Watermelon, how I love it. It takes me back to many childhood summer memories where indulging in this sweet treat was pure bliss. It’s one of the healthiest foods on the planet. Who doesn’t love biting into a juicy sweet piece of watermelon? It’s 92% water and saturated in an array of vital nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. It effectively hydrates, detoxifies, and cleanses the entire body on a deep cellular level.
This succulent fruit is rich in vitamin A, C, B6, folate, lycopene, beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. Watermelon is also abundant is calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium. So what are the health benefits of these attributes?
Heart & Bone Health
By far, lycopene is lauded as the superstar antioxidant in watermelon. This has lead to the prestige of being deemed a high lycopene food. Lycopene is a carotenoid phytonutrient that is especially important to our cardiovascular health. It has been shown to benefit and protect the blood vessels around the heart. Watermelon also contains citrulline and arginine that can improve blood flow, lowers blood pressure, and reduces heart clogging arterial plaque. Lycopene is also great for skeletal health. Dietary lycopene reduces oxidative stress thus reducing the risk of osteoporosis.
Excellent Anti-inflammatory Properties
This thirst quencher can significantly reduce inflammation. It has the potential to aid in chronic inflammation that cause illnesses like diabetes, asthma, arthritis, and coronary disease. It also can provide protection from certain cancers such as lung, mouth, pancreatic, breast, prostate, endometrial, and colon cancer. Watermelon contains triterpenoid, which is a powerful anti-inflammatory phytonutrient; it blocks the inflammation causing enzyme cyclooxygenase. Triterpenoid also neutralizes nitrogen-containing molecules in the body.
Skin and Hair Benefits
Vitamin A is superior for the skin, hair, teeth, and soft tissue. It keeps your skin and hair moisturized and encourages healthy collagen and elastin cell growth. Vitamin A also promotes good eye health and keeps mucous membranes moist.
A Natural Viagra
Studied have shown that increased circulation can benefit more than the heart. Citrulline, which your body converts into L-arginine, is a blood vessel relaxer which enhances circulation to all your vital parts.
Reduce Body Fat
The citrulline in watermelon helps reduce the accumulation of excess fat. It can block the activity of TNAP (tissue-nonspecific alkaline phosphatase) which makes our fat cells create less fat and thus helps prevent over-accumulation of body fat.
Watermelons are extremely hydrating being 92% water, so it’s a natural diuretic; this helps increase the flow of urine without straining the kidneys. Watermelons also help the liver process ammonia which eases tension on the kidneys while getting rid of excess fluids.
Many people discard the rind of the watermelon. It has a storehouse of citrulline, which is deemed a non-essential amino acid. It boosts libido, fights free radicals, and aids in weight loss. The rind is one of highest organic sodium foods in nature and one of the best sources of chlorophyll. The black seeds in watermelon have incredible benefits too; they aid in relaxing the body, lowering blood pressure and contain healthy amounts of iron, zinc, and protein. Maybe we won’t be so hasty it throwing this part out. I wash the rind extremely well and juice it with other fruits. It’s tasty and so beneficial.
As summer approaches, I can’t wait to indulge in watermelon; it’s one of my favorite fruits to eat because I love the flavor. The health benefits are a bonus! Eating healthy can be delicious!