“Watermelon”- How to Choose the right one?
4 mins read

“Watermelon”- How to Choose the right one?

Watermelon is a sweet and juicy fruit making it a perfect treat to quench thirst during the summer season. It is full of nutrition. It is loaded with Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and antioxidants. Watermelons are 91% water and hence are a perfect way to keep oneself hydrated. They are low in calories, rich in fiber, and help to keep you full for a long time. It is super refreshing and can be used to create a variety of dishes like salads, curries, lemonades, smoothies, popsicles, etc.

However, this energizing and wholesome fruit is highly prone to Food Adulteration. Some vendors inject sugared water to make it sweeter and heavier. Others inject red dye to make the flesh look brighter, which can be toxic. One should take the below cautions to avoid buying/consuming an adulterated watermelon:

    • Check for any white/yellow powder coating on the surface of the watermelon This dust could be carbide which is used for the quick ripening of watermelon and many other fruits.
    • Avoid buying watermelon with tiny holes/cracks on the surface. It might have been injected with some dye/unnatural sweetener.
    • After cutting the watermelon, If you find any cracks/holes in the middle, it might be injected. Such cracks/holes are rare in a fruit that ripe naturally.
    • After buying watermelon, leave it outside the refrigerator for 4-5 days. A naturally ripened watermelon can last for several days. If you observe any foam or water coming out, it might be chemically injected.
    • After cutting the watermelon into two halves, dab cotton on the inner succulent part. If the cotton turns red on dabbing, the watermelon is adulterated with dye.

The best way to avoid consuming an adulterated watermelon is to pick the right one. Therefore you should keep the below things in mind while buying it:

    • Look for a uniform-shaped watermelon (either round or oval). Watch out for irregular bumps. If there is an irregular bump, don’t buy it. Never buy a watermelon that has dents or cuts on it.
    • Choose a watermelon that is heavy in size. A heavier one usually has more water content and is sweeter.
    • Never buy a watermelon with a white spot. Such watermelons are unripe and might not taste sweet.
    • Webbing or Sugar spot is usually a sign of the sweetness of the watermelon. Extended webbing on the skin of the watermelon is a sign that the melon is seeping out sugar.
    • Look for watermelon with a yellow spot. This spot is also known as the “Field or the Ground Spot”. This spot indicates that it has spent sufficient time on the vine for ripening and hence will be sweeter.
    • Select a watermelon that is dark and dull. If it is shiny, it is under-ripe and is not ready for consumption.
    • One of the old and popular methods to choose a watermelon is to “Tap it”. A ripe one will have a deep sound when you thump it with your hand or knuckle.
    • Check for the tail/stem of the watermelon. dried stem is an indication of a ripe watermelon. A green stem shows that it was harvested early.

If you buy a pre-cut watermelon:

    • Choose a slice with bright red flesh.
    • Avoid pieces with white streaks or too many white seeds. The seeds should be brown/black.
    • Never buy a piece that looks dried out.

Always remember that it’s best to consume seasonal fruits. Fruits that tend to ripe in natural sunlight are much more nutritious and have higher antioxidants, hence considered good for health. Never buy a watermelon or any fruit during the off-season.

Off-season fruits have to travel much longer to reach the market when compared to seasonal fruits. This leads to higher use of a wax coating, preservatives, ripening agents, thus making them unhealthy for consumption.

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