Ahhh… summer… the long, hot days, the ice cold drinks, and watermelon out the wazoo! Watermelon is great after a long run (I tell all my athlete clients to eat up after a sweat fest). It has 92% water. But it’s not the water that’s the winning ingredient in this super-yummy health food, it’s the 8% lycopene. Lycopene is a phytochemical that protects your heart, prostate and skin health. Sounds good to me!
The latest scientific info on watermelon is probably the most interesting… Researchers at the Indian Association of Urologists say it can help men make babies! After conducting numerous research studies, they claim that lycopene has been found to enhance male fertility by improving both sperm concentration and motility.
If you’re not in the market for a youngin’, you’ll be glad to know that watermelon also reduces risk of several cancers: prostate, ovarian, cervical, oral and pharyngeal. Still not impressed? It also protects skin against sunburn. As an added bonus, if you get burned, you can always use cold watermelon as a compress on your sore skin!
So, love the fruit that loves you back and add watermelon to your healthy eating plan.
Here are a few ideas:
- Breakfast: make a watermelon smoothie with 1 cup watermelon and 1 cup fat-free Greek yogurt. Toss in a few ice cubes and enjoy.
- Lunch: chilled baby spinach salad with watermelon chunks, almond slivers, and grilled chicken breast with a raspberry salad dressing (or make your own with lemon juice and olive oil).
- Snack: frozen watermelon (if you can’t make this, I can’t help you… serious, cut into chunks and freeze in an airtight container. You will love these healthy popcicles!) Or try these Watermelon Honeydew Kabobs with a sweet honey lime dressing.
With only 50 calories a cup, this super-delicious, super-healthy super fruit is a weight management wonder. Just make sure you don’t get stuck with a “lemon”. Follow these tips to choose the best melon in the patch.
Selecting the Best Watermelon
Look for one that is heavy for its size with a rind that is relatively smooth and that is neither overly shiny nor overly dull. Look for the underbelly – an area that is distinct in color from the rest of the rind, displaying a yellowish or creamy tone. This is the place that was resting on the ground during ripening.
July 10th, 2009