Green Magic––Can Cucumbers Really Help You Lose Weight?
Cucumbers, a simple vegetable that’s easy to grow, tasty to eat and won’t make you pack on the pounds. Let’s look at how this yummy vegetable can help you lose weight and discover more about the so-called cucumber diet.
But, first, let’s take a closer look at this humble vegetable.
Cucumbers, like most other vegetables, come packed with vitamins and essentials nutrients to keep you healthy.
Two of its key vitamins are C and K. Vitamin C, famous for its connection to orange juice, helps keep your skin beautiful by supporting collegian production and works to support your bones and hair. A medium-sized cucumber can provide around 7% of your necessary daily intake––no small amount.
Meanwhile, vitamin K works in your body to aid healthy blood clotting.
Alongside their nutritional effects, cucumbers are low in calories––a medium-sized cucumber has around just 14 of them–– and is packed with water which hydrates your system and leaves you feeling fuller.
The cucumber diet for weight loss
With such acclaimed cucumber diet benefits as “lose 15 lbs in one week”, this trend has caught the eyes of the health and fitness community worldwide. But is there any truth behind these claims, what exactly is the cucumber diet plan and is it healthy?
The cucumber diet is a seven-day plan that works to increase your vitamin and water intake with cucumbers, helping you lose weight and increase your health and fitness levels.
Don’t be scared off by the name; you won’t just be eating cucumber all week. The plan is carefully tailored to provide the variety necessary to help you stick to it.
Preparing your cucumber
To peel or not to peel, that is the question. Before getting into how the plan works, it’s important to know how to prep your cucumber. Many cucumber fans choose to peel the vegetable before consuming it for fears of pesticides, while others remind that many of its nutrients are stored in its skin.
So, if you’re questioning whether to peel or not to peel, look at where it was grown, if it is organic or not. If you are in doubt, it may be best to be on the safe side and get out that peeler. However, whatever the case, make sure to give your cucumber a good wash before eating––food safety first.
This is the seven-day cucumber diet plan, within the diet you’re free to mix and match the food combinations you choose and work to increase your cucumber intake.
The cucumber diet will only work if you make sensible food choices alongside your cucumber. Burgers and cucumber, chocolate and cucumber, fries and cucumber––not going to work.
Cucumber is already a stable in many continental breakfasts and for good reason too. These are our favorite cucumber-based breakfasts:
- Cucumber and cheese on whole-wheat crackers
- Cucumber and boiled eggs
- Cucumber salad
Eating regularly helps you avoid that hungry feeling that leads you to choose unhealthy snacks. These cucumber-based snacks help fill you up. Be sure to aim for at least two snacks day:
- Cucumber smoothies. Mix your cucumber with a variety of other fruits and vegetables including apples, avocado, lime, pineapple, spinach and more
- Sliced cucumbers on their own
- Cucumber and egg salad
Lunch is calling
Around 1 pm we all start to feel that tummy rumble, that means it’s time for lunch. There are our suggestions:
- Cucumber salad with cheese, lemon juice and olive oil
- Cucumber, cheese, and orange mix
- Fresh vegetable salad with cucumber, sweet peppers and tomatoes
- Grilled salmon and cucumber salad
- Cous cous and cucumber salad
- Brown rice with chicken breast and cucumbers
- Greek-style salad with feta cheese and cucumbers
Time to dine
Now you’re at home it’s hard to resist fridge temptations as you round up the day, but there’s no excuse for not sticking to the plan and keeping your diet healthy. Why not try these tasty dinners:
- Cucumber salad, olive oil, olives and feta cheese
- Fresh vegetable salad with cucumbers, carrots and beetroot
- Cottage cheese and cucumber dinner-time snack
- Cucumber and pea salad
- Fresh roasted vegetable and cucumber side salad
- Roasted chicken and cucumber-avocado salad
Cucumber diet benefits and risks––is it healthy?
While the cucumber diet certain has its benefits, including weight loss, less spent at your weekly food shop and improved digestion from a ‘simple’ diet, it does have its downsides too.
In the long-term you may become deficient in certain vitamin groups, as the diet is pretty restrictive. In addition, it’s low-calorie nature may leave you feeling a little lethargic and hungry.
If you’re seeking a short-term healthy solution to kick start an overall fitness regime, the cucumber diet may be just the trick to get you started on the right path.
But, as a long-term weightless solution, the diet is lacking in the number of calories and variety to keep you happy and healthy. In short:
- Quick weight loss
- Great way to kick start a wider regime change
- For a longer time period, the diet is restrictive
- You may need to add extra vitamins
- Low calories may leave you tired and hungry