Watermelon benefits, properties, calorie content, useful properties and harm

The content of the article

According to the botanical classification, watermelon (lat. citrullus lanatus)
Is a berry of the family pumpkin, although there is a consensus on
this matter still does not exist. Many scholars attribute it
to the group false berries, and some botanists call pumpkin.

Differences in classification, however, do not in the least interfere with
it is safe to say that watermelon is a healthy product that gives
the body not only feels fresh, but also benefits
work of the heart, helps to lower cholesterol levels and, accordingly
reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. Amino acid
citrulline makes it invaluable for athletes, and the presence in it
the composition of antioxidants is associated with the prevention of cancer.

Useful properties of watermelon

Composition and calorie content

Fresh watermelon contains (in 100 g): .

Calories 30 Kcal

Vitamin C 8,1 Potassium, K 112 Vitamin
B4 4,1 Phosphorus,
P 11 Vitamin
B3 0,178 Magnesium, Mg 10 Vitamin B5 0,221 Calcium, Ca 7 Vitamin E 0,05 Sodium,
On 1

Full composition

As you can see from the table, watermelon is a low-calorie berry consisting of
mostly from water. However, abuse it and try to lose weight
using it is not worth it, since it contains a large amount
carbohydrates
and sugars and has a very high glycemic index. However,
it is also impossible to underestimate the benefits of watermelon for the body, because in
it contains useful trace elements and vitamins. And his seeds
although they have an excessively high energy value, –
the richest source of phosphorus, magnesium, zinc and vitamin PP.

Fresh watermelon slices

Medicinal properties

At first glance, it may seem that a watermelon, which is 90%
from liquid, does not particularly enrich the body with useful elements,
but in fact, together with him, a person receives a significant dose
vitamin C, which protects cells from damage and gives the skin
and blood vessels elasticity, as well as vitamin A, which takes direct
participation in the process of visual perception. Although
the pulp of watermelon is not high in vitamins of the group
B, including the extremely important folic acid, and
vitamin PP, which regulates the release of energy
from food, they are abundant in watermelon seeds.

In terms of minerals, watermelon provides
a large amount of magnesium in the body, which has a beneficial effect
on the contractility of muscles. In addition, it is badly needed.
for normal absorption of calcium.
The process of bone tissue renewal is impossible without magnesium. Special
a lot of this trace element in watermelon seeds (130% of the daily
norms per 100 g). Also watermelon (to a lesser extent the pulp and to a greater
seeds) are rich in phosphorus, which gives strength to bones
and teeth. By the way, contrary to popular myth, eating sunflower seeds
does not lead to appendicitis.

American scientists have proved that watermelon is the richest natural
a source of L-citrulline – amino acids,
from which nitric oxide is synthesized in the body, which, in its
turn, promotes vasodilation and maintains their tone.
In one experiment, subjects after consuming citrulline
transferred to a room with a low temperature in order to provoke
vasoconstriction. Then they measured their pressure, and it turned out that
after ingestion of the amino acid, the indicators were lower and
vessels narrowed less. Moreover, L-citrulline is able to remove
from muscles lactic acid..

The red color of the flesh of a watermelon is largely due to the presence in it
the composition of carotenoids, which are converted into a vitamin in the body
A. However, one of them, lycopene,
this transformation does not undergo. Instead, he manifests
high antioxidant activity. Some scholars associate
its effect on reducing the risk of developing digestive cancer
system and prostate. In addition, they celebrate its beneficial
effect on blood vessels (lowers cholesterol levels and prevents
plaque formation) and heart function. Like other carotenoids,
lycopene is good for vision and contributes to preventing
age-related macular degeneration (central vision impairment).

Athletes eating watermelon in the gym

Watermelon is considered a functional food and it is very healthy for people,
who get a lot of physical activity in training. This
the berry simultaneously provides the body with fast carbohydrates,
antioxidants,
amino acids. Research shows that watermelon puree and juice
(in a volume of 500 ml after training) affect the body in the same way,
as well as sports drinks. They reduce muscle soreness and help
rebuilding..

