Cucumbers ( Cucumis sativus ) fall under a similar family as squashes or melons. Commercially cultivated cucumbers classically fall under 2 forms i.e., slicing cucumbers (for fresh intake) and pickling cucumbers (for getting processed into pickles). It also has immense health benefits and cucumber is good for diabetes.
Cucumber is rich in antioxidants, chiefly in their skin. These substances aid a person’s body process and get rid of free radicals. This helps in reducing the risk of medical problems such as cardiovascular disorders, diabetes, or cancer.
In addition, cucumber contains the mineral potassium. It aids in renal working, communication of body cells, and contraction of muscles. In the absence of potassium, a person might observe issues related to cardiac working and blood pressure.
Besides potassium and antioxidants, cucumber contains rich amounts of:
- Vitamin K
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Nutrients Per Serving
Half a cup serving of cucumber consists of:
- Calories: 8
- Carbs: 2 g
- Sugar: 1 g
- Fat: below 1 g
- Fiber: below 1 g
- Protein: below 1 g
As cucumber contains fewer calories, it’s difficult to consume in excess when the topic of weight loss comes. Yet, consuming an excess of anything may create uneasiness. Consuming cucumber in excess may result in stomach pain or GI problems. On the whole, it’s good to consume some ounces of cucumber at a time to avoid stomach problems.
Cucumber contains phytochemicals with defensive or disease preventive properties. These phytocompounds can be flavonoids, lignans, and triterpenes.
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Glycemic Index of Cucumber
Even if, it is presently uncertain whether cucumbers may reduce the levels of blood glucose, low-carbohydrate vegetables contain many other benefits. Cucumbers contain a very low GI score, which indicates they fail to add to high blood glucose levels.
In explanatory terms, the GI assesses the effect the carbohydrates present in a particular food product would exert on the blood glucose levels. Glucose contains a glycemic index of 100. As per the Glycemic Index Foundation, a glycemic index of less than 55 shows that a food product would exert less effect on blood glucose levels. Also, a glycemic index of more than 70 indicates that a food product would create a higher (or possibly poor) effect on glucose levels.
The cucumber glycemic index is 15, which is very low. This is due to the reason that cucumbers are non-starchy veggies. This indicates that they comprise slight or no carbs. This is significant for diabetic patients as the consumption of carbohydrates increases normal blood glucose levels. The ADA strongly promotes the consumption of too many non-starchy foods. And, this is the food group that diabetic patients don’t require to consume within limits.
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Cucumber Sugar Content and Fiber Content
Another reason low-carbohydrate, non-starchy vegetables are great for diabetic patients is their high fiber content. Fiber delays the body’s capability to absorb sugar. This causes reduced blood glucose levels. It is also recommended that non-starchy veggies such as cucumbers work great for regular high blood glucose levels.
It’s all about the fiber content. Thus, cucumbers offer the utmost health benefits for diabetic patients. One cucumber (skin intact) contains nearly 1.5 g of fiber, which is around 6% of the daily value.
The fiber content of cucumbers or other non-starchy veggies adds to a sensation of fullness. This might aid in preventing prediabetics or type 2 diabetics from consuming excessive calories and gaining weight. And, this might worsen the condition.
Moreover, the sugar in cucumber is pretty less i.e., one whole cucumber packs at least 5 g of sugar. In addition, the low-carbohydrate vegetable is a complete source of potassium and vitamin C and contains fewer calories. One whole cucumber contains around 45 calories.
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Cucumber for Diabetes
Is cucumber good for diabetic patients? Yes, if a person is diabetic, he or she may consume cucumbers. As they contain fewer carbs, a person may have as many as he or she wishes to consume at any time as well.
The ADA considers cucumber a non-starchy veggie, the “one food group where a person can please his or her appetite. A study even proposed that a low-calorie meal plan with non-starchy veggies may be efficacious in reversing type 2 diabetes.
Benefits of Cucumber for Diabetes
Cucumber contains rich amounts of fiber and lesser calories. This makes it an excellent fruit to consume by diabetics to regulate their glucose levels.
- Packs antioxidants
- Improves the production of insulin
- Lowers the risks of kidney stones
- Helps in weight loss
- Reduces the levels of blood sugar and blood pressure
- Keeps a person hydrated
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Cucumber and Diabetes Research Support
Research studies relating cucumber extracts to reduced blood sugars exist, however they’re very less. More studies are essential.
A study observed that diabetic rats had a reduced blood glucose level after a 9-day diet of cucumber seed extract. Another study found that the phytonutrients present in cucumber are associated with blood glucose-lowering effects in diabetic rats. Another study established that cucumber pulp might be utilized successfully for treating or managing diabetes in rats. These research studies made use of cucumber extracts. There’s no data those whole cucumbers might offer similar advantages.
