Watermelon is considered by most people to be a fruit because of its sweet taste. However, in fact, a watermelon is actually a vegetable. It is related to cucumbers, pumpkins and squash. It has an exterior skin which is typically green and is thick. The internal part can have either black or white seeds with a juicy flesh that is either pink or red in color. Watermelons have a sweet syrup taste and are available almost year round. However, the best eating watermelons are produced in our summer months.
There are over 1200 varieties of watermelon grown worldwide and about 200-300 of these are grown in the United States and Mexico. There are about 50 varieties of watermelon that are popular here in the United States. Watermelons are classified into five different types: Seeded, Seedless, Mini, Yellow and Orange.
Watermelon provides a moderate amount of energy. A 100 g serving of the fruit contains approximately 30 calories. It is an ideal health food because it doesn't contain any fat or cholesterol, is high in fiber, and vitamins A & C, and is a good source of potassium. It is believed that watermelons kept at room temperature are more nutritious than those kept in the refrigerator.
Water makes up about 92% of the watermelon flesh, which explains the melon's relatively low calorie content. High water content also makes it an excellent thirst quencher. Watermelons have been known to help reduce inflammation from conditions such as asthma, atherosclerosis, diabetes, colon cancer, and arthritis.