Finally, you should pay attention to the fact that despite the widespread
popular belief is that watermelon cannot be considered a magical remedy,
flushing and cleansing the body of all toxins. Together with the pulp
we consume not only a large amount of fluid, but also excess
the amount of sugar. To put it into operation, they are actively included
kidneys, and the more sugar they need to excrete, the more fluid
they pull out of the body. Thus, small portions are capable of
in a good way, to activate the work of these bodies, but to lean
on watermelons and you do not need to create a large load on them.

In medicine

In scientific medicine, watermelon is still practically not used. But given
the fact that some of its components have a high healing potential,
it is possible that in the future, scientists will use them to develop
various medications (for example, vasodilators).

Today, watermelon juice extract is used in Korean
a means called “Mighty Khan“Or”Super han».
Its action is aimed at enhancing potency, and watermelon juice responds
for cleansing and dilating blood vessels through which blood flows to
penis. True, let us pay attention to the fact that this means
do not belong to drugs, but to food additives. Yes
and it is rather difficult to make an unambiguous conclusion about its effectiveness.
The degree of exposure depends on the causes of erectile
dysfunction, therefore it is better about the advisability of taking these capsules
consult a doctor.

Also on the shelves of pharmacies, watermelon is presented in the form of an oil extract.
its seeds, which are recommended for use in kidney disease.
This product helps to remove sand and small stones. Thanks to
it improves the structure of the renal tissue. In addition, the oil produces
mild diuretic effect, enhances the excretion of uric acid
and is involved in maintaining the acid-base balance.

Seeds of watermelon

In folk medicine

In folk medicine, watermelon is used mainly in the treatment
kidney and urinary tract diseases, but some prescriptions
promise a solution to problems with cardiovascular and digestive
systems. Also, watermelon is used externally to speed up healing.
wounds and burns.
Note that when preparing folk remedies, the peels and seeds
watermelon fruit is used more often than pulp.

Broths

A decoction of watermelon peels is advised to use when sand appears
or small stones in the kidneys and gallbladder, as well as colitis
and dysbiosis.
This remedy can be prepared from both fresh peels and
dried. If we are talking about fresh raw materials, then the first thing is the crust
must be separated from the pulp and cleaned from the outer bright green
films. Then grind and fill with water at the rate of 100 g of raw materials
for 1 liter of water. This mixture should be left on low heat for 30 minutes,
then let it brew for about an hour and strain.

If there is a need to prepare such a decoction throughout
year, then you can make supplies for the winter. Peeled and sliced
small pieces of crust should be laid out in one layer on a baking sheet
and put in an oven preheated to 50 ° C. When the moisture evaporates
the temperature is raised to 70 ° C. You can also leave the baking sheet
in the sun or use an electric dryer. The resulting raw materials are usually
stored in paper bags or ground into powder and transferred
in glassware.

To prepare the broth, 150 g of dry peel are poured into 1 liter of boiling water
(when using powder, take 1 tablespoon for 1,5 cups
water) and let it brew for an hour. Take this remedy
one glass 3-4 times a day 20-30 minutes before meals. By the way,
with diarrhea, healers advise taking one teaspoon of the powder,
washing it down with water, every two hours, until digestion improves.

There are also recipes for watermelon seed decoctions. For
preparation of such a drug, 40 g of seeds are kneaded in a mortar
and pour 1 liter of hot water, leaving on low heat for 30
minutes. Then you need to let the liquid brew for about an hour and strain.
Then add 150 g of mashed watermelon pulp, mix and send
for storage in the refrigerator. Use this remedy for inflammation
urinary tract and kidney disease 2 days a week according to the following scheme:
1 glass on an empty stomach, and then another glass 30 minutes after
every meal.

Watermelon juice

External application

Traditional healers claim that both watermelon pulp and watermelon
crusts are effective in treating minor wounds and sunburn.
To do this, you need to grind fresh raw materials with a blender until puree
mass, and then apply to the affected area of ​​the skin and fix
bandage. After an hour, wash off with cool water. To speed up healing
wounds, you can make a compress from a decoction of watermelon peels.

In addition, traditional healers claim that applying fresh
crusts to the temples with headaches and to the joints – with arthrosis
helps to reduce pain. However, it is still useful
from such procedures is extremely doubtful.

