One of my favorite summer pleasures is enjoying the sweet, succulent slice of watermelon also known as citrullus lanatus. My family spends a big part of the summer vacation at our weekend house, in a beautiful natural setting away from the hustle and bustle of the big city. We use this time to relax, recreate and reconnect with each other.
The highlight of our day is just before sunset, when the heat eases, the sky is illuminated with beautiful colors and the crickets start chirping. We gather together in our garden, inhaling the aroma of newly mowed grass and then my husband brings out a tray with freshly cut cold slices of watermelon. My daughter always screams with delight at this sight.
Did you know that everyone’s favorite summer fruit is actually a vegetable? Watermelon belongs to the family of cucumbers, squash and pumpkins. My 90 year old grandmother must know this instinctively since she loves eating watermelon with cheese, which is an unthinkable combination for my palate. I have recently discovered that watermelon is also served with feta cheese in Greece, Turkey and Israel.
Regardless of different ways to consume this God-given product, watermelon is full of important nutrients that refresh us and offer us abundant health benefits.
I assume that most of us regard them as an unnecessary part of the watermelon that we just pluck out and throw away. We are doing great injustice to the seeds and to ourselves, since they are edible and also packed with precious substances.
Health Benefit Of Watermelon Seeds
They contain essential amino acids
Arginine boosts our metabolism, helps our cardiovascular system and contributes to our sexual health. Lysine aids the formation of our connective tissues and collagen. Tryptophan improves our sleep, relaxes us, helps us lose weight and achieve emotional balance. Glutamic acid is important for supporting a healthy and energetic body. It also acts as a neurotransmitter in our central nervous system and a fuel for the brain, improving memory function and stimulating mental activity.
We must take in these amino acids through food since our body does not produce them on its own.
Watermelon seeds are high in protein
One cup of dried seeds contains 30 grams of protein, which is a building material for our muscles and connective tissues, and for the production of enzymes. Protein contributes to the health of our hair and nails.
They are rich in unsaturated fatty acids
Oleic and linoleum acids are heart-healthy nutrients that provide our bodies with energy and make our skin healthy and shiny.
They are a rich source of magnesium
100 grams of seeds contain 139 percent of the daily requirement. This mineral is essential for the proper functioning of the heart,it regulates blood pressure, relaxes the muscles and the nervous system and supports metabolic processes.
They contain B-complex vitamins in great amount
B vitamins are essential for our nervous system. They regenerate our nerves and speed up the recovery of damaged nerves. They help convert food to fuel and give us energy. Thiamine (B1) participates in the creation of new cells in the body and it protects the immune system. Niacin (B 3) boosts the good cholesterol and is good for the skin. B 6 (Pyridoxine) helps the body in the production of serotonin and melatonin, hormones that promote good sleep and improve our mood. B 9 (folic acid) prevents neurological birth defects and prevents memory loss.
They contain copper. This mineral participates in the production of melanin, which is a color-providing pigment for our skin and hair.
Lycopene in the seeds offer powerful antioxidant properties, protecting us from the effects of free radicals.
Watermelon seed benefits have been supported by doctors and scientists. Dr. Simran Saini, a dietitian at Fortis, New Delhi says:“Watermelon and also others like melon seeds and flaxseeds are rich in micronutrients like selenium, potassium, copper and zinc which you may not derive from your daily diet in adequate quantities. They can be sun-dried and eaten as a snack or can also be powdered. They’re good for your heart, boost immunity and keep blood sugar levels in check. You can add it to your diet as a health supplement in combination with others seeds. I’d suggest about ¼ of a teaspoon twice a week. ”
Watermelon Serving Suggestion
1.You can sun-dry them and eat as a snack. To do this, you need to rinse and clean the seeds thoroughly. Place them outdoors, under direct sunlight and let them dry for about a week. Once they are dried, their taste is similar to that of sunflower seeds but less nutty. You can eat them alone or mix them with other nuts.
2. You can roast them for a healthy and tasty snack that is low in calories. In order to do this, you need to soak them in water for a few hours. Spread them on a pan and salt them to your taste. Bake for 40 minutes at around 325 Fahrenheit and allow them to cool.
3. You can eat them with fried rice, mix them in yogurt and soups and enrich your salads with them.
4. Add extra flavor and nutrients by adding watermelon seeds to your sauces, dips and sandwiches.
5. You can powder dry seeds and mix them in smoothies.
6. Make an unusual addition to your baked muffins, cookies and granola bars with them.
Watermelon Seed Tea Recipe
You may be surprised to know that you can actually make tea from watermelon seeds. It can be used as a home remedy for keeping your blood sugar levels under control. This tea is also helpful for detoxification and as a potent kidney cleanser and for the elimination of kidney stones. It is also simple to make but it will do you good!
To make it, you need 4 tablespoons of crushed and ground watermelon seeds. Boil them in 2 liters of water for 15 minutes.
This tea lasts for 2 days. It is suggested that you drink it for two days and then take a 1-day break. You should repeat the procedures for the next few weeks. Feel free to repeat the procedure for the next few weeks.