Summer Nutrition Powerhouse – Watermelon

The lazy dog days of summer roll on. It’s been unseasonably hot here in Calgary and Southern Alberta.

It’s time to cool down with one of Nature’s absolute best… the watermelon.

This summer favorite is a natural anti-inflammatory, an excellent source of water and is full of vitamins and cancer-preventing compounds. It’s fresh, sweet and will keep you feeling refreshed even on the hottest of summer days. Watermelon is delicious sliced up for a snack, used in (or as!) dessert and makes a fabulous savory side dish.

Watermelon is a healthy choice, being rich in Vitamin A (eye health), Vitamin B6 (brain function), Vitamin C (immune support), Lycopene (studied for its antioxidant and cancer-preventing properties), and electrolytes (sodium and potassium).

Buying Guide

Choose a firm watermelon that has dried stems, a dull (not shiny) skin, rounded ends, has a cream-colored belly and is heavy for its size. Avoid watermelons that have a flat side.

Storage Tips

Store your unwashed watermelon at room temperature for up to 2 weeks, or until ripe. Ripe, cut watermelon can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
~1 week in the refrigerator
~2 weeks at room temperature.

Easy Prep Steps

Rinse the rind of the melon thoroughly before preparing. Slice the top and bottom off – a serrated knife works best for foods that have a softer interior and tougher exterior like melons, tomatoes and breads.

Tip! Your knife should be longer than the food you’re going to cut.

Cut the watermelon in half, then cut each half into sections. Hold the sections as you cut the red meaty part of the melon from the rind. Cut into chunks or slices, and throw away the rind.

Once melon is cut it should be stored, covered, in the refrigerator. Don’t leave cut melon at room temperature longer than 2 hours total time.

Best 6 Ways To Enjoy Watermelon

Grill It
Transform watermelon from sweet to savory! Drizzle thick slices of watermelon with a mixture of lime juice, honey and chili sauce; grill for about 2 minutes a side. For an added flavor punch, garnish with freshly chopped cilantro.

Freeze It
insert a Popsicle stick into the rind of a watermelon slice and freeze to make healthy frozen treat.

Drink It
Watermelon is 92% water and full of electrolytes, making it a terrific way to stay hydrated.

Blend It
Blend cubes of watermelon, Greek yogurt, strawberries a banana together for a fast and delicious smoothie.

As A Snack
Cut watermelon into cubes and eat on the go! It’s only 40 calories per cup. Remember, eat it within 2 hours unless you can keep it cold.

As A Decoration
Carve a watermelon into fancy shapes for a centerpiece, or hollow out and use as a fruit basket or salsa bowl for your next get together.

 

Mmmmm…

 

Photo Credit: well-beingsecrets.com

 

About the Author:

Hello! Sharon here… Nutrition & Wellness Expert in Calgary, Canada. My passion is helping you feel better. With great foods and healthy habits I can help you find the energy and happiness for work, life and play.