Juice

In folk medicine, watermelon juice is considered an effective remedy.
with fever,
hematological diseases and infectious inflammation of the genitourinary
systems. Usually it is taken in one glass 4-5 times a day.
In addition, watermelon juice is often mixed with freshly squeezed
juices of other vegetables and fruits. Of the most popular blends
The following can be distinguished:

  • Watermelon orange
    (mix in equal proportions and take 0,5 cups 3 times
    a day 30 minutes before meals). Reduces cholesterol levels,
    activates intestinal peristalsis, helps with mild constipation,
    relieves the symptoms of overwork.
  • Watermelon-birch (mix in equal proportions and take
    1 glass 3 times a day 30 minutes before meals). Reduces pressure
    helps to alleviate the symptoms of arrhythmia,
    has choleretic, diuretic and antipyretic effects.
    She is recommended to rinse the mouth and throat for inflammatory
    processes.
  • Watermelon cherry
    (mix in equal proportions and take 1 glass 3-4 times
    in a day). Helps with colds, has an anticonvulsant
    action, normalizes the work of the gastrointestinal tract and improves
    appetite.
  • Watermelon-apple
    (mix in equal proportions and drink throughout the day). Promotes
    restoring or maintaining the tone of the body, helps with
    mental and physical fatigue, dizziness. Renders
    mild laxative effect.
  • Watermelon-potato
    (mix in a ratio of 2 to 1 and take 1 glass 2 times
    in a day). The mixture of these juices is beneficial for digestive problems.
    system (gastritis
    with high acidity, enterocolitis, intestinal ulcer
    and stomach, dysbiosis,
    heartburn, constipation). It is also used in the form of lotions for solar
    burns.

By the way, for inflammation of the urinary tract and fevers, it is recommended
consume “watermelon milk”. For its preparation 50 g of seeds
knead thoroughly in a mortar, and then add 500 ml of water and
continue to crush until a milky liquid appears. Received
filter the mixture and drink 1 teaspoon 6 times a day.

Watermelon in a garden with leaves and flowers

In oriental medicine

In folk medicine of eastern countries, watermelon has long been given close
Attention. For example, in China it was referred to the group of cooling
products and believed that it affects the heart, stomach and
bladder. It was believed to have a cleansing effect
and is able to remove disease from the body if taken regularly
before eating. In addition, this berry soothes the spirit and helps to get rid of
from anxiety and feelings of frustration..

Until now, Chinese traditional healers use watermelon for relief.
diseases such as nephritis
and hypertension..
Moreover, they believe that it has antipyretic, diuretic
and a mild laxative effect. Special attention is paid to seeds,
which are brewed dry like tea. Such a drink is beneficial
affects the kidneys and helps to reduce blood pressure. But
Chinese physicians warn against eating watermelons of those
who have acute problems with the gastrointestinal tract.

In Indian folk medicine, watermelon is considered in the first degree.
cold and moist food that stimulates the appetite and improves
digestion process. In addition, it is recommended to use it
for eye diseases, as well as use externally for inflammation
skin.

In scientific research

Watermelon gets into scientific research mainly due to the fact
that it contains a high concentration of carotenoid
pigment lycopene.
Previously thought to be the richest source of this antioxidant
– tomato.
However, later scientists found that watermelon with red pulp
not only does not yield, but even surpasses the tomato in this indicator
about 40%.… Moreover, to get high
a dose of lycopene from tomato, it must first be subjected to
heat treatment, and from watermelon lycopene is absorbed by the body
in full and directly..

Researchers believe this pigment has the properties it needs
to prevent chronic diseases such as dyslipidemia
(cholesterol disorder), diabetes,
osteoporosis and even cancer.
In addition, it contributes to the fight against free radicals, oxidative
stress (a process that leads to the appearance of diseases of the cardiovascular
and nervous systems) and neurodegenerative diseases..

For example, in one of the experiments, scientists introduced lycopene into the diet.
healthy male smokers with little fruit intake and
vegetables and found that the level of oxidative stress in their bodies
dropped significantly. Moreover, improvements were recorded
the functioning of the endothelium (inner layer of blood vessels)..

Watermelon pulp close up

One study from Harvard
university, scientists have found that men who regularly receive
lycopene, are less at risk of developing cancer, especially
prostate cancer.… There is also evidence that among
those who did develop the disease were 25% more people
with a lack of this carotenoid pigment in the diet..

