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Cantaloupe Fruit- Nutrition, Health Benefits And More

Rajan is a botany and chemistry major. He has worked as a poultry breeder for 23 years, breeding layer and broiler parents.

Cantaloupe Fruit

Cantaloupe is the fruit of the plant Cucumis melo which is native to Persia (current day Iran), India and Africa.

In India, it is called "Kharbuja".

About Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe is also known as muskmelon, sweet melon, rockmelon, Persian melon among many of its other names.

The plant grows in tropical areas and needs long periods of warm temperatures as the growing period extends for a long time. A sandy soil that drains well is the best suited for it.

The Cantaloupe Fruit

Cantaloupe fruit comes with a netted or smooth rind, ribbed or otherwise, with colours ranging from light brown to yellow to grey-green. It has a mildly sweet taste and buttery texture and a yellow to orange coloured flesh usually.

The fruits are picked before they reach full ripeness and are treated with either a bleach wash or sodium hypochlorite solution to prevent the growth of bacteria, particularly Salmonella, that frequently are found on the rind, as well as moulds.

Therefore, before cutting a cantaloupe, washing the rind well, by scrubbing it thoroughly, is recommended.

Two varieties of cantaloupe are commonly seen in the West.

  • The European Cantaloupe which is lightly ribbed and pale green rind from the plant Cucumis melo cantalupensis
  • The North American Cantaloupe having reticulated skin from the plant Cucumis melo reticulatus.

Cantaloupes are round to oblong in shape and weigh from 500 grams to 1 kilo on an average.

Cantaloupe or muskmelon is a sweetly aromatic, succulent, sweet, juicy and refreshing fruit.

Nutritional Benefits Of Cantaloupe

  • Low in calories and fat.
  • Cholesterol free.
  • Excellent source of vitamin A in the form of betacarotene.
  • Very rich source of vitamin C as well.
  • Rich in flavonoids like beta carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin and cryptoxanthin.
  • Contains moderate amounts of several B complex vitamins including folate and minerals like potassium, copper and magnesium.
  • Almost no sodium.
  • Though cantaloupe contains a lower concentration of polyphenols than fruits like strawberries, grapes, lychee it provides more total amount of polyphenols than many fruits including kiwi, grapefruit, pineapple, etc since the amount of cantaloupe consumed is much more than these fruits.
  • The edible seeds are a good source of omega-3 fats.

Nutrients In Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe (Cucumis melo), Fresh, 

Nutritive Value per 100 gms

 

(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)

 

Principle

Nutrient Value

Percentage of RDA

Energy

34 Kcal

1.50%

Carbohydrates

8.6 g

6.50%

Protein

0.84 g

1.50%

Total Fat

0.19 g

<1%

Cholesterol

0 mg

0%

Dietary Fiber

0.9 g

2.25%

Vitamins

 

 

Folates

21 mcg

5%

Niacin

0.734 mg

4.50%

Pantothenic acid

0.105 mg

2%

Pyridoxine

0.072 mg

5.50%

Riboflavin

0.026 mg

2%

Thiamin

0.017 mg

1%

Vitamin A

3382 IU

112%

Vitamin C

36.7 mg

61%

Vitamin E

0.05 mg

0.50%

Vitamin K

2.5 mcg

2%

Electrolytes

 

 

Sodium

1 mg

0%

Potassium

267 mg

6%

Minerals

 

 

Calcium

9 mg

1%

Copper

41 mcg

4.50%

Iron

0.21 mg

2.50%

Magnesium

12 mg

3%

Manganese

0.041 mg

2%

Zinc

0.18 mg

1.50%

Phyto-nutrients

 

Carotene-alpha

2020 mcg

--

Crypto-xanthin-beta

1 mcg

--

Lutein-zeaxanthin

26 mcg

--

Health Benefits Of Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe contains a diverse variety of nutrients from vitamins and minerals to carotenoids and flavonoids and from the organic acids ferulic acid and caffeic acid, which are antioxidants in action, to the Cucurbitacins that have anti-inflammatory properties.

