Watermelon, a fruit that helps to remain well hydrated during summer, is a drought tolerant crop. Researches show that along with thirst quenching and coolant effect, its great medicinal and nutritional values place it first and foremost among fruit category. Its scientific name is Citrullis lanatus vulgaris in sanskrit it is known as Kalinda its hindi name is Tarbuj. It grows as vines on the ground. Watermelons can be round, oblong or spherical in shape and feature thick green rinds that are often spotted or striped. They range in size from a few pounds to upward of ninety pounds. It has an extremely high water content giving its flesh a crumbly and subtly curnchy texture. Watermelons originated in Africa and were first cultivated in Egypt from where followed that spread to the Mediterranean areas and in an eastern direction to India. Watermelon is of five types named sweet, Ice-Box, Seedless, Crimson and yellow flesh. Ayurvedic Energetic: Guru (Heavy to digest), Shita (cool), Kapha increasing and Pitta pacifying. Watermelon is also a very concentrated source of the carotenoid and lycopene. The antioxidant function of lycopene impart ability to protect cell and other structures in the body from oxygen damage and to prevention of heart disease. Protection of DNA (our genetic material) inside of white blood cells has also been shown to be an antioxidant role of lycopene.
Particularly lycopene and beta-carotene increases, if this water melone is stored at room temperature.
BENEFITS OF WATERMELON
• Body coolant: Being a juicy fruit with water content watermelon act as a body coolant. In Arabian countries, the red flesh boiled with honey, sugar and rose water is used as a medicine for fever. According to Materia medica watermelon flesh can be used to reduce typhoid fever.
• Anti-inflammatory: It may also help to quench the inflammation that contributes to conditions like asthma, atherosclerosis, diabetes, colon cancer and arthritis.
• Antioxidant: Rich content of vitamin C, A, Beta carotene and lycopene helps to make it a potent antioxidant that neutralizes the harmful free radicals.
• Anti cancerous: Adding lycopene-rich fruits, such as whatermelon in daily diet helps to reduce a man's risk of developing prostate cancer. Another same type of study conducted by Harward University reveals that consumption of red fruits such as water-melon and tomatoes leaves one with a much lesser risk of developing certain cancers. It is also useful against breast cancer, endomaterial cancer, lung cancer and colorectal cancers.
• Prevents macular degeneration: The risk of age related macular degeneration the primary cause of vision loss in older adults, may be reduced by 36% by consuming 3 or more servings of fruit per day.
• Prevents erectile dysfunction: Amino acid called citrulline is also present inside the watermelon. Citrulline is converted into the amino acid Arginine, that is a precursor for nitric oxide. The nitric oxide helps in blood vessel dilation that helps in erection.
• Treats hypertension: Due to presence of amino acids like citrullin and arginine, it helps in blood vessel dilation. Thus by releasing the tension inside the blood vessel, Blood-pressure comes to normal range. Consuming 10 numbers of seeds ground well with milk is also effective against hypertension.
• Improves Insulin Sensitivity: Watermelon has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity in obese type2 diabetic patients with insulin resistance.
• Urine infection: Dried seed powder in milk or ghee provides relief from urinary infections. Consuming water melon flesh with cumin water and little sugar is effective against urinary infections. This is a very good diuretic.
• Skin Care: Due to its moisturizing properties and contents such as Vitamin A, B, C etc. helps to keep the skin fresh, radiant and hydrated. It is very useful for removing blemishes, maintaining elasticity and texture of the skin. The non-greasy oil helps to smooth the skin. It is widely used as massage oil, baby oil, facials, face creams, salt scrubs, shower bath as well as hair oil. The acids in the fruits act as exfoliates.
Recipies of watermelon
1. Blend the watermelon flesh with sugar and rose water and drink it with ice cubes.
2. Mix sugar, pinch of black salt, lemon juice and mint leaves in the watermelon juice. Add some ice cubes.
3. Cut the fruit flesh in small pieces or mash it. Then freeze it with water to make ice cubes. These colorful ice cubes will be pleasant in look and property as well.
4. Watermelon with honey, lemon and mint leaves makes a very teste salad.
Watermelon for skin care
• As a toner and exfoliate- Mash a cup of watermelon apply this paste on face, relax for 10 minutes. Rinse it later.
• As an astringent- Watermelon juice possess astringent property. That gives skin a fresh and clean look.
• For dry skin: Mash a cup of watermelon and mixed with a banana. Banana acts like a binding agent enhancing the effect of the watermelon.
• For oily skin: Combination of yogurt and watermelon is perfect for oily skin. The lactic acid in the yogourt is also very beneficial for skin.
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