Cucumbers abound in the summertime. As part of the squash family, once a plant takes off, you can get more cucumbers than you know what to do with. Besides being great for making pickles and putting on your eyes to relieve the puffiness, cucumbers have a lot of other uses.
They are vitamin and mineral powerhouses, containing vitamins C and K, magnesium, potassium and manganese. Their health benefits go beyond simple vitamins and minerals, though. Here are 5+ ways eating cucumbers benefit your body.
1. Hydration. Cucumbers are mainly made up of water, so Medical News Today says that snacking on them throughout the day during the summer is a great way to help your body stay hydrated. You can also make refreshing cucumber water by thinly slicing 1 English cucumber and placing it in a pitcher. Fill the pitcher with 1 quart of seltzer water and 1 quart of regular water. Let it sit in the refrigerator for two to four hours to infuse the cucumber into the water. Strain the cucumbers out and enjoy your drink.
2. Brain food. According to Huffington Post, cucumbers contain fisetin, which has “the ability to reduce the impact of age-related neurological diseases on brain function.”
3. Antioxidants. Healthline reminds people that cucumbers contain lots of antioxidants to help repair the damage free radicals do to your body. Enjoy cucumber salad by cutting up 2 English cucumbers and 1 medium onion. Mix 1/4 cup white vinegar, 1/4 cup water, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Pour the mixture over the cucumbers and onion and mix thoroughly. Garnish it with chopped fresh dill.
4. Bone health. As you age, keeping your bones healthy becomes even more important. Medical News Today reports that cucumbers are an important source of vitamin K which is necessary to strong bones.
5. Anti-inflammatory. For those who suffer from arthritis or stiff joints, Huffington Post shares that cucumbers contain flavonoids which help reduce inflammation in the joints. You can enjoy some cucumber juice by peeling 1 1/2 pounds of cucumber and chunking them. Place them in a blender and puree them. Strain them twice to get just the juice out of the mush.
Add 1 cup of sugar, 3/4 cup lime juice, 4 1/2 cups water and 28 grams of grated ginger. Let it chill and then enjoy.
6. Weight loss. Cucumbers make great snacks if you’re trying to lose weight. With only 16 calories to one cup of cucumber, Healthlinerecommends keeping them around to snack on.
Because cucumbers are so healthy, find other creative ways to enjoy your cucumbers throughout the year.