Ah watermelon, the quintessential summer fruit. It reminds me of cookouts, beach days + warm weather and just overall gives me JOY. Not only does this juicy melon give me nostalgia + #feels but it’s also (needless to say) DELICIOUS & is JAM PACKED with vitamins + antioxidants that help your bod in MANY ways. See my breakdown below of why watermelon is the GOAT of fruits:
1. Watermelon Has More Lycopene Than Raw Tomatoes: Lycopene is a powerful carotenoid antioxidant that gives fruits and vegetables a pink or red color. It’s most often associated with tomatoes, but watermelon is actually a more concentrated source! Antioxidants protect your body from free radicals which are basically toxic byproducts of oxygen metabolism. When free radical levels outnumber antioxidant levels, they can create oxidative stress in your body. This stress is linked to certain chronic diseases, such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease and Alzheimer’s. Research has shown that lycopene can keep these levels in check and protect your body against some of these diseases. You go LYCO!
2. Watermelon is mostly water: WATER-melon…they were thinking when they named it! Watermelon is actually 92% water so not only is it a delicious food, it also hydrates you. It also only has 46 calories per cup and the combination of water and fiber means you can consume a good volume of food and feel fuller longer without consuming a lot of calories.
3. Watermelon is full of vitamins and nutrients: One cup of watermelon includes all of these vitamins and minerals:Vitamin C: 21% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)Vitamin A: 18% of the RDIPotassium: 5% of the RDIMagnesium: 4% of the RDIVitamins B1, B5 and B6: 3% of the RDI
Watermelon also contains citrulline, an amino acid that may increase nitric oxide levels in the body. Nitric oxide helps your blood vessels expand, which lowers blood pressure and may improve heart health.
4. Watermelon may help relieve muscle soreness: Watermelon juice appears to enhance the absorption of citrulline. One small study gave athletes plain watermelon juice, watermelon juice mixed with citrulline or a citrulline drink. Both watermelon drinks led to less muscle soreness and quicker heart rate recovery, compared to citrulline on its own.
5. Watermelon helps your hair and skin look FAB: Vitamin C helps your body make collagen, a protein that keeps your skin supple and your hair strong. Vitamin A helps create and repair skin cells and both lycopene and beta-carotene may also help protect your skin from sunburn. Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s watermelon!
Tips for choosing the best watermelon in the patch:
Believe me when I tell you this, the struggle was REAL for me when it came to picking out the finestttt watermelon in the bunch. Nothing’s worse than coming home all amped up (side note: do other people get amped up when they’re about to eat watermelon or is it just me?) and seeing that your watermelon is mealy, not ripe and/or just NAHT GOOD. UGH, first world problem but a problem nonetheless! Here are some pro tips I’ve learned throughout my years to help you find that elusive #perfect watermelon.
1. The heavier the better: this indicates it’s full of water and is nice and RIPE
2. Look for the field spot: you want the watermelon to have distinct yellow spot in one central location. This is where the watermelon sat and ripened. Make sure it’s yellow and not white though!
3. Look for webbing: this indicates again that it’s ripe and READY
4. Give it a little knock: a ripe watermelon should have a deep hollow sound like a drum or knocking on a door.
Happy Summer! May all your (watermelon) dreams come true this season!