GERD

Is watermelon acidic or alkaline? Is it good for acid reflux?

People always inquire about the pH value of watermelon in order to find out whether it is acidic or alkaline. And of course, whether its consumption is beneficial to those with acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease.

Watermelons, said to have originated from southern Africa, are now a favorite fruit of many people around the world. They grow well in tropical and subtropical areas of the world, and are cherished for their sweet taste.

Watermelons are not a nutrient power house, but they boost of many non-nutritive components that are beneficial to the body. They are full of water, which represents about 91% of their total content. They also contain sugars in reasonable amounts at about 6% of their content, and very small amounts of fat.

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Are watermelons acidic or alkaline?

Watermelons are just slightly acidic, as they have a pH of 5.18-5.60 (1). However, there are a lot of variations that exist when it comes to predicting the exact pH of watermelons. Factors like growing conditions, processing methods, and varieties affect the pH of most fruits. So, it shouldn’t be surprising if you find other values elsewhere. Besides, there are a lot of other online publications that put the pH of watermelons at values between 8.0 and 9.0.

If you are not aware of how the pH scale works: it is based on values from 0-14, with values from 0-6.9 indicating acidity, and those from 7.1-14 indicating alkalinity. The intermediate value of 7.0 indicates a neutral position on the scale.

Image by VectorStock

If you take a look at the image above, you can see that acidity increases when you move towards the left hand side of the scale, and alkalinity increases when you go towards the right. So, a substance having a pH value of 2 is more acidic than one with a pH value of 4.

Watermelons and Acid reflux

Forget about some of the pH values that show watermelons are acidic, as a lot of nutritionist have classified these fruits among the most alkaline foods out there. Theoretically, these fruits are just slightly acidic, and have very low tendencies to cause acid reflux.

Many people even believe that watermelons can be used to cure high acidity. According to LeafTv, you can do that by eating 4-6 chunks of ripe watermelon throughout the day (2). Yes! Only ripe ones, as unripe watermelons will not reduce your acidity. Instead, they may increase it.

While watermelons can be used to reduce acidity and fight acid reflux, a few people normally experience discomfort after eating watermelons. This is because watermelons are rich in FODMAPs; which are short-chained carbohydrates that are poorly absorbed in the small intestine. These FODMAPs include fructose and polyols (3).

About the author

Abbati

Abbati studied Biological sciences at Ahmadu Bello Univeristy, Zaria. He loves learning about the medicinal properties of foods, and the need to explore them!

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