Honeydew melon, or honeymelon, is a fruit that belongs to the melon species cucumis melo (muskmelon).
The sweet flesh of honeydew is typically light green, while its skin has a white-yellow tone. Its size and shape are similar to that of its relative, the cantaloupe.
Honeydew melon is available worldwide and can be eaten by itself or used in desserts, salads, snacks and soups.
Though its greatest appeal may be its flavor, honeydew is also nutritious and may provide several benefits.
Here are 10 surprising benefits of honeydew melon.
The diverse nutrient profile of honeydew is arguably its most valuable asset.
In fact, the various nutrients and plant compounds may be responsible for its many potential health benefits.
A 1-cup (177-gram) serving of honeydew melon provides (1):
- Calories: 64
- Carbs: 16 grams
- Fiber: 1.4 grams
- Protein: 1 gram
- Fat: 0 grams
- Vitamin C: 53% of the reference daily intake (RDI)
- Vitamin B6: 8% of the RDI
- Folate: 8% of the RDI
- Vitamin K: 6% of the RDI
- Potassium: 12% of the RDI
- Magnesium: 4% of the RDI
In addition, the honeydew fruit and seeds also contain compounds with strong antioxidant capacity, including beta-carotene (pro-vitamin A), phytoene, quercetin and caffeic acid ().
Summary Honeydew melon contains a wide variety of nutrients and plant compounds that may be responsible for its many potential health benefits.
In general, a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of high blood pressure and heart disease ().
More specifically, it's well established that a low-sodium diet and an adequate potassium intake can positively influence your blood pressure regulation ().
As honeydew melon is a low-sodium and potassium-rich fruit, it may help you maintain healthy blood pressure levels.
Summary Honeydew melon may help reduce blood pressure due to its high potassium and low sodium content.
Honeydew melon contains several nutrients that are vital for repairing and maintaining strong bones, including folate, vitamin K and magnesium.
In particular, the melon is a good source of folate — with 1 cup (177 grams) providing 8% of the RDI (1).
Folate is essential for the breakdown of homocysteine — elevated levels of which have been linked to reduced bone mineral density over time ().
Though more research is needed to draw definitive conclusions on the relationship between folate and bone health, eating foods that contain folate, such as honeydew, may promote healthy bones by ensuring homocysteine levels stay within the normal range ().
Vitamin K is involved in the production of a major structural protein in bone known as osteocalcin. Therefore, adequate vitamin K intake is essential for healthy bones. A serving of honeydew provides 6% of the RDI of this vitamin (1, , ).
In addition, you can meet about 4% of your daily magnesium needs with one serving of honeydew.
The cells responsible for building and breaking down bone tissue require magnesium to function properly. Thus, magnesium is another nutrient vital for bone health (1, ).
Honeydew also contains small amounts of other bone-supporting nutrients, including calcium, phosphorus and zinc (1).
While these nutrients are not highly concentrated in honeydew, adding the fruit to your diet can still support your bone health when paired with a balanced diet that includes a variety of other nutrient-dense foods.
Summary Honeydew contains multiple nutrients that are vital for bone health, including folate, vitamin K and magnesium.
Some research indicates that eating fruits, such as honeydew melon, regularly may promote healthy blood sugar levels.
A recent seven-year study in half a million people found that those who consumed fresh fruit daily were 12% less likely to develop diabetes, compared to those who rarely ate fruit ().
In those participants who already had diabetes at the beginning of the study, eating fruit at least three times per week led to a 13–28% lower risk of experiencing diabetes-related health complications in addition to a 17% lower risk of premature death ().
Though honeydew melon contains carbs that can raise your blood sugar temporarily, it also provides fiber and other nutrients that may help improve blood sugar control over time.
Summary Regularly eating fruit, such as honeydew melon, is associated with a lower risk of diabetes and related health complications. This is likely due to the fiber and other health-promoting nutrients found in fruit.
Honeydew melon is about 90% water and contains electrolytes, such as potassium, magnesium, sodium and calcium (1).
This combination of water and nutrients makes honeydew great for hydrating after a workout, during illness or if you’re just trying to stay hydrated throughout your day.