As for women, scientists believe that a sufficient number of
lycopene in the body helps to reduce the risk of cancer by 5 times
cervix.… And if you take statistics that include others
types of cancer, then among patients there were 44% more people who received
insufficient amount of carotenoid pigment..

Lycopene has also been shown to be effective in hyperglycemia. Chinese
scientists divided the rats into groups, each of which for
This pigment was given for 28 days in various doses (0, 250, 500 and 2000
mg / kg body weight). At the end of the experiment, no deviations from
the norm in the readings of blood and urine was not detected, in addition,
what’s the glucose level
decreased markedly. Moreover, the higher the dose of lycopene, the stronger
glucose dropped.… In another similar study
not only a decrease in sugar was recorded, but also an increase in the level
insulin..

In addition, from 1992 to 2003. large-scale work was carried out
for the observation of women with diabetics of the middle age category.
During this period, they followed a diet in which
there were many lycopene-containing foods. Scientists continued to monitor
the condition of these women before 2013 and, as a result, concluded that
that on average, their insulin levels increased by 37-45%..

Finally, in one of the most recent studies, scientists analyzed
the effect, not only of lycopene, but of all components of watermelon on the body
rats kept on an atherogenic diet (which promotes the development of
atherosclerosis).
In particular, special attention has been paid to antioxidant and anti-inflammatory
the properties of watermelon, as well as its effect on the lipid profile.

It turned out that in comparison with the control group, in rats that
regularly received watermelon extract, decreased the level of oxidative
stress, cholesterol and triglycerides, as well as increased antioxidant
the ability of the body, which, in turn, causes a decrease
risk of developing cardiovascular diseases..

Girl eating watermelon

For losing weight

Usually, watermelon is included in the top fruits and vegetables that help
lose weight quickly. It is often even based on a mono diet. With one
hand, such an attitude towards this giant berry seems justified,
because it contains a lot of liquid and very few calories (in 100 g
pulp contains only 30 kcal). However, on the other hand, watermelon
has an excessively high glycemic index, it contains a lot
sugar and in large quantities, it has a gigantic load
on the kidneys.

So, the use of watermelon in weight loss diets is possible, but
its portions should not exceed 200-300 g per day. Despite
the fact that this berry has fiber, which should provide
long feeling of satiety, after watermelon quite quickly again
appetite appears. The thing is that its glycemic index
is 80 units. This means that after eating the pulp
in the blood rises sharply, and then the level drops just as sharply
sugar and hunger quickly renews. Moreover, though
sugar in watermelon and simple, but their excess does not bring benefits to the body.

If in diets with a varied diet, watermelon in moderation
quite acceptable and even useful because of its low calorie content and
the ability to remove excess fluid from the body, then from watermelon
mono diets are best avoided. Eating the same food
the body loses a huge amount of nutrients. In addition
along the way, the watermelon washes away useful minerals that have already been
in the body.

Finally, the greatest burden falls on the kidneys, therefore
such a diet is not just undesirable, but contraindicated for people who
who already have problems with these organs or are suffering from inflammation
genitourinary system. Dangerous consequences can await those who have
who has diseases of the cardiovascular and digestive systems
or diabetes mellitus.

In cooking

The traditional way of drinking watermelon is fresh and often
separate from other products. However, this is not all,
in many cuisines of the world, watermelon is dried, salted, fried. Out of him
make jam, honey (traditional Astrakhan nardek), add it
for desserts, for oysters,
in salads and even soups (for example, one of the options for summer gazpacho).
In addition, the inhabitants of the Mediterranean prefer to spread on
watermelon is a cream cheese, and Thais have a habit of sprinkling the pulp with salt.
By the way, in China, watermelon with salt is also quite common, therefore
they even released the popular Fanta drink with a corresponding
aroma.

Watermelon ice cream

By its taste, watermelon goes well with sweet,
and with salty foods. However, it is worth paying attention to the fact
what salt
retains water, and watermelon supplies it to the body in large
quantities. This combination can lead to fluid stagnation.
and swelling. It is useful to combine this berry with fat-containing foods,
after all, lycopene and carotenoids are fat-soluble pigments. In that
sense, a salad of watermelon, feta cheese and mint is well suited,
seasoned with olive
oil.

