The New Year is all about setting intentions for healthy living. Yet most diet and weight loss goals fade from memory by spring. Many people turn to fad weight-loss diets, instead of making sustainable diet changes that promote a healthy lifestyle. Follow these 4 simple steps to help make this year and the years that follow, the healthiest possible with watermelon.
Step 1: Up Your Hydration
Whether you’re exercising, traveling, enjoying leisure time, or accomplishing your daily activities, it is important to stay well hydrated. Staying hydrated is fundamental for health because our bodies need water in order to function properly. Water supports many body processes. It carries nutrients and oxygen to cells, moves waste products out of our body, and helps lubricate joints allowing us to exercise and play! While drinking water throughout the day is important, it is not the only way that you can stay hydrated. At 92% water, watermelon is a delicious way to rehydrate. Eat watermelon all-year-round to up your hydration!
Step 2: Increase Your Physical Activity
Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health! Regular physical activity may help lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and certain cancers. Staying active may also boost energy, mood, and overall health. Physical activity helps strengthen bones and muscle and even increases your chances of living longer.3 Fitting activity into a daily routine doesn’t have to be hard. Every little bit adds up and doing something is better than doing nothing. Try taking a brisk 10-minute walk to and from the parking lot or join a virtual exercise group! Most importantly — have fun while being active! Did you know that you can work out with watermelon?
Step 3: More Fruits and Vegetables
People who eat more vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet are likely to have a reduced risk of some chronic diseases. Fruits and vegetables provide nutrients vital for the health and maintenance of your body. For example, watermelon is a nutritious option all-year-round. Watermelon is cholesterol-free, fat-free, sodium-free, and only 80 calories per 2 cups. It truly is a fruit for a heart-healthy diet and is proudly American Heart Association Heart-Check Certified.
Yet, eating fruits and vegetables can sometimes be more difficult than it sounds. Often, people don’t know how to cook or prepare fruits and vegetables in a way that satisfies their taste buds. The Watermelon Board makes eating more fruit and vegetables easier by providing many plant-based recipes, which can be found here.
Step 4: Prioritize Self-Care
Instead of treating self-care like an afterthought that only happens once everything else is complete, try scheduling time for self-care this new calendar year. It is important to remember that self-care looks different for everyone. While some may view self-care as a day at the spa or getting a full 8 hours of sleep, others may practice self-care by exploring new hobbies or completing a task that sets them up for success. For example, choosing to meal prep can be a fantastic way to care for yourself and prioritize your health.
New Year, New Recipes!
To put the 4 steps to a healthier New Year into practice, try incorporating these quick and easy watermelon recipes into your meal rotation!
- Peach, Pineapple, and Watermelon Smoothies This smoothie is a mixture of 3 fruits: pineapple, peaches, and of course watermelon. It’s refreshing, it’s filling and it’s surprisingly delicious! The hint of cinnamon and vanilla in this smoothie offers some zest and finishes with a smooth silky taste.
- Watermelon Feta Bruschetta Take your regular bruschetta up a notch by adding a watermelon topping! With a classic combination of feta, mint and watermelon, this recipe combines a wonderful mix of both sweet and salty.
- Zesty Watermelon Chicken Salad Tortilla Cups These gorgeous cups look impressive and are easy to make – great for guests, game nights, and brunches! We love this spin on chicken salad and know you’ll enjoy them just as much as we do!
Harvard Health Publishing. https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-importance-of-staying-hydrated
 USDA Food Composition Database. https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/search/list?home=true.
 Center for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/pa-health/index.htm
 National Institutes of Health: National Institute on Aging. https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/real-life-benefits-exercise-and-physical-activity
 U.S. Department of Agriculture: ChooseMyPlate. https://www.choosemyplate.gov/resources/physical-activity-tips.
 U.S. Department of Agriculture: ChooseMyPlate. https://www.choosemyplate.gov/eathealthy/vegetables/vegetables-nutrients-health.
 USDA Food and Nutrient Database. 09326, Watermelon (raw). https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/09326. Updated April 2018.