Fun Fact: Did you know there are over 1,200 varieties of watermelon are grown worldwide in 96 countries?
As summer begins to wind down, it’s important to take advantage of one of the seasons most prized possessions. Dubbed one of the worlds “healthiest” foods, the watermelon is not only is an amazing source of vitamins, nutrients, and fiber, but it also significantly impacts many of our daily bodily needs including digestion, hydration and muscle recovery. So, to find out how to best enjoy this delicious gem, we asked self-proclaimed “veghead” R.D. Miranda Hammer of the popular blog The Crunchy Radish, to explain the nutritive benefits of the watermelon and share a recipe that will not only tickle your tastebuds, but calm your muscles after an intense class at Flywheel.
“Adequate hydration is essential for optimal wellness. The ideal source of hydration comes from clean and simple H2O. Not only does water quench your thirst, it is involved in a myriad of essential bodily functions. Water helps ensure luminous skin, flushes toxins from the body, and carries nutrients to and from the cells.
After a sweat fest at your favorite Flywheel class, it is extra important to re-hydrate. Water should always be your first option instead of sugary sports drinks.
Many fruits and vegetables contain water. Consuming fresh produce is an excellent way to obtain optimal hydration while receiving the beneficial vitamins and minerals in fruits and vegetables.
As the name states, watermelon is composed of almost 90% water, which makes it the perfect summer or post workout replenisher. Watermelon also contains vitamin C, essential for immunity, skin integrity, and rich-antioxidant properties. Additionally, watermelon contains citrulline, an essential amino acid that aids with muscle relaxation, another beneficial post-workout attribute!”
For a refreshing and replenishing spin on gazpacho, consider The Crunchy Radish’s chilled watermelon summer soup!
Watermelon Summer Soup
5 cups watermelon, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon, finely chopped and peeled fresh ginger
1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1/2 small jalapeño chile, seeded, minced
1/2 small red onion, diced
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
Sea salt to taste
Puree the watermelon and the ginger in a blender until smooth. Transfer puree to a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the cucumber, bell pepper, jalapeño, red onion, olive oil, lime juice, and vinegar. Reserve ¼ cup of vegetable mixture for garnish. Add vegetables to the watermelon puree. Cover gazpacho and refrigerate until cold, at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.
Divide gazpacho among four bowls; top with a generous heap of reserved cucumber and bell pepper mixture, finish with salt to taste and enjoy!
Check out these recipes for post-Flywheel smoothies.