If you want to experiment and bring a little exotic
in your daily diet, then you can try to fry watermelon
lobules. First of all, they need to be peeled and seeds removed, and then
cut into small pieces. For batter, mix 2
egg whites and 4 tablespoons of potato starch (previously
diluted in a little water). Dip slices of watermelon
in flour, then in batter and deep-fry in a frying pan.
Then sprinkle with icing sugar.

Another interesting summer dessert is watermelon cake. To prepare it
peel the watermelon and use a knife to give it any
shape (will serve as the basis for the dessert). Then chop the pieces of coconut
until puree, heat this mass and add to it
gelatin, stirring until completely dissolved, pour in cold whipped
cream and put in the refrigerator for an hour. Then coat with this cream
watermelon pulp and sprinkle with almond
shavings.

By the way, not only the pulp, but also the peel can be useful in cooking,
from which jam is made. The recipe is extremely simple,
but it will take time. Washed and cut into small pieces
the peels are put in sugar syrup and boiled for 15 minutes, then left
in the refrigerator for 12 hours. During this time, the skins become translucent.
and acquire an amber hue. After that, they must be put again.
on fire and boil for 15 minutes, and then hide for 12 hours
in the refrigerator. For the third time during boiling in jam you need
add orange zest
and spices to taste.

Finally, very effective summer cocktails are made from watermelon.
To prepare such a “drink in a barrel” you need to cut
at the top of the fruit there is a small hole for the blender, immerse
inside and beat the pulp. Then add rum or whatever
kind of alcohol, mint and lime
and insert the straws.

Whichever way you are going to cook a watermelon, it is important to remember,
that first it must be washed, otherwise when cutting
peel, bacteria from the surface will enter the edible part.

Watermelon Skin Scrub

In cosmetology

Unlike official medicine, in cosmetology, watermelon has long been
received the recognition it deserved. Pulp extract as well as oil
watermelon seeds are used in beauty products for various purposes.
For example, due to its high liquid content, the berry represents
special value for moisturizers, and the presence of simple
sugars (sucrose,
Glucose
and fructose),
containing glycolic acid justifies its appearance
in products for gentle peeling. This acid helps to remove
a layer of dead cells without damaging the skin underneath.

In addition, watermelon contributes to the chemical composition of cosmetic
pectin products that activate the protective function of the skin
cover and soften the aggressive impact of the environment. Vitamin
C and antioxidants give the epidermis elasticity and firmness,
thus protecting it from premature aging. Finally,
B vitamins stimulate the process of filling cells with oxygen
and thus maintain skin tone. Note that watermelon is also
provides a slight whitening effect, which may be beneficial
for owners of pigmented and freckled skin.

As for watermelon seed oil, according to cosmetologists,
it has a beneficial effect on the hair. Stearic, oleic,
linoleic and palmitic acids nourish curls, and L-arginine affects
on the blood supply to the hair follicles, stimulating the growth process
and, if necessary, starting the recovery process. Thanks to
the content of copper and zinc, products with watermelon seed oil, will
especially useful for hair prone to oily and active hair loss
pigment (graying). Finally, we note that thanks to the fresh
and a slightly sweet aroma, watermelon is often used as in a woman’s,
and in men’s perfumery, especially when creating summer scents.

As for the preparation of cosmetics at home,
then among the most popular recipes, the following can be distinguished:

  • For a refreshing and tonic effect, it is recommended
    freeze watermelon juice in an ice cube tray and then rub
    him face skin. Wash off the remaining liquid after 15 minutes.
  • When acne appears
    it is necessary to put 10 g of watermelon seeds in a mortar and knead well
    them, gradually adding 100 ml of water. Apply to skin, leave
    for 20 minutes and then rinse with cool water.
  • If the skin is rough and dry, the upper part should be cut off.
    watermelon fruit, beat the pulp inside a little with a blender, add
    a glass of warm milk there and put it in this
    palm mixture. Then apply a fatty fraction to the skin (any vegetable
    butter).

