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The honeydew melon, otherwise known as honey-melon belongs to the muskmelon group in the gourd family. Large and oval-shaped, the fruit belongs to the cucumis melo species. Interestingly, honeydew is the American name of white Antibes commonly found in Algeria and southern parts of France.
Honeydew is also found in the northwestern province of Gansu, China named as Bailan melons and in some parts of Chile, where it is called melon tuna (tuna melon). The fruit is a famous member of its family, along with watermelon and cantaloupe.
Tightly packed with minerals, nutrients and vitamins, honeydew is generally known for its pale green flesh in a smooth yellow rind. Usually incorporated in salads, the smooth fleshy fruit is a powerhouse of health benefits. Generally low in calories, honeydew has no fat and is zero cholesterol. Likewise, it is rich in potassium, calcium, zinc, iron, copper, phosphorus, and manganese. It is true that honeydew is the most neglected fruit in a fruit salad, but you may want to rethink your decision to avoid this tropical fruit the next time you eat a fruit salad.
Nutritional Facts Of Honeydew
A raw honeydew melon of 100 grams consists of 36 kcal.
Likewise, 100 grams of honeydew contain approximately:
- 9.1 grams carbohydrates
- 1 gram dietary fibre
- 0.5 gram protein
- 3 micrograms vitamin A
- 18 milligrams vitamin C
- 228 milligrams potassium
- 18 milligrams sodium
- 6 milligrams calcium
- 0.17 milligrams iron
Health Benefits Of Honeydew
1. Optimal for hypertension
The high potassium content in honeydew is ideal for individuals who suffer from hypertension. The potassium content curbs the hike in the blood pressure level, and helps the body in maintaining a balance. Honeydew acts as an alternative to salt due to its sweet and sour nature.
2. Beneficial to pregnant women
The rich content of minerals, vitamins and antioxidants in honeydew has a direct impact on the immune system of the mother, as well as the unborn baby. The presence of folate in the fruit is extremely beneficial as it helps prevent neural tube defects and certain other birth defects. Consumption of honeydew provides energy, prevents leg cramps and anaemia, and maintains blood pressure levels. The fruit is not only beneficial during pregnancy but also after, as the presence of vitamin A (fat-soluble vitamin) helps in postpartum tissue recovery; which have been proven through fruits such as mangoes and grapes.
3. Helps in weight loss
High fibre content and low calories make honeydew an essential component in your diet, especially if you are planning to lose weight. The fibre helps the digestion process, reducing the occurrences of digestion-related issues such as constipation. The high content of water (about 90%) and low calories help keep your body satiated, thus avoiding the tendency of excess eating.
4. Fights cholesterol
Honeydew contains two types of fibre, soluble and insoluble. The soluble fibre helps balance the blood sugar, as it slow downs the carbohydrate absorption. The fibre content directly hits the LDL cholesterol, also known as the 'bad' cholesterol accumulated as a result of plaque. Likewise, this lush fruit lowers your cholesterol by flushing it out of your system.
Also read: Fruits that can help fight cholesterol
5. Enhances bone & teeth strength
As it contains a generous amount of calcium, consumption of honeydew can strengthen your teeth and bone. Incorporation of the fruit in your daily diet can ensure you stronger bones and teeth.
6. Nourishes the skin
The vitamin C content in the fruit helps nourish your skin by improving the collagen levels. Collagen is a type of protein ensuring the enhancement of your skin cells and blood cells. Consuming honeydew juice can help fight signs of ageing, wrinkles and saggy skin. The fruit also possesses good moisturizing and energizing properties.
7. Improves digestion
The insoluble fibre content in the oval-shaped fruit has a direct impact on your digestive system. A glass of honeydew juice can reduce bloating and constipation efficiently. The mineral and water content in the fruit eliminate acidity that causes digestion difficulties.
8. Improves immune system
By providing an ample amount of vitamin C, a glass of honeydew juice can improve your immune system. A stronger and better immune system acts as a strong wall against the unwanted and excess development of fat, disease-causing bacteria and any sort of illness. Studies have revealed that consumption of honeydew can suffice up to 34% of your body's vitamin C demand.
9. Prevents diabetes
Diabetes is the result of your body's inability to maintain or develop necessary insulin. The diuretic nature of honeydew balances and regulates insulin production. Thus, the consumption of the fruit from the melon family can help in avoiding fluid retention. The low glucose content in the fruit makes it easily consumable for people suffering from diabetes, as it will appease your sweet tooth without risking the glucose level.
Also read: 12 Healthy Fruits For Diabetics
10. Improves eye health
Honeydew is rich in zeaxanthin and lutein, which are essential for the overall health of your eyes. Daily consumption of the phytonutrients can help in reducing the risk of eye infections and cataract.
11. Provides generous hydration
The honeydew fruit is packed with an ample amount of water. Made up of 90% of water, consumption of the fruit can supply your body with important minerals, such as iron, zinc, magnesium and potassium.
Honeydew vs Cantaloupe
Honeydew and cantaloupe are often confused with each other. The similarity in the looks of the fruits, as it belongs to the same gourd family, is one of the major reasons contributing towards this generic confusion. Although both the fruits share the similarities of size and family along with some nutritional values, there are disparities in its nature.
Tips For Buying A Perfect Honeydew
Skin colour - Before buying a honeydew, always make sure to check the skin colour of the fruit. Choose one with a dull looking appearance, duller the skin riper the honeydew is. The colour should be between pale yellow to light lemon yellow.
Inspect for defects - Always, always make sure that you inspect the fruit thoroughly picking one. Check for spots, cuts or bruises.
Check the size - The size of the fruit does matter. Yes. Choose a honeydew that is heavier for its size.
Always tap - Before choosing the perfect honeydew to take home, make sure it passes the tap test. That is, tap the fruit with the palm of your hand and if it makes a hollow sound - take it home!
Smell it - To make sure the honeydew you have selected is fresh, push your fingers around where the vine was attached. It should smell fresh with a slight hint of sweetness.
Healthy & Hearty Honeydew Recipes
1. Honeydew melon juice
¼ honeydew, 1 cucumber, 350 grams of spinach and 1 peeled lemon.
Wash all the ingredients and chop it finely.
Add the ingredients in the juicer.
Extract the juice, strain any solid parts.
Pour the juice in a glass, add some ice cubes and enjoy!
2. Melon salsa
Red onion, cilantro, honeydew melon and lemon juice.
Finely chop the ingredients.
Pour the lemon juice over the chopped ingredients.
Mix well and enjoy!
How To Store Honeydew Melons
It is preferable to store honeydew melons at room temperature.
Once cut, you can store honeydew in the refrigerator. Not for a period longer than 1-2 weeks.
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