6 Reasons to Love Watermelon

WatermelonEarlier this month we celebrated National Watermelon Day—and with good reason! In addition to being a refreshing summer treat, the fruit-slash-vegetable is loaded with beneficial nutrients known to support health. Here are six great reasons to grab a slice (or a few) before the season is over:

Heart Helper
Scientists at Florida State University recently found that the amino acids L-citrulline and L-arginine found in watermelon may protect against heart disease. In addition to improving circulation, they support the health of the arteries around the heart and help maintain healthy blood pressure levels.

Inflammation Fighter
Watermelon is rich in lycopene (which gives it its red color) and choline—two nutrients valued for their beneficial anti-inflammatory properties. Together, they support a healthy inflammation response in the body to promote immunity and overall health.

Thirst Quencher
Did you know watermelons are more than 90% water? On hot days, eating the fruit can help you stay hydrated as well as replace important electrolytes lost when you sweat.

Tummy Aid
Combined with its high water content, the fiber in watermelon supports healthy digestion and regularity. Watermelon is also low in sugar, which means it benefits the good bacteria in your gut.

Skin and Hair Supporter
Watermelon contains a healthy dose of vitamin A and vitamin C, which together support healthy cell and tissue growth. In addition, vitamin A helps produce a substance called sebum that keeps hair and skin moisturized

Muscle Motivator
Try adding watermelon to your post-workout nourishment. Its amino acids work to improve circulation and help maintain a healthy heart rate. They also support muscle health and help reduce next-day soreness.

Sources:
https://www.fsu.edu/news/2010/10/13/watermelon.study/
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/08/130820-watermelon-nutrition-health-food-science/
http://www.livescience.com/46019-watermelon-nutrition.html
http://health.usnews.com/health-news/blogs/eat-run/2015/08/03/celebrate-national-watermelon-day-with-this-watermelon-gazpacho-recipe
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/07/21/watermelon-nutrition.aspx
http://www.post-gazette.com/news/health/2015/07/28/Nutritious-watermelon-not-just-summer-dessert/stories/201508040003
http://www.watermelon.org/

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Study: Women More Likely to Suffer from Alzheimer’s

Woman Holding TempleFor as much as we know about the human brain, there are still countless questions yet to be answered. One of them, according to researchers at the Duke Institute for Brain Sciences in North Carolina, has to do with why women are more likely than men to suffer from Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, and almost two-thirds of Americans diagnosed with it are women. Moreover, at age 65 women without the disorder have greater than a one in six chance of developing it during their lifetime, while men of the same age have only a one in 11 chance.

In a recent study of nearly 400 seniors, researchers found that women experience a decline in healthy brain function at a much faster rate than men. And, once the early symptoms of cognitive deterioration (including memory loss and disorientation) begin to show, overall decline in healthy brain function tends to happen more quickly in women—about twice as fast.

Despite their findings, it is still unclear why women seem more vulnerable than men to Alzheimer’s and similar disorders. Possible contributing factors may include hormonal or DNA differences, as well as lifestyle factors such as nutrition and physical activity. Duke scientists hope this and other studies may one day help with Alzheimer’s treatment and prevention.

Sources:
https://www.alz.org/aaic/releases_2015/Tues8amET.asp
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/22/health/women-decline-toward-dementia-faster-than-men-study-suggests.html?_r=0
http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2015/07/21/425054345/womens-brains-appear-more-vulnerable-to-alzheimers-than-mens
http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_what_is_alzheimers.asp
https://www.nia.nih.gov/alzheimers/topics/alzheimers-basics

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