Dangerous properties of watermelon and contraindications

Moderate consumption of watermelon has a beneficial effect on the body,
however, abuse can lead to negative consequences:

  • Over 30 mg of that very beneficial antioxidant lycopene can
    provoke disruption of the digestive system (especially
    in the elderly), cause nausea and diarrhea.
  • In people with hyperkalemia, large amounts of watermelon can cause
    muscle spasm and arrhythmia.
  • An excess of potassium can also lead to a sharp decrease in
    pressure.
  • Large amounts of sugar – high glycemic load
    on the body, especially those suffering from diabetes.
    It is better to combine eating watermelon with plant foods rich in
    fiber. This will make the spike in glucose less dramatic.
  • For kidney problems, large portions of watermelon can provoke
    severe swelling
    because the liquid simply cannot leave the body quickly.
  • Watermelon seeds contain so-called antinutrients (phytins,
    tannins,
    inhibitors of trypsin – an enzyme that breaks down proteins), therefore
    they are best consumed not raw, but dried or fried.

We have collected the most important points about the benefits and possible dangers of watermelon.
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Useful properties of watermelon

Interesting Facts

Watermelon has been cultivated in the Kalahari desert for another 4000 years
ago, but it came to Europe from Africa only in the XNUMXth century. Breeders
argue that modern berries bear little resemblance to their predecessors.
American scientist James Niinhuis cites a still life in confirmation
by the Italian artist of the time Giovanni Stanki, on whom
depicts a fruit with a very light, barely pinkish pulp. Red
the watermelon was made thanks to the work of breeders, who gradually
filled it with lycopene.

Watermelon in painting: still life by Giovanni Stanki and "The merchant's wife at tea" by Boris Kustodiev

At the beginning of the twentieth century, the berries have already acquired a reddish hue and, by
claims historians have been extremely sweet. In the watermelon museum
in Astrakhan, Boris Kustodiev’s painting “The Merchant’s Wife at Tea” is exhibited.
The canvas depicts a woman with a cup, and on the table next to a samovar
there are slices of watermelon. It is believed that the berry was so sweet
that it was eaten as a dessert, washed down with tea.

Since then, watermelon has only gained popularity all over the world, for good reason
in many countries thematic festivals are held, and even put on
monuments to him. Many such monuments are located on the territory
post-Soviet countries. The most famous are located in Saratov and Kamyshin.
(Russia), as well as in Kherson and s. Osokorovka of the Kherson region (Ukraine).
Also, a giant sculpture stands in a small Australian town
Chinchilla. Although more modest, there is a monument to a watermelon and
in the USA – in Texas.

Monuments to watermelon in various countries

It is interesting that watermelons are loved and appreciated not only for their taste characteristics.
and useful properties, but also for a special structure. First, they serve
wonderful material for culinary carving masters (artistic
cutting for vegetables and fruits). Second, the sound engineers of horror films
use watermelon fruit to recreate the sounds accompanying
blows to the face, splitting of the head, breaking bones. And in the famous
TV series “Game of Thrones” by hitting a watermelon imitated the sound
a cracking dragon egg.

Selection and storage

Determine the period from which it becomes safe to buy watermelons,
and choosing a good ripe berry is a simple matter, although surrounded by
many myths. It is best to start eating watermelons at the beginning of the season,
that is, in August. Of course, there are early ripening varieties that
ripen earlier, but there are relatively few of them on the market, but the probability
to run into a fruit, the growth of which was forced by fertilizers, is enough
high.

Note that almost all melon growers use nitrogen fertilizers.
when growing watermelons, but the main thing is not to exceed the permissible norms.
With an excess of nitrogen, the fruit ripens quickly, but it remains
a large amount of nitrates. Likewise, the danger is
and unripe berries. Nitrates from fertilizers must go through a period of associated
forms and excretion, and in the case of early harvest, harmful substances
do not have time to do this and remain inside.

Despite the fact that there may be an excess of nitrates in watermelon and
it is not very useful for the body, practically poisoning with them
impossible. Allowable intake of nitrates by a person with weight
60 kg – 300 mg. Even in the most “polluted” watermelon fruit, 1
kg of pulp accounts for approximately 270-280 mg of harmful substances. For comparison
sometimes up to 1000 mg of nitrates / 1 kg is found in meat, and in greenhouse
spinach and arugula
– up to 2500 mg / 1 kg.

