Well+Good is your healthiest relationship, hooking you up with the best, most interesting things/people/food in wellness. And nothing gets at this concept better than the plus-sign in our logo, which acts like a gallery window where we showcase the most exciting, transformative objects and ideas that add wellness to your life. And this week we’re spotlighting the undeniable rise of… the watermelon.
Juicy, hydrating watermelon is the queen bee of the picnic table pretty much every summer, but this year, we’ve noticed something major is undeniably happening the popular summer fruit. (And no, not just that exploding watermelon video everyone watched on Buzzfeed a few months ago.)
For the first time, food companies to skin-care brands are tapping watermelon, known for its respectable amounts of vitamin A, B6, and C, to create entirely new products. “It’s been overlooked as a superfood for far too long,” says Sagan Schultz, the founder of the watermelon-based sports recovery drink WellWell.
Could it be that our love for superfruits like goji berries and acai has been so strong that that we’ve taken the watermelon, here all along, for granted?
From watermelon seeds now being used to power protein bars, watermelon jerky (yep, believe it), and three new watermelon beverages hitting shelves to a natural anti-aging oil, the hydrating fruit is having a major healthy moment in the spotlight.
Scroll down to see summer’s buzziest (and yummiest) watermelon foods and drinks…
Go Raw’s watermelon seeds have been in stores for a while now, but the brand just came out with a new line of protein bars, all powered by the little, surprisingly powerful seeds. (The flavors on deck: cinnamon spice, dark chocolate, zesty lemon, and mint chocolate.) One bar has just six ingredients and 12 grams of protein, double the amount of protein in one egg. Makes you think twice about picking them out of the fruit and chucking like you might normally, right?
Watermelon seeds can give you some oomph, but the juice itself can actually help repair your muscles after an intense workout, which is why WellWell released a watermelon juice-based sports recovery drink a couple months ago. If you’re into the habit of grabbing a banana post-workout, consider this: WellWell delivers double the amount of potassium than one banana—and has electrolytes and l-citrulline, which helps with muscle soreness. And, just like that personal trainer crush you follow on Instagram, it doesn’t hurt that it’s pretty to look at either.
Summer’s most popular fruit has even found its way into beauty products—and no, it doesn’t feel sticky like actual watermelon juice (or smell like Lip Smackers). Luxury clean beauty brand True Botanicals painstakingly extracts the oil from watermelon seeds for its Pacific Body Oil, where it’s used as an anti-ager. Also amazing? Because the oil is so light, it doesn’t clog pores. (Hear that, everyone with combination skin?)
The fact that, DrinkMaple, a beverage completely centered around maple water, is turning to watermelon to launch its next drink just shows you the power of the red juice. Out later this month, DrinkMelon will be the only 100 percent organic watermelon juice on the market. The company says the juice is sourced at watermelons’ peak ripeness to extract the highest levels of vitamin C, antioxidants, potassium, citrulline, and lycopene (which is linked to preventing heart disease and cancer). It’s touting itself as a workout enhancement drink, so expect to start seeing more gym goers chugging it near the squat rack.
You know something is about to reach superfood status when Sakara gets behind it. The only ingredient in this healthy snack is literally dehydrated watermelon—nothing is added at all. It’s just another way to enjoy the sweet goodness—getting all of watermelon’s vitamins and nutrients—while avoiding getting it all over your shirt.
A big reason to try Wtrmln Wtr? Well, Beyonce loves it and is an investor. But Wtrmln Wtr also wants you to know its electrolytes give it workout-enhancing benefits and make it a good hangover cure (no more buying Pedialyte). It also claims to be a libido booster due to the citrulline, which relaxes and dilates blood vessels, much like Viagra. So far, lemonade hasn’t been able to claim the same effect.
Other summer news you can use? These five insanely delicious veggie burger recipes are key for throwing the best cookout ever. And if you need side dishes, we’ve got you covered right here.