvin
Ganaisha Calvin2 years ago

the fresh water sounds delicious

Elisa F.
Elisa F.2 years ago

Love Watermelon :)

Sandra Santana
Sandra Santana2 years ago

Watermelons are the perfect summer fruit, I wish they were in season all year round!

Evelyn D.
Evelyn D.2 years ago

Can't wait for the watermelon to come into season here.

Duane B.
.2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Aud Nordby
Aud nordby3 years ago

ty

Dorlinda Chong
Dorlinda Chong3 years ago

Love watermelon! Watermelon/muddled mint juice makes a refreshing drink.

Patricia H.
Patricia H.3 years ago

thanks for sharing

Magdika Cecilia Perez
Magdika Perez3 years ago

love watermelons - and they have a low glycemic load