The debate of whether cucumber is a fruit or a vegetable is still on, though what is known about this crunchy delight is that it grows on a vine and belongs to the gourd family. Originated from India, cucumber has traveled far and wide and today is available in every continent of the world.
If data is to be believed, cucumber is the oldest mass cultivated crop, first cultivated almost 3000 years ago. Over the years, cucumbers have become the fourth most widely cultivated vegetable in the world, next only to tomatoes, cabbage, and onions.
The best aspect about cucumber is that it can be eaten in several forms, whether raw, pickled, cooked or in the form of juice. Below the hard green peel lies the sweet, white, mushy, and watery flesh, which is not only rich in water and electrolyte content, because it also contains vital nutrients and minerals.
In the following lines, we have provided a detailed description of the nutrition content of cucumber and its health benefits.
Cucumber Nutrition Facts
Amount of Cucumber (sliced): 1/2 cup
Total Weight of Cucumber: 52 g
|Calories From Carbohydrate||6.5|
|Calories From Fat||0.5|
|Calories From Protein||0.8|
|Total Carbohydrate||1.9 g|
|Dietary Fiber||0.3 g|
|Fats & Fatty Acids|
|Total Fat||0.1 g|
|Total Omega-3 Fatty Acids||2.6 mg|
|Total Omega-6 Fatty Acids||14.6 mg|
|Vitamin A||54.6 IU|
|Vitamin C||1.5 mg|
|Vitamin K||8.5 mcg|
|Pantothenic Acid||0.1 mg|
Nutritional Benefits of Cucumber
- Cucumber is 96% water. Hence, consuming cucumber keeps the body hydrated. Though the crust of cucumber is thick and crunchy, it has high fiber and water contents, which further helps in regulating body temperature. Cucumber is also a detoxifying agent that helps in the outflow of the toxic agents from the body.
- The vegetable contains a lot of potassium and magnesium which are major agents in regulating the body’s blood pressure. Not only is it beneficial in maintaining high blood pressure, but it also helps in regulating low blood pressure.
- The cucumber contains lots of mineral contents which makes it a natural acidity regulator. This happens because the juice of cucumber is alkaline in nature and hence it helps in maintaining the pH balance of the body. It also acts as a soothing agent during gastric ulcers.
- Silica is the main content of cucumber skin and it is known for forming better connective tissues and in turn maintaining better cartilages, bones, tendons, ligaments, and muscles. Cucumber is also known for treating the swelling under the eyes. Just placing two slices of cucumber over the eyes reduces puffiness of the eyes significantly.
- Cucumber is also well known for helping in the treatment of eczema. The vitamin A, B & C present in the vegetable helps in maintaining a healthy glowing skin
- Regular consumption of cucumber results in healthy hair growth as the vegetable is rich in silicon and sulfur.
- As the vegetable has a water base, it is a useful diuretic. It has a cleansing action and helps in the outflow of the waste collected inside the body. It also helps in getting rid of uric acid from the body and hence is good for arthritis patients. Cucumber also aids in conditions like asthma and gout.
- Researches have been conducted to prove the fact that cucumber contains some hormones which help the pancreas in the production of insulin. As such, cucumber makes way for being a must-be vegetable in the diet of patients with diabetes.
- Including cucumber in the diet is an effective way to reduce weight as it has high water contents and has a very low-calorie count. It contains no fat or amino acids and keeps the body replete with water and keeps away the hunger pangs.
Cucumber, being a vital source of water and electrolyte, must be included in the daily diet if one wants to live a healthy life. Binge on this crunchy delight and live a healthy, nutritious life.