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12 Best Melons For Summer And Their Amazing Health Benefits With Recipes

Melons are category of fruits highly valued for their sweet and refreshing flesh and tempting aroma. They belong to the Cucurbitaceae or Cucurbits family that consists of melons, along with squash, cucumber and gourd, to a total of 965 species.

Melons are very nutritious and are considered the best for the summer diet. They are low in calories, cholesterol and sodium, and high in potassium, zinc, vitamin A and vitamin C. Melons are also packed with an abundance of phenolic compounds and flavonoids such as gallic acid, quercetin, lycopene, beta-carotene and luteolin. [1]

In this article, we will discuss some of the amazingmelons and their health benefits. These melons will help you stay healthy and hydrated during the summer. Take a look.

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Best Melons For Summer

1. Watermelon

According to a study, watermelon is the richest source of L-citrulline, a non-essential amino acid linked to health benefits such as lowering blood pressure, reducing body fats, improving glucose levels and balancing hormones.

Watermelon is high in water content, making it one of the most demandable fruits of the season. A cup of sliced watermelon can meet around 21 per cent of the daily requirement of vitamin C and 17 per cent of vitamin A. it is also high in potassium, dietary fibre and magnesium. [2]

2. Honeydew melon

Honeydew melon is orange-fleshed or green-fleshed fruit with an incredible nutritional profile. It is packed with phenolic compounds such as gallic acid, caffeic acid, catechin, quercetin, ellagic acid and hydroxybenzoic acid.

This melon type is also rich in vitamins such as A, C, B1 and B2, and minerals such as potassium, phosphorus, zinc and calcium. Honeydew may help lower cholesterol and maintain the body's electrolyte due to its high water content. [3]

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3. Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe is a light-brown or grey-to-green melon with a net-like and slightly ribbed skin. They have a juicy taste, sweetness, pleasing flavour and rich nutritional value. Cantaloupe is rich in micronutrients such as potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C and magnesium.

This melon type is known for its medicinal properties such as analgesic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiulcer, antimicrobial, anticancer, diuretic, hepaprotective and antidiabetic properties. [4]

4. Ananas melon

Ananas melon is an oval and small-to-moderate sized type of melon with a firm rind of green to golden yellow colour. It has a perfumed aroma similar to pineapple or ananas. When ripe, ananas melon tastes sweet, floral, with a tinge of caramel.

Ananas melon is rich in vitamin C, vitamin A, folate, dietary fibre, magnesium and vitamin K. It is good for boosting the immune system, reducing inflammation and preventing oxidative stress.

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5. Armenian cucumber (Kakdi)

Armenian cucumber, commonly known as kakdi or snake cucumber, is a green, long, thin and mildly sweet fruit with a similar taste to cucumber, but actually belonging to a variety of muskmelon.

Armenian cucumber is good for hydration due to high water content, bone health due to the presence of vitamin K, heart health due to high fibre and potassium, diabetes due to high antioxidants and skincare due to its anti-inflammatory and astringent properties.

6. Citron melon

Citron melon, a relative to watermelon is a yellow-green big round-like fruit with white pulp and red seeds. Though the pulp smells like watermelon, it tastes a bit bitter with no specific taste of its own.

As the pulp of citron melon is a bit bitter, it is mostly not consumed fresh, but made into juice, jams or pies and preserved with lots of sugar or flavourings such as lemon or ginger. Citron melon has cancer-preventive and immunoprotective effects.

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7. Galia melon

Galia melon has potent antioxidant activity due to the presence of antioxidants such as ascorbic acid, quercetin, chlorogenic acid, neochlorogenic acid, isovanillic acid, and luteolin.

Galia melon has cholesterol-lowering, antidiabetic, antibiotic and antioxidative properties. It is also good for digestive health, eye health and immunity.

8. Canary melon

Canary melon is a bright-yellow elongated melon with white to a pale green or ivory pulp that tastes gentle sweet, yet tangier with a hint of pear or pineapple. This melon has smooth skin, and when ripe, the rind gives a slightly waxy feel.

Canary melons are a good source of vitamin A and C. The fibre in the fruit is known to lower the risk of many diseases such as obesity, diabetes and blood pressure. Fresh canary juice is preferred during the summer to maintain body hydration.

What Is Horned Melon? Its Benefits, Side Effects And Recipe

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9. Horned melon

Horned melon, commonly known as kiwano is a yellow-orange or bright orange coloured melon fruit with spikes on the outer surface and lime-green jelly-like pulp with edible seeds.

Kiwano is packed with antioxidants - it may help lower the risk of cancer, stroke, premature ageing and digestive problems. Horned melon is also good to improve cognitive functions and eye's health due to the presence of vitamin C.

10. Casaba melon

Casaba melon relates to honeydew and cantaloupe. This melon is sweet, but with a tinge of spiciness. Casaba melon is unique in appearance with an ovoid to round shape. It has a thick and hard rind with irregular wrinkles all over. The skin is golden-yellow with a tinge of green while the pulp is pale green to white.

Casaba melon is rich in vitamin B6, vitamin C, folate, magnesium, choline and potassium. The melon is best used to prepare cold soups, sorbets, smoothies, cocktails and sauces. Casaba melon is best for weight loss.

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11. Bailan melon

Bailan melon has white skin with a pale green to a white pulp. The melon has high water content, up to 90 per cent, the reason why it is highly consumed during the summer as juice or in a salad.

Bailan melon has plenty of bioactive compounds such as carotenoids, fatty acids and polyphenols. It is also a great source of vitamin C and protein. The melon is good for cooling the digestive system.

12. Banana melon

As the name suggests, banana melon looks like an enlarged banana with yellow rind and peach-orange flesh. The melon gives a banana-like aroma, has a savoury-sweet taste with a papaya-like texture.

Banana melon is rich in vitamin B9, vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, iron and niacin. The melon is good for drinks and salads with health benefits for the heart, digestive system and skin.

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Melon Juice Recipe

Ingredients

  • Take any of the melons from watermelon, cantaloupe or honeydew melon.
  • Jaggery or cane sugar (or any sugar alternative)

Method

  • Remove the melon rind and cut it into small slices. Also, remove the seeds.
  • In a blender, add the fresh melon slices with sugar alternative and blend to form a thick and smooth mixture.
  • Add ice cubes, if preferred and then blend again.
  • Pour in a juice glass and serve fresh.
  • You can also add milk for a refined taste.
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Mint And Melon Salad

Ingredients

  • Any preferred melons such as watermelon, horned melon, cantaloupe and ananas melon.
  • A few mint leaves.
  • A pinch of black pepper.
  • Salt
  • A teaspoon of lemon (if you are using any tangy melons, you can skip this)

Method:

  • Cut the melons into small pieces and put them in a salad bowl.
  • Sprinkle salt and black pepper.
  • Add lemon juice.
  • Decorate with mint leaves and serve fresh
Story first published: Friday, April 2, 2021, 18:30 [IST]