If you thought that watermelon was nothing more than a watery sweet treat, think again. Watermelon is both delicious and quite nutritious.
Fat free and low in calories, a two cup serving of watermelon supplies good amounts of Vitamins A, B6 and C. The red variety also has a significant amount of lycopene – an antioxidant that numerous studies suggest reduces the risk for prostate and cervical cancers. While tomatoes have long been cited for their high lycopene factor watermelon actually has more – two cups has 18.16 mg compared to one medium-sized tomato with 4 mg.
SELECT THE BEST!
To find the ripest, juiciest watermelon:
- look for one that it is heavy for its size
- is free from cuts or bruises
- has a yellowish spot where it sat on the ground happily ripening in the sun
Store whole watermelons in the fridge or at room temperature for up to a week. Cut watermelon should be wrapped in cellophane and stored in the fridge. Even though you don’t eat the rind, wash the melon before cutting to rinse off debris that could easily wander from fingertips to fruit.
Enjoy watermelon any time of day – breakfast, lunch, dinner or as a snack. For an exotic treat, toss some seeded watermelon chunks into a blender, whirl into liquid, pour into ice cube trays and freeze. Enjoy the frozen chunks in your favorite lemonade or try the berry lemonade recipe for a refreshing twist on a summer favorite.
Berry Watermelon Lemonade
Prep time: 20 minutes
Chill time: 1 hour
6 C fresh watermelon cubes (seeds removed)
¼ C raspberries or strawberries
1 C water
1/3 C sugar (superfine dissolves faster)
½ C lemon juice
Place watermelon, berries and water in blender, puree until smooth. To remove seeds berry seeds, pour liquid through a fine mesh strainer. Stir in lemon juice and sugar until dissolved. Chill in refrigerator for about an hour.
For more recipes and nutritious insights, check out my new book, The Essential Guide to Healthy and Healing Foods.