Cucumbers are very common fruits with a lot of health benefits.

But there is so much to know about these fruits (are you thinking they are vegetables?) that they almost come across as mysterious!

Cucumbers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

They are actually 95% water.

Cucumbers can be grown where there is no soil – like in water.

A slice of cucumber pressed to the roof of your mouth for 30 seconds can kill bacteria and freshen the breath!

We could go on for quite a while.

Some cucumbers are treated with a wax coating after they are picked. Do not wash these before storing,


Cucumbers are best consumed raw. They have a mild taste and cool crunch that makes them a great addition to any salad or sandwich. But ensure that you wash them thoroughly or peel them before consumption. Also, avoid shrivelled or withered ones.

Here are some recipes you could try out:

  • Mix sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, olives, and feta cheese for a Greek-style side dish
  • Jazz up your water by adding mint leaves and cucumber
  • Slice cucumbers into thick slices and dip them in your favourite hummus
  • Combine them with cheese or sliced turkey in a sandwich
  • Cucumber juice, alone or combined with the juice of other vegetables, such as carrot and celery, makes a healthful and refreshing drink
  • Make chilled gazpacho soup out of cucumbers, tomatoes, green peppers, and onions.

Risks of cucumbers

Some people find some types of cucumber hard to digest, but the conventional, large cucumber seen on most grocery shelves are sometimes known as “burpless,” because they are easier to digest.

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Since cucumbers are relatively high in vitamin K, high consumption of them could have an effect on blood clotting. People who use warfarin (also known as Coumadin) or similar blood-thinning drugs should not increase their intake suddenly without consulting a doctor.

Each year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) produces a list of fruits and vegetables with the highest levels of pesticide residue, known as the Dirty Dozen.

Cucumbers are high on the pesticide residue list.

The EWG suggest buying organic cucumber to reduce the risk of pesticide exposure.

Some cucurbitacins are known to be toxic. Consuming these could be hazardous. People are advised not to eat the plant on which cucumbers grow, and some fruits of the same family, namely the bottle gourd, have caused illness.

The concentration of cucurbitacins in everyday cucumber are unlikely to cause toxicity, and their nutritional benefits far outweigh any risks of pesticide or natural poisoning.