Watermelon is 92% water, but also has plenty of nutritional value. It contains healthy amounts of vitamins A and C, as well as beneficial antioxidants and amino acids. All of that while being low in calories and fat free! Let’s take a look at the specific health benefits watermelon can offer
1. Water Melon Replenishes Hydration
Talk about an all-natural food to rehydrate the body, especially if you feel like you need some sugar and vitamins along with water. Watermelon is pretty close to 100% water, but, importantly, the juice is full of beneficial electrolytes. While drinking water is the most important way to keep you hydrated, eating foods with a high water content can also help. Because watermelon also has a hit of fiber, it can keep you hydrated and feeling full. It means you’re eating a decent volume of food with few calories. The electrolytes found in watermelon may even help prevent heat stroke.
2. Water Melon Encourages Digestion
Watermelon contains a small amount of fiber and lots of water, which are both important for healthy digestive function. The combination keeps you regular. The water helps move food and waste through the digestive tract and fiber provides bulk for your stool. Fruits and vegetables that are rich in fiber and water can promote regular bowel movement.
3. Water Melon Is Heart Healthy
An animal study conducted by Purdue University and University of Kentucky in 2012 found that watermelon may be beneficial to heart health. The study looked at the role of citrulline, a compound found in watermelon. Researchers concluded the amino acid may play a role in promoting cardiovascular health.
There are also several other nutrients in watermelon that have specific benefits for the heart. A 2014 study found that the high levels of lycopene found in watermelon may lower cholesterol and blood pressure. It was also found to help prevent oxidative damage to cholesterol. Lycopene is a chemical that occurs naturally in some fruits and vegetables, giving them their red color, like tomatoes. Obese postmenopausal women were found to benefit from lycopene in another study. Researchers found it may help reduce the stiffness and thickness of artery walls.
4. Water Melon Has Anti Inflammatory Properties
Watermelon contains anti-inflammatory antioxidants, including lycopene and vitamin C. They may help reduce inflammation and oxidative damage. Lycopene works as an inhibitor for certain inflammatory processes and as an antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals. A 2015 study looked at supplementing an unhealthy diet with watermelon powder in laboratory rats. Researchers found the subjects that ate the powder developed lower levels of C-reactive protein (which is a marker for inflammation), and less oxidative stress when compared to the control group. Inflammation can promote chronic diseases, so it is important to keep it at bay. Choline is also found in watermelon, which can help reduce chronic inflammation.
5. Water Melon May Reduce Muscle Pain
The amino acid citrulline in watermelon may aid muscle recovery. A 2013 study looked at the bio-availability of the amino acid from consuming the fruit. Athletes were separated into three groups. The first group was given plain watermelon juice before exercise. The second was given watermelon juice mixed with citrulline. And the third group was given a straight citrulline drink. Both watermelon juice drinks helped reduce the recovery heart rate and muscle soreness after 24 hours. Interestingly, they were more effective than the citrulline on its own. Researchers believe citrulline absorption is more effective when consumed as a component of watermelon.
6. Water Melon May Benefit The Eye
The lycopene in watermelon helps reduce the risk of oxidative damage and inflammation. Lycopene is also found in parts of the eye. Consuming lycopene through watermelon may prevent macular degeneration brought on by age. It may also prevent age-related macular degeneration from worsening. The disease is caused by the thinning of a macula layer of retina, resulting in a gradual decrease in vision.