June 23

Is seedless watermelon too high on the glycemic index?

Filed under Raw Food & Health by Frederic Patenaude

And I personally LOVE to eat watermelon at any time of the day, but particularly in the morning or after or during a workout. Watermelon juice is by far my favorite juice of all!

Of course, pretty much all the watermelon you find everywhere is SEEDLESS.

Watermelon is also “pretty high” on the glycemic index compared to other fruits (at 72 compared with pure table sugar at 58).

For those reasons, a lot of people are avoiding watermelon and instead consume low-sugar fruits such as little green, acidic/tart apples or grapefruits.

And that my friend, is a big mistake.

You’re missing out on one of the best fruits on the planet just because you’re getting caught in numbers or the unverified hype of some “expert”.

First, let’s talk about the seedless issue.

The reason why seedless watermelon is popular is because people don’t really like to eat watermelon seeds or spit them out, and also because seedless watermelons have a longer shelf life.

They last longer because they’re more dense and have no seeds inside to break down the flesh.

The process for growing seedless watermelon might sound a little complicated, but it’s actually not anything GMO-related. It’s just a matter of crossing two plants together with the right set of chromosomes.

It’s been discovered over 40 years ago that if you cross breed a watermelon with four sets of chromosomes with one that has only two, you end up with a watermelon with three sets of chromosomes.

Follow so far?

The result is something that’s called a triploid seed (“tri” stands for three) and when grown the watermelon won’t reproduce itself and thus has no viable seeds.

They’re not always completely seedless by the way, and you may have noticed they often contain little edible white seeds.

You might not know that in order to produce seedless watermelons, seeded watermelons are planted *just for their seeds*, and in a big field of seedless watermelon you’ll find about 25% regular seeded watermelons that are used for their pollen so that bees can cross pollinate the other melons.

It’s actually not that much more complicated than the other cross-breeding techniques and grafting techniques that have been used in agriculture for thousands of years.

People who call seedless watermelon “unnatural” are eating a ton of foods that are cross-bred also without even knowing it, yet turning their nose up to seedless watermelon.
If you want to go full-on “natural”, the only way to go is to eat only truly wild foods and I don’t see a lot of benefits for doing that. If you are foraging all of your own food and taking only what was not planted by humans, you’re going to be doing a lot of work just to get enough to eat.

*What About the Glycemic Index?*

People like to get caught up in numbers for no reason, and avoid perfectly healthy foods like seedless watermelon just because someone created a neat little chart they could follow with foods to eat and foods to avoid.

But based on what?

The glycemic index measures the rise in blood sugar after eating specific foods. I’ve already debunked the myth that the glycemic index is terribly important in my new book “The Raw Vegan Coach” (which is no longer available on its own but is now included as part of the Raw Health Starter Kit: http://www.fredericpatenaude.com/starterkit.html)

The truth is, a higher glycemic index is sometimes a good thing.

Sometimes you DO want to eat something that will bring your blood sugar back up.

That’s why I find watermelon to be the perfect post-workout food, as well as a “lift-me up” kind of fruit when your energy is low.

Also, you have to take into account your entire state of health and the ability for your body to handle sugar and carbohydrates.

On a low-fat diet, with enough exercise, you will improve your insulin sensitivity and therefore you should be able to eat all kinds of fruit without problems.

But if you keep eating oil and fat every day, then any carbohydrate you eat will send you into an unnecessary blood sugar swing.

Watermelon is very high in water content and electrolytes, it is a food that is assimilated very quickly and helps rehydrate your body. Which means it’s perfectly healthy to eat a large bowl of watermelon for breakfast. You’ll feel instantly refreshed and rehydrated without the need to drink copious amounts of water to flush out your system every morning.

Do you have more unanswered questions on the raw food diet?

Last week I released my new book “The Raw Vegan Coach” which answers 144 common questions and controversies.

Unfortunately, the pre-order offer for this book is over and I will no longer be selling the book directly.

However, if you order the Raw Health Starter Kit now (which includes all of my main books and DVDs), I will include the new book The Raw Vegan Coach as part of your order for free!

Plus, you can save $32 if you use the following coupon code, but only if you order now:

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Make sure to order the Starter Kit today and use this coupon code to receive your free book and save $32. Just go to:


Yours for health and success,


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10 Responses to “Is seedless watermelon too high on the glycemic index?”

  1. James says:

    I just rediscovered my love of watermelon and have been using tons in my smoothies each day. You’re right, its delicious, refreshing, and energizing!

    Thanks for the lesson on how watermelons are cross-bred. Good to know.

  2. Anandi says:

    Hi dear Frederic,
    A small thank you for explaining so clearly and simply how do we get seedless watermelons.

    A big thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience on raw foods as i am regularly reading yours and your books.

    Do you recommend eating water melons alone, i mean, not along with other foods?

    And finally i wonder if you had included visiting Auroville, in S. India during your world tour where i will have the pleasure of meeting you. If you come during summer, like now you can eat mangoes, jackfruits, sapotas, amla, pitanga, sauersaup, bullock heart, guavas, tamarind, young palm fruit ,sita fruit etc, of course water melons and our native melon which i did not find it in USA. Hope my invitation is sweet, cool and refreshing!


    Love and thanks,

  3. June says:

    I love your website, and all the information you give us. I love watermelon, and think there are of the best fruits to eat. right now I have 3 seedless plants of watermelon, in my organic garden. I read that you can make a juice using the pulp , and the peel together. I got the idea from someone doing it in a Juicer. The expert swear for it, and looks very healthy and young for his age.

    I decided to give it a try with my wonderful blender in this way:

    1- blending the flesh with little bit of water
    2- empty it in a jar, leaving some juice in the container
    3- cut in small pieces the skin of the watermelon
    4- add to the blender
    5- use more watermelon juice, as need it, and blend
    6- empty the content of the blender in a milk bag, and squeeze all the juice from the skin over the watermelon juice, mix, and enjoy!

    It will turn in a deep red color (almost like blood color) and taste like coconut water)

    I wonder if doing this it will balance the glycemic index. What do you think? I feel so great after having this juice!!

    PS: I put the dry pulp in my compost pile.

  4. Terri says:

    Hi Frederic,

    I absolutely love watermelon as well 🙂 I think it’s important to differentiate between glycemic index and glycemic LOAD (which takes into account the fiber in foods). Glycemic load is a more accurate determination of how quickly blood sugar levels rise. While I’m not particularly one for charts myself, for those of your readers who are they can be assured that watermelon actually has a relatively low glycemic load. In fact, most fresh whole fruits have a low gycemic load, except perhaps ripe bananas and pineapple which are at the low end of the “medium” range. So yes, enjoy your bowl of watermelon – I know I will!

  5. lola says:

    I love watermelon. Now all I can get are tiny personal watermelons which is great because I can carry one home but the giant seeded ones taste amazing.

  6. Steph says:

    Hi Fred. I actually have a question that ties in with blood sugar. Is it possible to heal Type I Diabetes where the Pancreas is no longer producing insulin? I have a friend who thinks I’m incorrect in believing the body can recover from that. Thanks

  7. Natasha j says:

    I really enjoyed the watermelon article, it served as a confirmation as I eat watermelon quite often. I am going to try it after my workouts. Thank you for the wonderful information you provide. Have a beautiful day.

  8. Chris Crookes says:

    Hi Frederic
    I felt it was high time I let you know how much I appreciate the depth of research of your information and then all presented with an honesty, integrity and an apparent lack of any manipulative mercenary self-serving in it. Respect. Thanks bro’. Much appreciated.

  9. Susan says:

    Hi Frederic-
    Thanks so much for explaining about watermelon! I was hesitant to buy the seedless variety, thinking they were GMO’s.
    I LOVE watermelon, especially in the summer. I live in Nevada, and it is HOT here! When we have watermelon for breakfast, we don’t have to drink water for hours, it’s awesome!

  10. Nan Hill says:

    Thanks Frederic! I had some misconceptions about watermelon and I’m so glad you cleared them up because I love them! Terrific in smoothies to avoid using water (which I try to keep away from food by 30-60 min). We live near Toronto so it’s a pretty short season; I’m enjoying them while I can! cheers, nan

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