Imagine a glass of water filled with cucumber slices … is there anything literally more refreshing? (Bonus points if you then put these slices on your eyelids.)
But when it comes to eating cukes, do cucumbers have nutritional benefits? Or is eating cucumbers basically the same as eating iceberg lettuce?
Good news, cooking enthusiasts: "Like all vegetables, cucumbers have beneficial effects on health. Although they may not be as well known as kale, that does not mean they're not there, "says Jessica Perez, Dt.P.
Example: all these benefits for cucumber that you probably have never heard of before …
1. Cucumbers are super nutritious.
Here are the nutritional information for a cup of cucumbers:
- Calories: 16
- Protein: 1 g
- Lipids: 0 g (saturated 0 g)
- Fiber: 1 g
- Carbohydrates: 4 g
- Sugar: 2 g
- Sodium: 2 mg
And beyond their low calorie packaging, cucumbers contain a lot of important nutrients:
- Vitamin C: 14% of RDI
- Vitamin K: 62% of RDI
- Magnesium: 10% of RDI
- Potassium: 13% of RDI
- Manganese: 12% of RDI
2. They contain antioxidants and micronutrients.
Scientists have been working hard to refute the idea that cucumbers are basically a load for salad. According to Journal of Aging Research and Clinical Practice, cucumbers contain a group of polyphenols called lignans, which may be useful in the treatment of estrogen-related cancers.
Perez says that they also contain other types of antioxidants such as beta-carotene and flavonoids, which help fight inflammation and protect cells from chronic diseases.
3 Cucumbers can help keep your blood pressure under control.
High blood pressure, or high blood pressure, can put you at risk of developing an aneurysm, stroke, or worse. Since cucumbers are high in electrolytic potassium, they can reduce sodium-induced fluid retention and lower blood pressure, according to the American Heart Association.
But, of course, cucumbers will not be enough to mitigate the damage caused by an entire bag of chips a day. Therefore, if you suffer from high blood pressure, also be sure to reduce harmful habits (such as smoking, maintaining a sedentary lifestyle). , and eat foods that are excessively saturated with saturated fats and cholesterol), in addition to focusing on your coffee consumption.
4. They can keep your digestion strong.
Basically, all the calories in cucumbers (and yes, there are not many) come from fiber. According to Perez, the fibers help improve bowel health and stool consistency, are useful for managing certain conditions such as diabetes and high cholesterol, and will even fill you up for you avoid overeating. Damn. Yes.
5. Cucumbers keep you very hydrated.
Staying hydrated is essential for transporting nutrients into your cells, preventing constipation and eliminating bacteria, to name a few. Perez says eating cucumbers can help you reach your recommended daily intake of fluid (eight cups of H2O, FYI).
The amount of water that you actually consume cucumbers depends on the size of your serving, but since they are composed at 95% water, you can be assured that a cup of cukes will contribute so significant to your water needs, according to Bonnie Taub-Dix, RD, creator of BetterThanDieting.com and To read before eating.
6. They keep your bowel happy.
As mentioned before, cucumbers contain a lot of fiber, which is great for the health of the intestines. But when you eat them in the form of pickles, they are really superstars in this category. ICYMI: Pickles are made from cucumbers and a good mix of spices, salt and vinegar. "The fermentation process makes it a perfect fuel for your gut," says Taub-Dix. The increase of "good bacteria" in your gut is associated with a host of benefits, such as better immunity and functional bowels.
7. They can help promote a healthy weight.
There is no single food or exercise that is solely responsible for weight loss or maintenance, but cucumbers are certainly a great addition to an otherwise healthy lifestyle, rich in fruits and vegetables, cereals complete, healthy fats and lean protein. "They can help you lose weight in that if you do more, you'll be less likely to eat junk food because they can be very nutritious," says Perez.
Want to know more about healthy foods to add to your refrigerator? Find out how this professional fighter is accumulating:
8. Cucumbers can help regulate diabetes.
Similar to how they can help you maintain a healthy weight, cucumbers are able to control diabetes. Perez, once again, points out that because they are rich in water, they dilate in your stomach and reduce the need to snack on sweet snacks, which is a great way to regulate insulin levels.
9. They could help strengthen your bones.
Calcium is not the only nutrient that strengthens your bones – think also to opt for vitamin C-rich cucumbers more often. A Journal Study Medicine PLos found that postmenopausal women who took five milligrams of vitamin K per day for two years had 50% fewer fractures than the control group. Because vitamin K helps blood clotting, tell your doctor before you suddenly increase cucumber intake if you are taking blood thinners.
10. They are super versatile in cooking.
Cucumbers have a neutral flavor, so they go very well in many dishes or as a simple snack. Ready to add more cucumber to your diet? Try these recipes that contain cucumber: