Watermelon is the quintessential summer fruit. An apt name, watermelon is just that – mostly water (about 92%), making it an excellent choice for summer hydration. Watermelon helps us to balance electrolytes and keep the body’s salts in order during hot summer days. Red grapes are also highly concentrated in water and add a yummy and fruity flavor to almost any recipe. Combining the two fruits offers a power pack of nutrition complimented by flavor that’s out of this world.
Watermelon’s Vitamin Wow and Lycopene
Watermelon is a great source of vitality with Vitamins A, B6, and C. One cup of watermelon provides 10% of the recommend daily value of Vitamin A, which assists in eye health; 25% of Vitamin C, which is an all around immune booster; and 10% of B6, which is needed to convert protein to energy and keep the brain healthy.
While Tomatoes have long been touted as “the” fruit to get the power antioxidant lycopene (most well known as a cancer preventative), the unassuming watermelon packs a concentrated amount of this powerful nutrient. In fact, watermelon has more lycopene than any fresh fruit or vegetable.
Red Grapes and Heart Health
Red Grapes and their crunchy texture bursting with that sweet yet tart flavor makes it an easy go-to fruit between meals, and a great addition to summer salads. The grape nutritional claim to fame is in its concentrated levels of manganese which promotes a healthy cardiovascular system. Grapes provide antioxidants and nitric oxide which reduces the “bad” form of cholesterol LDL (which only becomes bad if it is ‘oxidized’, hence the need for antioxidants). The benefits of red grapes towards blood and heart health can be found here.
In the Pink Cleanse
- 1 wedge of watermelon
- ½ lb red grapes
- Squeeze of lemon juice (optional)
Juice the watermelon rind and all (choose an organic melon if using the rind) with the grapes for a rehydrating refresher on a hot summer day to refresh and replenish. You can also use this recipe to cleanse your digestive track after that summer BBQ party!
Watermelon Basil Lemonade (or Limeade)
- 4 cups boiling water
- ¼ cup basil
- 3 cups watermelon flesh, pureed
- 1 cup fresh lemon or lime juice
- Honey or agave nectar sweetener
Place the basil in a large container that will fit in your refrigerator. Bruise the basil with a wooden spoon and pour the boiling water over it. Let it cool for 5 minutes and then add the sweetener so that the mixture dissolves without destroying the nutrition (honey should never be added to anything over 100 degrees). Puree the watermelon in a blender, juice the lemons and add to the basil, water, and sweetener mixture. Chill for at least 3 hours. Serve with slices of lemon and watermelon. Serves 6. Note: this drink is great for mixing with Japanese Saki for a summer Saki-tini.
This summer keep cool, stay hydrated, and keep it fresh!