Delve into the taste of seasonal fruits that are delicious yet healthy. Consider the juicy and pulpy fruit ‘Cantaloupe’ as an ideal summer delight. A type of melon, Cantaloupe belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family, the same family that includes fruits and vegetables like squash, pumpkin, cucumber, gourd, etc. Muskmelon, Rockmelon, Sweet melon, Persian melon and Kharbuja (Hindi) are some of the names with which it is generally known.
Cantaloupe provides a multitude of health benefits as it is a rich source of vitamins and minerals like Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, calcium, phosphorus and more. Besides having a delicious taste, cantaloupes are quite hydrating. Beat the heat this summer with this amazing fruit and gain a plethora of health benefits as well.
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Useful Information About Cantaloupe
- Cantaloupe is a melon that has a round oblong shape, soft juicy consistency and a sweet musky aroma. Like other melons, these also grow on the ground surface as a trailing vine
- The hollow cavity in the fruit consists of small off-white seeds which can be roasted and consumed for gaining multiple health benefits.
- The fruit colour varies according to the country it is grown. But generally, it is yellow to orange
- Cantaloupes are harvested in the months of April to August and act as a relief in the hot sizzling summers
PRO TIP: Grown in 90 percent water, cantaloupes carry only 60 calories per cup. Now, that’s what we call as a fruit which is a delight in summers! It is tasty, sugary and healthy!
Benefits and Uses of Cantaloupe
1. Strengthens the Immune System
Cantaloupe is a rich source of Vitamin C and A. This helps stimulate the growth of white blood cells in your body. These white blood cells act as a defence mechanism against the foreign bodies from attacking us. A regular consumption of Cantaloupes can improve your immunity and safeguard you from various diseases. According to a 2007 study titled ‘Strengthening Knowledge and Understanding of Dietary Supplements’ that was published in National Institutes of Health, the intake of Vitamin A in an adequate amount helps strengthen the immune system.
2. Improves Cardiovascular Health
Cantaloupes contain an essential mineral like potassium that controls blood pressure. Also, it contains another compound named ‘Adenosine’ which has blood thinning properties that further helps prevent blood clotting in the system. According to a 2009 study by Dr. Katherine L. Tucker that was published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, cantaloupes help prevent heart attacks and hardening of arteries.
3. Combats Stress
Being rich in potassium, cantaloupes help in normalizing heart beat and increasing the oxygen supply in the body. It is also rich in a compound named ‘superoxide dismutase’ that combats stress by lowering the blood pressure and relaxing your nerves.
4. Improves Vision
Cantaloupes are rich in beta carotene responsible for maintaining eye health. These beta carotenes get absorbed by the body in the form of vitamin A. The vitamin A content in your body helps improve vision. According to a study titled ‘Beta Carotene: How Safe and Effective’ at Kansas State University by Dr. Mary Klarke, cantaloupes can reduce chances of developing a cataract by 40%.
5. Aids in Weight Los
Cantaloupe is rich in dietary fibre which can make you feel fuller for a longer time. The slow digestion process of fibre content in your body regulates calorie intake. If you wish to control your hunger pangs, then consume a bowl of freshly cut cantaloupes. According to a 2009 study published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition by Dr. David Sparrow and appearing in US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, cantaloupes are rich in dietary fibre that improves metabolism.
6. Cures Toothache
Cantaloupes are rich in certain minerals like magnesium, calcium, zinc and phosphorus that takes care of your overall health. You can use cantaloupe rind to cure toothaches and bad breath too. Take 6 grams of cantaloupe rind, boil it in water for few minutes. Strain it upon cooling and rinse your mouth to cure toothaches.
7. Promotes Healthy Digestion
The high content of dietary fibre in cantaloupes aids in healthy digestion. Its cool and calming effect regulates your bowel movement which makes your digestive system healthy. You can have a bowl of cantaloupes before lunch to give a kick-start to your gut before you have your day’s meal. According to a 2009 study by Dr. David Sparrow published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, cantaloupes are rich in dietary fibre that promotes healthy digestion as well.
