Winter Springs, Florida-based National Watermelon Promotion Board has partnered with Nutrition Impact on a research project to “determine intake of watermelon and assess association with diet quality, energy and nutrient intake and physiological parameters in children and adults.”
A National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey Analysis, the study found that total diet quality was higher in watermelon consumers as compared to non-consumers.
Also according to the study, children and adult watermelon consumers had greater than 5 percent higher intake of dietary fiber, magnesium, potassium and vitamin A, as well as more than 5 percent lower intake of added sugars and total saturated fatty acids, as well as higher intake of lycopene and other carotenoids.
This study suggests watermelon can increase nutrient intake, as well as diet quality in both children and adult Americans. Further details hope to be presented later this year at a nutrition research conference.
“Researching the nutritional benefits of watermelon is essential for the watermelon industry and consumers alike,” said Megan McKenna, senior director of marketing and foodservice.
“By understanding the nutritional value of watermelon, we can ensure we are supporting the industry by effectively communicating those benefits, while also helping consumers make informed decisions about their health and nutrition.”
The National Watermelon Promotion Board was established in 1989 as an agricultural promotion group to promote watermelon in the U.S. and in various markets abroad. Funded through a self-mandated industry assessment paid by more than 800 watermelon producers, handlers and importers, NWPB’s mission is to increase consumer demand for watermelon through promotion, research and education programs.
Watermelon consumption per capita in the U.S. was about 16 pounds in 2021. Consumption for the fruit was about 5.6 billion pounds in 2021. The U.S. exported an additional 375 million pounds of watermelon.
For additional information, visit watermelon.org.