Watermelon is arguably one of summer’s greatest gifts. They’re sweet (without being highly caloric), hydrating, and high in hunger-satiating fiber. They are also an excellent source of vitamin C and potassium. The only drawback to watermelons, really, is that they are so BIG! It can be hard to finish the whole thing before it starts to turn. You may often be caught wondering what to do with leftover watermelon. We have a delicious and health-conscious idea for you: freeze it, blend it, sip it!
Even in all its summer glory, frozen watermelon can be a little bland or over-sweet. It’s so easy to give it a lift with a squeeze of citrus and/or a scoop of vitamin C powder from Metabolic Maintenance.
Why Add Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is a potent water-soluble antioxidant and essential in the human diet as it cannot be synthesized within the body . Vitamin C is required for the production and maintenance of collagen, a necessary element of all connective tissue . This means the formation and maintenance of cartilage, bones, skin, tendons, and tooth dentin all require a vitamin C-mediated process .
If you’d like to learn more about what vitamin C can do to promote youthful-looking skin, check out another blog piece posted this month, linked here.
Vitamin C also has anti-inflammatory properties, supports a robust immune system, contributes to the healthy production of neurotransmitters, and aids in the absorption of iron .
Of all the body’s organs, the adrenal glands accumulate the highest levels of vitamin C . This is because vitamin C is a cofactor for the biosynthesis of the catecholamine neurotransmitters, epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine, as well as adrenal steroidogenesis .
For those consuming plant-based diets (no animal tissue), vitamin C is the only known dietary constituent that can significantly increase the absorption of nonheme iron . It is important to note, the stimulating influence of ascorbic acid on iron absorption has been demonstrated to be most pronounced when ascorbic acid is consumed with food . But hey, watermelon is food!
Slushie Recipe (serves 2-4)
3 cups of cubed watermelon, frozen
½ tsp Metabolic Maintenance Vitamin C Powder (or a squeeze of lime juice)
Splash of cold water (or preferred liquid) to reach desired consistency
When you simply can’t eat any more watermelon, cut the remaining fruit into cubes and put them into a zip-loc bag (or alternative, freezer-safe reusable container) and leave them in the freezer.
After a minimum of 4 hours (up to several months) take the frozen melon cubes out and put them in a blender. Turn on the blender and add liquid a splash at a time, just until the slushy is blended to your desired consistency. Then, add the scoop of vitamin C powder and/or lime juice to taste and blend again until fully incorporated.
If the vitamin C makes the slushy too tart for your taste, agave, monk fruit, or honey are good choices of sweeteners that can help you find a balance.
Now you know what to do with leftover watermelon, enjoy!
- Padayatty, Sebastian J., et al. “Vitamin C as an antioxidant: evaluation of its role in disease prevention.” Journal of the American college of Nutrition 22.1 (2003): 18-35.
- Libby, Peter, and Masanori Aikawa. “Vitamin C, collagen, and cracks in the plaque.” (2002): 1396-1398.
- Patak, P., H. S. Willenberg, and S. R. Bornstein. “Vitamin C is an important cofactor for both adrenal cortex and adrenal medulla.” Endocrine research 30.4 (2004): 871-875.
- Cook, James D., and Manju B. Reddy. “Effect of ascorbic acid intake on nonheme-iron absorption from a complete diet.” The American journal of clinical nutrition 73.1 (2001): 93-98.