8. Hydrates and Rejuvenates Skin
Cantaloupes contain Vitamin E and K that helps keep your skin healthy and radiant. Your skin gets hydrated from within due to the fruit’s high-water content. You can apply cantaloupe juice that can soften and rejuvenate your skin.
9. Promotes Hair Growth
Abundant quantities of Vitamin B promotes healthy hair growth. Cantaloupes have sufficient amounts of inositol which is absorbed as Vitamin B thereby stimulating hair growth and arresting hair fall.
10. Treats Eczema
Cantaloupe juice works as a perfect lotion for treating Eczema and removing freckles from your skin. The rind of the fruit can be used as a first aid for burns and abrasions. According to a study published in a book titled ‘Eczema No More’ by Jason S. Bradford, cantaloupe juice helps to reduce the effects of Eczema.
Also Read: Plum Benefits
Nutritional Value of Cantaloupe
Now that you know how beneficial cantaloupes can be, here’s a look at its nutritional values. Nutrition Data lists these values for 156 gm of Cantaloupes:
|Total Carbohydrate||13 g|
|Dietary Fibre||1.6 g|
|Total Fat||0.3 g|
|Vitamin A||5987 IU (International Unit)|
|Vitamin C||65 mg|
Cantaloupe has anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and antiseptic properties which help cure several diseases and improve human health. The low-calorie content and high dietary fibre aids in weight loss and promotes healthy digestion. According to a study titled ‘Musk-Melon is a must eat melon’ by Parle Milind that was published in the International Research Journal of Pharmacy, Cantaloupes provide several vitamins and minerals like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and potassium and vitamins like niacin, riboflavin, Vitamin B6, E and K.
Also Read: Grapefruit Nutrition | Lychee Nutrition
Risks Or Precautions When Consuming Cantaloupes
Cantaloupes are 100% natural and do not pose any potential risks or harm to your body. However, you can keep the following things in mind before starting to consume cantaloupes on a regular basis:
- If you’re suffering from Diabetes Mellitus, you should avoid over-consuming Cantaloupes as these may elevate your blood sugar levels. You can have them in moderate quantity or as directed by your physician.
- You should avoid consuming Cantaloupes during the night or before sleep as it is rich in dietary fibre. It takes time to digest and the digestion process is much slower during that time.
- Over consumption of cantaloupes may result in diarrhoea as it contains sorbitol in large quantities that promotes loose stool and gastric issues.
How to Consume Cantaloupes
The ripe yellow cantaloupes have a sweet and musky aroma which is quite distinct from the unripe ones. The soft yet firm cantaloupes taste sweet while eating. Fresh cantaloupes can last up to a week in the refrigerator. If you wish to add cantaloupes to your diet to reap its benefits, then you can consume it in the following forms:
- You can make a cantaloupe smoothie by tossing 8-10 slices of cantaloupes into the milk before grinding. Enjoy this refreshing drink this summer!
- Cantaloupes ice pops is a new way to enjoy your summers. Blend a little sugar, diced cantaloupes and 1 lemon to make a puree. Fill the batter into popsicle moulds and freeze it for a day.
- A fruit salad that includes cantaloupes can bring a multitude of health benefits and improve immunity. Include this delicious fruit into your salad to satiate your hunger pangs
Some Fun Facts About Cantaloupe
- Cantaloupe derives its name from the town of Cantalupo, Italy
- Cantaloupe has a plenty of relatives as it belongs to Cucurbitaceae which includes melons, squash, cucumbers, pumpkins and gourds
- The vine of the fruit naturally slips from the fruit when it’s harvest time!
- Cantaloupes have a mysterious past as no one can actually pin point where they exactly showed up first.
If you wish to control your appetite, improve your immune power or promote hair growth, then grab a bowl of delicious cantaloupes to give your day a healthy start. A myriad of health benefits from this tasty treat is something that you should add on to your diet.