In my childhood, growing up in the American Pacific Northwest, watermelon was a summertime treat; something enjoyed during weekend barbecues when one or more of my mother's numerous brothers and sisters would come to town with their own sometimes large families. A large melon would be the simple dessert to a picnic styled meal.

Watermelons fresh - and dirty - from the farm.

In Thailand, watermelon can be grown all year round. It's one of several fruits you can count on seeing on every fruit platter, along with pineapple, rose apples and guavas. Watermelon is one of the most cooling of all Thai fruits. Nothing quite takes the edge off a spicy meal like a bit of melon. Thais grow the same varieties you will find in most other parts of the world, including melons with yellow flesh as well as the common red type. You'll find large piles of watermelons on sale in the Muang Mai wholesale market, which lies along the river front just north of the old municipal offices of Chiang Mai. A medium sized whole watermelon may cost as little as 25 U.S. cents. Most of the customers who purchase here are the owners of smaller stalls and restaurants, who will cut up the fruits to serve to their customers. At the fruit carts which ply the street, customers will usually order just a quarter of a melon, which will be sliced into bite sized chunks.

Watermelon is known to flush out accumulation of uric acid in the system, which helps prevent arthritis, gout or uremic poisoning. Also, eruptions on the surface of the skin usually indicate an acidic condition in the blood. This comes from eating too much meat, fried food, sweets and white flour products as well as drinking a lot of soda, etc. Watermelon juice flushes a lot of the acid from the system and renews the blood. When this happens the skin will start looking and feeling better.

Exactly where watermelons were first cultivated is not known for sure. However, it is known that they were grown in ancient Egypt as much as 5,000 years ago. The melons can be seen in paintings and seeds have been found in tombs. It has also been suggested that the Egyptians pickled watermelons as well, although I'm not sure why.

Weight Information
1 cup, balls 154.0 g
1 cup, diced 152.0 g
1 melon (15" long x 7-1/2" dia) 4518.0 g
1 wedge (approx 1/16 of melon) 286.0 g
1 watermelon balls 122.0 g
1 NLEA serving 280.0 g
Nutritional Information for 1 cup, balls
Energy 46.2
Protein 0.9394 20.000 5%
Total lipid (fat) 0.231 65.000 0%
Carbohydrate, by difference 11.627 300.000 4%
Fiber, total dietary 0.616 25.000 2%
Calcium, Ca 10.78 1000.000 1%
Iron, Fe 0.3696 18.000 2%
Magnesium, Mg 15.4 400.000 4%
Phosphorus, P 16.94 1000.000 2%
Potassium, K 172.48 3500.000 5%
Sodium, Na 1.54 2400.000 0%
Zinc, Zn 0.154 15.000 1%
Copper, Cu 0.06468 2.000 3%
Manganese, Mn 0.05852 2.000 3%
Selenium, Se 0.616 70.000 1%
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid 12.474 60.000 21%
Thiamin 0.05082 1.500 3%
Riboflavin 0.03234 1.700 2%
Niacin 0.27412 20.000 1%
Pantothenic acid 0.34034 10.000 3%
Vitamin B-6 0.0693 2.000 3%
Folate, total 4.62 400.000 1%
Folate, food 4.62 400.000 1%
Carotene, beta 466.62
Vitamin A, IU 876.26 5000.000 18%
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) 0.077
Vitamin K (phylloquinone) 0.154 80.000 0%
Fatty acids, total saturated 0.02464 20.000 0%
Fatty acids, total monounsaturated 0.05698
Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated 0.077