One day, a friend told me that even the picture of a watermelon itself arouses the soothing in his throat. Truly it is possible, and yes it is. Did you know that watermelon can quench your thirst better than drinking water when the weather is hot with scorching heat? The fact remains that many people go for watermelon because it tastes sweet and also quenches thirst.
However, it is worth noting that besides the common known benefits, watermelon also has numerous health benefits. Therefore, it is necessary for you to go through this article on the top 10 health benefits watermelon.
Brief History of Watermelon
The origin of watermelon points to South Africa where it is believed that the crop was first grown around the 5th century. The fruit existed in three main varieties bland, bitter, and sweet. It is also in the records that the fruit found its way to India later in the 7th century, and later to China in the 10th century. Presently, China is the leading and the largest producer of watermelon to the world’s market.
Is watermelon good for me?
Whoever asks that question would be expecting yes as an answer, and truly yes it is. Even though its consumption is highly favored during the summers in most of the European countries, this fruit should be part of your pudding all year round. Any other fruit that beats watermelon in nutrients has not yet been found. Of all the nutrients, the lycopene which is an antioxidant responsible for the deep red coloring is the first. The antioxidant has more advantages in your body health.
Nutrients Value of a Watermelon
- Energy – 1.5% in 30 Kcal
- Carbohydrates – 6% in 7.6 g
- Protein – 1% in 0.6g
- Total Fat – 0.5% in 0.15g
- Cholesterol – 0%
- Dietary Fiber – 1% in 0.4 g
Vitamins Content in a Watermelon
- Folates – 1% in 3 µg
- Pyridoxine – 3.5% in 0.045 mg
- Vitamin A – 19% in 569 IU
- Niacin – 1% in 0.178 mg
- Vitamin C – 13.5% in 8.1 mg
- Thiamin – 3% in 0.033 mg
- Vitamin E – 0.5% in 0.05 mg
- Pantothenic acid – 4.5% in 0.221 mg
- Vitamin B6 – 3% in 0.1 mg
Minerals Content of Watermelon
- Calcium – 0.7% in 7 mg
- Copper – 4.5% in 42 µg
- Iron – 3% in 0.24 mg
- Magnesium – 2.5% in 10 mg
- Manganese – 1.5% in 0.038 mg
- Zinc – 1% in 0.10 mg
The Health Benefits of wateremelon
Table of Contents
10. Controls blood pressure
Research has it that watermelon has a higher production of citrulline which is closely related to arginine. Arginine is the amino acid that promotes and maintains a healthy blood pressure. On the same note, another study points out that it is even better with those who can drink the juice. Having said that, I hope you understand the role that potassium plays in your body. Potassium is an electrolyte responsible for regulation of the high blood pressure.
9. Prevents Asthma
Lycopene is a very strong antioxidant and helps the body to react to flu and cold. It, therefore, helps in reducing asthma, especially in children and adults too. Apart from that, it also improves breathing to give a smooth and proper breathing.
8. Might Prevent Macular Degeneration
Watermelon is the known and proven chief source of lycopene. Lycopene has the ability to reduce of various diseases including the macular degenerative ones. Some high-profile medical researchers have attested that the lycopene produced in a watermelon is a potential treatment for eye disorders, macular degeneration being one of them.
The argument behind the treatment potential has attributed the possibility of lycopene in offering protection against the eye lens. Therefore, watermelon is what you need to stay away from eye diseases and blindness too.
7. Improves Skin And Hair
What strengthens the air and also keep the skin supple is collagen. The formation of collagen is dependent on the availability of vitamin C. Vitamin C is plenty in a ripped watermelon. Besides, another research had it that the fruit is also an excellent source of beta-carotene which is the best remedy for psoriasis and vitiligo – skin conditions. Having said that, when it comes to skin treatment, Vitamin A is also an essential remedy for the skin and repairs the cells.
6. Aids Weight Loss
People do consider weird ways of gaining weight loss, some of which are more harmful. Among the many watermelon benefits, aiding weight loss is one perfect health benefit. Watermelon contains a lot of water and is capable of filling up someone for fewer calories. As commonly known, water speeds up metabolism and also flush out fats and toxins. By so doing, it helps one achieve a proper and healthy water loss.
A confirmed health research points it out that one wedge of watermelon has a content of about 86 calories, 0.56 grams of fat, and no cholesterol. Besides, you can also meet your 5% daily fiber requirement threshold and about 22 grams of carbs by eating watermelon. The carbs and fiber content of watermelon makes it a great food responsible for burning of fat and eventually weight loss.
5. Strengthens Immunity
One’s ability to fight diseases is the body immunity. An active protection is necessary for faster recovery from ailments and a weak immunity is known to be prone to many diseases attacks that can endanger one’s life. For you to have a great body immunity, you must eat foods that have a perfect content of vitamin C.
Vitamin C is known to strengthen the body’s immune system. The only sure source of the exact percentage of vitamin C that can build up the immune system perfectly is watermelon.
Besides vitamin C, watermelon also contains vitamin B6 which is the best in the production of antibodies. The production of antibodies against antigens is a sure way of combating infections in the body too. Again, vitamin B6 is also useful in the formation of red blood cells. Finally, the fruit has a content of vitamin A which also acts on the regulation of the immune system and also protection from infections.