Girl keeps watermelon in the refrigerator

The poisonings commonly associated with drinking watermelon are indeed
happen, but not at all due to nitrates, but rather due to non-compliance
hygiene standards. Nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea – accompanying symptoms
intestinal infections that arise due to ingestion
bacteria living on the surface of unwashed vegetables and fruits. When cutting
they get on the pulp, and then into the gastrointestinal tract. So
that you should wash the watermelon well and thoroughly before use.

When choosing a fruit, you should pay attention to the peel: it does not
there should be damage and dents. The surface of a ripe watermelon is usually
shiny and bright green, but yellow-brown on one side
(earthen) spot – the place where the watermelon lay, ripening. Quite
it is normal for a watermelon rind to have a bee’s spider web
– thin ornate gray-brown stripes. It’s believed that
this is a sign of the special sweetness of the fruit. A ponytail or a place where
it is attached, must be dry, and the sound when tapped must be clear.

As for storing watermelon, after cutting it can be kept
in the refrigerator no more than 3-4 days. By the way, inventive amateurs
they came up with a useful life hack of this berry – cover the remaining half
watermelon shower cap. Due to the elastic band, it holds well and
protects the pulp from chapping.

At room temperature, a whole watermelon can lie on average about
2 weeks, but the timing depends on the degree of maturity. Interesting that
this fruit can be preserved even until the New Year. For this it is necessary
either placed in a net and hung, or placed on shelves, wrapped
straw, in a dark and cool (4-5 ° C) room. True, as they found out
scientists, in conditions with low temperatures in watermelons decreases
lycopene content (from 8,1-12,7 mg / 100 g to 7,8-8,1 mg / 100 g)..

Varieties and cultivation

Previously it was believed that watermelon can only grow in hot conditions
southern climate. However, the work of breeders made it possible to grow
this berry and in less favorable conditions, the main thing is to correctly
choose a variety for your region. Melon should be located on
south side of the site and protect from strong winds. Note that
unacceptably close location of groundwater, and for a better outflow
liquid and warming up the earth, you can even make beds 15 cm high.
In terms of structure, sandy loam or sandy soil is best suited.

You can sow watermelon directly into the ground when the temperature has reached the mark
15-16 ° C, and the ground warmed up about 10 cm deep. Watering the plant
may occur infrequently, but should be abundant (about 3 buckets
per 1 sq. m.). During the flowering period, moisturizing should be carried out 2 times
per week, and during ripening, watering is no longer required.

Unusual varieties of watermelons: Lunny, Densuke, Cubic, Pyramidal, Without seeds

The varietal variety of watermelons is amazing: you can choose a berry practically
for any climatic conditions. They will differ in terms of vegetation,
frost and drought resistance, but taste characteristics and external
the species remain largely unchanged. There are some exceptions though.

For example, breeders managed to bring out “moon” watermelons with pulp
yellow color. And on the Japanese island of Hokkaido, watermelons of the variety grow
Densuke. Their peel is dark green without stripes, so their
also called black. In one season, very little is collected there.
the amount of fruits, but it is believed that they have a special sweetness.
This explains their average price of $ 250 per berry weighing
6-7 kg, and the largest black watermelon was sold at auction for 6100
dollars. They are usually sold in stylish black boxes and are considered
a very valuable gift.

In addition, there are varieties that are completely seedless.
(they are not very common in our country, but in Europe they make up 80% of the market).
In some countries, tiny portions have become popular.
berries (about 10 cm in diameter). Also, Japanese melon growers are actively
experiment with shape, growing pyramidal and cubic
fruit. By the way, if the pyramid watermelons were created, rather, in marketing
purposes, the appearance of watermelon cubes is explained by quite practical
considerations. Such berries take up much less space and are more convenient.
to transport.

You can grow a cubic fruit in your garden. The moment when
the ovary reaches the size of an apple or a tennis ball, and is covered on top
plastic cube (designed for 4-5 kg) with transparent walls
and openings for air penetration. When the berry fills everything
space, the cube is removed and the fruit is left to ripen.

All in all, watermelon is not just refreshing water, but a source of
essential amino acids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
It is low in calories and fat, but it contains fiber. These berries are already
have long been used in cosmetology, and now their properties are actively
studied by physicians. When consumed in moderation, watermelon helps
maintaining the normal functioning of the cardiovascular and
digestive systems, it also contributes to the antioxidant
protection of the body and helps prevent the development of many chronic
diseases.

