Thursday, September 25, 2014

Day 25

A Different Fruit A Day Personal Health Challenge

The cucumber is originally from Southern Asia, but now grows on most continents.

The Cucumber is a widely cultivated plant in the gourd family Cucurbitaceae (same as the squash, pumpkin, and watermelon). It is a creeping vine that bears cylindrical fruits that are used as culinary vegetables. There are three main varieties of cucumber: slicing, pickling, and burpless. Within these varieties, several different cultivars have emerged.

The cucumber is originally from Southern Asia, but now grows on most continents. Many different varieties are traded on the global market. 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.

Oma did not know that cucumbers are the fourth most cultivated vegetable in the world. They are known to be one of the best foods for your body's overall health, often referred to as a superfood.

Nine Reasons to Eat Cucumbers

  1. Protect Your Brain (contain an anti-inflammatory flavonol called fisetin)
  2. Reduce Your Risk of Cancer (polyphenols called lignans)
  3. Fight Inflammation
  4. Antioxidant Properties (vitamin C , beta-carotene)
  5. Freshen Your Breath*
  6. Manage Stress (multiple B vitamins)
  7. Support Your Digestive Health (rich in water and fiber)
  8. Maintain a Healthy Weight (very low in calories)
  9. Support Heart Health (potassium)

*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.

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