The start of a new year is the perfect time for new beginnings, including a fresh start on eating healthy. The trick to making this year’s resolution stick is introducing smart eating habits so tasty and easy that your eating plan becomes more a way of life than a short-lived commitment. One easy way to achieve that habit is by adding watermelon to your daily diet, giving your body a low-calorie option to curb an appetite for unhealthy snacks.
Set reasonable goals. A deprivation diet is destined to fail because eventually your body will rebel. Instead, aim for well-rounded meals with moderate portions. If weight loss is your ultimate goal, know that losing two pounds a week is generally considered the maximum.
Satisfy your sweet tooth. Everyone, even the most dedicated health food fans, experience cravings from time to time. Most experts agree that it’s OK to answer your sweet tooth – in moderation of course. Before you take the plunge, think about whether there are other options that could be a good substitute. For example, instead of a sugary candy bar, consider a naturally sweet slice of watermelon for a cholesterol-free, fat-free way to satisfy cravings at only 80 calories per 2-cup serving. Watermelon contains fiber and water, and packs a wealth of health benefits, including strong levels of vitamins A, C and B6.
Stay well hydrated. During the cooler winter months, it’s easy to let water consumption slide because you’re not feeling the heat and thirst you do in warmer weather. However, the dry winter air can also be hard on your body, so it’s important to keep that water flowing year-around. Most adults should aim for eight glasses of water each day, but you can also boost your water intake with foods that have a high water content, such as watermelon, which is 92 percent water and contains protein and fiber so you are satisfied on fewer calories while boost- ing your overall hydration.
Find more inspiration for health-conscious habits in the new year at watermelon.org.
Watermelon Protein Bites
Recipe courtesy of Anya Shinall of Anya’s Eats
1 cup pitted dates, soaked
1 1/2 cups sprouted watermelon seeds,
divided, plus additional for
1 tablespoon coconut butter
1 cup fresh watermelon, chopped
1/8-1/4 cup roughly chopped beets
Chop dates in half.
Place dates in bowl of purified water and
soak 1-2 hours.
Remove dates from water bowl and place
them into food processor.
Pulse a few times then add 1 cup water-
melon seeds, coconut butter and watermelon.
Add chopped beets, if using.
Blend until well combined, scraping sides
of food processor as you go.
Add remaining watermelon seeds and
pulse, leaving some seeds chunky.
For smoother texture, continue to blend.
Remove mixture from food processor, place
in small bowl and cover, allowing to cool in
refrigerator 30 minutes.
Remove mixture from fridge. With
fingertips slightly wet, roll mixture into balls
and place on a plate.
Once done rolling, add watermelon seeds
Place watermelon bites in freezer 1-2 hours,
or until frozen.
Island Fruit Salad
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons coconut
1/2 lime (1 tablespoon),
1 1/2 teaspoons rum extract
2 kiwis, peeled and diced
1 orange, sectioned and
2 cups seedless watermelon,
2 teaspoons flaked,
In small bowl, combine water
and coconut sugar; microwave 20
seconds. Stir to completely dis-
solve sugar. Let cool. Once cool,
add lime juice and rum extract.
In medium bowl, add kiwi,
orange and watermelon. Pour rum
juice over top and thoroughly toss.
Let sit 30 minutes to allow flavors
Divide fruit salad into two bowls
and sprinkle with coconut.
Make Water Mouthwatering
A simple infusion of flavor gives water an instant upgrade,
whether you’re looking to add some variety to your daily
water consumption or you’re hosting an event and want to
offer guests a unique and nutritious beverage. Use your
favorite herbs and fruits to create one-of-a-kind combinations
that provide refreshing rehydration. Try these pairings:
Watermelon with basil, mint or lime
Strawberry with lime and basil
Cucumber and rosemary
Mixed berries and mint
Pineapple with coconut
Steel-Cut Oats with Watermelon
1 cup 1 percent milk, plus additional
1 cup water
1/2 cup steel-cut oats
3/4 cup diced seedless watermelon
2 tablespoons dried tart cherries or
2 tablespoons chopped pecans
2 tablespoons maple syrup
In medium saucepan over high heat, bring
1 cup milk and water to gentle boil. Pour in
oats. Stir; return to gentle boil then reduce
heat to simmer, stirring occasionally, 20-30
While oats are cooking, in small bowl,
combine watermelon, dried fruit, nuts and
Portion out oats and top with watermelon
mixture. Add additional milk, if desired.