Photos: Melon Slices

Today photos show slices of sweet, refreshing Jamaican watermelon; in Jamaica, we just call it melon. watermelon slicesThe watermelon is a vegetable that is made up of approx. 92 percent (92%) water; it is fat-free and low in sodium.

The water content of watermelons can help keep you hydrated, and their juice is full of good electrolytes. Watermelons also contain fiber, which encourages a healthy digestive tract and helps keep you regular.watermelon slicesThe watermelon is a good source of Vitamins A, B6, and C; it also contains lycopene, antioxidants, amino acids, and potassium.

The high levels of lycopene found in watermelon are very effective at protecting cells from damage and may help lower the risk of heart disease. The antioxidant properties are also helpful in reducing the risk of cancer, and lycopene is also known for reducing prostate cancer cell proliferation.watermelon slicesWhen I bit into a slice of watermelon just now, I found it to be juicy and delicious, I ate it . . . seeds and all.

There is no danger in eating watermelons in moderation, but you should bear in mind that they are relatively high in sugar. Please note that persons with hyperkalemia (i.e. having too much potassium in their blood), should not consume more than about one cup of watermelon a day.  Also, eating too much of this lycopene-rich food can result in nausea, diarrhea, indigestion, and bloating.watermelon slicesAll parts of the watermelon can be eaten, including the rind, which also contains nutrients. I read that the rinds can be cooked along with other vegetables, but it is popularly used in pickles.

An old friend of mine told me that she usually cut up the white parts of the rind of melons and soak them along with raisins and currants in red wine. This she did as she prepared to bake her infamous fruit cakes at Christmas time.

At our home we throw the melon rinds away; however, in the past, when we raised chickens, we would give them the rinds . . . oh how those hens relished eating melon! watermelon slices

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