Watermelon: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

Written by Resurchify | Updated on: January 11, 2023

Watermelon: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits

Everything you need to know about watermelon is included in this article.

The huge, sweet fruit known as a watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) is originally from southern Africa. It has a connection to cucumber, pumpkin, zucchini, and cantaloupe. Watermelon is very refreshing, high in water and minerals, and has relatively few calories. Additionally, it is a good dietary source of the potent plant components citrulline and lycopene.

This sweet melon may help to lower blood pressure, enhance insulin sensitivity, and lessen muscular stiffness, among other health advantages. Watermelons can be frozen, converted into juice, or added to smoothies in addition to being mostly consumed raw.

A Brief History of Watermelon

The University of Missouri in Columbia reports that although watermelon is a summertime staple in the United States, its earliest ancestor is believed to have originated in southern Africa, where it still thrives in the wild today. Watermelon seeds and even watermelon artwork have been discovered in Egyptian tombs that date back 4,000 years.

Watermelon was produced in India in about the seventh century and was prized for its alleged medical powers in both ancient Greece and Rome. From there, it spread to China in the 10th century and eventually, in the 1200s, to the rest of Europe. Both colonial and slave trade ships are thought to have carried watermelon to North America.

Although no one is entirely certain of the watermelon's original origins, it is undeniable that generations of Americans have cherished the fruit. On a steamy summer day, its high water content is cooling, and its sweetness rivals that of ice cream and other processed, high-calorie treats. This may help to explain why watermelon is the most popular melon in the nation.

Although there are more than 200 different types of watermelons grown in North America today, the National Watermelon Promotion Board reports that China is the world's leading grower. The most common watermelon types in the US have vivid red flesh, although there are also variants with yellow and orange flesh. In addition to squash, pumpkin, and cucumber, watermelon is a relative.

Watermelon — The Disease Fighter

Did you know that watermelon contains the highest amount of lycopene of any fresh fruit or vegetable? Antioxidant lycopene has been associated with a lower risk of cancer, heart disease, and age-related eye conditions. Watermelon is a healthy food.

The ideal healthy and delectable sweet treat is watermelon.

  • Watermelon has 46 calories per cup.
  • 865 international units (IU) of vitamin A are contained in 12 grams of carbs (equates to .26 milligrams)
  • Vitamin C - 12 milligrams
  • Potassium in the amount of 170 mg.
  • Vitamin B6 in the amount of 0.1 mg
  • No sodium, cholesterol, or fat

The health of your skin and eyes depends on vitamin A. The immune system and neurological health depend on vitamin B6, which also aids in the digestion of protein. Both the immune system and iron absorption are aided by vitamin C. Potassium aids in decreasing blood pressure and is crucial for nerve health.

Nutrition Facts Related To Watermelon

Watermelon diced in 152g servings contains 46 calories, 0.9g of protein, 11.5g of carbohydrates, and 0.2g of fat per serving. Vitamins A and C and lycopene are both abundant in watermelon. The USDA has given the dietary facts listed below.

  • 146 calories
  • Fat: 0.2g
  • Salt: 1.5 mg
  • 11.5g of carbohydrates
  • 0.6g of fiber
  • 9.4g sugars
  • 0.9g of protein
  • 12.3 milligrams of vitamin C
  • 42.6 mcg of vitamin A
  • 6890mcg of lycopene


Watermelon's carbs are primarily sugars, with very little fiber. Fructose makes up half of the sugar, followed by glucose, which makes up a quarter, and sucrose, which makes up the remaining small amounts. It is crucial to measure watermelon precisely if you are keeping track of carbs.

  • 0.6 grams of fiber, 9.4 grams of sugar, 11.5 grams of total carbohydrates, and 10.9 grams of net carbohydrates are included in 1 cup (152g) of diced watermelon.
  • 1.1 grams of fiber, 17.7 grams of sugar, 21.6 grams of total carbs, and 21 grams of net carbohydrates are present in 1 medium-sized slice of watermelon (286g).

The glycemic index (GI) of watermelon is 76.2. This indicates that it can cause your blood sugar to rise more quickly than foods with a lower GI. However, a half cup of diced watermelon has a glycemic load of 4, which is modest when compared to other foods (which considers how much you consume each serving).


Watermelon is comparable to other melons like cantaloupe or honeydew in that it contains nearly no fat. With smaller levels of monounsaturated (0.056 grams) and saturated (0.024 grams) fatty acids, the fat that is present is primarily polyunsaturated (0.076 grams).

