In the US the month July is known as the National Month of the Watermelon. This is because there are watermelon harvests at this month and the fresh appearance of the watermelon slice symbolizes the summer.
But that doesn’t mean that August should not also be the month of watermelon. After you get to know all the facts and benefits of watermelon you would like every month to be watermelon month.
There is a list of melons in the US that are most consumed. On that list, the watermelon is first, and then the cantaloupe and the third place takes the honeydew. There are even hieroglyphics that show that watermelon has origin 5,000 years ago from Egypt.
And also that the watermelon is a cousin to the pumpkin, cucumbers and also to the squash. In the present, there are 50 popular varieties of watermelon, but around 300 are grown in Mexico and also in the US.
The watermelon can be a magnificent addition to your regular diet, and it comes with a lot of benefits if you consume it with moderation. Also, you need to know how you can consume it.
You need to know that you cannot mix it with other foods, but consume it alone because it might lead to groan stomach. Most precisely would be, not to eat anything 30 minutes before you consume watermelon and 30 minutes after you consume it.
6 Surprising Facts About Watermelon
1. Mostly Water
Some of you might know that 91 percent of the watermelon is actually water. You can prevent dehydration on sunny and hot summer days just by consuming watermelon.
But bear in mind that the consumption of watermelon juice, it’s just one way to remain hydrated, and it does not replace the usual plain water. Consuming plenty of water during the summer days is a must.
2. More Lycopene in Comparison to Raw Tomatoes
Lycopene is a carotenoid antioxidant that is potent and is responsible for the pink and red color of the fruits and vegetables. Usually, the lycopene is linked to the tomatoes. But, most people are not aware of the fact that there is more lycopene in the watermelon.
Only one cup watermelon has 1.5 times more lycopene than a large tomato. There is 6 mg lycopene in watermelon, and on the other hand, there is 4 mg lycopene in tomato.
3. Consume the Rind and Seeds of the Watermelon
This is probably something that most people do not know, that you can consume the rind and seeds. You can keep the rind, blend it and add some lime. And this may serve as your healthy summer treat.
The rind is beneficial because it contains a lot of health-promoting and blood building chlorophyll. According to a study, there is more citrulline amino acid in the rind than in the pink flesh of the watermelon.
This amino acid converts into arginine in your kidneys, and it is beneficial for your heart health and immune system. It is said that citrulline has therapeutic value with up to hundred health conditions.
Most people eat the seedless watermelon. But, it that a good choice? Well, actually no, because the watermelon seeds are healthy and edible. The black seed has protein, fiber, zinc, and iron.
The watermelon varieties that are seedless aren’t genetically modified. That is like that due to hybridization.
4. Yellow Watermelons
On the market, you can find yellow watermelon like the Crimson which has yellow flesh with honey flavor. This watermelon is sweeter in comparison to the well-known Crimson Sweet which has a pink flash.
There are many nutritional benefits of the yellow watermelon. But the problem is that researchers somehow only choose to conduct studies about the pink watermelons.
5. It Is Fruit and Vegetable Too
Watermelon is a cousin to the pumpkin, cucumber, and squash. It is like that because the watermelon is, in fact, part watermelon, part fruit. And you can eat the rind as well.
6. Watermelon Juice Relieves Muscle Soreness
Watermelon juice is great to consume before you go to the gym. You just need to juice 1/3 watermelon in the juicer or blender. This amount of watermelon has around 1 gram of l-citrulline amino acid which protects and helps from any pain in your muscles.
In fact, one study showed that men who consumed this pasteurized and natural drink before they went to the gym had reduced muscle soreness just one day later.
And those participants that had placebo took longer time. The watermelon drink helped all participants to reduce the recovery of heart rate.
But, you need to be careful with drinking watermelon juice because in its content there is a presence of fructose. To avoid over-consumption, eat the fruit instead to juice it.
Lycopene- Famous Nutritional Benefit of the Watermelon
One cup of watermelon has around 6,500 micrograms i.e. 6.5 mg lycopene. The varieties of watermelons that have red flesh usually have more lycopene in comparison to the yellow watermelons.
