23 Best Benefits Of Cantaloupe (Kharbuja) For Skin, Hair, And Health November 9, 2016

One of the reasons to look forward to summers is the variety of fruits you get to eat during the season. One such fruit is cantaloupe. Yep, I’m talking about the juicy and the pulpy muskmelon also known as cantaloupe. It has a mild sugary and watery taste that enhances as the fruit ripens. Besides being delicious, and hydrating, cantaloupes are also a rich source of essential vitamins and minerals like Vitamin A, Vitamin B6 as well as dietary fibers and folic acid.

Excited? Dive right in to know more

Cantaloupe—A Brief

Cantaloupe—A-Brief

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Scientific Name—Cucumis melo var. Cantalupensis
Family—Cucurbitaceae
Native—Persia
Other Names—Muskmelon, Rock melon, Sweet melon, Persian melon, Kharbuja (Hindi), Parangi pazham (Tamil), Thalkumbalam (Malayalam), Karbooja Hannu (Kannada)

Cantaloupe is a type of melon belonging to the Cucurbitaceae family which also includes fruits and vegetables like squash, pumpkin, cucumber, gourd, etc. This fruit is light yellow to orange in color, sometimes with a deeper salmon hue and like other melons it also grows on the ground surface as a trailing vine.

This fruit has a round or oblong shape, a soft consistency and juicy texture with a sweet musky aroma which is best found in completely ripe fruits. The hollow cavity in the center contains small off-white colored seeds. Cantaloupes are primarily summer fruits and are best in the months of April to August.

Types of Cantaloupes

Several varieties of cantaloupe fruits are grown all over the world. But generally, two common varieties of melons are popular in the western countries, depending on their place of origin.

  • North American Cantaloupe (Cucumis melo reticulatus): This type is popular in the United States and has been named reticulatus due to its net-like (reticulated) skin. These melons have a sweet characteristic pale green succulent flesh.
  • European Cantaloupe (Cucumis melo cantalupensis): This cantaloupe gets its name from the Italian papal village of Cantalup and is characterized by lightly ribbed pale green skin that is quite different from its North American counterpart. Galia melon and charentais also belong to this category.

Trivia- Made out of 90 percent water, a cup of cantaloupes carry only 60 calories. Now, that’s what we call a fruit that is tasty, sugary and healthy!

Benefits Of Cantaloupe

Benefits-Of-Cantaloupe

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Cantaloupes not only appeases the taste buds, but also offer a wide range of health benefits. Here’s a look at the various benefits the fruit offers.

Health Benefits

  1. Strengthens The Immune System
  2. Cardiovascular Health
  3. Prevents Cancer
  4. Combats Stress
  5. Eye Health
  6. Prevents Diabetic Nephropathy
  7. Beneficial For Lungs
  8. Treatment Of Insomnia
  9. Treatment Of Menstrual Problems
  10. Aids In Weight Loss
  11. Quit Smoking Sans Withdrawal Symptoms
  12. Beneficial For Pregnant Women
  13. Medicinal Property Of Cantaloupe Seeds
  14. Cures Toothache
  15. Medicinal Value Of Cantaloupe Tea
  16. Treats Arthritis
  17. Promotes Digestion

Skin Benefits

  1. Hydrates And Rejuvenates Skin
  2. Skin Regeneration
  3. Anti-Ageing Benefits
  4. Treatment Of Eczema And Other Skin Problems

Hair Benefits

  1. Combats Hair Loss
  2. Perfect Conditioner

Health Benefits Of Cantaloupe

Health-Benefits-Of-Cantaloupe

Image: Shutterstock

Apart from their delicious sweet taste and enticing aroma, cantaloupe melons are excellent sources of minerals, pro-Vitamin A, potassium and dietary fiber, thus providing several health benefits.

1. Strengthens The Immune System

Consuming cantaloupes on a regular basis can improve your immunity on absurdities of the weather and other diseases.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe is rich in Vitamin C and Vitamin A which boosts immunity by stimulating the white blood cells in the body. WBCs are considered as the body’s natural defense mechanism as they prevent foreign bodies from attacking as well as eradicating infections that attack the body (1). Being a powerful antioxidant, Vitamin C also effectively combats free radicals in the body. These free radicals damage the skin and are responsible for causing premature aging. Adding cantaloupes to your diet can keep premature aging at bay.

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2. Cardiovascular Health

Cardiac related issues are quite common these days. Why not try cantaloupes to keep your heart healthy?

