The heavy snow of 2010 certainly showed some of us how weak our bones, cartilage or tendons can become if we don’t look after them. There was an epic number of breaks and fractures in my area. So I started reading about bone health. One simple food popped up – Cucumber, also useful for weight-loss.
Nutrition is important for bone health and in another article on this site I list all the nutrients required and the role they play in bone health.
Recently, I came across a paper on silica/silicon and its importance to bone health. 1
Silicon gives strength and density to our bones, tendons, ligaments, muscles, cartilage and skin.
Sources of Silicon
Drinking water is a source of silicon. Hard water typically has higher silicon levels than soft water.
Cucumbers are a source of silicon. It is found in the outer skin therefore it is important to try buy organic and eat the skin. It is also found in oats, oat bran, whole grains, fruits, cereals, beer and vegetables such as green beans. All of these foods are included in my food plans.
Other health benefits in Cucumbers
Cucumbers, composed mainly of water help to relieve water retention. There are 2 compounds in cucumber – ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and caffeic acid (a flavonoid) which may help to reduce inflammation. For example. they are often used topically to help skin irritations, sunburn and swollen eyes.
Serving ideas for Cucumber
1. Dice a cucumber into small pieces, added a generous serving of chopped fresh mint and mixed it with a small amount of apple cider vinegar and lime juice. Serve with fish, tomato salsa and a 3-bean mix.
2. You could cut a thick circle of cucumber and use as a base for finger foods – low-fat cream cheese or hummus topping
3. It makes a great chilled Summer soup with tabasco and low-fat probiotic yoghurt adding prawn or crab for protein balance
1. Jugdaohsingh R. (2007) Silicon and Bone Health. J Nutr Health Aging;11(2): 99–110.
Joan Moloney is a weight-loss nutritionist and motivational coach to help you achieve you goals.