A Love Letter to Watermelon
When I was pregnant I fell in love with watermelon. So cold, so thirst-quenching, so naturally sweet… and the love never left.
I know it’s not just watermelon that nature offers us right now – there’s all sorts of wonderful summer fruits that provide lots of water and sweetness to cool the body.
But watermelon is the only fruit I might just be able to live on.
Here are my 5 favorite things to do with watermelon:
1. Eat half a watermelon for a meal. Yes, your next meal might come a little sooner because it’ll pass through quickly. Eat more watermelon. This is called a watermelon cleanse. You can do it for a half day, or more, depending what you want to do (and how much you need to cleanse).
2. Put watermelon in the blender and pour it into popsicle holders for the kids. In doing research for this, I came across tons of popsicle recipes that called for sweeteners. Does. Not. Need.
3. Add it to your daily Green Smoothie to make it even better
4. Have two big meals during the day and snack on only watermelon the rest of the day. In our house, we have a rule that snacks are only fruits and veggies. We don’t always stick to it, but we always come back to it.
5. Blend and pour into a glass with some water for a special sweet juice for the kids.
What else can we do with watermelon?
I saw a video of a guy who was a fruitarian and only ate watermelon for 2 years. He had been in a wheelchair and was by then completely healed. Search for watermelon fruitarians on YoutTube to hear why many fruitarians go for watermelon.
Watermelon also happens to be one of nature’s most nutrient-rich foods.
Here are some of the ways watermelon nourishes our bodies:
– It’s a high-lycopene food. These means it supports cardiovascular as well as bone health.
– It has citruline, which is an amino acid that can improve blood flow and may help prevent excess accumlation of fat in fat cells.
– Even the white flesh near the rind has a high concentration of antioxidants (don’t believe what you heard as a kid about it giving you a stomach ache)
– It has tons of vitamin C
– The more ripe it is, the more nutrients it has, including beta-carotene
– It is anti-inflammatory because of its phenolic compounds, including flavonoids, carotenoids, and triterpenoids
– The lycopene content doesn’t diminish in the fridge until 7 days
– Even though we get so many nutrients, including 20% of our RDA of Vitamin C, it only costs us about 2% of our daily recommended calories.
– The seeds provide us with iron and zinc, which is surprisingly bioavailable – meaning your body can actually get to it!
How to select a watermelon:
– A fully ripened watermelon will be heavy for its size
– If it’s been allowed to ripen on the vine long enough, it will have a big spot where it rested on the ground, and it should be creamy yellow
– If you like to thump your watermelons, look for a low sound, rather than high-pitched
And more ideas I read about:
– Purée watermelon, cantaloupe and kiwi together. Swirl in a little plain yogurt and serve as refreshing cold soup.
– In Asian countries, roasted watermelon seeds are either seasoned and eaten as a snack food or ground up into cereal and used to make bread.
– A featured item of Southern American cooking, the rind of watermelon can be marinated, pickled, or candied.
– Watermelon mixed with thinly sliced red onion, salt and black pepper makes a great summer salad.
And finally, it’s been hot in China so there’s a new trend – watermelon baby wear! You gotta check this out: http://kotaku.com/these-are-chinas-watermelon-kids-1076489968
Thank you watermelon for being there for us. You are so deeply hydrating, nourishing, and naturally sweet!