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Cool As a Cucumber: 14 Health and Beauty Benefits of the Green Vegetable

It may be humble, but it has huge advantages, so start munching away.

The cucumber, often referred to as a superfood, is the fourth most cultivated vegetable in the world. With its gentle taste, it is known to be one of the best foods for your body’s overall health. Also, thanks to its water content, munching away on some cucumbers can help hydrate your skin and provides other great beauty benefits.

Here are 14 reasons to add cucumbers to your shopping basket:

Attacks cancer: Studies show the miracle vegetable, which contains lariciresinol, pinoresinol and secoisolariciresinol, can fight cancer. The three lignans have a strong connection with the reduced risk of several cancer types, including breast, ovarian, uterine and prostate. Cucumbers also contain phytonutrients that fight cancer.

Helps diabetics: Cucumber juice contains a hormone that is needed by the pancreatic cells to help it produce insulin, which has been found to be beneficial to diabetic patients.

Cuts cholesterol levels: Researchers believe a compound called sterols found in the green marvels may help reduce cholesterol levels.

Regulates blood pressure: Scientifically known as cucumis sativus, cucumbers also contain huge amounts of potassium, magnesium and fibre, which are needed to regulate high and low blood pressure.

Helps the heart: Cucumbers support the heart as they are rich in potassium. As an electrolyte, potassium is a positive charged ion that must maintain a certain intensity in order to carry out its functions, which include interacting with sodium to help control nerve impulse transmission, muscle contraction and heart function.

Spurs weight loss and proper digestion: Cucumbers are known to aid in weight loss. Very low in calories and made of 95 percent water, cucumber is the ideal snack for people who are looking to ditch some kilos. As it is a powerhouse of antioxidants, it boosts metabolism too.

Aids digestion and detoxifies: The water and dietary fibre in cucumbers are very effective in flushing out toxins. As well as purifying your blood, there’s great news for the digestive system.

Boosts energy: A great source of vitamin A, pantothenic acid and phosphorus, cucumbers are also packed with B-vitamins, which provide you with a burst of energy you need for your day and help your mind stay clear. So instead of that pot of coffee, try eating slices of cucumber first thing in the morning.

Inhibits water retention: Two compounds in cucumbers - ascorbic acid and caffeic acid – can help people who have excessive water retention.  

Promotes joint health: Cucumber is a fantastic source of silica, a trace mineral found in connective tissues like cartilage and tendons. This makes it important for those suffering from pain due to arthritis.

Reduces skin irritations: The high antioxidant levels and anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce puffiness, redness and blemishes, plus calm inflammation. Cucumbers are good for dark circles too. So believe the movies and magazines, and when you have tired or irritated eyes, wind down with a couple of cucumber slices over your eyes.

Fosters hair growth: Belonging to the same botanical family as melons and squashes, cucumber contains silicon and sulphur, which encourage hair growth and stop hair from falling.

Battles bad breath: By taking a slice of cucumber and pressing it to the roof of the mouth using the tongue for almost a minute, phytochemicals will demolish the bacteria responsible for bad breath.

Rejuvenates skin: With all that hydrating power and so many vitamins and minerals, cucumbers can give you healthy skin from within, helping you look revitalised.

Cucumbers serve as a wonderful addition to your juices, so find the right green glass for you if you don’t like the taste of cucumbers on their own.

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