Cucumbers: Everything You Need to Know

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Not too many people out there would tell you that cucumbers are one of their favorite foods, or jump up and down if they are offered one, but there’s a lot you may not know about them.

Some people enjoy them in a delicious and refreshing cocktail drink on a hot sunny day, or simply sliced up in a healthy salad. Cucumbers: everything you need to know. 

Then there are moms out there that love scaring (and scarring) their younger children by covering her eyes with them. Many people prefer to just eat them raw. Here is more information and the health benefits of cucumbers that may surprise you. Vegetable Peeler, this is my favorite one.

Cucumbers: Everything You Need to Know 

Hands with freshly picked cucumbers

Formally known as the Cucumis sativus, cucumbers are a member of the gourd family, but are still considered a fruit. Yes, you heard that right! That’s because it grows from the flowering part of the plant, which classifies it as a fruit.  

Cucumbers have been around and cultivated for about 3,000 years and are thought to have originated from India. Europe is believed to have been introduced to them by the Greeks or the Romans, while the Americas didn’t begin cultivating them until Christopher Columbus introduced them to Haiti.

Later in the 16th century, cucumbers finally made an appearance to the Native Americans of the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain regions by European fur traders.   

Fun Facts

Have you ever heard the phrase “cool as a cucumber?” That’s because you will find around a 20-degree difference between the inside and outside surroundings of a cucumber. They also contain around 90% water. 

  • Another interesting fact about cucumbers is that a lot of cats seem to be terrified of them. No one is really sure why that is, but some people say that cats may mistake it as a predator, or simply are startled by the strange object. 
  • Most of the flavor that you enjoy so much about cucumbers comes from the seeds. 
  • Did you know that the wax coating of a cucumber can be used to remove ink? So remember to keep a cucumber around when you’re writing a school paper using a pen.

Varieties

There are three distinguishable varieties of cucumbers that are cultivated today. Slicing, pickling, and burpless. If you want to plant some cucumber seeds in your garden this year, this is where I buy my seeds: SeedsNow 

Slicing

The slicing cucumber is the one typically grown to be eaten fresh. They are best enjoyed unripened (green), instead of the sour and bitter taste you get with a fully ripe cucumber (yellow).

The American slicing cucumbers are usually long, contain more seeds, and come with thicker skin, while the English slicing cucumber is long, thin, and contains fewer seeds. 

Pickling

Can you guess what this variety of cucumbers was bred for? That’s right, pickling! These tend to be shorter, along with small bumps all over the skin. 

Burpless

Burpless cucumbers have thinner skin, a sweeter taste, and can grow as long as 2 feet. They contain fewer seeds and are easier to digest. Just like its name suggests, burpless cucumbers are thought to prevent gas. Most times you’ll find them shrink-wrapped at the grocery store to preserve moisture.

Nutrition Facts 

One cup of cucumber only contains 16 calories. Cucumbers contain vitamins and minerals that simply cannot be ignored. While lower in calories, they contain more of the good stuff like fiber, potassium, Manganese, Magnesium, and Vitamins C, and K. 

Cucumbers also contain antioxidants and help hydrate with the amount of water that they hold.  It’s best to eat cucumbers along with the peel. Removing it only decreases the number of nutrients you intake. 

Cucumbers: Everything You Need to Know for Health 

May Help With Weight Loss

As we’ve already mentioned, cucumbers contain very few calories. You can eat several of them without worrying about adding on any more weight. Another reason they might help with weight loss is that they are full of water. Studies have shown that people who eat foods that contain a higher amount of water and fewer calories have helped them decrease body fat.  

Protects Your Skin 

Cucumbers are used for several skin therapies. They help protect the skin against aging and wrinkles and can be placed over your eyes to help alleviate puffing and soothe your skin around them. 

Reduces the Risk of Cancer

Cucumbers also contain polyphenols that are called lignans, which can help reduce the chances of getting certain types of cancer. 

Lower Blood Sugar 

Cucumbers are also thought to help lower blood sugar and help with certain complications of diabetes. However, the results are limited to animal studies and test-tube.  

Promotes Regularity

One of the main reasons we suffer from constipation is because of the fact that we are dehydrated. Cucumbers are full of water and fiber, both of which help with regular bowel movements and stop constipation. 

