Watermelon contains 92 percent water and most people are not aware that watermelon contains more for nutrition. The Department of Science and Technology’s (DoST’s) Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI) proved that watermelon is a good source of vitamin A, which helps to maintain normal vision and helps keep skin and hair glossy, and promotes growth. It is also a good source of vitamin C which boosts the body’s ability to fight infection and helps keep gums healthy. It is an antioxidant which protects body cells from damage by free radicals. A cup or a slice of watermelon (i.e. 43 kilocalories) or about 140 grams gives 140 micrograms of betacarotene and 9.8 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C. This is based on the 13% of the Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intakes (RENI) of a typical adult.
This functional food also contains lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that appears to help prevent heart illness. Based from associated study conducted by food scientists at the Florida State University (FSU) suggests that watermelon can indeed be a helpful natural weapon against prehypertension, a precursor to cardiovascular disease. According to FSU Assistant Professor Arturo Figueroa and Professor Bahram Arjmandi, when six grams of the amino acids L-citrulline/L-arginine from watermelon extract were administered daily for six weeks, there will be improved arterial function and lesser aortic blood pressure. The study was conducted in all nine of their prehypertensive subjects – four men and five postmenopausal women, ages 51 to 57.
FSU was the first to document improved aortic hemodynamics in prehypertensive but otherwise healthy middle-aged men and women receiving therapeutic doses of watermelon. The fruit’s vasodilatory effect may prevent prehypertension from making progress to full-blown hypertension, a major risk factor for heart attacks and strokes, so this wil reduce blood pressure.