½ large watermelon, chopped, rinds removed
1 jicama, peeled and chopped
1 cup mint, cut into thin ribbons
1 tsp olive oil (optional)
Combine watermelon and jicama cubes in a large bowl. Sprinkle mint on top. Squeeze lime juice over top. Toss; serve immediately or refrigerate.
Why Should You Eat This?
Watermelon contains more lycopene than tomatoes – and it’s just as bioavailable. In a study from the Phytonutrients Laboratory, researchers measured plasma concentrations of lycopene from a watermelon juice diet and from a tomato juice diet. Even though the tomato juice had been treated with heat (thus making its lycopene more bioavailable), plasma concentrations of lycopene were similar. Lycopene is especially important in the summer: as an antioxidant, it neutralizes the harmful, DNA-damanging and aging effects of UV light. To boost the lycopene bioavailability, add a teaspoon of olive oil.
Jicama, also know as Mexican turnip or yambean, is rich in satiating fiber (one whole jicama has 32 grams of fiber), potassium, and vitamin C. Mint also packs a powerful nutritional punch: it’s rich in vatmin A, C, B12, folic acid, potassium, iron, calcium, and zinc. Mint also acts similarly to carinogen-fighting rosemary; in a study published in Food Chemistry, researchers found that its antioxidants reduced carcinogenic activity in radiation-processed meat. In addition to this salad, sprinkle it on chicken, lamb, and steaks for a flavor and nutrition boost.