It's watermelon weather! I really love a good piece of watermelon. It seems like watermelon is only available in my area a couple of times a year. So when it is available, I make an effort to have some. Watermelon has a lot of great health benefits and great flavor.
Recently, I've seen a lot of discussions popping up about fruit, sugar and blood sugar control. In fact, I recently wrote a blog post on sugar explaining the differences between natural sugars found in fruit versus added sugar and their effects on the body. You can click here to access that post.
The reason blood sugar control is starting to get a lot of visibility is if you effectively manage your blood sugar (i.e. avoid spikes and keep it consistent) then you have a better chance of reducing the risk of certain types of chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease. The good news is that watermelon, no matter how sweet it is, it is low in carbohydrates and has a very small impact on blood sugar levels. (Source: Livestrong.com)
Watermelon is a good source of Vitamin C but also contains potassium, Vitamin B-5 and Vitamin A. Watermelon also contains the amino acid Citrulline and lycopene, a powerful antioxidant. Citrulline is transformed into arginine, which is an essential amino acid. Arginine is needed for the lungs, kidneys, liver, the immune system, and the reproductive system. However, while arginine is a great thing to get from eating watermelon, you would need to eat 5 pounds to get the daily requirement of arginine. Lycopene is usually associated with tomatoes but watermelon contains more than tomatoes. (Source: Healthline.com)
Ultimately, eating watermelon in the summer is a good thing since it can help keep you hydrated. After all it's name gives an indication of the benefit water - melon! While I like to chop it up and eat it as a mid-morning snack, there are a variety of ways you can cook with it and add it to other dishes to take advantage of it's sweet taste.
Below are several recipes I am going to try. If you try any of them, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram as @heatherleehurst and use the #heathershealthhabits hashtag. I love seeing your takes on the recipes I share! If you'd like to get healthy living tips and recipes for free, follow my blog on Bloglovin.
Watermelon Lemonade by Belle of the Kitchen. Watermelon lemonade is a great way to enjoy the hydration benefits of watermelon on the go. You can make a batch of it and take it with you! This recipe calls for 1/2 cup of sugar. I would use raw honey instead. I may also try this with a variation of adding ginger and turmeric to add anti-inflammatory benefits as well. Click here for the recipe.
Greek Couscous Salad with Watermelon and Feta by Katie at the Kitchen Door. This is a really simple recipe since couscous only takes 5-10 minutes to cook. Simply chop and mix the watermelon, cucumber, feta and olives, toss in a vinaigrette and BOOM you're done! Click here for the recipe.
Watermelon Taboule Stacks with Chicken by Watermelon.Org. What a great idea and by using packaged taboule, an easy dinner or lunch recipe that will have others drooling. I could also envision using tempeh to make a vegan friendly version of this dish. Click here for the recipe.
Baked Watermelon Barbecue Chicken Drumsticks by Floating Kitchen. Watermelon is used as part of the barbecue sauce and is mixed with ketchup, honey and chipotle peppers. This is a unique way to use watermelon for dinner. Click here for the recipe.
Frozen Watermelon and White Wine Granita by Cook the Story. When you think of watermelon of course you think of dessert! This is a simple and sophisticated desert that will wow your guests. Make this for a casual girls lunch or a family barbecue. Click here for the recipe.
I hope you enjoyed this compilation of watermelon recipes. If you try any, let me know what you thought. If you would like free healthy living tips and recipes, follow my blog on Bloglovin.