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Melon (Latin Cucumis melo.) – Melons, plant family Cucurbitaceae. A close relative of the cucumber; botanically considered a false berry. Homeland melon – Asia, some varieties can be found in the European part of Russia, mainly in the southern regions, since this plant is thermophilic and photophilous.
The main value of the melons – its fruits – melon. Big, tasty and fragrant fruit, have, in addition to outstanding taste and nutritional qualities, certain medicinal properties.
The composition and useful properties of melon
The chemical composition of the melon is rich in various valuable substances. The organic fruit pulp contains digestible sugar, a protein, starch, pectin, food fibers, organic acids, fiber, vitamins and minerals. Melon is rich in potassium salt, which makes it very useful for the heart, as well as in diseases of the kidneys and urinary tract. A lot of iron, is useful in anemia, decreased hemoglobin, fatigue and general weakness.
In the pulp of melon contains a silicon salt, which positively affects the hard tissues. Silicon is essential for the normal nail, hair, bone systems of the body, has a positive effect on the cerebral cortex and nervous system. melon The benefit is that it is very rich in vitamin C – more than in other melon plants. The abundance of fiber and dietary fiber has a beneficial effect on the state of the gastrointestinal tract, lowers bad cholesterol, improves intestinal microflora.
In melon contains vitamins: PP (niacin equivalent), folic acid, vitamin B, and 13% natural sugars. Presence of substances that promote the production of serotonin, the so-called “happiness hormone”, as well as beneficial enzymes, flavonoids and biologically active substances. However, due to the abundance of sugars, it should not be carried away by people suffering from obesity and diabetes. Although calorie melon is only 38 kcal.
The use in cooking
Melon is usually eaten fresh as a dessert, but sometimes add in salads. However, nutritionists recommend to use it in its pure form, without mixing with any other products – then all is normal digestible nutrients.
From melons are manufactured preserves and jams, make nectars and fruit drinks, candy and dried slices and candied fruit. With exquisite flavor is used for flavoring tea, tobacco, spirits, liqueurs, and is also used in the cosmetics and perfumery industry. The famous Italian carpaccio served with Parma ham with melon.