You can classify watermelon as a non-fat food for dietary monitoring purposes. The seeds—which can be eaten—are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids.


With little under 1 gram of protein per cup, watermelon has very little protein. It's interesting to note that some businesses shell and sprout watermelon seeds to make protein. However, since the seed's shell inhibits the protein inside from being digested, you won't be able to receive as much protein from fresh seeds.

Vitamins and Minerals

The amount of nutrients in a fully ripe red watermelon is higher than in an unripe fruit. Watermelon is a good source of vitamins C and A, meeting a sizeable portion of your daily needs for each in just one serving. While vitamin A is crucial for eye health, vitamin C promotes wound healing and may have anti-aging and immune-boosting qualities. About 7% of your daily requirements for copper, pantothenic acid, biotin, and vitamins B1 and B6 are met by a cup of watermelon.


Watermelon that has been chopped or balled has about 46 calories per cup. If you like to eat it wedged, a wedge that is about one-sixteenth of the melon in weight (286 grams) has roughly twice as many calories, or about 86.

In conclusion, watermelon has few calories and nearly no fat. Although it has several important nutrients, such as vitamins A and C, it also has a fair amount of sugar, so those who are watching their sugar intake may do best by consuming this fruit in moderation.


Since watermelon contains 90% water, eating it might help you stay hydrated during the summer. Its natural sugars can also sate a sweet tooth. Antioxidants are also present in watermelon. These compounds can aid in the removal of reactive species, also referred to as free radicals, from the body. Free radicals are created by the body naturally during processes like metabolism. Smoking, air pollution, stress, and other environmental stressors can also cause them to form.

Oxidative stress can happen if the body has an excessive amount of free radicals. This may cause cell damage and result in a variety of illnesses, including cancer and heart disease. Some free radicals can be eliminated by the body naturally, although dietary antioxidants aid in this process.

Here are a few ways that watermelon's antioxidants and other nutrients may contribute to a person's health.

Asthma Prevention

Some specialists think that the development of asthma is influenced by free radicals. Vitamin C and other antioxidants, which are found in the lungs, may lower the chance of developing asthma. However, a diet high in vitamin C may provide some protection. Studies have not proven that taking vitamin C supplements can help prevent asthma.

12.5 milligrams (mg), or between 14% and 16% of a person's daily requirements, of vitamin C are included in a cup of watermelon balls, which weigh about 154 grams (g).

Blood Pressure

In a 2012 study, researchers discovered that middle-aged patients with obesity and early hypertension had lower blood pressure in and around their ankles while using watermelon extract. Two of the antioxidants found in watermelon, L-citrulline, and L-arginine, were proposed by the authors as potential candidates to enhance artery health.

Another antioxidant found in watermelon, lycopene, may help prevent heart disease. According to a 2017 review, it might accomplish this by lowering inflammation related to high-density lipoprotein (HDL), also known as "good" cholesterol.

Low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or "bad" cholesterol, may be managed with the aid of phytosterols, which are plant-based substances. Some recommendations call for 2 grams (g) of phytosterols per day. At 3.08 mg, 154 g of watermelon balls only supply a little quantity.

Although lowering LDL cholesterol may help prevent heart disease and high blood pressure, the precise effect of phytosterols on CVD is still unknown.


Free radicals can contribute to the emergence of some cancer forms, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI). They can harm DNA cells by causing oxidative stress. Vitamin C and other dietary antioxidants found in watermelon may fight free radicals, hence preventing cancer.

Additionally, several studies have connected lycopene consumption to a decreased risk of prostate cancer.

Digestion and regularity

Watermelons are rich in water and include some fiber. By reducing constipation and supporting regular bowel movements, these nutrients aid in the promotion of a healthy gut.


Nearly 90% of a watermelon's weight is water, and it also contains potassium and other minerals. As a result, it's a nutritious option for a summertime snack. Watermelon can be consumed raw, as juice, or frozen in slices for a refreshingly cool snack similar to a Popsicle.

Brain and Nervous System

Another antioxidant found in watermelon is choline. It supports the following undertakings and activities:

  • Memory and learning of movement patterns
  • Preserving the integrity of cell membranes
  • Early brain development, nerve impulse transmission

There is insufficient data to support a claim that choline may slow the onset of dementia in Alzheimer's patients.