Summary Honeydew melon is made up of mostly water but also contains electrolytes that may hydrate you more effectively than just water alone.
Eating honeydew melon may support healthy skin due to its high vitamin C content.
Adequate vitamin C intake is imperative for the proper production of collagen, a major structural protein that’s vital for repairing and maintaining your skin tissue ().
Additionally, because vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, some research indicates that it may protect your skin against sun damage ().
Honeydew melon is an excellent source of vitamin C — a single cup (177 grams) provides 53% of the RDI (1).
Though you can obtain vitamin C from a variety of foods, eating honeydew is an easy way to quickly meet your daily needs — promoting healthy skin in the process.
Summary Honeydew melon is rich in vitamin C, a nutrient that promotes the production of collagen and may protect your skin from sun damage.
Vitamin C is arguably best known for its role in supporting immune function, and honeydew melon is loaded with it.
The human immune system is complex and requires a wide array of nutrients to function properly — vitamin C is a critical component ().
In fact, research suggests that adequate intake of dietary vitamin C may both prevent and treat various respiratory and systemic infections, such as pneumonia and the common cold ().
A 1-cup (177-gram) serving of honeydew provides over half of the RDI for vitamin C, making it a great food to add to your diet as you prepare for this year’s cold season (1, ).
Summary Honeydew melon contains high levels of vitamin C, a nutrient that supports proper immune function.
Honeydew melon contains fiber, a nutrient that is well known for improving digestive health ().
Adequate intake of dietary fiber slows blood sugar response and promotes bowel regularity and the growth of healthy gut bacteria (, ).
A single cup (177 gram) provides about 1.5 grams or roughly 5% of the RDI for fiber. Though many other fruits contain more fiber per serving, honeydew can still contribute to your daily fiber intake (1).
In fact, for some people with certain digestive disorders or those who are newly introducing or reintroducing fiber into their diet, a lower-fiber fruit like honeydew may be better tolerated than other high-fiber foods.
Summary Honeydew melon contains fiber, a nutrient known to support healthy digestion. Due to its moderate fiber content, it may be better tolerated than high-fiber foods by people with certain digestive disorders or those introducing fiber into their diet.
Honeydew melon contains two potent antioxidants: lutein and zeaxanthin ().
These carotenoid compounds are well known for supporting eye health and preventing the development of age-related vision loss ().
Research indicates that regularly eating foods that contain these antioxidants, such as honeydew melon, may support proper eye function throughout your life (, ).
Summary Honeydew melon contains lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants that are known to support healthy eyes and vision.
Adding honeydew melon to your diet couldn’t be easier.
It’s widely available, and its price is comparable to that of other popular melons like cantaloupe or watermelon.
To make this dietary endeavor worth your while, choose a ripe melon. Out-of-season or unripe honeydew melons are flavorless and leave much to be desired.
A great selling point for fruit is that it can easily be enjoyed by itself — a slice of cool, ripe melon on a warm day is hard to beat.
However, if you’re looking for something a little more creative, there are many other ways you can enjoy this fruit.
Honeydew melon can be added to a wide variety of dishes, including:
- Salads: Slice some honeydew into bite-sized pieces and add it to your favorite salad.
- Desserts: Puree the melon and use it as a base for popsicles or ice cream.
- Breakfast: Serve sliced melon alongside cottage cheese or blend it into a smoothie.
- Soups: Serve honeydew as the base of a chilled soup with peppers, mint and cucumber.
- Appetizers: Wrap slices of melon with cured meats or add it to a spicy salsa.
Summary Honeydew can be enjoyed by itself or added to many different dishes, including salad, salsa, soup or dessert. The key is choosing a ripe melon while it's in season.
Honeydew melon is a sweet fruit that can be found around the world. Its flesh is light green, while its rind is typically white or yellow.
Honeydew is full of vitamins, minerals and other health-promoting plant compounds. Eating this type of melon could have several health benefits, mainly due to its rich nutrient content.
Honeydew melon can be eaten by itself or as part of other dishes like soups, salads, smoothies and more. For the tastiest experience, choose an in-season and ripe melon.