Can Bitter Cucumbers Make You Sick?

Why do cucumbers taste bitter?

The bitterness of cucumber actually comes from the genome of this fruit. Cucumbers belong to the Cucurbit family and are relatives of fruits such as watermelon and squash. The natural cucurbit family often contains cucurbitacin B, C and tetracyclic triterpenoids, compounds that have been shown to produce a bitter taste in cucumbers.

Giving cucumbers a bitter taste is essentially a defense mechanism to avoid pest damage. These compounds are usually confined to the stems, leaves, and roots of cucumbers. Only when these compounds migrate into the fruit do we experience a bitter taste.

Normally, the bitter taste of cucumber will be concentrated in the end of the stem and just below the pulp of the fruit.

Of course the appearance of cucurbitacin is just one of the main causes of the bitter taste of cucumber. In fact, the following factors in the growing cucumber process can also influence the bitterness of the fruit.

– Drought: Hot and dry weather can be the cause of bitter melon. To reduce heat in your garden, try to water the plant regularly, especially on dry days or when the plants flower and bear fruit, you need to increase the amount of water to save the cucumbers.


– Poor soil nutrients: One of the factors that make cucumbers bitter is also due to poor soil nutrition. Cucumber is a fruit that requires a plentiful source of nutrients, so use fertilizer after about 4-6 weeks to replenish nutrients to the soil. However, it should be noted not to over-fertilize when the melon grows.

– No sunlight: Strong sunlight is not good, but without sunlight, cucumbers are easily bitter. The reason is that the root system of the plant is damaged, leading to a poor ability to absorb water and nutrients. Consequence is that the melon is stunted and the more likely it is to accumulate bitter substances at the top of the melon.

– Recessive genes in seeds: Certain varieties of cucumbers may contain recessive genes and lead to bitter phenomenon.

Eating bitter cucumber can cause some of the following harms:

Causes allergies

A cucumber allergy usually occurs in the oral cavity, with symptoms such as itching and swelling in the mouth. We can cook it instead of eating it raw, it will overcome the allergy, of course, if we cook it, it will not be delicious anymore.


The bitter taste in cucumbers is caused by toxins such as cucurbitacins and tetracyclic triterpenoids. One study even stated that consuming too many of these substances has the ability to threaten our lives.

Increased risk of premature aging

Vitamin C is an effective immune system boosting factor, it also plays an important role in preventing the manifestations of colds and rickets while being a powerful antioxidant. However, consumption in excess of the limit has the opposite effect: Against the antioxidant nature, the growth and spread of free radicals.

Vitamin C is abundant in cucumbers, so when you get too large of vitamin C from cucumbers, you are enabling free radicals to “roam”, causing the risk of cancer, acne, aging…

Headache and difficulty breathing

Cucumbers are also high in potassium. Eating a lot of cucumbers causes the amount of potassium in the blood to increase, leading to flatulence and abdominal pain. Over time will impair kidney function. Whereas cucumbers also contain 90% water if the amount of water in the body is higher than the net volume of blood, it will put pressure on the blood vessels and heart.


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