Monday, September 1, 2008

Watermelon II

I previously blogged about the health benefits of eating watermelon at the beginning of the summer. It appears we have even more reason to enjoy a slice - it "has a Viagra - like effect on the body's..."

When Doug reads this blog he will think I am making this up. When he reads this report from Science News, he is going to think I've been tricking him into getting busy with all the watermelon I've been feeding him. Of course, I have only been thinking of his heart.

Lycopene in red melons is higher than than that found in tomatoes or red grapefruit. Apparently, lycopene relaxes blood vessels. So does Viagra. For a real good dose, you have to eat the rind since that's the part of the melon with the highest concentration of this nutrient. Don't worry, they are working on a new breed so we don't have to eat the nasty stuff. OHI is validated - they sometimes only juice the rind and give that to you.

It is known that the body is better at absorbing lycopene in tomatoes when it is consume with oily vegetables such as spinach or avocado. Dr Patil thinks watermelon in a salad is a hard sell. He may be right, a blog search nets only one such salad in the first few Google pages. However, watermelon is finding its way into gourmet restaurants. I located a Watermelon, Avocado and Arugula salad, which I would prefer to the spinach. There's Watermelon, Avocado and Tequila soup, not exactly a Margarita but what the heck. The one I liked best was a salad with Seared Tuna, Watermelon, Avocado and Grapefruit. Another recipe called for shrimp and shallots with the watermelon and avocado, watercress too.

It is my humble opinion that people seem to put together things in recipes that work best for the body. The French bistros have made salads of grapefruit and avocado for a long time and Mexicans have their guacamole. In the name of better health (and more nookie), I made the following salad...

Watermelon And Avocado Salad

1/8th watermelon or 1-2 cups, cut in chunks
1/2 ripe avocado, cut in chunks, s & p to taste
1 green onion, sliced-green parts only
4-6 leaves, basil, mint or combo of both, chopped
2 oz goat cheese, or substitute with feta, crumbled
Pistachios or sunflower seeds, chopped

Mix all ingredients. Serve with your favorite balsamic or red wine vinegar and oil dressing.

For a dressing, I pureed some watermelon with lemon juice and poured that over the salad with a sprinkle of almond oil.

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