There is nothing more refreshing than munching on fresh cucumbers on a hot, summer day. This is not surprising though, given that cucumber is made of up to 96% water.
However, cucumbers are also known for their nutritional profile and wide range of health benefits as well. They are relatively low in calories, packed with electrolytes, and high in many nutrients.
They are very easy to grow and are widely cultivated all around the world. They come in various shapes, colors, and sizes, but most of them are green with a rich flesh and tiny, edible seeds.
If you don’t harvest them on time, they will increase in size and the skin will turn yellow and harder. The seeds will turn yellow as well, and shouldn’t be consumed. The good news is that fresh cucumbers are available all year round!
Here are some of the reasons why you should consume cucumbers on a daily basis:
1. Mineral Content
Cucumbers are packed with minerals, such as magnesium, silicon, and potassium, all of which are needed for optimal health and proper function of the entire body.
2. Vitamin Content
Cucumbers contain virtually all the vitamins needed for optimal health. For instance, they are packed with vitamins A, B, and C, all of which are known to boost immunity and energy levels.
3. Toxin Removal
As mentioned in the very beginning, cucumbers are mostly water. The high water content makes them effective in eliminating toxic waste from the body and easier elimination of kidney stones.
4. Moisturize the Body
Again, being over 90% water, cucumbers hydrate the entire body and moisturize the skin.
5. Promote Joint Health
The silicon content in cucumbers strengthens the connective tissues and joints, promoting joint health. When combined with carrots, they treat arthritic and gout pain by reducing uric acid in the system.
6. Fight Cancer
Cucumbers contain lariciresinol, pinoresinol, and secoisolariciresinol, lignans which prevent various cancer types, such as cancer in the uterus, prostate, ovaries, and breasts.
7. Promote Kidney Health
Regular consumption of cucumbers keeps the kidneys healthy by reducing uric acid in the body.
8. Promote Weight Loss and Healthy Digestion
Being high in water and low in calories, cucumbers are an excellent weight loss tool. In addition, they are an excellent source of fiber which improves digestion and prevents constipation.
9. Promote Healthy Gums and Remove Bad Breath
The juices released when you munch on cucumber reduce inflammation and heal the gums. They are also rich in phystochemicals which fight off bacteria and bad breath.
10. Fights Solar Damage
Regular consumption of cucumbers regulates skin`s acidity while the topical use of this veggie heals sunburns.
11. Promote Hair and Nail Health
The silicon and sulfur present in cucumbers strengthen the hair and nails and stimulate their growth.
12. Treat Hangover
The high electrolyte and vitamin B content helps treat hangovers and headaches, so make sure you have a few cucumber slices before bedtime if you have consumed alcohol earlier.
13. Remove Dark Circles
Cucumbers are effective in removing dark circles and swelling under the eyes, probably due to their anti-inflammatory properties.
14. Tasty and Versatile
Last but not least, cucumbers are delicious and highly versatile. You can add them to juices, salads, appetizers, and many more!
Low-calorie Cucumber Recipe
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
- 2 cups cucumber, finely chopped peeled and seeded
- 1/2 cup tomato, cut into small pieces
- 1 chili (jalapeño, tree, etc.) chopped and without seeds
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- 2 tsp fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt (you can also use cottage cheese/ricotta)
- 1-1 / 2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1-1 / 2 teaspoon lime juice
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- Mix the garlic, red onion, cucumber, tomato, chili, parsley, and cilantro in a small bowl
- Mix the Greek yogurt, lemon juice, lime juice, sea salt, and ground cumin in a separate bowl
- Pour the cucumber mixture in the bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mix well
- Serve with a whole-grain toast