Why Does It Work

These melons are rich in potassium which controls blood pressure, thus keeping your heart healthy. This mineral also prevents hypertension and prevents sodium from further harming the body (2). Cantaloupes are also rich in a compound called adenosine which is beneficial for the heart as it has blood thinning properties. This prevents blood clotting in the cardiovascular system. Vitamin C prevents arteriosclerosis i.e. hardening of arteries while folate helps in preventing heart attacks.

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3. Prevents Cancer

The very name cancer is phobic as it could turn fatal anytime. The least we can do is have foods that can prevent the deadly disease. One such food is cantaloupe.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupes have a high content of Vitamin C and beta-carotene which can effectively fight and eliminate free radicals from the body. These free radicals are harmful as they attack the body cells and cause cancerous growth (3).

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4. Combats Stress

Deadlines at the office, rushing kids to school, making breakfast for the husband, dropping mom to Yoga class…such hectic lifestyle can only lead to stress. Next time you feel that way, take a break and have a glass of cantaloupe juice. You should feel better in minutes.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe is rich in potassium which normalizes the heartbeat and promotes the supply of oxygen to the brain, thus making you feel more relaxed and focused. It also has superoxide dismutase which combats stress by lowering the blood pressure and relaxing the nerves. It prevents cellular death caused due to oxidative stress (4).

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5. Eye Health

Who wants to wear the ugly spectacles or irritating lens when you can have a good eyesight naturally? Try cantaloupe.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe is rich in beta carotenes which help in maintaining healthy eyesight. On absorption by the body, these beta carotenes get converted into Vitamin A which helps in preventing cataract and improving vision (5). Studies have proved that regular consumption of foods with high vitamin content can reduce the risk of developing cataracts by 40%.

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6. Prevents Diabetic Nephropathy

Diabetic nephropathy is a kidney disorder in which the kidney cells get dangerously damaged.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe extract known as “oxykine” can prevent this condition (6). Moreover, cantaloupe has a low glycemic index (GI) which means that fructose and glucose contained in cantaloupe is a simple sugar. Thus, this fruit is safe for diabetic patients and those suffering from obesity.

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7. Beneficial For Lungs

Did you know cantaloupes are one of the best fruits for your lungs?

Why Does It Work

Regular intake of this melon replenishes the body from the loss of vitamin A over a period due to continuous smoking or exposure to second-hand smoke. This helps in rejuvenating the lungs and is particularly beneficial for smokers whose lungs have been severely damaged due to smoking (7).

8. Treatment Of Insomnia

All the home remedies have failed to give you a sound sleep? Try cantaloupe.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe has powerful laxative properties as it contains a uniquecompound that relieves the nerves and calms anxieties. Thus, it helps insomniacs to get rid of their sleeping disorders by soothing their nervous system (8).

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9. Treatment of Menstrual Problems

The menstrual cycle is one of the most dreaded times for women. If you are one of those battling cramps, then cantaloupe can help.

Why Does It Work

Vitamin C in cantaloupes is effective in regulating menstrual flow and relieving menstrual cramps in women. Regular consumption of cantaloupe during menstruation can reduce the flow and clotting considerably; It gets rid of other menstrual problems. Cantaloupe is also sometimes used to induce menstruation (9).

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10. Aids In Weight Loss

Cantaloupe aids in weight loss as it is low in calories and high in fiber. Thus, you can eat lots of cantaloupes while keeping your caloric intake under control.

Why Does It Work

Fiber is beneficial for weight loss as it takes a long time to leave your stomach and enter the digestive tract, thus making you feel full for a longer time (10). This slow digesting process prevents you from overeating. Besides, fiber-rich foods are often bulky and occupy more space in your stomach, making you feel fuller and preventing you from snacking in between meals.

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11. Quit Smoking sans withdrawal symptoms

Want to kick the butt but can’t do it for fear of withdrawal symptoms? Try cantaloupe.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe is beneficial for those who are trying to quit smoking. This is because the minerals and nutrients in cantaloupe help the smoker to deal with nicotine withdrawal symptoms effectively. Moreover, it helps the body to recover faster by replenishing the lost vitamin A of the body due to constant smoking (11).

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12. Beneficial For Pregnant Women

Cantaloupe is like an elixir for pregnant ladies.

Why Does It Work

Folic acid is often recommended for women who are trying to conceive as well as for those who are pregnant (12). The high folate content in cantaloupe helps in the production and maintenance of new cells, especially in pregnant women and it also prevents neutral tube disorders in fetuses. Cantaloupe also prevents water retention by regularly flushing out the extra sodium from the body.

