Cucumber is one of the famous vegetables people use in dishes at present. With the scientific name Cucumis sativus, cucumber is broadly grown in North America; also the plant’s origin is South Asia. The following are the health benefits of cucumbers, along with a sample recipe.
One health benefit of cucumber includes the antioxidants it has. According to World’s Healthiest Foods, cucumber contains phytonutrients like flavonoids, lignans, and cucurbutacins. As per the publication, they are three types of phytonutrients that provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer benefits. Antixidants help the body get rid of unwanted substances like toxins and free radicals, which increase a person’s risk of having heart diseases and cancer.
Another health benefit of eating cucumber is cancer prevention, not to mention that cancer is one of the deadliest diseases in the world. According to Medical News Today, cucumber’s cucurbitacins, and vitamins A, B, C, D, and E have cancer-fighting properties, which prevent cells from reproducing and thriving in the body. To add, vitamin A promotes good vision and skin and mucus membrane integrity while vitamin B boosts brain functions like thinking, learning, and memory.
The health of the heart and the blood vessels is also part of the health benefits of cucumber. According to Mecrcola, cucumber contains potassium, a mineral that plays a pivotal role in heart function. First, potassium facilitates muscle contractility; without enough potassium in the body, the muscles would feel tired, reducing their overall function when performing the activities of daily living. Also, potassium counters the water-retention actions of sodium.when sodium attract water to the body cells, blood pressure increases and the workload of the heart also increases. Thus,adding potassium to the diet via cucumber helps achieve a normal blood pressure through reduction of excess fluid in the cells.
One health benefit of cucumber is weight management, particularly weight loss. First, cucumber contains water, which provides a sense of fullness to the person. The person thinks that he is full, so he will not crave for more food. This reduced food intake results to weight loss due to allocation of macronutrients carbohydrates and fats. In addition, cucumber’s fiber content helps reduce fat from the blood stream; thus, it assists to achieving weight In a study, as cited by Authority Nutrition, it was found that eating foods that are rich in water and low in calories was linked to a considerable decrease in the body weight.
One recipe that contains cucumber is Asian Cucumber Salad. According to sandradxb of All Recipes, it is a delicious and light salad preparation. As per the publication, the ingredients include two cucumbers (halved lengthwise, seeded, sliced), two teaspoons salt, half cup of rice vinegar, one-fourth cup of white sugar, two tablespoons of sesame oil, one tablespoon minced garlic, one tablespoon minced fresh ginger root, one tablespoon sesame seeds, and four fresh red chile peppers (sliced).
To prepare, the cucumber slices are placed in a colander, sprinkled with salt, and set aside to drain for an hour. Next, the vinegar and sugar are whisked together until the sugar is dissolved. Then, the sesame oil, sesame seeds, garlic, and ginger. After that, the salt on the cucumber slices is rinsed off with cold running water; the slices are placed in a large bowl with the sliced red chile peppers. Finally, the dressing is drizzled over the vegetables and tossed to coat.
Overall, cucumbers are considered nutritious food with their various benefits to human health. Thus, it is easy to add cucumber to one’s diet, since it is capable of raising one’s health and well-being.