Cucumbers contain an Amazing Amount of Health Benefits,
along with a few surprise uses!
Cucumbers are said to be the fourth most cultivated food in the world, and are a member of the gourd family.
They were first cultivated in India, and have been grown for over 3000 years.
Botanically speaking, cucumbers are actually pepoes, a type of berry, (just to confuse things)!
what nutrients do cucumbers have?
Cucumbers contain most of the vitamins and minerals
that you need every day for good health!
Just one average sized cucumber contains:
- most of the B vitamins (help with energy and reducing effects of stress),
- folic acid,
- vitamin C,
- calcium and vitamin K (both important for bone health),
- potassium (can help lower blood pressure), and
- The silica in cucumbers helps to strengthen connective tissues to promote joint and hair and nail health, and may help to stimulate the growth of hair.
- Cucumbers are full of important electrolytes and antioxidants.
- They are made up of 95% water, which is hydrating to the body.
- Remember too, that cucumbers are a Whole, Raw Food, the Best thing that you can do for your body!
- Cucumbers contain fiber for digestive health and have a mild detoxing effect, helping to clear toxins and waste from the body.
- Fiber helps to prevent constipation.
- To prevent chronic constipation, eat some cucumbers every day!
- High fiber foods curb the appetite and help you to maintain a healthy weight.
- High Fiber = Improved Digestion = Easier To Lose Weight
- Low in fat, calories, sodium, and cholesterol.
- Only about 16 calories with the peel!
- Mild enough for the pickiest eaters!
cucumber health benefits
- Plant foods like cucumbers help to reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.
- Cucumbers contain a hormone needed to produce insulin, which is beneficial to diabetics.
- They contain three lignans, that have been shown to reduce the risk of several types of cancers and cardiovascular disease.
- Potassium, magnesium and fiber in cucumbers help to regulate blood pressure, whether it is low or high.
- Potassium can help lower risk of stroke.
- Fisetin in cucumbers is anti-inflammatory, which plays a part in brain health and neurological functioning, and is being studied for use with Alzheimer’s disease.
- A compound called sterols in cucumbers have been found to help reduce cholesterol levels.
- Cucumbers contain high levels of nutrients called cucurbitacins, A, B, C, D and E, known to block certain pathways that cancer cells use to survive and proliferate.
more cucumber health benefits!
- Are you stressed out and don't have time for a massage, facial or visit to the spa? Cut up an entire cucumber and place it in a boiling pot of water. The chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber will react with the boiling water and be released in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma. Studies have shown that this has been used to reduce stress in new mothers and college students during final exams.
- Cucumbers are widely used in skin care for protecting against the effects of aging, as well as being effective against wrinkles.
- Cucumbers tone the skin, and women have used them for centuries for eye puffiness and dark circles.
- Used topically, cucumbers help to decrease swelling and inflammation.
- Cucumbers have a cooling effect on sunburns, skin irritations and insect bites.
- Cucumbers have pain-relieving abilities due to anti-inflammatory substances such as flavonoids and tannins.
- Ingredients in cucumbers help to limit the release of free radicals in your body.
- Looking for a fast and easy way to reduce cellulite before going out to the pool? Try rubbing a slice or two of cucumber along your problem area for a few minutes. The phytochemicals in the cucumber cause the collagen in your skin to tighten, firming up the outer layer and reducing the visibility of cellulite. Works great on wrinkles, too!
- Just finished a business lunch and you don't have gum or mints? Find a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds to eliminate bad breath. The phytochemicals will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath!
- The fiber and water in cucumbers also boost saliva production in your mouth to help wash away bacteria and bad odor.
- Feeling tired in the afternoon? Put down the caffeinated soda or coffee and pick up a cucumber!
- Cucumbers are a good source of B vitamins and carbohydrates that can provide that quick pick-me-up that can last for hours, with no sugar crash!
- Want to avoid a hangover or terrible headache? Eat some cucumber slices before going to bed and wake up refreshed and headache free. Cucumbers contain enough B vitamins and electrolytes, not to mention water, to replace essential nutrients the body lost, keeping everything in equilibrium, avoiding both a hangover and headache!
- Looking to fight off that afternoon or evening snacking binge? Cucumbers have been used for centuries by European trappers, traders and explorers for quick meals to thwart off starvation.
- Try using cucumber slices instead of chips for dipping!
- Add slices of cucumbers to cold water for a cool and refreshing drink.
- Chopped cucumbers, tomatoes, feta cheese and olive oil make a quick, easy and healthy Greek/Mediterranean side dish.
Buy organic cucumbers when possible, as the skin unfortunately can contain a lot of pesticides.
Wash well or peel if consuming.
I have an abundance of small pickling cucumbers in my little garden. They are very easy to grow, and I feel better knowing that there is no poison sprayed on them!
Cucumbers in grocery stores are usually waxed to retain their moisture. This would be a good reason to peel them before eating!
odd uses for cucumbers!
- Looking for a 'green' way to clean your faucets, sinks or stainless steel? Take a slice of cucumber and rub it on the surface you want to clean... not only will it remove years of tarnish and bring back the shine, but it won't leave streaks and won't harm your fingers or fingernails while you clean!
- Tired of your bathroom mirror fogging up after a shower? Try rubbing a slice of cucumber over the mirror... it will eliminate the fog and provide a soothing, spa-like fragrance.
- Using a pen and made a mistake? Take the outside of the cucumber and slowly use it to erase the pen writing!
- Also works great on crayons and markers that the kids have used to decorate the walls!
- Have an important meeting or job interview and realize you don't have enough time to polish your shoes? Rub a freshly cut cucumber over the shoe. It's chemicals will provide a quick and durable shine that not only looks great, but will repel water!
- Are grubs and slugs ruining your planting beds? Place a few slices of cucumber in a small pie tin and your garden will be free of pests all season long. The chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give off a scent undetectable to humans, but drive garden pests crazy and make them flee the area. (I am trying this as we speak... so far I think that it is working!).
- Out of WD-40 and need to fix a squeaky hinge? Take a slice of cucumber and rub it along the problematic hinge, and voila, the squeak is gone!
I hope you enjoyed the cucumber tips, and
feel free to send in any of your own helpful cucumber ideas
and we will add them here!
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