Though commonly thought to be a vegetable, cucumber is actually a fruit.
It’s high in beneficial nutrients, as well as certain plant compounds and antioxidants that may help treat and even prevent some conditions.
Also, cucumbers are low in calories and contain a good amount of water and soluble fiber, making them ideal for promoting hydration and aiding in weight loss.
This article takes a closer look at some of the top health benefits of eating cucumber.
1. It’s High in Nutrients
Cucumbers are low in calories but high in many important vitamins and minerals.
One 11-ounce (300-gram) unpeeled, raw cucumber contains the following:
-Total fat: 0 grams
-Carbs: 11 grams
-Protein: 2 grams
-Fiber: 2 grams
-Vitamin C: 14% of the RDI
-Vitamin K: 62% of the RDI
-Magnesium: 10% of the RDI
-Potassium: 13% of the RDI
-Manganese: 12% of the RDI
Although, the typical serving size is about one-third of a cucumber, so eating a standard portion would provide about one-third of the nutrients above.
Additionally, cucumbers have a high water content. In fact, cucumbers are made up of about 96% water.
To maximize their nutrient content, cucumbers should be eaten unpeeled. Peeling them reduces the amount of fiber, as well as certain vitamins and minerals.
Summary: Cucumbers are low in calories but high in water and several important vitamins and minerals. Eating cucumbers with the peel provides the maximum amount of nutrients.
It Contains Antioxidants
Antioxidants are molecules that block oxidation, a chemical reaction that forms highly reactive atoms with unpaired electrons known as free radicals.
The accumulation of these harmful free radicals can lead to several types of chronic illness.
In fact, oxidative stress caused by free radicals has been associated with cancer and heart, lung and autoimmune disease.
Fruits and vegetables, including cucumbers, are especially rich in beneficial antioxidants that may reduce the risk of these conditions.
One study measured the antioxidant power of cucumber by supplementing 30 older adults with cucumber powder.
At the end of the 30-day study, cucumber powder caused a significant increase in several markers of antioxidant activity and improved antioxidant status.
However, it’s important to note that the cucumber powder used in this study likely contained a greater dose of antioxidants than you would consume in a typical serving of cucumber.
Another test-tube study investigated the antioxidant properties of cucumbers and found that they contain flavonoids and tannins, which are two groups of compounds that are especially effective at blocking harmful free radicals.
Summary: Cucumbers contain antioxidants, including flavonoids and tannins, which prevent the accumulation of harmful free radicals and may reduce the risk of chronic disease.
It Promotes Hydration
Water is crucial to your body’s function, playing numerous important.
It is involved in processes like temperature regulation and the transportation of waste products and nutrients.
In fact, proper hydration can affect everything from physical performance to metabolism.
While you meet the majority of your fluid needs by drinking water or other liquids, some people may get as much as 40% of their total water intake from food
Ntubiri is a local delicacy of the Ikwerre ethnic nationality, usually prepared with water yam extract. It is commonly patronised in the day as lunch or some time at night when heavy meal is not required Ntubiri is a great source of fiber, potassium, manganese, copper, and antioxidants. It is linked to various health benefits and may boost brain health, reduce inflammation, and improve blood sugar control.
To prepare a serving for a standard family, get a standard size water yam tuber, crayfish or fresh prown, oil, periwinkle (unprocessed), pepper, salt, onion, and seasoning cube if desired.
Thoroughly wash the yam, peel and grate.Wash your fresh or dry prown, cut the periwinkle, slice your onion, and mix the yam substance with the ground crown, pepper, salt, seasoning and set aside
Set your pot on your source of heat add a little red oil. When hot, put the sliced onion and the washed periwinkle and allow to boil in the oil. Put a little water and then gently put the yam mixture, cover and allow to cook for ten minutes.
The meal can be served with any chilled drink. Enjoy your weekend.
Cowpea And Nutritional Benefits
Cowpea contains flavonoids also called bioflavonoids which are mainly found in legumes, citrus fruits, red wine, apples etc. The antioxidants are very good for the body as it helps in the fight against cancer, reduce cancer risk and other health conditions such as stroke, heart diseases and asthma.
It also contains folate which helps in the body’s red blood cell production and in dead cells regeneration.
Helps Boost the Immune System
Adding cowpeas to your diet may help in boosting your immune system, for example, some of the antioxidants which can be found in kidney beans help to remove the free radicals in the body, thus making the immune system stronger.
Cowpea is an edible bean which is predominately cultivated and eaten in Africa and Asia, and in other parts of the world especially countries in the arid areas.
There are also various species of cowpea or beans present globally, and though they may be commonly referred to as beans, they have names specific to them, this includes Black-eyed peas which are popularly referred to as White or Brown beans, Adzuki beans, Sweet beans, Black Beans, Chickpeas, Kidney beans, Mung beans, Pigeon peas, Pinto beans, Bambara beans etc.
In some countries, beans have its own local names such as Chawli for Blackeye beans in India, Chori for Adzuki beans in India, Ewa for Blackeye beans in Nigeria and also Black Beans (popularly called Akidi), Pigeon peas (fio-fio).
Beans in most countries, especially in Africa is the primary protein food source and can be specially cooked by boiling either as white beans or porridge beans; in Brazil, the black beans are cooked and served with stew and the food delicacy is known as Feijoada.
Cowpea or beans can also be processed into various nutritional grades of products for diverse purposes while maintaining its nutritional value.
Beans can be grounded into flour known as beans flour which is used in the making of moi-moi (beans pudding), Akara (beanballs or cakes) and can be commercially used as a baking flour too.
Cowpea And Nutritional Benefits
The antioxidants which are present in cowpeas and other legumes helps in the removal of the chemical substances or toxins in the body, thereby providing the body with a better health condition.
Just like other proteinous foods, cowpeas contains also tryptophan which helps to induce sleep and can help alleviate other related sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, insomnia and more.
It also helps stabilize mood swings, restless especially in the night, anxiety and more.
Helps in Weight Management
It also helps in weight loss, as the fibre (dietary fibre) content in cowpeas or beans can help in reducing appetite and craving for foods thereby eliminating situations of extra foods intake or overeating.
It also contains low calories and also has low cholesterol content.
Improves the Skin
Cowpeas is one of the bodybuilding foods which provides maximum benefits to the body in general, not only does it help in the normal functioning of the body but it also helps improve the skin.
The vitamins in cowpeas such as vitamin A and B, as well as proteins and antioxidants, present helps to improve the skin as it protects it from ageing, wrinkles, etc., and also repair the body tissues.
Makes Bone Healthier
Cowpeas also contains numerous vitamins and minerals which are good for the bone such as iron which only does not help in the prevention of anaemia but also produces collagen which is one of the major components found in the bone.
·It contains magnesium which plays a vital role in the bone structure, this mineral works together with calcium as it helps in the absorption of calcium thereby processing it to provide the bones with the firmness and strength that it needs. it also helps in keeping the calcium level in the body normal.
Manganese is also one of the minerals which can be found in cowpeas as it helps in the absorption of the mineral – calcium, and it also helps in better functioning of the nerves and brains.
·Few kinds of beans such as Pinto beans contain a small amount of calcium which is also one of the main essential nutrients that the bone needs.
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