The summers are here and how. Our kitchens and refrigerators are filled with all things cool and summery. There are plenty of summer fruits and vegetables that are not only delectable but are also some of the healthiest additions you can make to your summer diet. Mention summer, and our mind instantly pictures fresh and vibrant mangoes. But summers in India are a celebratory affair, and while mangoes are a big part of it, they are not the only highlight of this scorching weather. Crunchy and cooling cucumbers are also an intrinsic part of our summer essentials (Think: raita, salads, detox water, smoothies). Cucumber is a treasure trove of bio-available minerals, electrolytes and vitamins such as vitamin K, vitamin C, magnesium, phosphorus, riboflavin, B-6, folate, pantothenic acid, iron, calcium and zinc. It is also helpful in maintaining body’s water balance on hot days. A proud member of the gourd family, cucumber is known to have plant sterols that are effective in lowering ‘unhealthy’ (LDL) cholesterol levels too. Cucumbers find a unique place in many skin and beauty rituals too. It is said that cucumber is packed with beauty mineral silica; it can exfoliate skin, remove dead cells and prevent tanning.
Cucumber is renowned to be our gut and tummy’s best friend in summer. In these months, one is generally advised to eat fresh, seasonal and homemade food as digesting greasy and heavy food gets increasingly tough during summer.
Here’s what makes cucumber ideal for gut, digestion and weight loss:
1. Cucumber For Gut:
According to the book, ‘Healing Foods’ by DK Publishing House cucumber “Cucumber contains erepsin, a digestive enzyme that helps breakdown the protein. It also acts as an antiparasitic and helps cleanse and tone the intestines.”
2. Cucumber For Digestion:
Did you know about 96 percent of cucumber is just water? Yes, you heard us! Cucumber is all water and nutrients. Since it is densely filled with water, it is good for your colon. If you are suffering from constipation, cucumber may help in softening your stool and enable better bowel regularity.
3. Cucumber For Weight Loss:
There must be some reason as to why cucumber makes for a salad staple. As mentioned earlier, cucumber is packed with water, which makes the veggie a very filling one. If you are full, you would naturally binge less. Cucumber is also a negative calorie food. A 100 grams serving of cucumber contains only 15.54 calories!