Zucchini is a fantastic summer veggie. It is easy at grow (assuming you have the space), and it’s super tasty. One of the great things about this vegetable (actually a fruit, but treated like a veggie) is that it produces a large crop.
Zucchini, also known as courgette, is a summer squash, which roots back to the Americas. However, zucchini, as we know it today, was first cultivated in Italy. It’s now grown across the world, and is one of 60 cultivated squashes.
Health Benefits of Zucchini
Not only is zucchini tasty and easy to grow, but it is also a great source of nutrients and natural health benefits.
Zucchini is a good source of protein, vitamin A, thiamin, niacin, phosphorus, and copper. It is also a great source of dietary fibre, vitamin C, vitamin K, riboflavin, vitamin B6, folate, magnesium, potassium, and manganese.
Zucchini is mostly water, with nutrients mixed into a fibre casing. The dietary fibre in this delicious summer squash is great for your gut. Fibre is needed to keep things moving and to clear the body of waste. A diet with more than 30g of dietary fibre a day has shown to be an effective prevention tool for type 2 diabetes as well as heart disease.
A large portion of the fibre found in zucchini is pectin. Pectin lowers cholesterol and reduces inflammation in arteries and the heart. While the pectin targets the cardio system, zucchini helps lower inflammation throughout the entire body. That’s because zucchini is rich in important vitamins like vitamin A and C, which help minimize inflammation and oxidative stress.
The high fibre, and high water levels also make zucchini a good weight loss tool. Zucchini is filling with few calories.
Zucchini, like many members of the squash family, can have a bitter taste. This is caused by a natural toxin in the plant called cucurbitacin. It is a protein that helps protect the fruit of the plant from predators. Most modern day zucchini is relatively low in the toxin and is fine for human consumption.