This is a stable antioxidant, it has only small deterioration after the watermelon is cut and after the watermelon stays in the fridge for more than 48 hours. One study reports that after 1 week of storage, that is when the lycopene begins to deteriorate and that only happens by 6 percent to around 11 percent.
Why is the lycopene important? Because it is believed that the lycopene is more potent in comparison to the beta-carotene. A 2014 meta-analysis reports that this antioxidant can reduce the risk of stroke by 19 percent.
Also, it is believed that due to its antioxidant properties it has high activity against cancer. According to 2014 meta-analysis made from 10 studies, the dietary lycopene may protect and help lower the risk of ovarian cancer with postmenopausal women.
Other studies made on animals suggest that the lycopene can help treat cancer. In addition, a different research suggests that lycopene treatment can reduce the growth of brain tumors. And yet another study suggests that regular lycopene consumption may suppress the breast tumor growth in mice.
Watermelon Extract Helps Reduce Your Blood Pressure
The watermelon and its nutrients play a crucial role in preventing heart attacks because the nutrients help reduce the blood pressure. In one study some obese participants took supplements of citrulline and arginine from the extract of the watermelon.
These participants experienced great improvements regarding their blood pressure and cardiac stress when they had stressful cold water test. The researchers note that the watermelon supplements helped to reduce their blood pressure and also the need of myocardial oxygen in a time of the CPT also known as a cold pressor test.
In addition, there was increased magnitude of cold in wave reflection with obese adults with hypertension. The watermelon may provide cardio protection by lowering the cold-induced aortic responses which are hemodynamic.
What happens in the body is that Citrulline transforms into L-arginine which is a precursor regarding the nitric oxide. In order to have a proper flow of blood and your blood vessels to relax you need to have a suitable amount of nitric oxide. This is why it helps to lower the blood pressure.
Use Watermelon for Inflammation and Much More
The L-arginine relaxes the blood vessels, and that is why it is good in case of erectile dysfunction. It is the same for the blood vessels that supply the necessary blood to the external organ in men.
Because of this benefit, the watermelon is said to be the natural Viagra. One study reports that men with mild erectile dysfunction may improve their hardness in terms of erection due to the citrulline supplements.
Furthermore, the watermelon is rich in anti-inflammatory substances. The watermelon contains lycopene, cucurbitacin E and also triterpenoid. In fact, the triterpenoid may help reduce the enzyme’s activity that leads to inflammation and pain i.e. cyclooxygenase.
Moreover, this is actually the same enzyme which the inhibitors COX-2 block it, this also involves NSAIDs like aspirin and also ibuprofen. The well-known fact is that the watermelon is very low in calories, in one cup there are only around 25 calories.
But, it is also rich in vital nutrients like:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B6
How to Select the Best Watermelon
Now that you are aware of all the benefits that the watermelon provides you need to learn how to pick the proper watermelon in order to enjoy all those benefits. And let’s be real, we all get a little disappointed when we buy watermelon, get home, cut it and we see that is bad.
But, you probably did not pick right, because you did not know about these tricks. Next time you go to buy a watermelon, the first thing you should do is to check its bottom.
Why? Because the proper watermelon will have a pale spot that is buttery-yellow. Bear in mind that the spot should not be green or maybe white. If that is the color of the spot, do not buy the watermelon.
Why is the color important? Because the watermelon sits on the grown and that is an indicator that is mature. If you want to find out more, watch the video below that will help you always to choose the right watermelon.
To pick the proper watermelon, you can also make the thump test. This is thought to be controversial, but it is said that if the watermelon is ripe, then it should have sort of hollow base sound.
The perfect watermelon has a smooth rind. However, with dull top. The opposite side of its ground spot is the top. It depends on its size, but watermelons should be heavy.
Before you consume the watermelon, remember to put in the refrigerator from 50 to 60 F degrees. Also before you decide to cut it, use a clean damp cloth to clean it.
After you cut it and take the amount you want to consume, put the rest back in the fridge. In case you decide to eat the rind, opt for organic watermelon, just to stay safe.
Bear in mind that the watermelon has fructose and that is why you should eat it in moderation. As a healthy treat, you can blend the rind with some lime.
Only one-sixteenth of watermelon of medium size contains around 11.3 g of fructose. For those people that are in good health, have recommended daily intake that is below 25 g.