Some of the health benefits of cantaloupes are listed as under:

  • Cantaloupes reduce the risk of developing metabolic syndrome or problems like high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high blood fat and high body fat by protecting against unwanted inflammation and oxidative stress.
  • Because cantaloupes improve insulin and blood sugar metabolism, they help to lower the risk of developing diabetes. It also lowers the risk of developing heart disease.
  • Cantaloupe improves skin health as it an excellent source of vitamins A & C. It improves elasticity and makes the skin youthful and improves the complexion.
  • Since it is low in fat and calories but rich in nutrients including fibre it helps to keep the stomach full, keeps hunger at bay and therefore contributes to losing weight. It also helps to detoxify the body as it is digested easily and quickly.
  • It is a good fruit for those with high blood pressure as it has almost no sodium and has a good amount of potassium.
  • Cantaloupe contains the compound adenosine that helps keep the blood thin and prevents blood clots from forming; thus preventing against stroke and heart attack.
  • The lutein and zeaxanthin protect the vision and also against age-related macular degeneration.
  • The various flavonoids like beta carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin and cryptoxanthin help protect against cancer of the breast, prostate, colon, lungs and pancreas.
  • Cantaloupe helps ease menstrual problems lie clots and heavy bleeding, and cramps experienced during this time.
  • With its wide range of antioxidants, cantaloupe helps boost body immunity and prevents infections from attacking.

On a hot summer day, cantaloupe consumption helps to eliminate fatigue and provides energy and strength.

References

  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15261965
  • http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/cantaloupe.html
  • http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=17
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19358284
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2870447/
  • http://www.medindia.net/patients/lifestyleandwellness/cantaloupes-the-healthy-fruit.htm
  • http://www.elements4health.com/cantaloupe.html
  • http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16179750

Disclaimer

The information provided in this hub is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult your physician, or health care provider before taking any home remedies or supplements.

Some Of My Other Hubs On Healthy Foods & Health

Cantaloupe Milk(less)shakes

Chilled Melon Soup Recipe by Manjula

Seafoam Lime Cantaloupe Pie

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2014 Rajan Singh Jolly

Comments

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 16, 2014:

teaches, we always have it in summer as it provides respite from the extreme heat we have out here. As it is a healthy fruit it is all the more beneficial.

Dianna Mendez on April 07, 2014:

I haven't had cantaloupe in quite awhile and reading your post now has me wanting some. I will have to put it on my shopping list. Thanks for the education.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 05, 2014:

It always feels so good to have fruits and vegetables grown at home. They give such a thrill. Thanks for stopping by Devika.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on April 02, 2014:

I like Cantaloupe Fruit we can't have enough during the summer one we planted this fruit and had a fair crop was interesting to have our own. Lovely photos!

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on April 02, 2014:

Thanks for stopping by precy anza. I appreciate your sharing this as well.

precy anza from USA on April 01, 2014:

One of the fruits I love, Rajan :) I would scrape the meat and add milk. And good to know all these health benefits. Up and FB shared! :)

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on March 30, 2014:

Nithya, thanks for stopping by.

srsddn, I'm glad you have the health info on this much loved fruit. Thanks for visiting.

srsddn from Dehra Dun, India on March 30, 2014:

Rajan, I love cantaloupe, the famous Kharbuja which we get in plenty during summer. But I could come to know more about its real nutritional value and health benefits now only. Thanks for sharing such a useful information.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on March 30, 2014:

Great hub about the cantaloupe, it is delicious and healthy! Thank you for sharing this information.

Rajan Singh Jolly (author) from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on March 29, 2014:

Thanks Bill and you have a good weekend too!

Flourish, a sweet and cool cantaloupe in summer is like tasting bliss. Have a fine weekend.

FlourishAnyway from USA on March 29, 2014:

Cantaloupe is one of my favorite fruits. In the middle of summer when you get a sweet one, it tastes as good as candy!

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on March 29, 2014:

Finally something I have heard of and eat...I love cantaloupe. Nice summary of its nutritional value. Well done, Rajan! Have a great weekend.