With their high water content and low-calorie count of just 16 calories per cup, cucumbers seem to be a great addition to a healthy diet. However, while they offer a wide range of additional health benefits, they can have a few unwelcome side effects as well like bloating and gas.
Do Cucumbers Cause Gas?
Like a number of other foods such as cauliflower, broccoli, green pepper and Brussel sprouts, cucumber can cause gas as well as indigestion. Why does it cause us to feel bloated and gassy?
A common culprit for causing gas is cucurbitane which can be found in cucumbers. It also contributes to upset stomachs, indigestion, and burping and is often the cause of the bitter taste some cucumbers produce. Climate and the soil where the cucumbers are grown can affect the amount of cucurbitacin cucumbers contain, so it is often difficult to tell which ones have more of this substance than others.
One way to avoid the unpleasant side effects cucumbers can cause is to remove the peel. Most of the cucurbitacin is found in the peels and outer flesh of the cucumbers as well as around the stems ends. As you are peeling the skin off the cucumber, continually wash the knife or peeler you are using to rid it of the substance. Or you can find and buy “bitter free' or “burpless” cucumbers.
What's more, cucumber seeds can cause your stomach to become upset if you have diverticular disease. This is a disease that can affect 10% of people of 40 and 50% of people of 60. It is due to small pouches forming in the lining of the colon or large intestines. People with diverticulosis can suffer from inflammation of these pouches leading to diverticulitis. While it is more likely that harder seeds like sunflowers seeds will cause gas and bloating, those who have extremely sensitive diverticulitis can feel these effects from cucumber seeds.
Do cucumbers cause gas if you grow them yourself? Well, you can buy cucumber seeds that are burpless or bitter free to help reduce the gas effects they can cause. The bitterness can also be avoided by ensuring they get plenty of water. Plant them with mulch to help keep moisture in as well. It is also important to have your soil tested to reduce the stress on the cucumbers.
Any Other Possible Side Effects of Having Cucumbers?
They can hide toxins
Aside from cucurbitacins, cucumbers can also contain other toxins such as tetracyclic triterpenoids. These toxins can also contribute to the bitter taste some cucumbers have, which is a cause for concern. Eating an excessive amount of cucumbers can be life threatening.
The cucurbitacin found in the cucumber seeds can possess diuretic properties. While this is often a mild presence if large quantities are consumed, it can still cause some harmful effects. The diuretic properties can cause the elimination of fluids from your body which will break off the balance of your electrolytes. This can lead to severe dehydration.
Excess vitamin C
While vitamin C is highly beneficial to the body because of its antioxidant compounds, immune boosting qualities, as well as its ability to combat and fight against a number of health conditions, excess of proper amount can be harmful. Excess vitamin C can trigger the growth of free radicals and allows them to easily spread. These free radicals put you at a higher risk of a number of health conditions from acne to cancer.
Renal system damage
If your body contains too much potassium, it can result in hyperkalemia. This condition can cause cramps, bloating as well as intestinal gas. Over time the condition can even worsen, resulting in the kidneys being unable to function properly which causes damage to the renal system.
Pressure on the heart
Do cucumbers cause gas because of the high amount of water found in them? Not likely, but, since cucumbers are more the 90% of water and are high in fiber, excess water can lead to a higher volume of blood. This can cause stress to the heart and blood vessels, which over time can lead to damage. The excess water also throws off the electrolyte levels in the blood and can cause seepage into the cells, resulting in headaches and difficulty breathing.
Some people have showed an allergic reaction to cucumbers if they have a milk allergy. Farmers often spray their crops with a wax coat to protect certain vegetables against insects. These waxes often contain milk casein and other various ingredients so that those who are allergic to milk can have an allergic reaction from this milk casein.
Oral and skin allergies can also be caused from cucumbers. People who have ragweed pollen, melon, chamomile, banana, and sunflower seed allergies should avoid eating cucumbers. While cooking them often eliminates the allergic reaction threat, it is safer to substitute zucchini instead.
Those who suffer from respiratory conditions like sinusitis should avoid consuming cucumbers. It is possible that the cooling effects of cucumber can cause complications with these conditions.
Eating cucumber while pregnant
Most women can eat cucumbers while pregnant with no problems, but there are a few instances where you might want to avoid them.
They will cause you to have to urinate more because of their diuretic properties.
The fiber content can cause additional bloating and cause abdominal pain or distended tummy.
Since you have known the answer to "Do cucumbers cause gas" as well as some other possible side effects, you'll want to consider these tips to help minimize these side effects.
Always wash your cucumber with running water before you eat them.
To help avoid toxins, remove the peels of the cucumber where these toxins hide.
Consider sauteing or grilling your cucumbers if you are having an issue with digesting problem.