Thursday

Secrets of a Little Green Gem?


I couldn't decide whether to write about this little green gem here -  or on The RV Gourmet  blog.  Although many may be aware of this little, long and green powerhouse of a veggie, I'll bet there's some new things you find in these FAQ's and brief history of this humble fruit of a vine:

Cucumber
Cucumber plants naturally thrive in both temperate and tropical environments, and generally require temperatures between 60-90°F/15-33°C. For this reason, they are native to many regions of the world.  The first cucumbers were likely to have originated in Western Asia (and perhaps more specifically in India) or parts of the Middle East. Cucumbers are mentioned in the legend of Gilgamesh--a king who lived around 2500 BC in what is now Iraq and Kuwait. It was approximately 3,300 years later when cucumber cultivation spread to parts of Europe, including France. And it was not until the time of the European colonists that cucumbers finally appeared in North America in the 1500's.Today they are widely available all year long.  As RVers, we can pick them up in virtually any state in which we travel.  Here in Texas, local farmers markets sell them for a fraction of grocery store prices and they are usually wax free.  Wax is not always a bad thing but can contain sprays containing chemicals.

Cucumbers contain most of the vitamins you need every day.  Just one cucumber contains Vitamin

B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Zinc.


Feeling tired in the afternoon, put down the caffeinated soda and pick up a cucumber. Cucumbers are a good source of B Vitamins and Carbohydrates that can provide that quick pick-me-up that can last for
hours.


Fogged Mirror
Tired of your bathroom mirror fogging up after a shower? Try rubbing a cucumber slice along the mirror, it will eliminate the fog and provide a soothing, spa-like fragrance. (Can't wait to test that one.)


Are grubs and slugs ruining your planting beds? Place a few slices 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 undetectable to humans but drive garden pests crazy and make them flee the area.


Looking for a fast and easy way to remove cellulite before going out or to the pool? Try rubbing a slice or two of cucumbers 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 great on wrinkles, too!


man with headache
Want to avoid a hangover or a terrible headache? Eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed and wake up refreshed and headache free.  Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish essential nutrients the body lost, keeping everything in equilibrium, avoiding both a hangover and headache!!


Looking to fight off that afternoon or evening snacking binge? Cucumbers have been used for centuries and often used by European trappers, traders and explores for quick meals to thwart off starvation.


cucumber shoe shine
Have an important meeting or job interview and you realize that you don't have enough time to polish your shoes?  Rub a freshly cut cucumber over the shoe, its chemicals will provide a quick and durable shine that not only looks great but also repels water.


Out of WD 40 and need to fix a squeaky hinge?  Take a cucumber slice and rub it along the problematic hinge, and voila, the squeak is gone!


Stressed out and don't have time for massage, facial or visit to the spa?  Cut up an entire Cucumber and

place it in a boiling pot of water,  the chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber with react with the boiling water and be released in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma that has been shown the reduce stress in new mothers and college students during final exams.


Just finish a Business lunch and realize you don't have gum or mints?  Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds to eliminate bad breath.  The Phytochemcials will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath.
red crayon on walls

Looking for a 'green' way to clean your faucets, sinks or stainless steel?  Take a slice of cucumber and rub it on the surface you want to clean.  Not only will it remove years of tarnish and bring back the shine, but it won't leave streaks and won't harm your fingers or fingernails while you clean.


Using a Pen and made a mistake?  Take the outside of the Cucumber and slowly use it to erase the pen writing. Also works great on crayons and markers that the kids have used to decorate the Walls!

Cucumbers can be used on sunburns to cool and soothe.  Many have heard of cooling hot and tired eyes with cucumber slices.  They are also purported to have anti-inflammatory affects.

Cut a cucumber in chunks and place in water on a stove. Simmer. Enjoy the wonderful aroma.
Dab some cucumber behind your ears and on your wrists. You will smell delicious!

So during these hot summer months, use some of these tips to stay "cool as a cucumber." 


Teri Blaschke is the RV Park operator of family owned HiddenValley RV Park in San Antonio, TX and writer of the park blog “A Little Piece of Country in San Antonio.” Teri contributes to various other blogs with a focus on either travel or social media and how it relates to the outdoor hospitality industry but her passion is serving the RV travel community by providing a memorable RV camping experience and growing the Hidden Valley RV family.  Connect with , Facebook and Twitter@HiddenValleyRV
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