The Health Benefits of Zucchini

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Two zucchini for the picture, but I only used one for my dinner.

Today I want to talk about some of the health benefits of zucchini.  First I’d like to share with you something that I didn’t know until I just looked it up, and was kind of surprised.  In culinary context, zucchini is treated as a vegetable, which means it is usually cooked and served as part of a main dish or a side dish.  Botanically, however, the zucchini is a fruit, being the swollen ovary of the zucchini flower.  Another interesting fact, the zucchini originates from Italy.  If you knew either one of these things you have one up on me because I didn’t know zucchini was a fruit, or that it originated in Italy.  I love learning new things.

So lets go over some of the health benefits of eating zucchini.  The information below has been taken from an article I found on healthdiaries.com.

1.  One cup of zucchini has 36 calories and 10% of the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion, prevents constipation, maintains low blood sugar and curbs overeating.

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One zucchini sliced in half and cut into quarters.

2.  The dietary fiber in zucchini helps lower cholesterol by attaching itself to bile acids that the liver makes from cholesterol for digesting fat.  Because fiber binds so well with bile acid, thus crowding its ability to immediately digest fat, the liver is charged with producing more bile acid.  The liver then draws upon even more cholesterol to produce bile acid, consequently lowering the overall cholesterol level in the body.

3.  Dietary fiber in zucchini helps promotes healthy and regular bowel movements.  Zucchini also helps prevent carcinogenic toxins from settling in the colon.

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Grilled zucchini on the George Forman Grill. Just brush with a little Olive oil and add a sprinkle of Greek seasoning before you put them on to cook.

4.  A one cup serving of zucchini contains over 10% of the RDA of magnesium, a mineral proven to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.

5.  Zucchini’s also have potassium, which can help lower blood pressure.

6.  Zucchini contains Vitamins C and A, as well as folate, which act as powerful antioxidants that fight oxidative stress that can lead to many different types of cancer.

As you can see zucchini is really good for you.  I actually have zucchini at least twice a week.  I like to cut it in half, quarter it, lightly brush it with olive oil, add a little Greek seasoning and put it on the George Forman Grill.  Simple, easy, and really yummy!

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The finished product. Dinner tonight was a grilled turkey burger with a slice of Swiss cheese on a toasted wheat bun with spicy brown mustard, pickle, lettuce and tomato. And grilled zucchini. Delicious!

Here are some more ideas for zucchini.  I’m going to have to try these.  Check them out.

10 Healthy Zucchini Recipes

Ten Delicious Zucchini Recipes for Everyone with an Abundance of Zucchini

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