For this study, researchers gave participants one of three drinks: natural watermelon juice, watermelon juice enriched with L-citrulline, or a placebo beverage. Both the natural watermelon juice and the enriched version helped reduce post-workout muscle soreness, however it was the natural watermelon juice that was best absorbed and used by the body, say researchers.
To give your own muscles a little TLC, nosh on about two cups of watermelon or drink around 500 mL (roughly 17 ounces) of watermelon juice an hour before exercise. “That was enough to reduce the recovery heart rate and muscle soreness after 24 hours in athletes,” says lead study author Encarna Aguayo, PhD.
Bored with biting into slices of this hydrating fruit? Here are 16 New Ways to Eat Watermelon.