A useful and inspiring guide to eating healthy, natural foods… By Katie Panamarenko
I name this column “Kooky Quirks About Cucs.” I know some folks who have had lots of luck this year growing their own cucumbers. Which is excellent news, considering these fun ways, which I found via the internet, to use the diverse, easy-to-grow vegetable beyond a crunch in salad.
1. Taking your vitamins? Cucumbers contain most of the vitamins you need, including vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, C, folic acid, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc.
2. Tired? Grab a Snickers or a cucumber! Cucumbers are a good source of B vitamins and carbohydrates, providing a quick pick-me-up that can last for hours.
3. All fogged up in the bathroom? Try rubbing a cucumber slice along the mirror. It will eliminate the fog after a hot shower and provide a soothing, spa-like fragrance.
4. Got grubs and slugs? Place a few slices of cucumber in a small pie tin and your garden will be free of pests all season long. The chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give off a scent humans can’t smell but pests can’t stand.
5. Cellulite cramping your style? Try rubbing a slice or two of cucumber along your problem area for a few minutes. The phytochemicals in the cucumber cause the collagen in your skin to tighten, firming up the outer layer and reducing the visibility of cellulite. Works on wrinkles too!
6. Who needs a hangover? Eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed and wake up refreshed with no headache. Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish essential nutrients, keeping everything in balance.
7. Got munchies? Cucumbers have been used for centuries by European trappers, traders and explorers for quick meals to thwart starvation.
8. Out of WD-40 and need to fix a squeaky hinge? Take a cucumber slice, rub it along the offending hinge, and – voila! – the squeak is gone.
9. Stressed out? Cut up an entire cucumber and place it in a boiling pot of water. The chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber will be released in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma that has been shown the reduce stress.
10. Need not a Tic nor Tac but the whole damn pack? Press a slice of cucumber to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds to eliminate bad breath.
11. Looking for a green way to clean your stainless steel? Rub a slice of cucumber on the surface you want to clean – not only will it remove tarnish and bring back the shine, but it won’t leave streaks or harm your fingers or fingernails while you clean.