Benefits of Watermelon
Watermelon is one of the most delicious fruits out there, and it is perfect for enjoying on a hot summer day. Unfortunately not many people are aware of how healthy it is. Once you take a look at the various nutrients contained within this popular melon that will quickly change.
Beneficial for Heart Health
If you are one of the millions of people who are worried about heart problems, adding watermelon to your diet is a great place to start. Studies have found that one compound in watermelon, lycopene, can assist in lowering cholesterol and blood pressure. Maintaining a healthy cholesterol and blood pressure is critical to overall heart health. This compound has also been shown to reduce the overall stiffness of artery walls, which is another key heart health indicator.
In addition to that, watermelon can help your body to produce nitric oxide, which allows your blood vessels to expand. This can also contribute to reducing blood pressure. More indirectly, the vitamins A, B6, and C can help improve overall heart health, as can magnesium and potassium, all of which are present in this fruit.
Excellent for Reducing Inflammation
Many chronic diseases and other health conditions are directly linked to inflammation. While all bodies have inflammation at different times for different things, chronic inflammation is terribly unhealthy. Watermelon is filled with lycopene and vitamin C, both of which are anti-inflammatory antioxidants. A recent study found that rats who were fed watermelon powder in addition to an unhealthy diet had reduced inflammation and oxidative stress when compared to rats who didn’t get the watermelon powder.
Other studies have looked at alternative sources of lycopene and vitamin c (tomatoes, for example) and found that the inflammation was reduced in the body. There is no reason to think that watermelon would have a different impact since it too contains both lycopene and vitamin c.
Helpful in Preventing Alzheimer’s Disease
The lycopene found in watermelon has also been linked to a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease. For those who do get it, this antioxidant can also help to slow its progression. Both of these things are crucial, and while an additional study is certainly needed, adding watermelon to your diet now should have a positive impact on your overall brain health.
Important for Eye Health
Eye health is vital, and watermelon may help in this area. The eye is sensitive to oxidative damage as well as inflammation. As shown above, the lycopene in watermelon can assist in both of these areas. More specifically, lycopene has been shown that it could help prevent macular degeneration, which is one of the leading causes of blindness in older people.
Reduce Muscle Soreness
There is an endless list of foods or supplements that people say will help relieve muscle soreness after a hard workout. For anyone who likes to exercise, watermelon should be put at the top of that list. Watermelon has an amino acid called citrulline that has been linked to reduced muscle soreness.
What is more interesting is that watermelon juice has been shown to be more effective at reducing muscle soreness, and restoring normal heart rate, after a workout than citrulline alone. It is still not known what in the watermelon itself helps to boost the effectiveness of citrulline, but for most athletes, it will be enough just to know that it works.
Beneficial for Digestion
Most people today aren’t getting enough natural fiber. Watermelon does not contain massive amounts of fiber, but since it is consumed with high amounts of water within the fruit, it can help boost the digestive process. Consuming water and fiber together is an ideal solution to issues including both constipation and diarrhea. It also helps to keep your digestive tract moving the way it is intended, which is critical for overall digestive health.
Watermelon is Great for Your Skin and Hair
Watermelon contains Vitamin C and Vitamin A, both of which are important for the health of your skin and hair. The Vitamin C is necessary for your body to make collagen, which is what is needed for soft, supple skin and healthy hair. Vitamin A, on the other hand, is used by the body to repair skin cells so that you have a youthful appearance. In the summer you can also benefit from the lycopene and beta-carotene found in this fruit. These two nutrients are great for providing protection from sunburn according to studies.
Keeping You Hydrated and Healthy
As the name implies, watermelon contains a lot of water. In fact, 90% of the fruit is water! Anyone who is at all interested in improving their health knows that getting enough water is critical to just about every aspect of their overall well-being. While the most common way to get hydrated is to have a glass of water, eating watermelon is an excellent option too. It is low in calories and offers all the above mentioned health benefits. Plus, watermelon tastes great and is fun to eat.
Whether you are a child or an adult, you can slice up watermelon and enjoy it anytime to enjoy both the taste and the incredible health benefits. You’ll be glad you did.