Undoubtedly you have heard the phrase “cool as a cucumber.” Maybe that phrase even describes you to a T: extremely calm, relaxed and in control of your emotions under any circumstance. Have you ever wondered where the phrase came from? My 12 year old has been really aware of idioms lately some of his favorite are: bite the bullet, make my day and pell-mell.
When we heard “cool as a cucumber” the other day we had to look up the origin of this phrase and what we found was fascinating. The inside of a cucumber stays up to 20 degrees cooler than the outside air. This is attributed to the fact that cucumbers are 95% water. So if you want to keep cool, stay hydrated and help our body detox, reach for a cucumber!
Ten Reasons to eat this Delicious Fruit
Support Strong Bones: Cucumbers have 22% of the recommended daily value of vitamin K. Vitamin K works together with other essential nutrients like calcium and magnesium to build and maintain strong bone density.
Fight Inflammation: Cucumbers on your eyelids will reduce puffiness. Did you even know why? Cucumbers are just beginning to be studied for their anti-inflammatory properties and have been shown to reduce unwanted inflammation by actually inhibiting the activity of pro-inflammatory enzymes.
Reduce Cancer Risk: Cucumbers contain powerful phytonutrients called cucurbitacins that according to research at the George Mateljan Foundation: “Scientists have already determined that several different signaling pathways required for cancer cell development and survival can be blocked by activity of cucurbitacins.”
Stress Relief: High in B vitamins which are known to help relieve feelings of anxiety and stress. Use a cucumber as a natural pick-me-up solution.
Digestive Booster: High fiber and high water content aid the body in eliminating toxins from the digestive system. Consuming cucumbers daily can be a great remedy for constipation because cucumbers are rich in magnesium and other hydrating electrolytes to help keep you regular.
Promotes Joint Health: Along with the anti-inflammatory properties of the cucumber it is also an excellent source of Silica which is needed to promote joint health and strengthens connective tissues.
Hydrating: Cucumbers are 95% water, one of the most hydrating foods around. Being hydrated can reduce symptoms like headache, joint pain, and irritability.
Heart Healthy: A compound called sterols found in plants help lower “bad” cholesterol. Cucumbers are an excellent source of potassium which helps lower blood pressure and magnesium which is responsible for heartbeat regulation.
Detoxifier: As mentioned above cucumbers contain phytonutrients that fight cancer. The high fiber and water content helps flush toxins from the digestive system and will helps flush the kidneys. Cucumbers also will help lower cholesterol and inflammation in the body.
Helps Maintain Healthy Weight: Cucumbers are low in calories but are packed with powerful nutrition. The high soluble fiber content helps you feel full longer. A body that is constantly ridding itself of toxins will reach and maintain a healthy ideal weight.
A Word of Caution:
The Cucumber is on the list of the “Dirty Dozen.” This is a list put together by the Environmental Working Group. The “Dirty Dozen” is a list of fruits and vegetables that contain the most chemical and pesticide residue. So spend a little bit extra money and buy organic cucumbers, grow your own in your garden or buy local at a farmers market or CSA.
Cucumbers are often waxed to prevent bruising during shipping. Organic cucumbers will be waxed with organic compounds but be sure to wash well before eating. Even though you will lose some important nutrient and fiber content it is best to peel a cucumber if it is not organic.
Try these recipes:
What is your favorite way to eat a cuke!