Watermelon Nutrition Facts and the Health Benefits of Those Nutrients

Page content

About Watermelon

Watermelon is a summer-seasonal fruit that is related to pumpkin and squash, as well as some other vine-grown produce. One serving of watermelon is considered to be the equivalent of two cups. The following nutritional information is based on that measurement.

Calories

There are 80 calories in one serving of watermelon. Those looking for a snack that is under 100 calories can comfortably enjoy two cups of watermelon in their snacking. This also makes it a great option for those wanting low calorie snacks but also wanting to avoid packaged or processed foods.

Fat and Cholesterol

There is zero fat and zero cholesterol in watermelon. This makes watermelon a great food for anyone who needs to watch their fat or cholesterol intake. Low fat and low cholesterol diets can help reduce the risk for heart disease.

Carbohydrates

One serving of watermelon has 21 total grams of carbohydrates. Twenty of those come from sugars; one gram comes from dietary fiber. This amount of carbohydrates may be too high for certain diets. The Glycemic Index Foundation lists ‘raw watermelon’ twice; both with the same carbohydrate amounts. However, one listing shows a glycemic index of 72, with a glycemic load of 4. The other listing shows a glycemic index of 80, with a glycemic load of 5.

Protein

One gram of protein may be found in one serving of watermelon. Protein benefits the body by aiding in the repair and growth of muscles. Those who do not eat meat may find that adding watermelon to their diet can help them meet their daily protein goal.

Sodium

There is no sodium in watermelon. People on a low-sodium diet may find watermelon to be a great snack and addition to other recipes. Sodium is an electrolyte that aids in fluid balance maintenance.

Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamin A. Thirty percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin A is in one serving of watermelon. Vitamin A is beneficial to eye health.

Vitamin C. The amount of vitamin C in one serving of watermelon is 25 percent of the recommended daily value. vitamin C is beneficial to boosting immunity. Vitamin C can also aid in the absorption of iron.

Calcium. The recommended daily value of calcium found in one serving of watermelon is two percent. Calcium is important for bones and teeth.

Iron. Iron is found in watermelon in the recommended daily value of four percent. Iron helps the body produce red blood cells.

Potassium. One serving of watermelon has 270mg of potassium. Under 10 percent of the recommended daily reference value for potassium can be found in one serving of watermelon. Potassium deficiency can lead to muscle cramping, so those wanting to help boost their potassium intake can benefit from adding watermelon to their diet.

Some of the other vitamins, minerals and nutrients found in watermelon have health benefits that can make watermelon a great addition to a healthy eating plan.

The antioxidants in watermelon help neutralize free radicals that can cause blood vessel walls to be coated, which can then lead to stoke or heart attack.

According to the National Watermelon Promotion Board, one serving of watermelon has more lycopene than one medium tomato at 18.16 mg and 4 mg, respectively. In studies, lycopene has been shown to help prevent certain types of cancer.

The amino acids in watermelon are beneficial in aiding with artery maintenance and heart health.

Another vitamin in watermelon provides health benefits, as well. Vitamin B6 helps create dopamine, serotonin and melatonin.

Summary

Watermelon nutrition facts are about more than numbers. The nutrients in watermelon can help add balance to a diet and health benefits to those who consume it.

Watermelon can be enjoyed in many ways besides in slices and chunks. There are many recipes for cold soups, beverages, salads, desserts and more that utilize the watermelon in ways that add fun and variety to any menu plan.

References

Watermelon. WHFoods. https://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=31

Watermelon Nutrition. National Watermelon Promotion Board. https://www.watermelon.org/watermelon_nutrition.asp