Cucumber is a widely cultivated plant belonging to the gourd family, Cucurbitaceae. In general, it is known as a vegetable but scientifically speaking, cucumber is a fruit. Cucumbers were first cultivated in southern Asia but is now grown in many parts of the world. Cucumbers are very rich in nutrients and are well known for their health benefits and beauty benefits. Eating cucumbers is good for our health but only when they are consumed in moderation as excessive consumption of cucumbers is bad for our health. Some of the major side effects of eating too many cucumbers are as follows.
Side Effects Of Eating Too Many Cucumbers
(1) Can Cause Toxicity
Although cucumber is a healthy fruit it contains small patches that make it tastes bitter. These small portions of cucumber contain extremely toxic triterpenoids or cucurbitacins compounds. It is, therefore, important for us to make sure that we keep our cucumber consumption within limits and don’t overeat them.
Many of us have experienced eating cucumbers that taste very bitter and we just want to spit them out. These cucumbers are highly toxic in nature and it is better to just avoid them in all circumstances. In the same way, we should also avoid drinking cucumber juice that tastes bitter because such juice is highly susceptible to this toxic compound.
(2) Can Cause Fluid Loss and Imbalance
Eating too many cucumbers can increase the risk of fluid loss and this can result in the imbalance of the body. The main reason behind the fluid loss by overeating cucumber is because of the presence of cucurbitacin and fatty oil in the cucumber seeds.
These compounds are mild diuretic in nature, which means overeating cucumbers can increase the frequency of urination which ultimately results in loss of fluids and electrolytes from our body, causing imbalances and in extreme cases it can even lead to dehydration.
(3) Vitamins and Minerals
Cucumber flesh is a good source of vitamin C and skin of cucumber is rich in minerals in like silica,potassium and magnesium, along with the dietary fibers All these compounds are very beneficial for our health but only until they are consumed within the limitations as over-consumption of these minerals and vitamins can trigger their dark side and cause harmful side effects.
Too much of vitamin C can promote the growth of free radicals which can harm our body cells, under certain conditions and in the same way too much potassium can put a negative effect on our kidneys and excessive fiber can cause intestinal gas, bloating and abdominal cramps. We will know more about these, shortly.
(4) Side Effects Of Excessive Vitamin C
Cucumber is an excellent source of vitamin C which is an antioxidant and plays a very important role in boosting our immune system and also prevents us from many diseases and give our immune system strength to combat various diseases like scurvy and flu. Being antioxidants, it fights with the free radicals of our body, stabilize them and prevents them from damaging our body cells.
However, all these benefits of vitamin C are only when it is consumed within the recommended dosage as too much of vitamin C can harmfully effect on our body. Ingesting vitamin C acts as a pro-oxidant when it is ingested in large quantities and can trigger the growth and spread of free radicals ( instead of stabilizing them) and these free radicals can then freely roam inside our body, damage our body cells and increase the risk of cancer, acne, premature aging, etc.
Although vitamin C is water soluble and excess vitamin C get flushed out of the body along with the urine but it is best to keep vitamin C intake within limits as the frequent urination is not at all good for our health and can increase the burden on our kidneys.
(5) Excessive Water
Cucumber is an excellent source of water. In fact, almost 90 percent of cucumber’s weight is water and this water makes us feel hydrated and refreshed ( on eating cucumbers) and also provide nourishment to our skin.
However, excess consumption of cucumbers can have a very harmful effect on our body because excessive water intake can increase the total volume of blood in our body, put the strain our blood vessels and heart and can cause excessive wear and tear of kidneys by putting the burden on them.
Having too much water in our system can also imbalance the concentration of electrolytes in our body and this can give rise to health conditions that range from headaches to impaired breathing.
(6) Harmful Wax Coating
Cucumbers are a fragile fruit which means they can get broken easily. This is not at all liked by the farmers and most farmers wax the skin of cucumbers at the growing or plucking stage. This wax coating protects cucumber from insects and also minimize the risk of damage while shipping. The bad part of this step is that the wax used for coating is made up of compounds like ethyl alcohol, soaps, and milk casein ( milk casein can trigger allergic reactions towards milk in certain individuals ).
