Watermelon season is almost over, so while they’re still around, slurp them up as much as you can. Cause the ones you’ll find in February won’t be nearly as juicy and sweet.
Watermelon is not only low in calories (about 50 per cup) but high in fiber, water, and flavor, so it keeps you full long after you eat it. It’s a great source of Vitamin C and a good source of Vitamin A. It’s also packed with lycopene, a carotenoid with antioxidant properties, that gives it its red color and its disease-fighting power.
Eating watermelon is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, macular degeneration, and many types of cancer, especially colon. Since your body absorbs lycopene better when it’s combined with a little bit of fat, consider adding some olive oil or avocado to your next watermelon salad.
Here are 4 refreshing ways to enjoy the health benefits of watermelon:
1. Power Boost Smoothie: Blend 1 cup cubed watermelon, 1 cup strawberries or blueberries, 1 cup reduced-fat milk of your choice, and ice.
2. Sweet Morning Fruit Salad: Combine watermelon, honeydew melon, and cantaloupe with fresh peaches, lemon juice, and mint for a refreshing summer salad.
3. Savory Watermelon and Avocado Salad: Combine mesclun salad mix, watermelon cubes, diced avocado, cubed jicama, sliced green onions, cilantro, and mint in a bowl. Toss with olive oil, lime juice, cayenne pepper, and salt. Sprinkle with a little crumbled queso fresco or feta cheese, if desired.
4. Watermelon Salsa: Combine diced watermelon, raw corn kernels, diced red bell peppers, sliced green onions, minced jalapeño, and diced avocado. Toss with a little olive oil, lime juice, and salt. Serve with grilled shrimp, fish, chicken, or pork tenderloin.
Got other ways to enjoy watermelon? Please share them below.
Photo credit: Susan Russo, Flickr, Food Blogga