NINE AMAZING HEALTH BENEFITS OF CUCUMBERS

Cucumbers
belong to the same plant family as squash, pumpkin, and watermelon (the
Cucurbitaceae family). Like watermelon, cucumbers are made up of mostly (95
percent) water, which means eating them on a hot summer day can help you stay
hydrated.
Plus, cucumbers contain unique polyphenols and other compounds that may
help reduce your risk of chronic diseases and much, much more.
Benefits of Consuming Cucumber:
1. Protect Your Brain
Cucumbers contain an anti-inflammatory flavonol called fisetin that
appears to play an important role in brain health. In addition to improving
your memory and protecting your nerve cells from age-related decline,1 fisetin
has been found to prevent progressive memory and learning impairments in mice
with Alzheimer’s disease.2
2. Reduce Your Risk of Cancer
Cucumbers contain polyphenols called lignans (pinoresinol, lariciresinol,
and secoisolariciresinol), which may help to lower your risk of breast,
uterine, ovarian, and prostate cancers.3 They also contain phytonutrients called
cucurbitacins, which also have anti-cancer properties. According to the George
Mateljan Foundation:4
“Scientists have already determined that several different signaling
pathways (for example, the JAK-STAT and MAPK pathways) required for cancer cell
development and survival can be blocked by activity of cucurbitacins.”
3. Fight Inflammation
Cucumbers may help to “cool” the inflammatory response in your body, and
animal studies suggest that cucumber extract helps reduce unwanted
inflammation, in part by inhibiting the activity of pro-inflammatory enzymes
(including cyclo-oxygenase 2, or COX-2).5
4. Antioxidant Properties
Cucumbers contain numerous antioxidants, including the well-known vitamin
C and beta-carotene. They also contain antioxidant flavonoids, such as
quercetin, apigenin, luteolin, and kaempferol,6 which provide additional
benefits.
For instance, quercetin is an antioxidant that many believe prevents
histamine release—making quercetin-rich foods “natural antihistamines.”
Kaempferol, meanwhile, may help fight cancer and lower your risk of chronic
diseases including heart disease.
5. Freshen Your Breath
Placing a cucumber slice on the roof of your mouth may help to rid your
mouth of odor-causing bacteria. According to the principles of Ayurveda, eating
cucumbers may also help to release excess heat in your stomach, which is said
to be a primary cause of bad breath.7
6. Manage Stress
Cucumbers contain multiple B vitamins, including vitamin B1, vitamin B5,
and vitamin B7 (biotin). B vitamins are known to help ease feelings of anxiety
and buffer some of the damaging effects of stress.
7. Support Your Digestive Health
Cucumbers are rich in two of the most basic elements needed for healthy
digestion: water and fiber. Adding cucumbers to your juice or salad can help
you meet the ideal of amount of fiber your body needs — 50 grams per 1,000 calories
consumed. If you struggle with acid reflux, you should know that drinking water
can help suppress acute symptoms of acid reflux by temporarily raising stomach
pH; it’s possible that water-rich cucumbers may have a similar effect.
Cucumber skins
contain insoluble fiber, which helps add bulk to your stool. This helps food to
move through your digestive tract more quickly for healthy elimination.
8. Maintain a Healthy Weight
Cucumbers are very low in calories, yet they make a filling snack (one cup
of sliced cucumber contains just 16 calories).8 The soluble fiber in cucumbers
dissolves into a gel-like texture in your gut, helping to slow down your
digestion. This helps you to feel full longer and is one reason why fiber-rich
foods may help with weight control.
9. Support Heart Health
Cucumbers contain potassium, which is associated with lower blood pressure
levels. A proper balance of potassium both inside and outside your cells is
crucial for your body to function properly.
As an electrolyte, potassium is a positive charged ion that must maintain
a certain concentration (about 30 times higher inside than outside your cells)
in order to carry out its functions, which includes interacting with sodium to
help control nerve impulse transmission, muscle contraction, and heart
function.

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