Muscle Soreness

Athletes' recuperation times after exercise may be sped up by using watermelon and watermelon juice. In a 2017 study, two hours before completing a half-marathon, runners drank either half a liter of a placebo or watermelon juice with additional L-citrulline. 24-72 hours after the race, those who drank the watermelon drank reported having less aching muscles.

Whether drinking watermelon juice without the L-citrulline addition would have the same effect is unknown.


Vitamin C, which the body needs to make collagen, is present in watermelon. Immune system performance and cell structure depend on collagen. Additionally, vitamin C aids in wound healing. According to studies, vitamin C may support healthy skin by lowering the risk of aging-related damage.

Metabolic syndrome

The metabolic syndrome's obesity and cardiovascular risk factors may be improved by watermelon, according to research published in 2019. 33 overweight or obese participants in the study chose to eat either 2 cups of watermelon or low-fat cookies per day for 4 weeks.

In comparison to those who consumed cookies, those who consumed watermelon reported feeling less hungry and more satiated. After 4 weeks, those who consumed watermelon also had:

  • Antioxidant levels in their blood are higher, and their body mass index and weight are lower (BMI)
  • Systolic blood pressure reduction
  • Better hip-to-waist ratio

Compared to the watermelon group, those who had the cookies had higher levels of oxidative stress. Additionally, their body fat and blood pressure rose. The findings imply that watermelon can be a healthy snack option for those with obesity and metabolic syndrome.

Diuretic Properties

To help their body flush out extra salt and water, some people use diuretic medications. People with kidney issues, high blood pressure, and other ailments may find this helpful. According to a 2014 mouse study, watermelon's diuretic impact may be comparable to that of the well-known diuretic furosemide. This might make it a natural choice for those who have an excess of fluid. Never discontinue using a prescription diuretic without first consulting your doctor.

Other Plant Compounds

Compared to other fruits, watermelon is a poor supplier of antioxidants. However, it's high in the antioxidant lycopene and the amino acid citrulline, both of which offer various health advantages.


The best-recognized food source of the amino acid citrulline is watermelon. The white rind that encircles the flesh contains most of it. Citrulline is converted by your body into the necessary amino acid arginine.

Nitric oxide is produced by the body from citrulline and arginine, and this compound helps reduce blood pressure by relaxing and widening your blood vessels. Additionally necessary for your immune, reproductive, and many other organ systems, including your lungs, kidneys, liver, and liver, arginine has also been shown to speed up wound healing.

According to studies, watermelon juice is a good source of citrulline and can significantly raise the levels of both arginine and citrulline in the blood. Although one of the best dietary sources of citrulline is watermelon, you would need to drink around 15 cups (2.3 kg) of it all at once to reach the Reference Daily Intake (RDI) for arginine.


The best-known fresh source of lycopene, a potent antioxidant that gives watermelon its red color, is found in watermelon. In actuality, fresh watermelon has more lycopene than tomatoes. Fresh watermelon juice is effective at increasing blood levels of lycopene and beta-carotene in humans, according to studies. To some extent, your body turns lycopene into beta-carotene, which is eventually transformed into vitamin A.


When shopping for a watermelon, look for one that is resolute, bulky, and symmetrical, with no mottling or bruising. Tapping outer surface can provide information about the texture of the fruit inside. Look for a soft, almost hollow-sounding thud. This indicates that the water and fruit contained are both intact and stable.

Serving Tips

Serving advice for watermelon includes:

  • Juice: To make a cold, hydrating electrolyte drink that is ideal for rehydrating after exercise or a day in the sun, combine sliced watermelon with a few ice cubes in a blender.
  • Salad: For a delightful and nutritious salad, top spinach leaves with fresh mozzarella, mint, and watermelon. Add a balsamic dressing drizzle.
  • Make a watermelon smoothie or add orange juice for additional tang. Keep in mind that fiber is broken down by juicing, making sugar simpler to absorb. Instead of drinking juice, people with diabetes might think about consuming fresh, entire watermelon.
  • Roasted seeds: Roast the watermelon seeds in an oven for 15 – 20 minutes to make a delightful snack. One ounce (28.5 g) of seeds can offer roughly 8 g of protein, or 14% - 17% of a person’s daily protein intake.
  • Check the packaging of readymade juices and sweets before consuming them because they may contain added sugar and not be as healthy as they appear. The healthiest choice is to eat watermelon whole.


