Muskmelon is a sweet, yellow-fleshed, and flavor-filled fruit that is a member of the Cucurbitaceae family. The fruit produces a characteristic musky aroma when ripe. Muskmelon has many cultivars with different names. For instance, Crenshaw, honeydew, and casaba are familiar examples of smooth-skinned muskmelons. On the other hand, cantaloupe, Santa Claus melon, and Persian melon are good examples of net-skinned muskmelons. Although cantaloupes often have net-like skin, some varieties have smooth skin, such as the European Cantaloupe. Cantaloupes emerge as a subject here because all cantaloupe varieties are considered muskmelons. Even so, not all cantaloupes can be regarded as muskmelons.
Health benefits of Muskmelons
A muskmelon is packed with different essential minerals and vitamins. For instance, muskmelon is a rich source of potassium, vitamins A and C, and folate. The fruit also contains antioxidants that play a significant role in disease prevention. Thus, these nutrients make muskmelon a healthy choice.
Muskmelons help regulate blood pressure
Muskmelons help control blood pressure when consumed because it is a rich source of potassium. Usually, resistance to blood flow causes pressure build-up in the vessels. However, the potassium in this fruit aids in vasodilation, causing blood vessels to relax and allowing smooth blood flow. The ability to regulate blood pressure makes muskmelon a healthy fruit choice for all people, including those with hypertension.
Muskmelons aid in weight loss
Muskmelons can help manage weight when consumed regularly. The fruit particularly contains a lot of potassium, which promotes weight loss. Muskmelons also have low calories and high water content, which help in achieving weight loss. Besides, the high fiber content in muskmelon seeds improves weight management by increasing satiety and reducing appetite levels. The low-fat content in a muskmelon also makes the fruit suitable for weight loss.
Muskmelons enhance skin health
Muskmelons have a 90 percent water content, which leaves the skin well hydrated and healthy when consumed. The fruit also contains vitamin C that plays a key role in collagen production. Collagen keeps the skin firm and youthful by eliminating fines lines and wrinkles. Further, muskmelons supply the body with folate, a vitamin that promotes smooth cell regeneration and helps maintain healthy and glowing skin.
Muskmelons boost immunity
Muskmelons improve immunity when added to the diet due to their high vitamin C content. Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that contributes to optimum health by preventing cell damage. Muskmelons also contain vitamin A, another strong antioxidant that plays a critical role in building immunity. Vitamins A and C contribute to strong immunity by conferring protective effects against infectious pathogenic agents.
Muskmelons promote digestion and gut health
Muskmelons improve digestion and gastrointestinal health by providing dietary fiber. The high water and fiber content also promote regular bowel movement, reducing the likelihood of experiencing constipation. Dietary fiber further contributes to gastrointestinal health by promoting the growth of healthy stomach bacteria.
However, eating muskmelon on an empty stomach is discouraged because the water in this fruit dilutes stomach contents, disrupting digestive processes. Therefore, this will likely cause digestive problems.
Muskmelons lead to better vision and eye health
Muskmelons promote and help maintain good vision and eye health by providing valuable antioxidants. In particular, these fruits supply zeaxanthin, lutein, and beta-carotene, all of which contribute to better eye health. As a result, muskmelons can help reduce the risk of developing vision problems such as cataracts and macular degeneration. The fruits can also help promote proper eye function in healthy persons regardless of age because they contain essential vitamins and minerals.
Muskmelons help when pregnant
Muskmelons are beneficial to pregnant mothers, with their various nutrients contributing to better fetal health. For instance, folate helps prevent congenital disorders and keep the fetus healthy. The calcium in a muskmelon can also form strong bones and teeth and keep the mother’s calcium stores well nourished. Additionally, vitamins A and C can help regulate blood pressure, prevent common infections, and relieve constipation or indigestion in pregnant women.
Although muskmelons are mostly safe to eat when pregnant, they might sometimes become contaminated with listeria bacteria, rendering them unsafe for consumption. Consuming a muskmelon infected with listeria can cause preterm labor, miscarriage, or stillbirth.
Muskmelons help relieve arthritis
Muskmelons aid arthritis patients to alleviate pain because of their anti-inflammatory properties. Specifically, muskmelons contain phytochemicals, which function as antioxidants. These chemicals help neutralize free radicals, prevent oxidative stress, and arrest cellular damage. Consequently, the cumulative antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects help reduce inflammation in the joints and bones and relieve pain in people with arthritis.
Muskmelons promote hair growth
Muskmelons are a good source of vitamin A. Vitamin A contributes to healthy hair by promoting sebum production in the body. The sebaceous glands secrete sebum, an oily secretion beneficial in keeping the hair healthy and well-moisturized. Muskmelons also have myo-inositol or inositol, a naturally-occurring substance that helps fight hair loss and stimulate hair growth.