Water is crucial to your body’s function, playing numerous important roles (7Trusted Source).
It is involved in processes like temperature regulation and the transportation of waste products and nutrients (7Trusted Source).
Fruits and vegetables, in particular, can be a good source of water in your diet.
In one study, hydration status was assessed and diet records were collected for 442 children. They found that increased fruit and vegetable intake was associated with improvements in hydration status (10Trusted Source).
Because cucumbers are composed of about 96% water, they are especially effective at promoting hydration and can help you meet your daily fluid needs (2Trusted Source).
Cucumbers are composed of about 96% water, which may increase hydration and help you meet your daily fluid needs.
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4. It May Aid in Weight Loss
Cucumbers could potentially help you lose weight in a few different ways.
First of all, they are low in calories.
Each one-cup (104-gram) serving contains just 16 calories, while an entire 11-ounce (300-gram) cucumber contains only 45 calories (1).
This means that you can eat plenty of cucumbers without packing on the extra calories that lead to weight gain.
Cucumbers can add freshness and flavor to salads, sandwiches and side dishes and may also be used as a replacement for higher calorie alternatives.
Furthermore, the high water content of cucumbers could aid in weight loss as well.
One analysis looked at 13 studies including 3,628 people and found that eating foods with high water and low calorie contents was associated with a significant decrease in body weight (11Trusted Source).
Cucumbers are low in calories, high in water and can be used as a low-calorie topping for many dishes. All of these may aid in weight loss.
5. It May Lower Blood Sugar
Several animal and test-tube studies have found that cucumbers may help reduce blood sugar levels and prevent some complications of diabetes.
One animal study examined the effects of various plants on blood sugar. Cucumbers were shown to effectively reduce and control blood sugar levels (12Trusted Source).
Another animal study induced diabetes in mice and then supplemented them with cucumber peel extract. Cucumber peel reversed most of the diabetes-associated changes and caused a decrease in blood sugar (13Trusted Source).
In addition, one test-tube study found that cucumbers may be effective at reducing oxidative stress and preventing diabetes-related complications (14Trusted Source).
However, the current evidence is limited to test-tube and animal studies. Further research is needed to determine how cucumbers may affect blood sugar in humans.
Test-tube and animal studies show that cucumber may help lower blood sugar and prevent diabetes-related complications, although additional research is needed.
6. It Could Promote Regularity
Eating cucumbers may help support regular bowel movements.
Dehydration is a major risk factor for constipation, as it can alter your water balance and make the passage of stool difficult (15Trusted Source).
Cucumbers are high in water and promote hydration. Staying hydrated can improve stool consistency, prevent constipation and help maintain regularity (16Trusted Source).
Moreover, cucumbers contain fiber, which helps regulate bowel movements.
In particular, pectin, the type of soluble fiber found in cucumbers, can help increase bowel movement frequency.
One study had 80 participants supplement with pectin. It found that pectin sped up the movement of the intestinal muscles, all while feeding the beneficial bacteria in the gut that improve digestive health (17Trusted Source).
Cucumbers contain a good amount of fiber and water, both of which may help prevent constipation and increase regularity.
7. Easy to Add to Your Diet
Mild with a distinctly crisp and refreshing flavor, cucumbers are commonly enjoyed fresh or pickled in everything from salads to sandwiches.
Cucumbers are also often eaten raw as a low-calorie snack or can be paired with hummus, olive oil, salt or salad dressing to add a bit more flavor.
With just a bit of creativity, cucumbers can be enjoyed in many ways.
Here are a few recipes to help incorporate cucumbers into your diet:
- Baked Cucumber Chips
- Quick Pickled Cucumbers
- Thai Cucumber Salad
- Strawberry, Lime, Cucumber and Mint-Infused Water
- Cucumber and Mint Sorbet
- Cucumber Goat Cheese Grilled Cheese
Cucumbers can be eaten fresh or pickled. They can be enjoyed as a low-calorie snack or used to add flavor in a variety of dishes.
The Bottom Line
Cucumbers are a refreshing, nutritious and incredibly versatile addition to any diet.
They are low in calories but contain many important vitamins and minerals, as well as a high water content.
Eating cucumbers may lead to many potential health benefits, including weight loss, balanced hydration, digestive regularity and lower blood sugar levels.
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Written by Rachael Link, MS, RD on May 19, 2017https://761559381aeaf757beaa4f0296277bd2.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html