Summertime and watermelon are practically synonymous. Juicy and high in heart-healthy antioxidants, watermelon makes a perfect snack to cool your body off on a hot day.
Plus, watermelon is extremely versatile: you can use it to make smoothies and juices, chilled soups, popsicles, salads, and more while reaping the health benefits.
“In terms of micronutrients, watermelon is a good source of immune-supporting vitamins A and C while also providing small amounts of a variety of other vitamins and minerals,” says Kelly Jones MS, RD, CSSD, sports dietitian and founder of Student Athlete Nutrition.
Watermelon is most known for its high antioxidant content, including L-citruline and lycopene, the latter of which gives the fruit its red hue. “Lycopene has been associated with reduced muscle soreness as well as improved exercise performance in some studies, while L-citruline is correlated with a reduced risk of prostate cancer in men,” Jones explains. And since L-citruline is more often found in animal sources than plants, watermelon is an excellent vegetarian source.