Zucchini Nutrition Facts, Health Benefits

Let us go through the health benefits of Zucchini, nutrition facts and other information in this article.

What is  Zucchini ?

Zucchini is a fruit-vegetable that makes dishes healthier. It is popularly known as summer squash that comes in a sausage-like shape in green or yellow color. Zucchini nutrition has been proven to help treat and prevent different illnesses. Also, it has been known to help lose weight and improve the overall well-being.

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All the parts of the Zucchini are edible, even the skin. It can be consumed raw, grilled, baked, roasted or stir-fried. This fruit-vegetable can also be added to soups, stews, curries, pasta sauces and vegetable salads.

History of Zucchini

The vegetable is native to America but information about Zucchini nutrition can be traced as early as 7,000 to 5,000 BCE in Mexico. The fruit-vegetable then spread throughout Europe with the Italians calling it zucchini, Britons referring to it as marrow, and courgette by the French. Zucchini is now cultivated across the globe with Italy, Turkey, Argentina, Romania, China and Japan as the major producers. It comes in different varieties such as golden zucchini, costata romanesco and Tatume.

Health Benefits of Zucchini

  • Lowers blood pressure and cholesterol

Zucchini has the essential nutrients, such as potassium and magnesium, needed to lower hypertension, preventing it from resulting into stroke or heart attack. On the other hand, the high fiber content of zucchini helps in reducing bad cholesterol and prevents damage to the blood vessels.

  • Aids in weight loss

This fruit-vegetable contains huge amounts of dietary fiber to aid proper digestion and stimulate regular bowel movement. It also helps in curbing overeating due to its low-calorie content for an effective weight loss management.

  • Cancer prevention

Zucchini helps in preventing cancer. This is due to huge amounts of fiber found in it, preventing carcinogens from settling in the colon. Its powerful antioxidants also drive the free radicals away from the body which can also cause cancer.

  • Promotes better vision and prevents birth defects

Zucchini is rich in vitamin A which supports good vision as well as strengthens the teeth and bones. It also contains folate which aids in the proper development of the baby’s brain and prevents birth defects.

  • Prevents hyper-inflammatory disorders

Zucchini’s anti-inflammatory properties help in preventing the development of certain hyper-inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and asthma.

  • Thwarts stroke and heart attack

Homocysteine is a harmful amino acid which could trigger stroke and heart attack if found in high concentrations. Folate found in zucchini will break this detrimental amino acid, and along with magnesium, will also stop stroke and heart attack from happening.

  • Improves overall health

Vitamin C and other powerful antioxidants found in zucchini enhance the overall well-being by encouraging proper metabolism and protecting the cells against free radicals.

Side Effects of Zucchini

Despite the innumerable health benefits of zucchini, it also has side effects. These often occur when the fruit-vegetable is taken in high amounts. For instance, zucchini occasionally produces cucurbitacin which is toxic and is responsible for the unpleasant and bitter taste or smell of zucchini. Moreover, zucchini may also cause serious digestive problems and allergic reactions in infants fed with it. It should only be introduced to babies when they are six months or older.

Zucchini Nutrition Facts

One cup of chopped zucchini contains:

  • Calories – 20
  • Total fat – 0.22g
  • Cholesterol – 0mg
  • Sodium – 12mg
  • Potassium – 325mg
  • Total carbohydrate – 4.15mg
  • Dietary fiber – 1.4g
  • Protein – 1.5g

Zucchini pictures

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