These compounds are not at all healthy for our body and-and can even cause skin reactions in certain individuals ( when peels are applied topically). It is, therefore, important for us to make sure that we only eat peeled cucumbers and, if possible, try to get organic cucumbers ( or grow your own cucumbers).
(7) High Risks of Pesticides
As per the Environmental Working Group, cucumbers ranks nine in the fifty fruits and vegetables tested for pesticides. In other words, cucumbers are highly exposed to pesticides and most of these pesticides are very bad for our health. Because of the pesticides’ risks associated with cucumbers, it is best to eat organically grown cucumbers ( or grow your own cucumbers).
However, if you find it difficult to find organic cucumbers then it is best to eat cucumbers only after thoroughly washing them with fresh water, and don’t forget to remove their peels.
(8) Was In News For Causing E. Coli Infection
Around 2014, the cucumber was in the news for causing E. Coli infection. The main factors that can lead to cause these infections by cucumbers are improper handling of cucumbers, use of animal manure as fertilizers and some other factors. Because of these factors, it is important for us to make sure that we get cucumbers only from the reputable organic sources that use properly composted animal manure as fertilizer.
(9) Can Cause Bloating, Flatulence, And Gassiness
Cucumber seeds contain a compound known as cucurbitacin. This element is toxic in nature and can trigger indigestion in certain individuals, especially in those with a sensitive digestive system. Indigestion caused by cucurbitacin can give rise to digestion problems like bloating and flatulence which then results in burps and farts ( as this is our body’s way of controlling bloating).
There are also some other vegetables like cabbage, onion, broccoli, radishes, cauliflower, etc. that can trigger gassiness in certain individuals and if you develop gas by eating these veggies then you are more likely to experience bloating, flatulence and gassiness by eating cucumbers. Because of this side effects of cucumber, it is best to eat cucumber in moderation or look out for burpless variants of cucumbers.
(10) Harmful For Renal System
Cucumber is a good source of potassium which is very beneficial for our health as it helps in controlling blood pressure, is good for our heart, prevents kidney disorders and is great for our nervous system. However, Over consumption of cucumbers can prove fatal as too much of potassium is bad for our health as it can trigger a medical condition known as hyperkalemia.
This condition can initially lead to bloating, abdominal cramps, intestinal gas, etc. and then the condition can get worse over time and starts hampering our kidney functions and damage our renal system.
(11) Can Trigger Allergic Reactions In Certain Individuals
According to American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology, some individuals are allergic (swelling or hives around your mouth, throat, and tongue ) to certain foods like ragweed pollen, melons, chamomile tea, bananas, sunflower seeds, etc. Those who are allergic to these foods are highly likely to be allergic to cucumbers because of a phenomenon known as cross-reactivity.
Those who experience these allergic reactions should avoid eating cucumbers in raw form and should replace it with another healthy salad like raw zucchini ( This is because although cooking can remove the threat of allergic reactions but traditionally cucumbers are served mainly in the form of salad in their raw form and it is, therefore, better to replace it with zucchini ).
(12) Not Suitable For Consuming While Suffering From Respiratory Problems
If you are suffering from sinusitis or any other chronic respiratory disease then you should avoid eating cucumbers. This is because cucumbers possess cooling effects ( as per Ayurveda) and this cooling effect of cucumbers can worsen the conditions of the respiratory problems resulting in complications.
(13) Eating Cucumber During Pregnancy
In general, cucumber is safe food and can be eaten during pregnancy but only when they are consumed in moderation and as per the consultation of the doctor as too much of cucumbers can cause frequent urination which will make a pregnant woman feel irritated and uncomfortable most of the times.
Cucumber is a good source of fibers which is healthy for our system but too much of fibers can cause the digestive problem like abdominal pain, bloating, flatulence, difficulty in the absorption of nutrients and so on.
The information contained in the post is for general purpose only and shouldn’t be considered as medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice. Although I’ve tried my best to keep the information contained in this post as accurate and updated as possible, I make no guarantee of the accurateness of the same.
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