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"Cool as a cucumber" isn't just a catchy phrase. The inner temperature of a cucumber can be up to
20 degrees cooler than the outside air. No wonder these are such a summertime favorite! 
Cucumbers were believed to have originated in India and spread through Greece and Italy. They
made their way into North America agriculture by the mid-16 century. Cool and moist due to their
high water content. "Cukes" belong to the same family as pumpkins, zucchini, watermelon and
other squashes. 
Serving size 1/2 cup, sliced with skin (52g)
Amounts Per Serving % Daily Value
Calories from Fat 0 0
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Sodium 0mg 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 2g 1%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Vitamin A 2%
Vitamin C 2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
There are several varieties of cucumber; the most popular are English, Persian, and Pickling
cucumbers. All these varieties are available year round.
Persian cucumbers are also known as regular cucumbers with soft, edible seeds. The skin is often
waxed to seal in moisture.
English cucumbers are sometimes known as gourmet cucumbers, "burpless", or seedless
cucumbers. This variety has seeds that are very small but do not need to be removed. Longer and
thinner than regular cucumbers this variety is usually shrink-wrapped to seal in moisture because
they are not waxed.
It’s important to look for firm cucumbers with rich green color and no soft spots. Cucumbers that
bulge in the middle, usually most likely means its filled with large watery seeds and tasteless flesh.
In a study, researchers from Cornell University selected 10 common vegetables and assayed their
phenolic contents. They found, broccoli possessed the highest total phenolic content, followed by
spinach, yellow onion, red pepper, carrot, cabbage, potato, lettuce, celery, and cucumber. 
 Chu YF, Sun J, Wu X, Liu RH. Antioxidant and antiproliferative activities of common vegetables.
J Agric Food Chem. 2002 Nov 6;50(23):6910-6.  fruitsandveggiesmatter.gov (a CDC website)