4. Treats Diabetes
The main question has ever been the link between watermelon and diabetes. In an attempt to establish an answer to that concern, several types of research have been done, and most of them find watermelon a cure for diabetes. Even though the fruit has a higher glycemic index, it has also been found that it has a lower glycemic load, hence the perfect food for the diabetics.
Another study conducted recently in Nigeria has it that watermelon has some anti-diabetic properties and that it also increases the mass of the brown adipose tissues in the blood. Adipose tissue has an effect on the reduction of white fat that eventually leads to treating of diabetes. Despite the fact that it does treat diabetes, it is advisable to discuss its adoption together with your doctor and to take his/her advice.
3. Relieve Muscle Soreness
Most people do complain about muscle soreness especially after long hours at the workplace. It is advisable for such people to adopt consistent consumption of watermelon. The fruit has amino acid citruilline and electrolytes that soothe sore muscles and relieve the pain. Also, going by another study conducted in Iran, the citrulline content of watermelon is useful in reducing muscle fatigue.
Similarly, citrulline, which is found in abundance in watermelons is able to accelerate the process of removal of the lactic acid from the blood. This, therefore, confirms that truly the fruits can remove muscle soreness. On the same note, drinking a glass of watermelon juice daily is a sure cure for muscle soreness and aids quicker recovery.
2. Helps Combat Cancer
When it comes to combating cancer, we give credit to the lycopene content of a watermelon. A recently confirmed research puts it clear that lycopene in watermelons reduces the extent or prevalence of the cancer insurgence. The same lycopene is what gives the fruit its red color and is a powerful confirmed antioxidant. Besides combating an already present cancer, it can also prevent the onset of other certain cancers.
Just a one cup of watermelon is able to serve you with 20 milligrams of lycopene, which is a great amount capable of battling free radicals to offer protection against various types of cancers. The most interesting study research on the same by a Chicago researcher has it that lycopene has chemopreventive properties and hence, the best in curing especially prostate cancer. Besides, the same lycopene is useful in treatment of human papillomavirus (HPV )infection too. This infection is always the cause of the know common uterine cancer.
1. Keeps Your Heart Healthy
A recent and approved medical research confirms that a slice of watermelon daily is the best practice to halt accumulation of cholesterol. You and I know that cholesterol is the chief cause of heart diseases, hence halter its accumulation is a sure way of preventing the heart diseases. Similarly, it is on record that a routine consumption of watermelon results to fewer fatty deposits within the blood vessels.
Again, the heart-healthy properties from watermelon still point to citrulline which is a chemical content of watermelon. Another recent medical research by Kentucky study states that citrulline has great beneficial effects on atherosclerosis. The same citrulline also has effect in reduction of arterial stiffness in women on post-menopause.
The Stunning Facts on Watermelon
- The largest ever watermelon weighed 122 kilograms. This was in 2005 from the Hope
- Arkansas Big Watermelon Contest.
- There exist over 1,200 varieties of watermelon.
- Watermelon is grown in nearly 96 countries in the world
- Watermelon contains over 40% more lycopene compared to the content of tomatoes.
- Square watermelon grows in Japan. The farmers are put inside square glasses when growing and they take the shape of the glass.
- Watermelon is both fruit and vegetable.
Watermelons – Selection And Storage
- When selecting a watermelon, go for firm and symmetrical ones that are free from dents, bruises, and cuts.
- Lift up the melon to feel its weight. The heavier, the better since the weight estimates the water content, go for the heaviest.
- Avoid the ones with bumps or lumps as this implies that the fruit did not receive sufficient water or sunlight.
- Any irregular lumps or bumps would mean that the fruit received insufficient amounts of sunshine or water.
- Look at the field spot; the spot that shows where the melon sat on the ground. The field spot should be darker to imply maturity. If the field spot is white or does not exist, it is an implication that it was picked immature.
- When selecting the best watermelon, go for the one with a dull look or dark green. Simply avoid the shiny. That is also a sign of maturity, and the shiny ones were picked before maturing.
- If purchasing a pre-cut melon, ensure that you select one with bright red flesh and dark brown or black seeds. Simply avoid the ones with some white streaks or white seeds.
- A whole uncut watermelon can stay up to a week in a refrigerator provided it is handled carefully and has no bruises.
- Never store the melon below 4 degrees since this can result in chilling injuries on the fruit.
- For a pre-cut melon, it is advisable to cut the remaining pieces into cubes, place in a covered container. Store the container in a refrigerator for a maximum of 3 to 4 days.
Side Effects Of Watermelon
1. Intestinal disturbances
From this article, you have seen that most of the benefits of are attributed to the presence of lycopene. However, the same compound is believed to cause some side effects if consumed much or in excess. Overdosing lycopene causes vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, and indigestion.
Hyperkalemia is a medical condition characterized by above normal levels of potassium, and excess consumption of watermelon can cause it. As a result, it can lead to the cardiovascular issues such as weak pulse and irregular heartbeats.
3. Allergic Reactions
Some individuals have developed an allergy towards watermelons. The allergic reactions associated with watermelons include facial swelling and mild or severe rashes. However, some individuals who experienced the conditions earlier argues that it ended and it happens no more. This can be attributed to the development of antibodies for a long time use.
Watermelon is a must-have pudding for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, especially during summers. It is the best weapon you need to beat the heat stroke during summer owing to its high water content. Therefore, failing to include watermelon in your diet is a suicide attempt.