When it comes to food, watermelon is one of the healthiest foods due to its myriad of vitamins and minerals that can be found in the majority of watermelon strains. Although there are many vitamins and minerals, watermelon stands out from every other food because of it's high lycopene content. Lycopene is a very special nutrient that helps aid in the cardiovascular health of the body. It's easy to picture a watermelon, or any fruit for that matter, as a healthy food option, but the kernel, or seed, is commonly overlooked when it comes to nutrition. You may think that the seeds are only good for spitting, however, when they have been properly dried and roasted, they make a great nutritional snack that can supplement almost any diet.
The health benefits of watermelon kernel share some of the same benefits of whole watermelon. First, watermelon kernels have high amounts of protein. One whole cup of watermelon kernels contains about thirty grams of protein. That equals to over sixty percent of the daily-recommended amount. The protein inside of watermelon kernels are made up of different amino acids, including arginine, which works great to lower blood pressure.
Watermelon kernels also contain several B vitamins. B vitamins are important as they help with important functions of the body, including making enzymes and changing food into energy that the body can use. The most abundant B vitamin that is in watermelon kernels is niacin. Niacin is a vitamin that helps maintain important body systems, such as the digestive system, the nervous system, and the skin. Watermelon kernels contain other B vitamins, such as riboflavin, thiamin, folate, and pantothenic acid as well.
Magnesium is the top mineral in watermelon kernels. It contains about 556mg of magnesium per cup, which is almost 140 percent of the daily-recommended value. Magnesium is a mineral that also helps in the regulation of blood pressure. Iron, potassium, copper, sodium, zinc, and phosphorous are other minerals that can be found in kernels.
One thing that most people don't realize is that watermelon kernels contain a surprising amount of fat. Not all fat is bad fat however. Omega-6 fatty acids are known for their wide range of health benefits, including increased bone health, better metabolism, and healthy skin and hair growth. Next time you are enjoying a nice slice of watermelon, don't forget about the healthy nutrition that can be found in the seeds that most people just spit out.