There are some cool watermelon benefits, pun intended heh! But lots of articles overstate and oversell just how good it is for you. Here’s the truth!
Watermelon is 90% water. That’s why it’s so refreshing.
But a cup barely gives you 5% your daily requirement of minerals like potassium. Yet still, articles go on and on about how watermelon’s amazing potassium levels help:
– “clean toxic depositions in the kidney…”
– “prevent both low potassium and magnesium deficiency…”
– “regulate nerve function by facilitating the passage of electrical impulses and messages.”
It’s less than 5% people! C’mon! Are they for real?
You need about 4,000 mg of potassium a day. A cup of watermelon will give you 170 mg. That’s it!
So let’s get down to the real watermelon benefits.
Proven Watermelon Benefits
1. It’s super hydrating
Watermelon is 90% water. That’s why it is so refreshing and hydrating, especially on a warm summer day. Should we expect anything less from a fruit with water in its name?
2. It’s a great low-calorie snack
100 grams of watermelon has 30 Calories.
A cup has 45 and a wedge will give you around 85 Calories.
So if you’re looking for a refreshing, low-calorie snack that doubles as a fruit serving, try a cup of watermelon.
3. It has great antioxidants
Watermelon can give you 10% of your daily Vitamin C levels. That’s OK, but you can get more from kale, broccoli and berries. Yes! Broccoli has more Vitamin C than watermelon.
Lycopene is another good antioxidant. It gives watermelon its gorgeous, vibrant, red color. And tomatoes too. You can get about 5 mg of lycopene in 100 g of watermelon. Again, that’s OK but you can get 75 mg in a cup of tomato paste.
Beta-carotene and Vitamin A are also in watermelon too.
But the special antioxidant award goes to l-citrulline. It is a non-essential amino acid that is antioxidant and awesome! You’ll see why it’s so good in a little bit.
4. Vitamin C is more than an antioxidant
Vitamin C is antibacterial, anti-fungal, and antiviral. It helps repair tissue damage and plays a major role in the immune system. If you get a cold, your cells use Vitamin C to fight off infections.
But… watermelon has only 10% your daily requirement. So eat other fruits and vegetables like citrus, kale, and berries to ensure you get all the Vitamin C you need.
5. L-Citrulline is very, very special
Ok, so bare with me.
Watermelon has high levels of l-citrulline. When you eat it, your body converts l-citrulline into l-arginine and then into nitric oxide.
I hope I haven’t lost you.
Your body needs arginine to heal and recover from injuries, burns, infections, kidney damage, and intestinal damage. It’s also important for immunity and for getting rid of ammonia in your body.
Now, nitric oxide is just as important. Your body uses it to transport glucose to fuel your cells. And it helps dilate your blood vessels and keep your blood pressure in check.
That’s why l-citrulline is so special.
6. Watermelon benefits blood pressure
A 2016 Brazilian study had hypertensive volunteers drink six grams of watermelon extract every day for six weeks. It showed watermelon reduced their systolic and diastolic blood pressure. That’s awesome.
A 2018 study noted l-citrulline and nitric oxide could lower blood pressure when you are calm and when you are stressed too! How cool and refreshing is that! Haha!
7. Watermelon lowers your cholesterol levels
Six grams of watermelon extract can lower your cholesterol levels too. I’m not kidding.
Another 2016 Brazilian study found participants who had six grams of watermelon extract every day for six weeks saw their total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels drop.
8. Watermelon is great for workouts
After a grueling workout, have yourself a wonderful wedge of watermelon… Or a smoothie.
A 2016 study from the Appalachian State University explains why. Nitric oxide helps glucose to move about your body and get to your tired, starved muscles. Your muscles use it to boost performance during the workout.
L-citrulline eases muscle soreness after high intensity exercises. And all the antioxidants in watermelon like l-citrulline, lycopene, and Vitamin C make sure to heal and repair muscle damage.
So grab watermelon as a post-workout snack!
That’s it! What do you think of these watermelon benefits? They aren’t overstated!