Watermelon – just the thought of this sweet fruit can make your mouth water. It’s one of those foods that tastes so good and is good for you.
Natural vitamin water
“This summer staple is rich in vitamins A and C, potassium and antioxidants,” said Chrisanne Urban, a dietitian at Marshfield Clinic. “It has health benefits.”
Watermelon can boost immunity, detoxify, improve heart and eye health, prevent kidney stones and help fight cancer. “Watermelon is low in calories and 90 percent water,” Urban said.
How much is too much
Maybe the only downside to watermelon is eating too much. “You still can eat too much of anything.” Urban said. “If you have diabetes, you need to be careful and monitor intake secondary to the carbohydrate content.”
She suggests keeping track by weighing it. One ounce of watermelon has 9 calories and 2 grams of carbohydrates.
“Even if you are trying to control your weight, you need to monitor how much you are taking in,” Urban said. “You need to balance the calories out.”
To keep it healthy, eat watermelon plain without salt. If you use it in a recipe, choose one without a large quantity of additional fats, Urban said. “I have not heard of anyone deep frying watermelon probably because of the high water content.”
Try this recipe
If you’re in the mood for something different, try this watermelon salad. It’s sure to cool you on a hot summer day.
Herb Watermelon Feta Salad
Prep time: 20 minutes
- 1/2 large chilled seedless watermelon, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 small red onion, sliced
- 1 cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
- 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/2 cup minced fresh mint leaves
- 2 limes, juiced
- 1 (4-ounce) package crumbled feta cheese
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, or more to taste
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Gently toss watermelon, onion, basil, cilantro, mint, lime juice, feta cheese, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and black pepper together in a large bowl.
Each serving contains about 177 calories; 6 g total fat (1.9 g saturated fat); 31.1 g carbohydrates; 4 g protein; 2.1 g dietary fiber; 112 mg sodium; 24.5 g sugar.