The concept of celebrating the watermelon day is both charming and health-friendly. Delicious, refreshing, and energizing, watermelon is 92% water and comprises a multitude of vitamins and minerals.
Let’s have a peek into how the ‘watermelon day’ originated while also exploring the early history of the scrumptious fruit.
The early history of the watermelon
Originated from southern Africa in the Kalahari Desert, watermelon was first harvested nearly 5000 years ago at the Nile valley in Egypt. For that reason, it is embroidered on the walls of ancient Egyptian and African buildings. Watermelon was often also placed in the burial tombs of kings and it was believed to ‘nourish’ them in their afterlife.
By the 10th century, the delicious and sweet fruit made its way to China through merchant ships. As of now, China is the world’s number one producer of watermelon. China’s neighbor Russia produces commercial melons. Russia also produces wine from the watermelon.
There is nothing like beating the heat with a slice or two of watermelon. Let’s explore some interesting facts surrounding the national watermelon day.
The Watermelon appeared in the English dictionary in 1615
The word watermelon first showed up in the English dictionary in the year 1615, according to John Mariani in his book “The Dictionary of American Food and Drink”. Watermelon was first introduced in the U.S. courtesy of African slaves, as historian John Egerton describes in his book called “Southern food”.
The U.S. currently ranks 4th in the worldwide production of watermelon, and as many as forty American states grow watermelon.
Full of nutrients and antioxidants
Did you know that watermelon is 92% water?
The fact makes it one of the most hydrating fruits in the world. Loaded with antioxidants like Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and lycopene, watermelon can help reduce oxidative stress and get rid of the free radicals in the body. Watermelon is also rich in B-vitamins.
Lycopene in watermelon has been shown to reduce the cancer growth cells in the stomach, prostate, and lungs. More reasons to incorporate watermelon into your diet, isn’t it?
The whole watermelon is edible
You may only have eaten the pink or reddish flesh of the watermelon, but did you know that its green scraps are also edible?
The rind of the watermelon, usually green-skinned, is the protective skin of the fruit. Like the flesh, it is also safe to eat. The rind, even though, not abundant in macronutrients, is still high in vitamins B and C.
Fun activities to do on the watermelon day
In the U.S. summer, the watermelon day is a fun day embracing the charms of the delicious watermelon. Traditionally, creative watermelon recipes are tried with total zest and enthusiasm.
There are so many things you could do with a watermelon!
Try a delicious frozen watermelon dessert, make candies, a salad maybe, a chilled smoothie to beat the heat, a watermelon cocktail, and make a salsa. The sky is the limit.
It may surprise you; you can even cook watermelon. While cooking, the water melon’s texture changes to slightly chewier. Somewhat like the raw tuna, cooked watermelon offers a more flavorful and smoky demeanor.
On the watermelon day, it is your chance to go berserk with watermelons and your creativity. The day is also a great opportunity to get together and bond with friends and beloved ones, and make the occasion a memorable experience for everyone you care about.
The heaviest grown watermelon ever
Christopher Kent of Sevierville, Tennessee, U.S. grew the world’s heaviest watermelon in 2013, weighing 350.5 b (159 kg). In an interview, Christopher admitted to his passion for growing. He also mentioned that watermelons grow much better in the Southern parts of the United States.
Watermelons in Japan
In Japan, watermelons are grown in different shapes and sizes. Japanese farmers are masters at producing square-shaped, pyramid-shaped; hearts and even human faces have been crafted with watermelons.
Farmers typically cultivate watermelons in specific forms and molds, and they ultimately take the shape of that particular mold.
Some health benefits of the watermelon
Watermelon is one of the sweetest and juiciest fruits we have on our planet. Both the flesh and its rind are eligible for eating. Let’s explore some of the health benefits of watermelon.
Keeps you hydrated
Comprising about 92% water, watermelon is a powerful hydrating fruit; it nourishes our bodies on a cellular level, helping the body to function more efficiently.
Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties
Courtesy of watermelon’s powerful combination of vitamin C, lycopene, vitamin A and trace minerals, it can significantly reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. The antioxidant, lycopene, can also help delay the advancement of Alzheimer’s disease, according to research.
Increases reproductive health and potency
Touted as a natural Viagra in the health community, watermelon can help combat symptoms of erectile dysfunction (ED) in men. It does so by boosting the production of nitric oxide, which helps to relax blood vessels and lower blood pressure.
Water melon’s rind contains amino acid citrulline, which helps in increasing libido in both men and women.
Reduces your blood pressure
Research has shown that watermelon can help manage blood pressure in obese individuals. Both the flesh and rind can help lower your BP.
Watermelon is also beneficial to the heart, liver, and kidneys, courtesy of its detoxifying properties.
More reasons to use the whole fruit!
Promotes skin health
Courtesy of its high vitamin C content, watermelon is especially beneficial to the skin, helping in collagen formation and reducing wrinkles and fine lines.
Watermelon day will be celebrated on August 3 this year.
This is a perfect opportunity for you to enjoy this sweet and savory fruit in the scorching summer heat, benefiting from its hydrating properties, its wonderful health benefits while also trying out fun recipes with friends and loved ones.
This is a perfect opportunity to enjoy the watermelon day with friends and your loved ones!