• Dr. Kaitlyn Zorn ND

Food As Medicine - Zucchini


This past week I was so thrilled to see Zucchini starting to pop up in the garden plot. This is mostly because last year our Zucchini didn't grow AND I started this Zucchini plot from seedling in the spring - newbie gardener wins! I actually didn't think they would grow because the seedlings became "leggy" so I didn't know if they would transplant properly into the garden.

Every time a vegetable comes to harvest, I imagine the possibilities that it could be used for. In this case, Zucchini bread, zucchini noodles or simply sautéed. I settled on shredding the Zucchini with a vegetable peeler to make noodles. This is a good substitute if you don't have a spiralizer that can make fancy veggie noodles.

Okay, lets get into how ZUCCHINI might help your health out now.

Health Info: Zucchini contains 56% of your daily Vitamin C (so if you need some immune boosting, oranges are not the only answer!). They also contain 21% of your daily Vitamin B6, a B vitamin used for healthy metabolism, neurotransmitter production and more. Other notable vitamins and nutrients are Potassium (15% of your daily amount) and carotenoid antioxidants (ex. beta-carotene).

Use For: Skin and Eye Health. Collagen production in skin requires Vitamin C, making Zucchini a good source of this vitamin. Also, the the beta-carotene compounds, along with zeaxanthin and lutein, are good for preventing macular degeneration and other eye diseases.

Digestive Health. Do you have IBS, or inflammatory bowel disease? Zucchini is a very digestible vegetable, and contains high levels of water and anti-inflammatory compounds, making it soothing to the gut lining. For anyone with digestive issues or on an anti-allergy diet, cooked zucchini is a great vegetable to incorporate.

Supporting Healthy Blood Pressure. If you are someone with high blood pressure or hypertension, fruits and vegetables high in potassium can help balance out excess sodium. It's a good idea to eat a variety of high-potassium foods and limit processed, packaged foods that are high in salt if high blood pressure is an issue that you have.

Recipe Idea: Here is an example of how to use Zucchini has a low carb, noodle substitute. https://draxe.com/recipe/zucchini-noodles-with-marinara-sauce/

This week's post was short and sweet, because it's August and we shouldn't be working too hard right?

Happy Summer,

References:

https://draxe.com/zucchini-nutrition/

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