Things I wish people would stop sharing on the internet - Part one, that cucumber thing

I'll level with you, I see a lot of shit on the internet when it comes to health and nutrition advice Not only do I see a lot of it on the net, I also see people sharing this stuff as if it's truth.  Next thing, everyone is sharing it and now we have a bunch of lies gone viral.

Today, we're talking about cucumber.  The current circulating lies are:

  • High in B Vitamins
  • Good source of carbs
  • Therefore, great for an energy pick me up mid afternoon.

Here's a wee table I have made for you regarding this:  The information comes from Foodworks, a very costly piece of software that contains the food composition tables for Australia and New Zealand.  It's the type of software we use to get the facts, not create lies.

B Vitamins in 5 common foods

B Vitamins in 5 common foods

Very clearly I think you can see that Cucumber does not kick any sort of ass in the B Vitamin stakes compared to other foods.  If you need B Vitamins you will find them in great quantities in whole grains, lentils/beans, seeds, nuts, meats and things like nutritional yeast.  I didn't add it to this chart, but lentils, sunflower seeds and almonds also had more B Vitamins than Cucumber.

And as for the carbohydrate content of Cucumbers being a way to get a great mid afternoon pick me up.  100g of cucumber has less than 2g of carb, and a 100g banana has about 24g.  Again, Cucumber not really stacking up to these viral claims.

This particular piece of viral madness also claims "Cucumbers have been used for centuries by European trappers, traders and explorers for quick meals to thwart off starvation"  and that's why we should eat them as a pick me up.

But a quick look on wikipedia tells me that European Trappers bartered with American Indians, obtaining cucumbers and other things to add to their crops.

Not a mention of starvation in Trappers, nor a mention of cucumbers being used to remedy such a thing.  And no where else, can I find a reference to this particular claim.

Why are cucumbers possibly a good pick me up?  Well out of that 100g of cucumber, 96% of it is water.  So if anything, it might be adding fluid to your body, but again hey, a glass of water has way more water in it than a cucumber.

Or maybe they just aren't a pick me up at all.

Maybe someone just started a dirty little rumour

Could you please stop spreading it now and get your advice from those who do "energy pick me up advice" for a profession.