Benefits of Cucumbers – Who Knew?

cucumbers

Cucumbers are the fourth most cultivated vegetable in the world and known to be one of the best foods for your body’s overall health, often referred to as a superfood. Cucumbers are often sprayed with pesticides so it is important to buy organic or even better, grow them yourself.

Here are 10 Benefits of cucumbers:

1.Quick pick me-up – Cucumbers are a good source of B vitamins. Put down your sodas and coffee and eat a cucumber slice.

2. Rehydrates body and replenishes daily vitamins – Cucumbers are 95 percent water, keeping the body hydrated while helping the body eliminate toxins. Cucumbers have most of the vitamins the body needs in a single day. Don’t forget to leave the skin on because the skin contains a good amount of vitamin C, about 10 percent of the daily-recommended allowance.

3. Skin and hair care – If you don’t like to eat the skin, it can be used for skin irritations and sunburns as aloe would be used. Place a slice over puffy eyes and its anti-inflammatory properties help reduce puffiness. The silicon and sulfur in cucumbers help to stimulate hair growth.

4. Fight cancers – Cucumber are known to contain lariciresinol, pinoresinol, and secoisolariciresinol. These three lignans have a strong history of research in connection with reduced risk of several cancer types, including breast cancer, ovarian cancer, uterine cancer and prostate cancer.

5. Home care – Eliminates a foggy mirror. Before taking a shower, rub a cucumber slice along a mirror and it will eliminate the mirror fogging up. Instead of WD40, take a cucumber slice and rub it along a squeaky hinge and your door will stop squeaking.

6. Relieves bad breath – Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds, the phytochemcials will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath.

7. Hangover cure – To avoid a morning hangover or headache; eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed. Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish many essential nutrients, reducing the intensity of both hangover and headache.

8. Aids in weight loss and digestion – Due to its low calorie and high water content, cucumber is an ideal diet for people who are looking for weight loss. The high water content and dietary fiber in cucumbers are very effective in ridding the body of toxins from the digestive system, aiding digestion. Daily consumption of cucumbers can be regarded as a remedy for chronic constipation.

9. Cures diabetes, reduces cholesterol and controls blood pressure – Cucumber juice contains a hormone which is needed by the cells of the pancreas for producing insulin which has been found to be beneficial to diabetic patients. Researchers found that a compound called sterols in cucumbers may help reduce cholesterol levels. Cucumbers contain a lot of potassium, magnesium and fiber. These work effectively for regulating blood pressure. This makes cucumbers good for treating both low blood pressure and high blood pressure.

10. Promotes joint health, relieves gout and arthritis pain -Cucumber is an excellent source of silica, which is known to help promotes joint health by strengthening the connective tissues. They are also rich in vitamin A, B1, B6, C & D, Folate, Calcium, Magnesium, and Potassium. When mixed with carrot juice, they can relieve gout and arthritis pain by lowering the uric acid levels

Sources for this article:

http://www.gardeningchannel.com/the-health-benefits-of-cucumbers/
http://www.healthonlinezine.info/15-health-benefits-of-cucumber.html
http://www.eatingwell.com
http://www.naturalnews.com/035719_cucumbers_anti-aging_vegetables.html

Juicing vs. Blending – Choose your favorite

We choose blending because we want the whole fruit and veggies not separated high level of sugar. Our blender is not as messy as our juicer was. We sold our juicer in a garage sale. We also take Juice Plus capsules which has whole fruits and veggies so we eat a lot of good stuff every day. 27 fruits and veggies a day in capsule form plus what we blend. See more on our website, click the Buy tab and place your order for better health. www.strauch.juiceplus.com

Weight Loss with Juice Plus Complete Shake

For Breakfast and Supper

Take 2-3 cups spinach (organic baby spinach) or a mix of kale, parsley or other raw, fresh greens together, 3-6 frozen strawberries or ½- 1 cup of fresh or frozen berries, 1 heaping TBSP of the chocolate or vanilla Juice Plus+ Complete , 1 TBSP of fresh ground, organic golden flax seed (use a coffee grinder to grind up enough to last for a week and put it in the freezer) combined with enough water to fill at least half the volume of the container or use all water and then top with unsweetened almond milk  and this will make a super green smoothie.

I recommend using a large blender and filling the greens to about ½ to 2/3 full, followed by the Complete and flaxseed, topped off by the berries and then I add the water to ½ to 2/3 up the blender, and top off with the almond milk.   Blend well! 