Information sources

  1. US National nutrient database, источник
  2. US National nutrient database, источник
  3. Top 9 health benefits of eating watermelon, источник
  4. Jaskani M.J., Kwon S.W., Kim D.H. Comparative study on vegetative, reproductive and qualitative traits of seven diploid and tetraploid watermelon lines. Euphytica. 2005;145:259–268.
  5. Edwards A.J., Vinyard B.T., Wiley E.R., Brown E.D., Collins J.K., Perkins-Veazie P., Baker R.A., Clevidence B.A. Consumption of watermelon juice increases plasma concentrations of lycopene and beta-carotene in humans. J Nutr. 2003 Apr; 133(4):1043-50.
  6. Choksi P.M., Joshi C.V.Y. A review on lycopene-extraction, purification, stability and applications. Int J Food Prop. 2007;10:289–298.
  7. Kim J.Y., Paik J.K., Kim O.Y., Park H.W., Lee J.H., Jang Y., Lee J.H. Effects of lycopene supplementation on oxidative stress and markers of endothelial function in healthy men. Atherosclerosis. 2011 Mar; 215(1):189-95.
  8. Dahan K., Fennal M., Kumar N.B. Lycopene in the prevention of prostate cancer. J Soc Integr Oncol. 2008 Winter; 6(1):29-36.
  9. Tang F.Y., Cho H.J., Pai M.H., Chen Y.H. Concomitant supplementation of lycopene and eicosapentaenoic acid inhibits the proliferation of human colon cancer cells. J Nutr Biochem. 2009 Jun; 20(6):426-34.
  10. Rao L.G., Mackinnon E.S., Josse R.G., Murray T.M., Strauss A., Rao A.V. Lycopene consumption decreases oxidative stress and bone resorption markers in postmenopausal women. Osteoporos Int. 2007 Jan; 18(1):109-15.
  11. Jian W.C., Chiou M.H., Chen Y.T., Lin C.N., Wu M.C., Du C.J., Chen-Pan C. Twenty-eight-day oral toxicity study of lycopene from recombinant Escherichia coli in rats. Regul Toxicol Pharmacol. 2008 Nov; 52(2):163-8.
  12. Ahn J, Choi W, Kim S, Ha T. Anti-diabetic effect of watermelon (Citrullus vulgaris Schrad) on Streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice. Food Sci Biotechnol. 2011;20:251–254.
  13. Wang L., Liu S., Manson J.E., Gaziano J.M., Buring J.E., Sesso H.D. The consumption of lycopene and tomato-based food products is not associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes in women. J Nutr. 2006 Mar; 136(3):620-5.
  14. Hong M.Y., Hartig N., Kaufman K., Hooshmand S., Figueroa A., Kern M. Watermelon consumption improves inflammation and antioxidant capacity in rats fed an atherogenic diet. Nutr Res. 2015 Mar;35(3):251-8.
  15. Pigulevskaya I. 365 Tibetan and Chinese secrets of health and longevity. Moscow: Tsentrpoligraf, 2011.
  16. Chinese Medicine Nutrition: Benefits of Watermelon, источник
  17. Choudhary R., Bowser T.J., Weckler P., Maness N.O., McGlynn W. Rapid estimation of lycopene concentration in watermelon and tomato puree by fiber optic visible reflectance spectroscopy. Postharvest Biol Technol. 2009;52:103–109.
  18. Alison J. Edwards, Bryan T. Vinyard, Eugene R. Wiley, Ellen D. Brown,Julie K. Collins, Penelope Perkins-Veazie, Robert A. Baker,Beverly A. Clevidence. Consumption of watermelon juice increases plasma concentrations of Lycopene and B-carotene in humans. The Journal of Nutrition, Volume 133, Issue 4, April 2003, Pages 1043–1050,
    source

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  • , title : 'Watermelon Hacks and Health Benefits - Here´s Why You Should Start Eating Watermelon
    Watermelon Hacks and Health Benefits - Here´s Why You Should Start Eating Watermelon

See also the properties of other berries:

Anna Evans

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