The cleverly named watermelon that originated some 5,000 years ago in southern Africa contains 92% water.
The round, sturdy, drought-tolerant watermelon still grows wild in that area.
There is some scientific evidence that ancient people roasted watermelon seeds for food and nutrition.
The watermelon is believed to have been used in ancient times by the people traveling through the Kalahari desert.
The fruit was eaten for its hydrating properties and its seeds used for nutrition.
Both images and seeds of watermelons have been found in Egyptian tombs at least 4000 years old.
Some hieroglyphics depict a big, oblong fruit with stripes.
Ancient watermelons were hard, pale, and bitter, much unlike the modern watermelon.
They acted as a water container and a source of nutrition when traveling through deserts.
The modern watermelon has come a long way.
A sweet, delicious source of food perfect for hot climates, watermelons are excellent sources of nutrition.
Watermelons can contain two kinds of seeds; black seeds and white seeds.
The only difference is that the white seed is not mature and cannot germinate.
In addition, there are variants of watermelons from the Middle East and China that have mature white seeds.
The seedless watermelons are sterile and cannot produce baby plants.
However, they sometimes have seed coats.
Seed coats look like seeds but are empty inside.
No matter what type of watermelon seed you eat, and regardless of what childhood myths you may have been told, you can be sure the watermelon seed will NOT start growing plants in your stomach!
Benefits Of Eating Watermelon Seeds
You can eat both black or white seeds directly from the watermelon.
Because of its tiny size, you probably won’t even notice the soft white ones.
You can also roast the watermelon seeds, use them in a fresh salad or just eat them as a delicious and healthy snack.
If you decide to roast the seeds from your watermelon, remove the immature white seeds.
Make sure they are clean and dry before you put them in a frying pan on medium heat.
Stir constantly and turn them frequently to ensure even roasting.
The table below lists the nutritional content of 100 grams of dry watermelon seeds.
|Fatty acids, total saturated||9.78||g|
|Fatty acids, total monounsaturated||7.41||g|
|Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated||28.1||g|
In addition, watermelon seeds have been known to have several health benefits such as:
Keeping Healthy Bones
The recommended daily magnesium intake for adults is for men 400 to 420 mg and 310 to 320g for women. (Source)
Magnesium is an essential mineral that is used for the body’s metabolism. 60% of the body’s magnesium is stored in the bones and used to build new bone cells and control calcium levels.
Magnesium helps the enzymes that regulate insulin and blood sugar levels.
A magnesium-rich diet can also reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes.
Watermelon seeds have a high zinc content. Zinc is vital to the immune system.
A zinc deficiency has been linked to slow healing of wounds, loss of taste, and weight loss. (Source)
The recommended daily intake of zinc is 8 mg for women and 11 mg for men.
Research shows that the length of the common cold is reduced by about a third by adding 75 mg of zinc to the daily diet. (Source)
Regulates Blood Pressure
Potassium is an essential mineral that acts as an electrolyte in your body, carrying an electric charge when in contact with bodily fluids.
Potassium is vital for cell, nerve, and muscle health.
Our bodies are unable to provide potassium.
It has to come from our food or supplements.
In addition, potassium also helps control blood pressure and offsets some of the negative impacts of salt.
Other functions of potassium include:
- Prevents blood clots
- Maintains healthy blood pressure
- Contributes to bone health
- Delivers nutrients to cells
- Improved nerve function
- Supports the body’s pH balance
Most of the potassium in the body is stored in bodily fluids like blood, plasma, and sweat, while a small amount is stored in bones.
Potassium is regulated by the kidneys and is lost through urine or sweat.
Contributes To A Healthy Heart
Watermelon seeds contain about 35.5% monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids.
These are essential fatty acids that help your body remove the effects of bad cholesterol (LDL).
High LDL levels can create problems with your heart, like hardening the arteries by the build-up of plaque, which is a combination of cholesterol, calcium, and fat.
Since our bodies can not produce Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, we have to get them from our food.
What Are The Side Effects Of Eating Watermelon Seeds?
In addition, roasted watermelon seeds have about 557 calories per 100 grams.
As the daily recommended caloric intake is about 2,000 for an adult, excessive consumption of watermelon seeds might result in weight gain.
Like any other food, watermelon seeds should not be excessively consumed.
A widespread prank is telling a child that if they swallow a watermelon seed, it might sprout in your belly and grow into a plant.
Of course, this is untrue and downright hilarious!
Seeds are designed by nature to pass through our digestive system and those of animals undigested, propagating elsewhere away from the parent plant to maximize nutrition.
If you do not chew the seeds and swallow them whole, the body will not digest them, and the nutritional value will be lost.
Can I Eat Watermelon Seeds Every Day?
Watermelon seeds are rich in zinc, an essential mineral vital for maintaining a healthy immune system and help with healing wounds.
Some research indicates that 75mg added to your daily diet can shorten the duration of flu and common colds by 33%.
In addition, watermelon seeds have been credited with the following health benefits.
- Lowering blood pressure
- Contributing to heart health
- Maintaining healthy bones
- Boosting the immune system
- Reducing the risk of blood clots
- Lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) levels
Seeds can also be sprouted, eaten raw, or dried for use in salads, soups, and cereal.
Sprouted seeds contain more protein and vitamin A than raw seeds.
How Much Watermelon Can I Eat A Day?
Originating in the south of the African continent about 5,000 years ago, the watermelon is a fruit and vegetable at the same time.
More commonly eaten as a fruit, watermelons are often consumed on their own or as part of a dish.
If the outer rind is used, it is considered a vegetable.
The rind can be pickled, stir-fried, or added to stews.
Watermelons contain 92% water and can be enjoyed by everyone.
They are a rich source of zinc, potassium, magnesium, and vitamin C.
In addition, watermelons have the following health benefits:
- They help you hydrate. In ancient times, watermelons were used in long voyages across deserts for hydration.
- One of the lowest caloric fruits, watermelons contain a mere 46 calories per cup.
- The lycopene found in watermelons is a powerful antioxidant that might reduce the risk of prostate and breast cancers.
- Watermelons are a rich source of vitamin C, another antioxidant that helps fight free radicals in your body and prevents oxidative stress.
- Watermelons also contain an amino acid called citrulline that increases nitric oxide levels in the body. Nitric oxide is known to expand blood vessels and lower blood pressure.
- Citrulline also has been linked to reducing muscle soreness and speeding muscle recovery. (Source)
- Watermelons are rich in vitamin A and C, both essential nutrients necessary for skin and hair health.
- The small amounts of fiber in watermelons help feed the good bacteria in your gut and contribute to healthy bowel movements.