Happy long weekend readers!
As Mark Twain once said,
“When one has tasted [watermelon], he knows what the angels eat,”
and I could not agree more. With extreme heat this week, we can be extremely thankful for fresh, hydrating fruits that satisfy both our hunger and thirst in one juicy bite.
This summer I’ve eaten my weight in melons but the past month I attribute full responsibility to my family gatherings and yoga classes for indulging my addiction. Sweet, refreshing and so juicy that our counter top looks as though I’ve murdered a rain cloud, the watermelon is a seasonal family favourite.
A quick Holistic Life Hack for these hot summer days;
- Refrain from concentrated starches and an excess of heavy animal proteins. Why? Both of these lack natural water content and therefore, use more water to metabolize than is being replenished leaving you feeling thirsty after your meal. This is troublesome considering our goal to refrain from drinking until 40-60 minutes after eating for optimal digestion.
- The perfect fix: Stick predominantly to fruits and veggies naturally high in water to hydrate you while you eat! This being yet another bonus of a plant-based diet!
1) It’s not a fruit!
- Not 100% anyway. In fact, watermelons are both fruit and vegetable; a natural, non-GMO hybrid of sorts. It’s related to cucumber, pumpkin and squash of the Cucurbitaceae family which all grow in much the same way. You can observe this in my grandparent’s garden as their fall pumpkin patch makes way for small but flavourful melons come summer.
2) You can skip the composter
- Both black watermelon seeds and rind are edible! Everyone laughs at the way I strategically eat melon. Much like you do your dinner plate, always saving the best for last, the middle of the melon is by far the most flavourful and so I craftily work my way backwards: from white rind up! Not only are you saving yourself the trip to your composter, you’re also reaping all the nutritional benefits possible!
3) Beyond a post yoga bribe
- After a hot and sweaty class, with sore thighs from warrior two and a steady yoga flow in the backyard, watermelon has played a vital role in refreshing my students after class in a bribe to keep them coming back 😉 But the benefits extend beyond the bribe!
- Watermelon is a natural cleanser and diuretic to keep excess bloating and summer swelling at bay when the heat causes us to retain water. The fibre will also help bind to toxins to excrete it from the body along with the water that flushes toxins from our system. The ultimate yogic detoxifier!
4) Has more lycopene than raw tomatoes!
- While most associated with vibrant, red tomatoes, watermelon is a more concentrated source of this antioxidant. It is known for its ability to protect you against free radicals, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and DNA damage. It is also lycopene we have to thank for the bright pink and red colourings of many of our fruits and vegetables.
5) Reduced muscle pains
- L-citrulline, an amino acid present in watermelon, has been shown to protect against muscle pain. The effects have been studied by juicing the melon, but I do not generally recommend this as stripping the fibre will rapidly spike your blood sugar from the high fructose content. Instead? Enjoy these benefits from consuming watermelon in its whole, natural state as nature intended.