Support Heart Health 

Because cucumbers contain potassium and help lower blood pressure, they can lower the chances of a stroke or other cardiovascular diseases. 

Maintains Good Bone Health 

Cucumbers are extremely rich in vitamin K, ( a single cup contains 22% of your daily value) which helps with calcium absorption in the bones and helps lower the chances of a bone fracture. 

Reduces Bad Breath 

It’s not fun when nobody wants to be around you because you’re sporting bad breath. Cucumbers might actually help wash away bacteria that cause bad breath. Foods similar to cucumbers that are high in fiber, can give a boost to your saliva production and help reduce bad breath. 

How to Store Cucumbers 

Before putting cucumbers directly into the refrigerator, it’s best to wrap them in shrink wrap to help them retain moisture. By doing this, your cucumbers should be able to last in the refrigerator for around 7 to 10 days.  

More About Cucumbers

Garden Gloves

These are my favorite garden gloves: DIGZ Garden Gloves They come in different sizes, that’s what I love the most. These are the best rose bush gloves: DIGZ Rose Bush Garden Gloves I have to get the large size for my hands. These are awesome!

Everything You Need to Know Series:

Final Word

So, not only are cucumbers a refreshing snack, they help your body in a number of ways. Realizing the nutrients and benefits you gain consuming cucumbers, will you consider adding them to your diet more often?

It’s also not a bad idea to get your kids loving them when they are younger. What are some of your favorite recipes that use cucumbers as an important ingredient? What do you think about cucumbers: everything you need to know?

Be aware of your surroundings. Please grow a garden. May God bless this world, Linda

Copyright Images: Cucumbers Depositphotos_52132233_s-2019, Cucumbers AdobeStock_284641543 by Samael334,

12 thoughts on “Cucumbers: Everything You Need to Know

  • March 6, 2020 at 12:58 pm
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    I absolutely LOVE this series of articles. Please, keep ’em coming!!!!!

    Reply
    • March 6, 2020 at 1:39 pm
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      Hi Mae, I have a lettuce one in 2 days!! You made my day, girlfriend!! Thank you so much!! Linda

      Reply
  • March 6, 2020 at 1:30 pm
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    I have a recipe for a cucumber dip that you can also use as a Spread. I worked in a Nursing
    Home and we had a Mother’s day tea. My Boss made her cucumber sandwich recipe and no
    one ate them. I asked if I could make mine. Everyone liked them, made my Boss mad. I
    don’t think you can beat tried and true recipes.
    In the summer I like slicing cucumber and put sliced onions with them and put
    Italian Dressing on them. Keep them in the fridge and eat on them all week long.

    Reply
    • March 6, 2020 at 1:41 pm
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      Hi June, you know I want that cucumber recipe now, LOL! Please share it if you can!! Your zucchini cake is almost ready to post! It’s the best zucchini cake I have EVER eaten! My granddaughter came home the other day and said: “grandma, do you have any zucchini cake left?” Stay tuned, Linda

      Reply
  • March 7, 2020 at 12:34 pm
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    I am giving you this recipe as it was given to me.
    1 or 2 packages of cream cheese
    1 finely chopped onion
    I finely chopped cucumber
    1 tablespoon Miracle Whip
    Dash of salt.
    Mix well and serve. I have served it on crackers, bread, dipped veggies in it and chips. I like it on anything
    Remember cucumbers are very watery so this can be thick one minute and then in a few minutes
    it can be very thin.

    Reply
    • March 7, 2020 at 5:57 pm
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      Hi June, is grated cheese or cream cheese? We all want to make this! Did you serve it with crackers or is it a sandwich spread? Linda

      Reply
  • March 8, 2020 at 1:06 am
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    So sorry i should have read over my recipe better. You use cream cheese. Also i have served on cracker, bread, dipped veggies in it and chips. I like it on anything

    Reply
    • March 8, 2020 at 5:03 am
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      Hi June, no worries, we all want the recipe!! It sounds so yummy!! Thanks again, Linda

      Reply
      • March 8, 2020 at 5:06 am
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        June, I just added the information to your original comment. I can’t wait to make it! Linda

        Reply

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