Very few meals are as cool as a cucumber. What different meals are you able to eat recent or pickled and that additionally gives a refreshing cowl in your eyes on the spa?

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But the perfect half about cucumbers? They supply large well being advantages. “Cucumbers can help with disease prevention, weight management and digestion,” says registered dietitian Amber Sommer, RD, LD. “And because they are readily available and easy to eat, everyone can reap the benefits.”

Are cucumbers good for you?

Yes, cucumbers are an important a part of a nutritious diet! Cucumbers belong to the gourd or Cucurbitaceae household, together with pumpkins, squash and melons. This low-calorie fruit (sure, a fruit — it has seeds and grows from a flowering plant!) is chock-full of water and different vitamins, together with fiber, nutritional vitamins A, Ok and C, potassium and calcium. One serving equals about 100 grams, or one-third of a medium-size cucumber.

A serving of uncooked cucumber, eaten with the peel, has:

  • 15 energy.
  • 0.1 grams of fats.
  • 3.6 grams of carbohydrates.
  • 0.5 grams of dietary fiber.
  • 1.7 grams of sugar.
  • 0.7 grams of protein.

Cucumbers supply important vitamins, too. One serving of cucumber delivers:

  • 16.4 micrograms of vitamin Ok (14% day by day worth).
  • 147 milligrams of potassium (3% day by day worth).
  • 2.8 milligrams of vitamin C (3% day by day worth).
  • 16 milligrams of calcium (1% day by day worth).

Health advantages of cucumbers

Whether you want your cucumbers uncooked or pickled, consuming them will profit your well being. They’re wealthy in antioxidants that may defend your cells and cut back the chance of power illness. Here are six methods consuming cucumbers improves your well being:

1. Increases hydration

Drinking water every single day is essential in your well being. It helps with:

  • Digestion.
  • Joint ache.
  • Kidney operate.
  • Memory and cognition.
  • Regulating physique temperature.

But you probably have a tough time consuming the water your physique wants (even with a kind of motivating water bottles), cucumbers supply a crunchier possibility. They comprise greater than 96% water. “Supplement the water you drink by adding cucumbers to a salad, wrap or snack,” suggests Sommer. “They offer an easy and refreshing way to boost hydration.”

2. Strengthens bones

Cucumbers are excessive in vitamin Ok — an enormous bonus for bone well being. Getting sufficient dietary vitamin Ok reduces your danger of bone fractures and promotes wholesome bone mass. If your bone mineral density is low, it raises your danger for osteoporosis.

The mixture of vitamin Ok and calcium in cucumbers gives added bone advantages. Vitamin Ok helps your physique soak up calcium, an important nutrient for constructing and sustaining sturdy bones.

3. Promotes intestine well being

The water in cucumbers naturally aids digestion — it helps your physique break down meals and soak up vitamins. The fiber in cucumbers additionally retains issues working easily by regulating bowel actions so you may keep away from constipation.  

Pickling cucumbers can increase the advantages to your intestine even additional. “Some pickles have probiotic properties,” Sommer says. “When fermented, they contain good bacteria that stop unhealthy bacteria from growing in your gut.” So whereas a pickle-heavy food regimen isn’t nice in your sodium ranges, a pickle at times can do good issues in your intestine.

4. Helps handle blood sugar and weight

You get a whole lot of bang in your buck whenever you snack on cucumbers, particularly you probably have obesity — the main danger issue for Type 2 diabetes. They’re low in energy, carbohydrates and sugar. Plus, the water and fiber in cucumbers can hold you feeling full longer.

Cucumbers additionally supply advantages for folks already residing with diabetes, notes Sommer. They rating low on the glycemic index (GI) — a ranking system that measures how rapidly a meals impacts your blood sugar.

“A low GI score means cucumbers have less of an effect on blood sugars than other high GI foods, making them a healthy option to include in your diet,” she continues. Research additionally exhibits that the antioxidants in cucumbers may assist gradual the development of diabetes and cut back issues related to the illness.

5. Protects in opposition to most cancers

Cucumbers comprise excessive quantities of Cucurbitacin B (CuB) — a naturally occurring plant compound gaining consideration for its impact on most cancers cells. A current review of research confirms that CuB is perhaps helpful in preventing liver, breast, lung and prostate most cancers. It exhibits that CuB could assist cease most cancers development and presumably destroy most cancers cells.

And put down that peeler! Cucumber peels additionally help in most cancers prevention. They are an excellent supply of fiber, which helps cut back constipation and protects in opposition to colon most cancers.

6. Improves coronary heart well being

High quantities of sodium result in hypertension. Potassium helps decrease blood strain by lessening the results of sodium. Combining the excessive potassium and low sodium present in cucumbers is a win-win in your blood strain.

Lowering blood strain isn’t the one manner cucumbers have an effect on your coronary heart. The CuB in cucumbers protects your coronary heart by preventing atherosclerosis — fatty buildup in your artery partitions. And fiber helps cut back ldl cholesterol. Research has even proven fiber can lower your risk of heart disease.

How to eat extra cucumbers

The great thing about the cucumber is its versatility. The delicate taste makes it simple so as to add to a wide range of dishes. Plus, they’re inexpensive and straightforward to seek out year-round. To add extra cucumbers into your food regimen, you may:

  • Slice them: Cucumbers are an important addition to salads, sandwiches and wraps — they usually present somewhat crunch.
  • Blend them: Adding cucumbers to your smoothie gives all of the well being advantages of cucumber with out overpowering your smoothie.
  • Dip them: The crunch of cucumbers resembles a potato chip. Dunk it in salad dressing, hummus or your favourite dip.
  • Drink them: Make cuke juice by mixing peeled cucumbers with water and straining it.
  • Eat them uncooked: Wash your cucumber and dive in. Keep the peel on to get all the advantages.
  • Top them: Treat a cucumber slice like a cracker. Top it with veggies or cream cheese.

Cucumbers can last as long as per week when saved correctly — washed, dried and saved within the warmest a part of your fridge (close to the entrance or on the door). If slicing your cukes makes you extra more likely to snack on them, place minimize cucumbers within the fridge in a lidded container stuffed with water. Get able to rediscover the common-or-garden cucumber and the various advantages it gives.

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