Attributes: Cucumber (huáng guā), is a great summer food because of its sweet and cooling properties. From a Chinese nutrition perspective, the cooling nature of the cucumber clears heat and quenches thirst. Its sweet property guides it to the Spleen to tonify the organ and better enable it to transform and transport fluids; hence, reduce swelling and the retention of water during the summertime. It also aids in difficult urination.
How’s it eaten: In America, most people use cucumber in some sort of summer salad or pickled. What you may not know, is that many Southeast Asian countries serve cucumber with most of their meals. The reason for this is because a lot of their food is spicy and generates heat in the stomach; and in general, heat in the body. So the cucumber aids in cooling and eliminating that heat when eaten with the meal.
Nutritional facts: Cucumber gets overlooked a lot as a nutritional food, but you’d be surprised just how good it is for you. Cucumber has many health benefits such as being high in anti-oxidants, it’s an excellent anti-inflammatory food, and it also has been shown to have anti-cancer benefits as well.