Food allergies to watermelon are uncommon. However, if you suffer from hay fever or have allergies to grasses or ragweed pollen, you may have a food-pollen allergy syndrome, which could cause a cross-reaction to the pollen-like proteins in watermelon. After eating watermelon, you could have a tingling or itching sensation in your mouth. In a few rare instances, this could be more serious and result in anaphylaxis or throat edema.

Adverse Effects

According to a study, watermelon is "nontoxic without known negative effects" and only offers a little risk. To prevent blood sugar increases, diabetics may need to exercise caution when eating watermelon because it does contain sugar.


There are numerous cultivars and variations of watermelon. These can be divided into categories based on their size (smaller "icebox" or "picnic" varieties vs. bigger "picnic" varieties), the hue of their flesh (pink, yellow, or orange), and whether they include seeds or not.

The thick rind of a watermelon can be plain green, green-striped, or white-mottled. Melons can be round or oval and weigh anywhere from 6 pounds to 29 pounds on average. Although variants with golden-fleshed flesh are becoming more popular, the crisp meat is often pinkish-red in color.

Watermelons are native to tropical Africa, and they are commercially cultivated in the United States in states like Texas, Florida, Georgia, and California where the climate is warm and ideal for a longer growing season.

Is Watermelon Good for You Sexually?

Some internet users assert that watermelon is "a natural Viagra," which implies that it may help you naturally boost your libido and enhance your sexual health. Lycopene, beta-carotene, and citrulline, which can help relax the blood vessels in ways akin to Viagra, are found in the juicy fruit, according to a prior study. Just keep in mind that more research is required because there isn't any peer-reviewed, published research to support the existence of this advantage.

Can Eating Watermelon Help With Weight Loss?

Over time, eating whole, fresh fruit rather than packaged foods high in sugar can aid in weight loss. Even while watermelon has less fiber than some other common fruits, such as apples and berries, researchers still think it can help you acquire enough fiber in your diet each day to lower your chance of having high cholesterol and improve regularity. However, the Mayo Clinic claims that fruits with high water content, such as watermelon, might also make you feel satiated. Whether you're on a diet or just trying to maintain your weight, watermelon is a wise snack or side dish option.

However, consuming only watermelon won't help you lose weight. Long-term calorie reduction and increased intake of vital nutrients can both be achieved by adding additional fruits and vegetables to your diet. Avoid fad diets that emphasize watermelon as the only food you consume; while they may briefly cause you to lose weight, if you resume your regular eating habits, you'll quickly put the weight back on.

Are There Any Health Risks to Eating Watermelon?

For the majority of people, watermelon has no long-term health hazards, unlike processed meals. Watermelon is a healthy treat for many people, including those with type 2 diabetes who must keep an eye on their blood sugar levels because of its low calorie and high nutritional content.

Despite having a glycemic index (GI) of 76, which is relatively high, a serving of watermelon has about 12 g of carbohydrates, according to Oregon State University. This indicates that the fruit has a low glycemic load (GL) of about 8. A measure known as the GL is used to estimate if a portion of food will probably cause a spike in blood sugar when you eat a realistic portion.

A severe allergy to watermelon is yet another exception. The Mayo Clinic adds that although it is uncommon, some persons who are sensitive to ragweed pollen and fruits from the gourd family may also be allergic to watermelon. Unfortunately, unless you get a blood test done, you can't be certain if you have a watermelon allergy until you experience a bad reaction after eating it. Hives, swelling, and breathing issues are a few symptoms. More serious reactions could be lethal.

Watermelon can also cause mild digestive discomfort, stomach pain, and diarrhea. The likelihood of this happening is higher if you've had too much fruit.

A severe allergy to watermelon is yet another exception. The Mayo Clinic adds that although it is uncommon, some persons who are sensitive to ragweed pollen and fruits from the gourd family may also be allergic to watermelon. Unfortunately, unless you get a blood test done, you can't be certain if you have a watermelon allergy until you experience a bad reaction after eating it. Hives, swelling, and breathing issues are a few symptoms. More serious reactions could be lethal.


Watermelon can also cause mild digestive discomfort, stomach pain, and diarrhea. The likelihood of this happening is higher if you've had too much fruit.


When consumed in moderation, watermelon is a hydrating fruit that is good for most people, even those with diabetes. According to some studies, it may even improve heart health by reducing high blood pressure and cholesterol. You can enjoy watermelon in a variety of ways, from salads to frozen desserts. Even easier, snack on this well-liked summer fruit when the weather warms up; your taste buds and possibly your ticker will appreciate it.


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