The cheery red color comes from lycopene, an antioxidant. Studies show it may help curb your risk of cancer and diabetes as part of a healthy lifestyle. Watermelon has more of this nutrient than any other fruit or veggie — even tomatoes. To load up on lycopene, choose a melon with bright red flesh rather than yellow or orange. And the riper, the better. Also, seedless melon tends to have more lycopene than those with seeds.
Some pigments help protect plants from the sun. Oddly enough, just eating them may shield your skin, too — at least a little. The lycopene in watermelon may make it less likely that you get sunburned. But that’s not for sure, so keep using your broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF of 30 or higher every day.
Watermelon is rich in an amino acid called citrulline that may help move blood through your body and can lower your blood pressure. Your heart also enjoys the perks of all the lycopene watermelon contains. Studies show that it may lower your risk of heart attacks. Of course, your whole lifestyle affects your heart health. So make sure you also work out, don’t smoke, limit saturated fat, and keep up with your doctor’s advice.
Protects Your Joints
Watermelon has a natural pigment called beta-cryptoxanthin that may protect your joints from inflammation. Some studies show that over time, it could make you less likely to get rheumatoid arthritis.
Easy on Your Eyes
Just one medium slice of watermelon gives you contains 9-11% of the vitamin A you need each day. This nutrient is one of the keys to keeping your eyes healthy. Foods are the best ways to get all the vitamins and minerals that your body needs.
Naturally Sweet Hydration
Juicy watermelon is 92% water, so it’s a simple way to help stay hydrated. Every cell in your body needs water. Even a small shortage can make you feel sluggish. If you get really dehydrated, it can become serious enough that you need to get fluids by IV.
A cup of ice cream will set you back around 300 calories. You can enjoy the same amount of watermelon for just 45.6 calories. And unlike many other desserts, it’s fat-free, cholesterol free, and has no sodium. Plus, the water in it will help you stay fuller longer. To make an easy sorbet, puree some watermelon in your blender, add a squeeze of lime, and pop in the freezer until it hardens.
Boosts Your Workout
Watermelon’s high water content, antioxidants, and amino acids may make for a better workout. It’s also high in potassium, a mineral that could cut down on cramps at the gym. You can sip watermelon juice after you sweat, too. Doing so could help prevent muscle soreness, as long as you don’t push yourself too hard.
Won’t Spike Your Blood Sugar
Trying to keep your blood glucose levels steady? You’re in luck. Watermelon has a glycemic Index(GI) value of 80, about the same as a bowl of cornflakes. But it’s got few carbs. That means its glycemic load (how quickly it enters your bloodstream and how much glucose it can produce) is a mere 5.