This should make a good 20-30 oz smoothie. You can certainly increase the water and greens and make it even bigger! 

Image www.strauchjuiceplus.com

For Lunch

Eat a big veggie meal with a small portion of organic or wild meat if you want meat (with no potatoes) and you can eat some small amounts of whole grains (1/2 cup).  For snacks consider raw veggies and/or a few nuts.  NO BREAD, NO PASTA, NO PROCESSED FOODS-COOKIES, CAKES, CRACKERS, CHIPS. 

Drink at least half your weight in ounces of water per day and for weight loss purposes even more!  This will be a fantastic weight loss regimen!!

For snacks

You may eat the Juice Plus+ Orchard, Garden and Vineyard Blend soft chews for something sweet!

Take four Orchard, Garden and Vineyard Blend capsules to give your body a lot of extra phytonutrients!

I suggest taking the 4 Orchard for breakfast, 4 Garden for lunch and the 4 Vineyard for the evening meal.  This allows your body to detox and sends signals to your liver to access fat stores.  The bottom line is to take as much Juice Plus+ as you can afford!

Crucial to this program is regular physical activity, a 30 minute walk at least 5 days per week at a brisk pace and some sort of resistance training twice per week if at all possible.  The resistance training sessions can take the place of the walk if you are breathing harder than normal during your workouts.

Is Nectresse Truly a Natural Sweetener? Read Below.

The makers of the artificial sweetener, Splenda, recently released a new sweetener, Nectresse, which is being marketed as a natural, zero calorie, healthy alternative to artificial sweeteners and sugar. Is it really natural or is it just tricky marketing to target health-minded consumers? We’ve done some research to help you make an educated decision.

The Nectresse website claims that the product is 100% natural and made from monk fruit. Monk fruit is an Asian melon that releases its sweetness when heated and is 150 times sweeter than sugar. The process to create Nectresse is described on their website as the following:

  1. The monk fruit is picked fresh from the vine.
  2. The fruit is then crushed to access the sweet extract.
  3. The crushed fruit is then soaked in hot water to release its sweetness.
  4. The monk fruit-infused water is filtered and dried to create monk fruit extract.
  5. The extract is then blended with other natural sweeteners to create NECTRESSE™ Sweetener.
It sounded good up until #5. They do not disclose what other natural sweeteners are used. We learn from this that there are other natural sweeteners AND other ingredients. So what are they? The first ingredient, which is always the most abundant, is erythritol. Erythritol is a sugar alcohol frequently derived from corn, which we know to be one of the largest genetically modified crops in the United States. There is no claim as to whether or not GM corn is used, but we will note that typically if it is NOT genetically modified, they make it known. The second ingredient in Nectressed is sugar, another  ingredient that is typically derived from a genetically modified crop (sugar beets) and is also refined. Monk fruit is listed as the third ingredient, which we discussed its role earlier. And the last ingredient in Nectresse is molasses, which is a sugar and typically a derivative of genetically modified sugar beets.

Besides monk fruit, the other three ingredients look to be derived from genetically modified crops and two of the ingredients are refined sugars.  The company can legally claim under the FDA guidelines  that Nectresse is zero calories per serving because erythritol is the most abundant ingredient used and is a sugar alcohol. Clearly, Nectresse is far from being a natural product due to the extremely high possibility that its ingredients are derived from bioengineered crops and sources. Monk fruit is very much a natural product, but paired with 3 other GM bi-products, Nectresse can hardly be thought of as natural.

Monk fruit can be up to 200 times sweeter than sugar because it contains natural antioxidants that have a very strong, sweet taste. The antioxidants in monk fruit, known as mogrosides, contain zero calories. Therefore, monk fruit is a healthy alternative to artificial zero calorie sweeteners. However, Nectresse is an impure version of monk fruit that is just one more example of the food industry’s ability to tap into the health-minded community of consumers. Don’t be fooled by this sly marketing attempt!

I recommend Stevia or Xylitol if you are searching for a zero calorie sweetener. You can find these sweeteners in the vitamin or baking aisles of your local health food store. Both products can be purchased in individual packets or canisters.

Sources:

www.nectresse.com

http://www.naturalnews.com/036719_Splenda_Nectresse_ingredients.html

http://360yourlife.com/category-nutrition/choosing-a-better-sweetener/