Cucumber – Farmacy Friday

Consumption of cucumber in the summer season is considered very beneficial for your health. One can keep themselves hydrated in summer by consuming cucumber as it contains 90 percent water. Consuming cucumber also provides coolness and lots of energy to the body.

Earlier, it was believed that the plant originated in Africa, but recently, researchers have provided genetic proof that they are common ancestors of melon originated in India, most likely on the foothills of the Himalayas. Their findings were published in PNAS on August 10, 2010.

Along with this, many nutrients like vitamins A, C, K, potassium, lutein, and fiber are found in it. Along with this, eating cucumber also helps in weight loss. 

Ayurveda says the fruit has several medicinal properties. Cucumber seeds soaked in water, along with whole seeds of coriander overnight, are ground into a paste. It is then mixed with water and consumed as a beverage in the morning to treat heartburn and burning sensation during urination. The cucumber plant has also found recognition in modern research. A study published in Metabolic Brain Disease in February 2017 says the leaf extracts of the plant have neuro-protective properties and can protect the brain from oxidative stress caused by diabetes. Though the nutritive value of the fruit is not known, the seeds are said to have around 15 percent protein and oil content of 22 percent. Due to the high oil content, the seeds are being explored as a potential source of oil.

Here are some more health benefits of consuming cucumber.

  1. Controls Cholesterol – Cholesterol levels can be maintained by eating cucumbers. Cucumber contains an element, which we call sterol. It maintains the right cholesterol level in the body.
  2. Blood pressure also remains normal – Cucumber contains a lot of potassium which helps in keeping blood pressure normal.
  3. Kidney remains healthy – Cucumber has a lot of water content. Together with potassium, it removes uric acid and kidney impurities from the body.
  4. Panacea for skin – Cucumber is very beneficial for skin and hair. If cucumber is eaten daily, it promotes good hair growth. In addition, the skin is also glowing. By drinking cucumber juice, the spots start disappearing.
  5. Bones stay strong – Eating cucumber strengthens the bones. Vitamin K is found in very high amounts in it. Eating cucumber increases bone density and can strengthen bones.

Cucumbers require warm, dry conditions to develop optimally, preferring both warm days and warm nights and growing best at a temperature of 30°C (86°F). Cucumbers will yield best if grown in fertile, well-draining soil, rich in organic matter and with a pH between 6.5 and 7.5. Cucumbers are very sensitive to cold and should be planted in full sun and provided with ample soil moisture due to their shallow root system.

-Aditi Patel

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