Health Benefits Of Cantaloupes

By:    Published: February 1, 2012

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With their juicy flesh, sweet smell and bright yellow-orange color, cantaloupes are a particularly appetizing variety of melon. These fruits are popular in just about all parts of the U.S., more than any other melon, in fact. What makes their popularity even more exciting is the fact that cantaloupes provide a wide range of great health benefits for those who eat them. In this article, we'll explore the many ways that eating cantaloupes are beneficial to your body and the diseases they can help to prevent.

Vitamins and Nutrients

Cantaloupes are packed with wonderful nutrients that your body needs, including fiber and folic acid. Cantaloupes also have a wealth of vitamins, particularly vitamin C, but also vitamin B6 and vitamin A. Minerals like potassium, thiamine, pantothenic and niacin are also found in significant amounts in cantaloupes.

Additionally, cantaloupes contain a compound called adenosine, which provides wonderful health benefits to the heart and the blood. Beta-carotenes, which help give cantaloupes their beautiful color, are also found in great amounts in cantaloupes. Once consumed, beta-carotenes are converted into vitamin A within the body. On top of all this, cantaloupes are also very low in calories, which make them even more of a healthy option when it comes to your diet.

Preventing Disease and Sickness

Cantaloupes are capable of making you healthier in numerous ways, many of which involve the prevention of serious diseases and other health conditions. Because cantaloupes contain a significant amount of beta-carotenes, they may help to maintain healthy eyesight and even prevent the development of cataracts. Cantaloupes are also a great source of vitamin A, which is critical for keeping your eyes healthy. Although more research is still needed, beta-carotenes have also been linked to the prevention of cancer.

The high amounts of vitamin C in cantaloupes are also a source of many health benefits. As most people know, vitamin C is great for improving the function of the immune system, meaning that your body won't be as susceptible to infection and viruses. However, vitamin C is also a great antioxidant that helps to protect the body from oxygen free radicals. While vitamin C is stimulating white cells to fight infection and kill bacteria, it also helps regenerate vitamin E that may have become inactive within the body. Because vitamin C is so helpful in preventing disease and sickness in general, it links cantaloupes to a reduced risk of death from a number of formidable conditions including stroke, heart disease and cancer.

Cantaloupes are also a great food to eat if you want to regulate your metabolism and blood sugar. That's because this healthy fruit contains many of the B complex vitamins including vitamin B6, folic acid and niacin. These vitamins work with potassium to keep carbohydrate metabolism regulated and stabilize blood sugar levels by ensuring that carbs and sugars are delivered into the blood stream gradually rather than all at once.

If you are looking for a heart-healthy fruit, you should seriously consider adding more cantaloupes to your diet. The compound called adenosine found in cantaloupes has the ability to thin the blood, which can prevent clots in the cardiovascular system. Furthermore, the folate found in cantaloupes has also been linked to the prevention of heart attacks.

Other Health Benefits

Cantaloupes also provide several health benefits unrelated to the prevention of disease and sickness. If you're feeling stressed, for example, the potassium in cantaloupes can help normalize your heartbeat and give a consistent flow of oxygen to your brain, helping you to relax and feel more focused as opposed to overwhelmed. Similarly, some studies have found that cantaloupes can calm the nerves and relieve anxiety, which makes it a possible treatment for insomnia.

Although the adenosine in cantaloupes does wonders for preventing blood clots, it can also relieve less serious conditions, including menstrual problems. As the adenosine in this fruit thins the blood, it can prevent clotting and reduce heavy flow for many women. Many women also find that eating cantaloupes also prevents excessive water retention during menstruation or pregnancy.

One of the most unique properties of cantaloupes is its connection to smoking. Many people have found that the nutrients and minerals found in cantaloupes help the body to recover from nicotine withdrawal as a person attempts to quit smoking. Furthermore, smoking depletes a person's vitamin A, so eating cantaloupes can help to alleviate that problem.

Although the conditions and health problems listed here may certainly be improved or prevented by eating cantaloupes, keep in mind that this fruit should not be used as a cure or treatment without the advice of a physician.

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