Amazing benefits of cucumbers for your kid

Why should you feed cucumber to children?

Made up of approximately 95% water, cucumbers are refreshing and cooling. It is typically enjoyed raw and one of the vegetables that children usually like eating. This versatile vegetable is also very easy to add to a child’s diet. So, let’s look at the multiple benefits of eating cucumber for toddlers and children.

Helps in hydration

We get about 40% of our total water intake from food and 95% of a cucumber comprises of water and electrolytes. This makes them a great way to beat the summer heat and stay hydrated.

Good nutrition

Cucumbers are a great snack since they have very few calories and no cholesterol or fat. The nutritional content of cucumbers according to the nutritive value of Indian Foods are:

  • Energy: 13 kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 2.5 gm
  • Protein: 0.4 gm
  • Fat: 0.1 gm
  • Calcium: 10 mg
  • Phosphorus: 25 mg
  • Iron: 0.60 mg
  • Sodium (Na): 10.2 mg
  • Potassium (K): 50 mg

They also contain various phytochemicals like lignans.

Prevents constipation

Cucumbers help regulate bowel movements in a number of ways. The high water content aids in digestion and eases the passage of stool. It also has high fibre content that improves stool consistency. In addition, pectin, a particular type of fibre present in cucumbers, plays an important role in regulating bowel movements.

Anti-inflammatory

Cucumbers contain tannins and flavonoids that have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This helps reduce oxidative stress caused by free radicals and damage done by chronic illnesses. It is also known to protect children against a number of health conditions such as diabetes, autoimmune conditions, heart conditions, cancer, etc.

Home remedy for sunburn

Children have a high risk of getting sunburnt as they play outdoors in the summer. Applying a few slices of cucumber on the skin can help relieve swelling and itchiness associated with sunburn. It can also help treat damaged skin and puffiness.

Weight Management

Cucumbers have a very low calorific value and hence are a great snack. They are also very high in fibre and hence help curb hunger pangs.

Here are some interesting recipes to use cucumber for your kids

The simplest way to enjoy cucumbers is to slice them and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Alternatively, you could cut the cucumber into long pieces and serve it with a yogurt dip. Cucumbers can also be pickled and refrigerated. If your child does not like eating plain cucumbers slices, here are some interesting dishes to try.

Thai Cucumber Salad

Ingredients: 2 cucumbers, 3 green onions, ¼ cup peanuts

Dressing Ingredients: 1/3 cup rice vinegar, 2 tbsp sugar, ½ tsp red pepper flakes, ½ tsp toasted sesame oil, ½ tsp salt

Method

  • Combine all the ingredients for the dressing in a bowl and keep aside
  • Slice the cucumbers and keep in a large bowl
  • Crush the peanuts roughly
  • Add the peanuts, green onions and dressing to the cucumbers and mix well.

Baked cucumber chips

Ingredients: Cucumber and your choice of seasoning from the options below:

Option 1: Smoked paprika, garlic powder, and salt

Option 2: Onion powder, garlic, and salt

Option 3: Apple cider vinegar and salt

Option 4: Fresh lemon juice and black pepper

Method

  • Slice the cucumbers and put them in a bowl. Mix well with your favourite seasonings.
  • Line baking tray with parchment paper and place the cucumber slices on it
  • Bake the chips at 170 degrees .
  • Remove once they are dry and crisp.

Cucumber and mint sorbet

Ingredients: 2-3 large cucumbers, 150gm sugar, ¾ cup water, handful of mint

Method:

  • Mix the water, sugar and mint in a saucepan and heat over a low flame till the sugar dissolves. Keep aside to cool
  • Puree the cucumber
  • Mix the pureed cucumber and cooled syrup and blend again
  • Strain to remove the pulpy bits
  • Freeze for a few hours while stirring occasionally
  • Let the sorbet thaw for a few minutes before serving.