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Health Benefits of Cucumber
The antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals present in cucumber offer important health benefits. For instance, cucumber skin packs beta-carotene, which provides cucumber its rich green color. The carotene family of pigments is significant provitamin. A person’s body can convert beta-carotene into vitamin A. It is a crucial vitamin for maintaining the health of the eyes and skin.
Other cucumber benefits can be:
Cucumbers pack nutrients that work as antioxidants. These antioxidants might exert strong effects, as per a few studies. One such study confirmed the power of cucumber powder and established that including cucumber in a meal plan considerably augments the antioxidant activity of a person’s body. It is found that cucumber root is a safe way of receiving more dietary antioxidants effortlessly.
Cucumber For Weight Loss
Cucumber contains much fewer calories. A whole cucumber usually said as being 8.25 inches long or 300 g, contains only 45 calories. Cucumbers contain more than 96% water, hence they’re filling and nourishing but not calorie-packed. This low-calorie, high-water blend works well in weight loss. Research indicates that consuming food products with low energy density, or few calories per gram, is associated with weight management in obese individuals. Cucumbers are another name for food having a low energy density. Thus, including cucumbers in a diet might aid in maintaining or lowering a person’s weight.
Cucumber for Lower Blood Glucose Levels
To conclude, cucumbers contain fewer carbs, hence they might be a good alternative for diabetic patients. Early trials propose that kheera is one of the successful plants for lowering glucose levels and also reducing hypoglycemia risk when glucose levels go too low. For diabetics, cucumber might be a useful inclusion in their meals to moderate their glucose levels efficiently.
Low-Carbohydrate Options for Diabetics
Below are listed some of the low-carb foods for diabetics:
It’s super low in carbohydrates and packs vitamins A, C, and K. In addition, cucumber packs fiber and iron. People must search for florets that are firmly packed together and are dark green in color.
It contains rich amounts of vitamin K, beta-carotene, and folate. All of this work great for people with high blood sugar. People toss them into their bowls full of curries, salads, or soups.
Tomatoes pack vitamin C, vitamin A, and potassium. They are low-calorie and low-carb alternatives.
Another low-carb vegetable, cauliflower might be a benefit to a diabetes diet. It contains fiber, potassium, vitamin C, and folate. All of these are useful for people with diabetes.
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How to have Cucumber in Diabetes?
Peel a fresh, green cucumber and slice it into little pieces. Then, add these kheera slices into a juicer or blender, and mix some water, salt, and sugar as per taste. After that, transfer the drink into a mesh and add ice to augment the taste.
Cut down a freshly peeled cucumber into very small pieces. After that, combine it with some chopped fruits and veggies as per choice. Add some sauces or spices to give the salad an exceptional flavor.
Mix a spoonful of salt, sugar, and pepper into a freshly prepared curd. After that, add a pinch of roasted cumin seeds. Combine everything nicely and include some grated kheera to make the Raita.
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Best Time to Eat Cucumber for Diabetics
The best time to have kheera is prior to lunch (nearly 15 minutes before). Also, it is recommended not to have cucumber at night as it comprises large quantities of water. And, this might interrupt a person’s digestion while he or she is asleep. Moreover, a person may have cucumber for breakfast or evening snacks.
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What are the Risks of the Over-Consumption of Cucumbers in Diabetics?
Having too many cucumbers might result in hypersensitivity, weak digestion, toxicity, and blood clotting.
- Too much intake of cucumber might delay the process of digestion. This may cause indigestion.
- High Vitamin K content present in cucumbers can result in blood clotting.
- Might result in allergies.
Even if, more studies are required to determine whether cucumbers can be an effective treatment for people with high blood sugars, they’re a nourishing veggie that people may eat freely in their diabetic-friendly diet. They must discuss with their healthcare providers a diet that may aid in managing their blood sugars.
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Is raw cucumber effective for anyone?
Raw cucumber is high in useful nutrients, antioxidants, and various plant compounds. All of them aid in treating or even preventing some health problems. Moreover, cucumbers contain fewer calories, a good quantity of water, and soluble fiber. This makes cucumber an ideal vegetable for supporting hydration and helping in weight management.
Is it good to have cucumber in a fasting state?
The high quantities of tannic acid would cause acidity that would cause gastric ulcers. Even, kheera is difficult to get digested in a fasting state. Hence, always avoid raw veggies and make a salad later in the day.
What occurs if a person consumes too many cucumbers?
Cucurbitacin causes a bitter taste. In addition, this is why people experience acidity or indigestion. These uneasy signs may take place if you consume an excess of cucumbers at a time.
Who must avoid the consumption of cucumber?
Cucumber is not a friendly snack for individuals with sensitive stomachs. It comprises a constituent known as cucurbitacin. It is a strong constituent famous for resulting in indigestion issues.
Last Updated on by Dr. Damanjit Duggal
The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.