Do you love watermelons? Me too! But did you know that, in addition to being a delicious thirst quenching fruit, watermelons have lots of health benefits? They are a source of many vitamins (like vitamin A and vitamin C) and are packed with nutrients that have healing properties when it comes to protecting your skin and reducing muscle inflammation, among other things.
Some of the benefits of watermelon include:
- An excellent source of hydration. They’re just like a power drink, but all natural. Watermelons are great hydrators because they are 92% water and electrolytes.
- It protects your skin. Not only does watermelon have nutrients like lycopene that help protect your skin from harmful UV rays, they are also packed full of vitamin A, which is great for healthy skin. The high amount of vitamin A and beta carotene also aids eye health. Move over carrots! Note, eating foods rich with lycopene will help your skin but are not substitutes to actual sun screen)
- Watermelon has been shown to combat free radicals, which are linked to causing cancers. The nutrient lycopene has also been studied and linked to decreasing the risk of prostate cancer.
- Reduces muscle soreness and inflammation. Watermelon contains choline and a specific amino acid that are said to reduce inflammation. Athletes that have taken watermelon prior to exercise had less muscle soreness afterwards. This could be contributed to watermelon’s hydrating qualities too.
- Aids in weight loss, because it is mostly water and lower in sugar than other fruits.
- Can lower blood pressure. Watermelon extract has been shown to help lower blood pressure, likely because of the healthy minerals it contains such as potassium and magnesium.
- Could help prevent asthma. Because of its high vitamin C content, watermelon is being studied for its effects on the lungs and ability to lower the risks of developing asthma.
Now I won’t feel quite as guilty hogging all the slices of a watermelon next time I get one.