Cucumbers belong to the Cucurbitaceae family which fits them into the category of both fruits and vegetables.
Cucumbers have 95 percent of water. They are mild, versatile, and are a treat to be consumed in those hot and humid weather conditions.
There are majorly two types of cucumbers- slicing cucumbers and pickling cucumbers. Slicing cucumbers are often eaten as salads.
They are 12 inches or longer and have smoother skin as compared to pickling cucumbers.
This variety of cucumber has less cucurbitacin which is a plant compound that gives it a mild taste.
While on the other hand, pickling cucumbers are smaller in size and have bumps or spines on their skin.
Thus, not only cucumbers are refreshing, but they also have various other health benefits, like-
Top 10 benefits of cucumbers
Hydration And Detoxification
Our body constitutes 70 percent of water.
Water is necessary for various functions of the body such as carrying nutrition into cells, flushing out waste products, and also temperature regulation.
It also affects the metabolism of an individual.
This study suggests that while you derive most of the water from drinking it, around 40 percent of the water is obtained from foods that you eat in the form of fruits and vegetables.
Since cucumbers have 96 percent of water, they are extremely effective in promoting hydration.
Therefore, cucumbers are extremely beneficial in summers in which we get dehydrated easily.
Additionally, cucumbers will also provide nutrients to your body. Cucumber in combination with mint and water effectively helps you to flush out toxins from the body.
Cucumbers are highly nutritious as they contain several important vitamins and minerals which the body requires.
As per this data, cucumbers contain 0 fats, 45 calories, 11 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of proteins, and 2 grams of fibers per 100 grams.
It also contains vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, potassium, and manganese.
In addition to this, cucumbers have high water content which makes them a perfect addition to your diet during summers.
Experts suggest that to achieve the maximum number of benefits from cucumbers.
You should eat them unpeeled as most of the fiber contents are present in the peel itself which gets wasted if they are peeled.
May Keep Your Blood Pressure In Check
Hypertension or high blood pressure may result in stroke, aneurysm, or other heart-related diseases.
Cucumbers are high in potassium which acts as an electrolyte in the body.
Due to the presence of potassium, cucumbers can significantly reduce sodium-induced water retention which leads to a lower blood pressure level.
As per this article, a medium, 7-inch cucumber contains around 273 milligrams of potassium along with just trace amounts of sodium.
Thus, reducing sodium intake and increasing potassium intake might help you to control high blood pressure problems thus lowering the risk of stroke or heart failure.
This is because pickled cucumbers contain added salt which may increase your sodium intake and hurt your heart health.
However, cucumbers cannot entirely be a compensation for a sedentary lifestyle.
To maintain good health, you must follow a balanced diet, avoid smoking, avoid eating cholesterol-rich foods and be physically active.
Cucumbers can add to the benefits of a balanced diet.
Rich In Antioxidants
Cucumbers are rich in flavonoids. It helps in reducing oxidative stress in the body.
Oxidative stress leads to serious diseases like cancer, lung diseases, auto-immune diseases, and heart diseases.
Cucumbers contain lignan which is a group of polyphenols that helps in the treatment of estrogen-related cancers.
A research conducted on aged adults to study the antioxidant properties of cucumber found that cucumber powder led to a significant increase in various markers of antioxidants.
It is also anti-inflammatory because of its antioxidant properties.
Can Help In Weight Loss
Cucumbers are packed with nutrients but they are not high in calories. As per this study, 100 grams of cucumber contain just 15 calories.
This implies that you can fill your stomach with cucumbers without thinking about excessive calorie intake.
Another reason why cucumbers can help in weight loss is the fact that it has high water content.
Cucumbers make a delicious addition to salads, sandwiches, and side dishes.
This study concluded that foods having low energy density are associated with a decrease in body weight in obese people.
Good For Skin
Cucumbers have anti-inflammatory properties that help relieve irritated skin. It is suitable for people with sensitive skin.
Because of its water contents, it has a soothing and cooling effect on your skin. It is one of the best methods to hydrate your skin.
It can improve dry, flaky skin which is prone to fine lines and wrinkles. Cucumbers are enriched with the goodness of vitamin C and folic acid which maintains skin health.
Cucumbers can also fight pollution, dirt, and stress. It can help you to rejuvenate your skin because of its anti-inflammatory properties.
Cucumbers can reduce dark circles and significantly improve dull skin. In addition to this, it can also soothe sunburns.
It May Help In Controlling Blood Sugar
Cucumbers can also help you in controlling blood sugar levels and prevent diabetes.
Experts say that since cucumbers are high in water contents, upon consumption, they expand in your stomach which reduces sugar cravings and thus, reduces sugar intake.
An analysis aimed at examining the effects of several plants on blood sugar found that cucumbers effectively help in controlling and reducing blood sugar levels.
Another study conducted on mice found similar results. Diabetes was injected inside the mice and then they were allowed to consume cucumber peel extract.
It concluded that the polyphenols, flavonoids, and ascorbic acid contents present in cucumber peel reversed the changes caused by the introduction of diabetes into the body.
This eventually resulted in a decrease in the blood sugar level. However, experts also say that more study is required on this subject.
Good For Bone Health
Although cucumbers do not contain calcium, they are rich in vitamin K. It may help in blood clotting and is extremely essential for strong bones.
Cucumbers are a good source of vitamin K and they should be included in our daily diet in the form of salad or could be eaten right away by slicing them into smaller pieces.
May Improve Digestive Health
Out of many of its benefits, cucumbers can also promote digestive health. Cucumbers contain fibers that promote digestive health.
It also keeps you full for a longer time and prevents excessive calorie intake. Fibers can also smoothen bowel movements.
As per this info, dehydration leads to constipation as it can negatively affect your water balance, and stool movement becomes difficult across the lining of the gut.
Since cucumbers are high in water, they can promote hydration.
Hydration improves the consistency of the stool, makes its movement smooth across the gut, and hence, prevents constipation.
Cucumbers also help in improving bowel movements frequency because of the presence of a compound called pectin.
As per this study, the fibers present in cucumbers fasten colon transit time and relieve constipation.
It also increased the number of good bacteria in the gut and improved overall digestive health.
Cucumbers Are Versatile
Cucumbers can easily be incorporated into your diet. They have a neutral flavor so they can be included in various kinds of dishes.
Cucumbers are popularly consumed in salads and sandwiches. They are often consumed raw as a snack which provides several health benefits without adding extra calories.
They can also be eaten with hummus, olive oil, and salt. They can be eaten both fresh and pickled.
Due to their versatile nature and extremely beneficial effects on health, cucumbers are widely popular all across the world.
Cucumbers are best for keeping yourself hydrated especially during summers when your body quickly loses water in the form of sweat.
They contain several important vitamins and fibers such as vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, potassium, and manganese.
They may improve your health, might help you to lose weight, control your blood pressure and blood sugar levels, and are also good for bone health and skin.
Working4Health prefers using primary and verified references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and our primary references include peer-reviewed research, academic, and medical institution studies.
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Alisha Matthew has been a practicing nutritionist since 2016. She holds a master’s degree in nutrition from the University of IOWA. She is a staunch believer in improving the human health index by educating people about nutrition and the importance of nutrition in leading a healthy and happy life. Her long-term goal is to keep educating people on general health and keep herself updated with the latest trends in the field of health.