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13. Medicinal Property Of Cantaloupe Seeds

Eating crushed cantaloupe seeds can help to expel intestinal worms. They are also effective in treating cough, fever, and indigestion (13).

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14. Cures Toothache

Cantaloupe rind is useful in treating toothache. Take about 6 grams of cantaloupe skin, add water and simmer till cooked. On cooling, strain and use it as a mouth rinse (14).

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15. Medicinal Value Of Cantaloupe Tea

Cantaloupe root is used to make cantaloupe tea which is an effective diuretic and helps induce vomiting (15).

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16. Treats Arthritis

Adding a proper dose of cantaloupe to your diet can help you kill the pain and discomfort associated with arthritis.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe carries anti-inflammatory properties that can prevent oxidative stress in your joints and bones, thus reducing inflammation (16).

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17. Promotes Digestion

Cantaloupes are perfect for your stomach giving it cool and calming effect. It regulates bowel movements making your digestive system healthy.

Why Does It Work

This miraculous fruit is full of essential dietary fiber that helps in regulating proper bowel movements. It also ensures a good and smooth flow of food in your digestive tract, thus reducing the risk of colorectal cancer (17).

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Skin Benefits Of Cantaloupe

Skin-Benefits-Of-Cantaloupe

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All varieties of melons are great for the skin, and cantaloupe melon being the most nutritious among them, is no exception. It offers the following benefits for your skin.

18. Hydrates And Rejuvenates Skin

Just like our body, the watery fruit is gold for our skin too. It keeps our skin hydrated and happy.

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe contains Vitamins K and E which play a major role in keeping your skin healthy and radiant. The high water content hydrates your skin from within. Cantaloupe is also a good source of B vitamins, choline, and betaine which keep your skin replenished and rejuvenated. Topical application of cantaloupe juice helps in softening and hydrating your skin (18).

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19. Skin Regeneration

Do you want to look young and fresh all the time? Cantaloupe can make that happen.

Why Does It Work

The high content of Vitamins A and C in cantaloupe fruit makes it beneficial for your skin. Vitamin A encourages skin regeneration while Vitamin C is involved in the formation of collagen, the connective tissue that imparts a youthful glow to your skin (19).

How To Use

You can prepare a face pack by processing some cantaloupe in a blender and adding powdered oatmeal and yogurt to the pulp to make a thick and smooth paste. Apply this pack all over your face and neck. Remove the paste by massaging it in gentle circular movements. Wash off with warm water. This should be applied thrice a week for best results.

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20. Anti-Aging Benefits

Cantaloupe can take you back to your teens again! Try cantaloupe salad and get back your youthful looking skin!

Why Does It Work

Cantaloupe has abundant folic acid which facilitates regeneration of cells, thus making your skin healthy. This is particularly beneficial for pregnant women. Vitamin C, on the other hand, prevents damage by free radicals. In this way, cantaloupe keeps wrinkles at bay, maintains skin elasticity and facilitates collagen synthesis, thus providing anti-aging benefits (20).

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21. Treatment Of Eczema And Other Skin Problems

The cantaloupe juice is also an effective lotion for treating eczema and removing freckles. It can also be used as a first aid for burns and abrasions (21).

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Hair Benefits Of Cantaloupe

Hair-Benefits-Of-Cantaloupe

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Cantaloupe contains all the vital nutrients and minerals that are required for maintaining healthy hair and scalp. Its benefits for hair are given below.

22. Combats Hair Loss

Tired of losing a handful of hair daily? A diet with cantaloupe can battle the issue.

Why Does It Work

Inositol is a form of Vitamin B which is required to prevent hair loss and promote hair growth. This vitamin is mostly found in citrus fruits except for lemons. Cantaloupe contains sufficient amount of inositol.Regular consumption of this fruit can stimulate hair growth (22).

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23. Perfect Conditioner

Cantaloupe can be a perfect hair conditioner during the summer months (23). All you need to do is mash a cup cantaloupe with a fork and massage your hair with this pulp after shampooing. Wash off after 10 minutes.

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A Word Of Caution

You will be surprised to know that researching for this particular section was a sheer waste of time because cantaloupe carries not a single side-effect. Amazing isn’t it! They are rarely known to cause any allergy.

Recipes Using Cantaloupes

Hey, we are not going to conclude this article without mentioning some yummy recipes using cantaloupes. So here we are with two awesome recipes.

1. Cantaloupe Ice Pops

1.-Cantaloupe-Ice-Pops

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Let’s begin this list with our favorite ice pops that are just best for the blazing summers.

