There’s no denying that a certain amount of confusion exists surrounding which fruits and vegetables are acceptable or not while on the keto diet. However, in general, most green options are usually considered to be keto safe.
But are they actually? Today we’re going to be taking an in-depth look at one particularly popular green option: cucumbers.
Are cucumbers keto? Let’s find out.
What Makes Cucumbers a Popular Choice for Low Carb Diets?
Before we dive into the nitty gritty of whether or not cucumbers are keto, it’s important to first understand some of the reasons why cucumber is such a popular choice amongst low carb dieters. Here are just a few of the reasons:
- Cucumbers are incredibly low in calories and carbs, with only 15 calories and about 3 grams of net carbs per 100 gram serving.
- They have an incredibly high water content which helps with keeping hydrated; something many novices to low carb diets can sometimes struggle with.
- Cucumbers are very nutrient-dense. They offer an abundance of vitamins, minerals, and disease-fighting antioxidants.
- On top of that, cucumbers are also a solid source of dietary fiber.
- They can be used to make an incredible amount of keto-friendly recipes. Cucumbers can be used for everything from making low carb salads to homemade baked cucumber muffins.
Are Cucumbers Keto?
Cucumbers can indeed be considered to be 100% keto-friendly.
Considering that 100 grams of cucumber contains about 3 grams of net carbs, it’s incredibly easy to work into your macros as long as you aren’t running an incredibly strict version of keto (10 grams of carbs or less, and even then, cucumber still works easily in moderation).
It isn’t just the low net carb content that makes cucumbers worth your while. They also offer a wealth of vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, antioxidants, and more.
While many keto dieters typically have no trouble hitting their dietary fat and protein requirements, including vegetables like cucumber in your diet makes it easy to round out all of your other nutritional requirements.
Cucumber Nutrition Facts
Here’s the approximate nutritional breakdown for a 100 gram serving size of fresh cucumbers:
- 15 calories
- 0.1 grams fat
- 0.7 grams protein
- 3.6 grams carbs
- 0.5 grams dietary fiber
- 1.7 grams sugar
- 0 mg cholesterol
- 2 mg sodium
- 147 mg potassium
Cucumber Health Benefits
Cucumbers are widely used in many all-natural detox remedies because of how nutrient-dense and good for your health they are. With that in mind, here are 3 incredible health benefits that cucumbers can offer you:
- Promotes hydration. Cucumbers are made of about 96% water on average; this helps to explain why their calorie content is so low as well. Thanks to their high water content, including cucumbers as part of your keto diet is a great way to help with keeping hydrated, especially since a lot of newcomers to the keto diet tend to lose a lot of water weight quite rapidly. (1)
- May help with weight loss efforts. Along with the fact that cucumbers are such a low calorie food, they can also help individuals achieve their weight loss goals thanks to a combination of their high water content, as well as their dietary fiber content. One particular meta-analysis found that eating foods that are low in calories and high in water like cucumbers was associated with significant weight loss results. (2)
- Provides protection against disease. Last but not least, cucumbers are an excellent source of disease-fighting antioxidants which can help protect you from inflammation and chronic diseases. (3)
Keto Cucumber Alternatives
Thankfully, it’s rather easy to find plenty of keto-friendly alternatives for cucumbers. In a pinch, you can simply substitute any of the following for cucumbers:
(Also read: Are Pickles Keto?)