Whether in the form of juice, ice cream or fruit salad, melon is a great snack option. In addition, the fruit also has benefits ranging from improving the appearance of the skin, even preventing cancer.
According to nutritionist Pollyana Oliveira, melon has a set of advantages. “It hydrates and detoxifies the body, as it is rich in water (about 80%), and has a low caloric value, ideal for those who want to maintain their weight. At the same time, because it is full of fiber , it helps with digestion, being very effective against constipation , in addition to increasing the feeling of satiety,” he explained.
Another great use is the ease of finding this fruit. Although native to Asia, it is popularly grown in warm countries. No wonder that the Northeast region is the largest producer of fruit in Brazil.
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What are the main benefits of melon?
The high nutritional value makes melon a great alternative for the composition of a healthy diet. Check out some of its main benefits:
1. Helps reduce blood pressure
It is known that a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables and vegetables, by itself, is already beneficial to health. However, because it is abundant in water and potassium, melon helps to reduce blood pressure in hypertensive patients. The consequence is that the individual is less likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease and other complications.
This happens because the fruit has a compound called L-citrulline, which favors the dilation of blood vessels and improves circulation. The ingredient also helps to improve the patient’s lipid profile, protecting their heart health .
2. Strengthens bones
Melon is rich in nutrients that help keep bones strong and healthy, including vitamin K, magnesium and folate. Folate is essential to keep the homocysteine level stable, which, when elevated, can be the cause of several diseases, including osteoporosis.
Magnesium, in turn, is essential in building bone mass. About 4% of the daily needs of this mineral can be met with a serving of melon. And vitamin K favors the fixation of calcium in bones.
In addition, melon also contains small amounts of other nutrients, including: calcium, phosphorus and zinc , which help to strengthen bone.
3. Relieves menopause symptoms
According to Pollyana Oliveira, “melon is capable of alleviating the symptoms of menopause, as its composition contains phosphorus, magnesium, vitamins A and B. This fruit is considered a natural tranquilizer , which also reduces mood swings during this phase of life. woman’s life”.
The strong waves of heat, which are characteristic of the natural decline in reproductive hormones, can be mitigated, or even avoided, thanks to the presence of vitamins C and E and flavonoids. These compounds also alleviate vaginal dryness and mood swings.
4. Favors the immune system
Melon contains vitamin C, capable of boosting the immune system and keeping away illnesses such as the flu, colds and pneumonia. While it doesn’t stop the body from catching a cold , it can alleviate your symptoms and shorten the problem’s duration.
This vitamin is also essential for tissue development and repair throughout the body. As an antioxidant, it fights free radicals in the body, which can help prevent or delay certain types of cancer and heart disease, as well as promote healthy aging.
5. Improves skin appearance
This benefit is also merit of vitamin C . It prevents cell degeneration and aging of the skin and organs in general. It also stimulates collagen production, repairing and maintaining the firmness of the complexion.
6. Acts in favor of eye health
For the nutritionist, melon is an ally of good vision because of the zeaxanthin present in the fruit’s composition. “This pigment fights free radicals and is naturally present in the body, especially in the eyes, improving the health of the retina”, stressed Pollyana.
|100 Gram serving||Amount per serving|
|Energetic value||29 Kcal|
|C vitamin||8,7 mg|
* Daily reference values based on a 2000kcal or 8400kj diet. Your daily values can be higher or lower depending on your energy needs. Data taken from TACO, revised and expanded edition.
Melon makes you fat. Truth or myth?
It is a myth. No food, in isolation, is able to make you fat or lose weight. It all depends on the general context of food and the individual’s way of life. Thus, if you are sedentary and eat inappropriately (too much fat, carbohydrates and processed foods), adding melon to your diet will not make any difference.
On the other hand, if you change the afternoon snack (stuffed cookies, sausages and fast foods) for a portion of melon, the fruit can help you lose weight in a healthy and balanced way.
However, the nutritionist points out that “despite being healthy, melon should not be consumed in excess, due to its high glycemic load and glycemic index”.
Types of melon
Melon is generally classified into two types, odorless and aromatic. The most common are Gaul, Honeydew and Cantaloupe. Check out its main characteristics according to the nutritionist:
Cantaloupe melon : it is a very tasty and sweet variety. The flavor even resembles that of watermelon. Its pulp is orange and soft, and the skin is full of reliefs. This melon is a great source of vitamin C and vitamin A and has healthy levels of potassium, vitamin B, thiamine, niacin, folic acid , vitamin K, magnesium and fiber.
Galia melon : Galia melons are yellowish or greenish, with a sweet yellowish flesh. It is a hybrid variety, originating from the Ogen melon and the Honeydew melon. They are rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, carotenoids, bioflavonoids and various minerals such as potassium, calcium, and iron . In addition to containing significant levels of fiber, including pectin. They are also fat-free, cholesterol-free, and low in calories.
Honeydew melon : this type of melon has a yellowish and shiny skin and a slightly greenish and sweet pulp. It has a high water content in its composition. But the sugar level can reach 10%, that is, it is also quite high. Looking at the nutritional value, it is even more nutrient-dense than a watermelon, containing a higher level of potassium, beta-carotene and vitamin A. In addition, it provides iron, B-complex vitamins and nutrients essential for our body’s health.
How to choose
When buying, some tips can help you choose a ripe and sweet melon. The first step is to check the skin for stains, mold, dents or cracks. Note that the rind is not very shiny, which could mean that the fruit is not quite ripe yet. Another tip is to tap it lightly with your hand and pay attention to the sound: if it’s hollow, the melon is ready for consumption.
How to extract the pulp
There are two more practical ways to cut this fruit.
1st : Place the fruit horizontally and cut its ends. Support one of your bases on the counter and peel it by cutting with a knife. Cut in half and remove seeds.
2nd : Vertically cut the fruit in half. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon and cut from one end of the melon to the other, into 3 or 4 centimeter slices. Remove the husk by separating it from the pulp using a knife.
How to consume
Introducing melon into the diet is quite simple, as the fruit is versatile and has a delicate flavor, pleasing even children. The best way to consume it is in its fresh form, cutting it into pieces. In this way, it can be eaten alone or added to a fruit salad. If you prefer, the melon can be used to prepare juices. In this case, the nutritionist’s tip is to add chia seeds to control the glycemic index.
Recipes with melon
We have separated 3 recipes for you to taste the fruit in different versions:
- 1 cup (of tea) of chopped melon
- 2 cups (of tea) of ice water.
Beat the melon with water in a blender. The fruit is naturally sweet, but if you want to sweeten it, opt for honey or brown sugar.
- ¼ chopped melon without husk and without seed
- 1 thin slice of ginger
- 200 ml of iced green tea
- 1 tablespoon of honey.
To prepare tea, put the water in a pot until it starts to boil. At this point, turn off the heat, add the herb and cover. Leave to rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Then strain the tea and put it to freeze. With the cold drink, mix it in a blender with the other ingredients and it’s ready.
- ¼ cup of lemon juice
- 1/3 cup of light condensed milk
- 6 cups of melon.
Blend all ingredients in a blender and transfer the cream to a baking dish. Store in freezer for eight hours. Scratch the granite with a fork to form ice crystals. To serve, garnish with mint leaves.
So, with so many benefits and delicious tips, what’s missing for you to introduce melon into your diet?
My name is Ellie Lauderdale, MD and I am USA based professional Nutritionist .
I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and board certified specialist in sports dietetics who is trained in integrative medicine. I have worked with hundreds of clients, from those suffering with chronic disease to professional and olympian athletes. My goal is to help optimize you from the inside so that you can feel, perform, and look your best on the outside.