What You Need
  • Diced cantaloupes (3 cups)
  • 1 Lime
How To Make

Blend all the ingredients for thirty seconds. Just make sure the mix is all smooth and pureed. Pour it into popsicle molds and freeze for 12 hours and enjoy the chilled and yummy popsicles.

2. Cantaloupe Smoothie

2.-Cantaloupe-Smoothie

Image: Shutterstock

Now, let’s enjoy the smoothie recipe.

What You Need
  • one cup cantaloupe (diced)
  • one cup yogurt
  • 20 ice cubes
  • Sugar to taste
  • half a teaspoon fresh ginger (grated)
How To Make

Add all the ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth. Serve in an attractive glass and enjoy the chilled drink in hot summer!

Nutritional Value Of Cantaloupe

The various cantaloupe benefits for health can be attributed to its rich nutritional value comprising Vitamins A, B, C and minerals like magnesium, sodium, and potassium. Moreover, it has zero cholesterol and high-level Vitamin B complex such as B1 (thiamine), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid) and B6 (pyridoxine).

Cantaloupe (Cucumis melo), Fresh, Nutritive Value per 100 g
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
PrincipleNutrient ValuePercentage of RDA
Energy34 Kcal1.5%
Carbohydrates8.6 g6.5%
Protein0.84 g1.5%
Total Fat0.19 g<1%
Cholesterol0 mg0%
Dietary Fiber0.9 g2.25%
Vitamins
Folates21 µg5%
Niacin0.734 mg4.5%
Pantothenic acid0.105 mg2%
Pyridoxine0.072 mg5.5%
Riboflavin0.026 mg2%
Thiamin0.017 mg1%
Vitamin A3382 IU112%
Vitamin C36.7 mg61%
Vitamin E0.05 mg0.5%
Vitamin K2.5 mcg2%
Electrolytes
Sodium1 mg0%
Potassium267 mg6%
Minerals
Calcium9 mg1%
Copper41 µg4.5%
Iron0.21 mg2.5%
Magnesium12 mg3%
Manganese0.041 mg2%
Zinc0.18 mg1.5%
Phyto-nutrients
Carotene-alpha2020 µg
Crypto-xanthin-beta1 µg
Lutein-zeaxanthin26 µg

 [ Read: Is Honey Good for Diabetics ]

  • Vitamin A: Beta-carotene, an orange pigment is a primary source of Vitamin A in cantaloupe. A cup of balled cantaloupe provides 5986 international units (IU) of this vitamin which is more than the recommended daily intake for adult men and women.
  • Vitamin C: Fresh cantaloupe is a rich source of Vitamin C or ascorbic acid. This essential water-soluble vitamin plays an important role in the growth and repair of tissues within the body and is also an antioxidant that blocks the action of free radicals. A cup of balled cantaloupe provides 65 mg of Vitamin C which is equivalent to 87% and 72% of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) for men and women respectively.
  • Potassium: Cantaloupe has a high content of potassium which is an electrolyte, a mineral that conducts electricity within the body together with other minerals like sodium, calcium, and magnesium. Thus, it is an essential mineral needed for almost all the processes within the human body. A cup of balled cantaloupe fruit provides 463 mg of potassium which is about 10% of the daily requirement.
  • Carotenoids: Carotenoids are yellow, orange and reddish pigments synthesized by plants. These pigments impart yellow or orange color to cantaloupes. They reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and certain cancers. Two carotenoids, lutein, and zeaxanthin, are vital for proper functioning and vision of the eyes.
  • Folate: Cantaloupe is a good source of folate, an important water-soluble B vitamin micronutrient, required for the healthy growth and maintenance of cells within the body and helps prevent anemia.
  • Myoiositol: Cantaloupe contains a lipid called myoinositol which prevents anxiety, insomnia, and hardening of the arteries.

Thus, cantaloupe can be a tasty treat whether eaten alone or added to summer fruit salads. Besides being delicious, it provides various health and beauty benefits.

Do you like cantaloupe? What recipes do you recommend with this amazing fruit? Comment below. We love to hear from you all.

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The one with a constant energy that can leave you awed, Tanya can jump around and talk for the whole day. If not found writing away the desired articles, she can easily be spotted glued to the youtube, eyes wide, spazzing over the perfection of her favorite singer. Functioning without music (Bollywood, Hollywood, Spanish, German, Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Thai and what not- Because music is music), and a big cup of tea is an impossibility for her. Ever heard of a totally weird soul that could go frenzy over the smell of a book, especially if it's a Dan Brown or Lee Child? Yep! That would be her.