The Health Benefits of Watermelon

This summer fruit is refreshing, juicy and delicious, and like most fruit, it has some great nutritional benefits. On realizing numerous benefits of watermelon, your love for this fruit will increase manifold. It not only tastes good but has many health benefits.

Despite the fact that watermelons are mostly water — about 92 percent — this refreshing fruit is actually a nutrient dense food. The healthy or beneficial effects of watermelon are mainly derived from its unique nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and organic compounds. It is a great source of vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, fiber, protein, and a large amount of potassium. Furthermore, they contain vitamin A, vitamin B6, niacin, thiamin, and a wide variety of carotenoids and phytonutrients, including lycopene.

Watermelon is thought to aid conditions including prevention of kidney disorders, high blood pressure, cancer, diabetes, heart diseases, heat stroke, and impotence. Other benefits of the watermelon include promoting a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy, and overall lower weight.

Read on to discover why watermelon is so good for you.

Heart health

Watermelon is loaded with lycopene. It’s high levels of lycopene are very effective at protecting cells from damage and may help lower the risk of heart disease, according to a study at Purdue University. A study published in the American Journal of Hypertension found that watermelon extracts helped reduce hypertension and lower blood pressure in obese adults.

Watermelon may be especially important for older women. A study published in Menopause found that postmenopausal women, a group known to have increased aortic stiffness, who took watermelon extract for six weeks saw decreased blood pressure and arterial stiffness compared to those who did not take watermelon extract. The authors of the study attributed the benefits to citrulline and arginine.

Arginine can help improve blood flow and may help reduce the accumulation of excess fat.

Anti-inflammatory properties

Choline – found in watermelon – is a very important and versatile nutrient; it aids our bodies in sleep, muscle movement, learning, and memory. Choline also helps to maintain the structure of cellular membranes, aids in the transmission of nerve impulses, assists in the absorption of fat, and reduces chronic inflammation.

Reducing inflammation isn’t just good for people suffering from arthritis. “When you’re sick, you have cellular damage, which can be caused by a variety of factors including stress, smoking, pollution, disease, and your body becomes inflamed,” Jarzabkowski said. “It’s called ‘systemic inflammation.'” In this way, anti-inflammatory foods can help with overall immunity and general health.

Hydration

As the name of the fruit implies, watermelon is 90% water, making it one of the best sources of hydration. It is far better than alcohol or caffeine in terms of being a diuretic. As it is a natural source, it increases urination without stressing the kidneys.

Digestion

The watermelon contains fiber, which encourages a healthy digestive tract and helps keep you regular.

Skin and hair benefits

Vitamin A is stellar for your skin, and just a cup of watermelon contains nearly one-quarter of your recommended daily intake of it. Vitamin A helps keep skin and hair moisturized, and it also encourages healthy growth of new collagen and elastin cells, according to the Cleveland Clinic. Vitamin C is also beneficial in this regard, as it promotes healthy collagen growth.

Muscle soreness & athletic performance

Watermelon-loving athletes are in luck: drinking watermelon juice before an intense workout helps reduce next-day muscle soreness and heart rate, according to a 2013 study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. This can be attributed to watermelon’s amino acids citrulline and arginine, which help improve circulation.

A 2015 study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology suggests that watermelon’s citrulline may also help improve athletic performance. Study participants who took citrulline supplements saw a boosted performance with more power production in high-intensity exercise like cycling and sprinting.

Cancer prevention

Like other fruits and vegetables, watermelons may be helpful in reducing the risk of cancer through their antioxidant properties. Lycopene in particular has been linked to reducing prostate cancer cell proliferation, according to the National Cancer Institute.

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