Sweet and juicy watermelon is an emblem of summer time. At a look, you may assume it’s largely sugar and water. But when you dig in and uncover its huge array of vitamins, you’ll be shocked what number of potential well being advantages it has.
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“We think of watermelon as a fun, seasonal food for barbeques and the beach, but it’s also really good for you,” says registered dietitian Lara Whitson, RD, LD. “It’s low in calories, keeps you hydrated and provides many other nutrients that can help you maintain good health.”
Is watermelon good for you?
Though it lacks protein and iron, the dietary worth of watermelon shouldn’t be underestimated. It additionally lacks fats, sodium and ldl cholesterol and is American Heart Association Heart-Check Certified. Even watermelon seeds have advantages, with magnesium, iron, wholesome fat and zinc.
One cup of diced watermelon has solely 46 energy and:
- 0 g of fats.
- 1 mg of sodium.
- 9 g of sugar.
- 10 mg of calcium.
- 12 mg of vitamin C.
- 15 mg of magnesium.
- 139 g of water.
Even extra spectacular, it has 170 milligrams of potassium, an important mineral that helps nerve and muscle operate, and the fluid stability in your physique. And along with vitamin C, it comprises good quantities of vitamin A.
Disease-fighting antioxidants in watermelon like lycopene and cucurbitacin E, could assist defend you from ailments similar to cancer or diabetes. Lycopene additionally provides watermelon its crimson colour.
Are watermelon seeds or rinds good for you?
Before you toss the rinds within the trash, subsequent time, take a second to think about the well being advantages of watermelon rinds and seeds.
Watermelon rinds have much less sugar and extra fiber than their flesh and likewise include citrulline. Watermelon seeds — dried or uncooked — are wealthy in magnesium and folate, which assist your physique work effectively and keep away from illness. Seeds even have the sorts of fatty acids that decrease dangerous ldl cholesterol in your blood and enable you keep away from coronary heart assault and stroke.
“You can stir-fry the rinds with other vegetables and add spices to the seeds, like you might do with pumpkin seeds, for an easy and healthful snack,” suggests Whitson.
Research exhibits melons, normally, are good for you, however we’d like extra research to know how watermelon particularly impacts your physique. Whitson shares 9 potential well being advantages of watermelon:
1. Helps you keep hydrated
Try consuming somewhat watermelon sprinkled with salt after bodily exercise or a strenuous exercise to replenish your physique’s electrolytes and carbohydrates. “It’s amazing what it can do to restore your energy and quench your thirst,” says Whitson.
2. Maintain a wholesome weight
Watermelon generally is a nice possibility if you’re making an attempt to keep up or obtain a wholesome weight, and resist the temptation of higher-calorie candy snacks. Because it comprises a lot water, watermelon has few energy and might make you’re feeling full for longer.
A 2019 study of 33 individuals who have been thought of obese or had obesity confirmed that those that ate watermelon as a substitute of low-fat cookies day by day for 4 weeks reported decrease starvation and fewer need to eat. Eating watermelon was related to decrease physique weight, body mass index (BMI) and waist-to-hip ratio, and decreased blood stress.
3. Protects in opposition to illness
Early proof means that often consuming watermelon promotes good well being and should scale back your danger of power ailments similar to diabetes, weight problems, cardiovascular disease and most cancers. This is probably going thanks, partly, to its antioxidants, which assist defend your physique from stress and forestall or gradual cell injury.
In truth, watermelon has extra lycopene than every other fruit or vegetable — together with tomatoes. It’s additionally the best supply of the amino acid citrulline, which produces a molecule referred to as nitric oxide that helps loosen up blood vessels.
The dietary advantages of watermelon could enable you fight blood stress, ldl cholesterol and inflammation that may result in illness. In one small study, researchers discovered watermelon extract lowered ankle blood stress in middle-aged adults with early hypertension (hypertension) and weight problems.
“We know that people who eat a well-balanced, nutritious diet can have better health outcomes, in combination with lifestyle choices and other factors,” notes Whitson. “Watermelon could be a part of that equation, keeping you healthier, longer.”
4. Supports eye well being
The vitamins in watermelon serve an particularly helpful function in relation to your eyes. Antioxidants could assist forestall or delay the formation of cataracts. They may even scale back your danger of growing age-related macular degeneration, which might trigger blindness.
The vitamin A in watermelon additionally helps the well being of your corneas. And it doesn’t take a lot: Just one medium slice of watermelon comprises as much as 11% of the vitamin A you want every day.
5. Boosts your immune system
Watermelon’s beneficiant dose of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) helps your immune system, which fights germs and an infection. It may assist scale back your danger of growing most cancers.
6. Relieves muscle soreness
A advantage of watermelon and watermelon juice could also be serving to your physique get well and really feel higher after train. This could also be due to citrulline, which helps produce nitric oxide to enhance blood circulate and muscle operate. Citrulline additionally removes ammonia out of your physique. This reduces the quantity of a substance referred to as lactate that builds up in your physique throughout train and might result in muscle soreness.
7. Aids pores and skin well being
Vitamin C in watermelon helps your physique produce collagen, which helps your immune system, the well being of your cells and your capability to heal from accidents. Collagen provides energy and elasticity to your pores and skin and helps exchange useless pores and skin cells. This means consuming watermelon might enhance your pores and skin and gradual age-related results.
Vitamin A produced by the beta-carotene in watermelon helps restore pores and skin cells, stopping dry skin and flaking. Its vitamin B6 could assist forestall acne. You aren’t off the mark when you’re pondering watermelon may even be a superb ingredient for a face masks — it’s.
8. Improves digestion
Plant compounds (polyphenols) in watermelon gasoline good micro organism in your intestine. This not solely eases digestion, however may enhance your immune system and your intestine’s manufacturing of important vitamins.
9. Controls blood sugar
Watermelon offers an amazing different when you’re making an attempt to maintain your blood glucose ranges regular or scale back your danger of diabetes. It has few carbs and a low glycemic load. That means watermelon enters your bloodstream and produces much less glucose than different meals, so you’ll be able to have a slice with out a big spike in blood sugar.
What are the negative effects of consuming watermelon?
Most of the time, you’ll be able to eat watermelon with out experiencing any negative effects. But you might need to keep away from watermelon when you:
- Are liable to migraine complications: Watermelon comprises a excessive degree of tyramine, an amino acid that would set off migraines.
- Have an allergy to sure pollens, together with grass or ragweed: Symptoms could embrace problem respiration, hives or swelling.
- Have diabetes: People with diabetes could need to reasonable how a lot watermelon they eat resulting from its pure sugars.
- Have digestive points: Watermelon can be thought of a excessive FODMAP, which suggests it comprises sugars that may be tough for some folks with circumstances similar to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) to digest. Symptoms could embrace bloating, constipation or diarrhea.
Is it protected to go on a ‘watermelon diet’?
“You can safely eat two servings of watermelon each day, but it’s never a good idea to go on a diet that features only one type of food,” cautions Whitson. “A watermelon cleanse is a fad, like any other, and it will deprive your body of other nutrients it needs to function properly.”
Nor do you want a watermelon weight loss plan to do away with toxins. Your physique can do that each one by itself, with the assistance of your liver and kidneys.
Enjoy the wholesome advantages of watermelon
Watermelon is reasonably priced and straightforward to arrange. Use it in smoothies or a summer time slushie, in a salad and even on the grill. You may freeze it in popsicles, or add it to gazpacho or nonalcoholic drinks and colourful cocktails. With its refreshing taste and wholesome array of vitamins, watermelon isn’t out of season.