Do you know Zucchini? It is also known as courgette, is a summer squash that is native to the Americas. It belongs to the species, Cucurbita people, along with a few other types of squashes and pumpkins. Zucchini is usually dark or light green; there’s also the golden zucchini, a variety which is deep yellow in color, or sometimes orange. You really don`t want to miss this discourse on this amazing fruit.
Zucchini Has a Number of Varieties
Let’s take a quick look.
- Black Zucchini
Its skin is dark green, and its fruit has white flesh. It’s the most common variety of zucchini.
- Gold Zucchini
This has got golden fruit.
- Aristocrat Zucchini
It’s got fruit with waxy skin; it’s green in color.
- Zucchini Gadzukes
This is a green fruit with distinct light green ridges.
What are Zucchini’s Benefits?
Because it’s a low-starch fruit, it is low in carbohydrates and high in fiber. Its fiber content fills you up so much that you can’t have any room for overeating.
What else makes Zucchini perfect for weight loss? It requires more chewing, hence limited quantity is consumed.
It Improves Heart Health
Zucchini is low in cholesterol, fat, and sodium. It is good for maintaining a balance of carbohydrates. These make it a perfect choice for a healthy heart.
Also, fiber in zucchini makes it fit for lowering the risks of stroke, heart disease, and hypertension.
And, folate in zucchini makes it perfect for reducing the risk of heart disease.
Potassium and magnesium found in zucchini ensure proper functioning of the heart.
What about riboflavin? It’s a B-complex vitamin that is essential for energy production. Riboflavin has been found to have some connections with maintaining a healthy heart.
It Improves Eye Health
Zucchini is rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants that prevent age-related macular degeneration. It is also a rich source of vitamin A; and of course, that vitamin is excellent for eye health. This amazing fruit also contains beta-carotene which improves eye health and offers protection against infections.
It Controls Diabetes
It looks like diabetes is part of us in the society already. Quite sad. Zucchini is loaded with dietary fiber, a necessary part of your diet which can delay glucose absorption and make better the health of diabetics.
It Lowers Cholesterol
Zucchini is cholesterol-free, hence suitable for your cholesterol-lowering diet. Soluble fiber does interfere with absorption, thus lowering bad cholesterol or LDL in the blood. Zucchini, by the way, does contain soluble and insoluble cholesterol. Zucchini is great, really.
It Cures Asthma
Zucchini’s got high levels of vitamin C which is necessary for curing asthma. The anti-inflammatory properties of Zucchini also contribute to its effectiveness in asthma treatment.
In addition, copper in zucchini makes it effective for treating asthma. So vitamin C, anti-inflammatory properties, and copper, super!
Wait, did I mention that bronchial hypersensitivity, a characteristic of asthma is cured using vitamin C? Oh yes, it is. Zucchini is such a wonder.
It Protects against Colon Cancer
The fiber in zucchini makes the treatment of colon cancer possible. The fiber absorbs excess water in the colon, retains enough moisture in the fecal matter, and enables it to vacate the body with ease.
The lutein in zucchini may also reduce the risk of colon cancer.
It Enhances Digestion
In addition to the loads of benefits you have already read, the wonder squash also aids digestion excellently. You can have zucchini after a meal to enjoy this benefit.
It Lowers Blood Pressure
Zucchini, being rich in potassium, is one of the most effective foods to combat hypertension. Would you believe that zucchini has more potassium than a banana?
Potassium is vasoactive; this means that it can affect the diameter of blood vessels, hence, the blood pressure as well. Lower your blood pressure with zucchini. Your health is important, and zucchini can help you treat it so.
It Strengthens Bones and Teeth
Zucchini promotes stronger bones and teeth. The lutein and zeaxanthin in zucchini keep the bones and teeth strong. They also strengthen the blood cells.
Magnesium, another nutrient found in zucchini is required to build strong bones and teeth.
What else? Magnesium works along with calcium to improve muscle contraction.
The folate in zucchini also protects the bones. Beta-carotene isn’t left out in this bone protection business.
It’s Loved by Pregnant Women
Dark green vegetables are a must during pregnancy, and zucchini is a great one among them. Zucchini offers adequate B-complex vitamins that help maintain the energy levels and mood. So great!
I should also mention that zucchini is rich in folic acid which reduces the risk of birth defects.
It is important to bear in mind that folic acid is at its best when taken before getting pregnant and during the first trimester.
Then its magnesium content is great for women with a high risk of premature labor.
It Does Prevent Gout
Vitamin C intake has a lot to do with a lower risk of gout in men. This is possible through the reduction of serum uric acid levels through a process called the uricosuric effect.
The vitamin prevents not just gout, but numerous other urate-related diseases as well. Super!
It Ensures Prostate Health
Men have a reason to rejoice again. Really, zucchini is one vegetable that should not be overlooked in matters of men’s health, apparently. The high carotenoid content of zucchini is sure for a reduced risk of prostate cancer.
It Aids Collagen Formulation
Zucchini contains riboflavin whose deficiency does affect the maturation of collagen. A reason zucchini can be great for the skin is its high water content which has been found to excellently enhance skin health.
Also, vitamin C in zucchini plays a major part in the synthesis of collagen, which is important for the maintenance of the health of joints, cartilage, blood vessels, and skin.
Vitamin C also protects the body from cellular damage.
Side Effects of Zucchini
People who are sensitive to zucchini may have allergies if they consume it. Reactions such as severe itching and nausea may be observed.
Risk of Excessive Beta-carotene
Since zucchini is loaded with bero-carotene, it could be a concern for some persons. Large doses of beta-carotene might be unsafe for pregnant and lactating women, and smokers too.
Amazing Zucchini Facts!
- Did you know that one zucchini is called ‘zucchina’? (Oops! So we’ve been misusing the word)
- The world’s largest zucchini, zucchina I mean, *winks* was 69 1/2 inches long and weighed close to 30 kilos. Zucchini is the only fruit that starts with the letter Z. Oh wow, interesting!
- The flower of the zucchini plant is edible. You can actually fry the zucchini blossoms into a delicacy.
Now that you Know…
You don`t want to allow all the excitement you have had in the course of reading this article to diffuse just like that. You really should not allow that. Now that you know, the expected next step is that you grab yourself some zucchini. Your health will be grateful for the wise decision made. So until you join our Zucchini Squad, as some of us are enjoying its benefits already, ensure you tell others about zucchini. Do share the link, and do share your zucchini when you get it.