Can't cucumbers with flowers on the top and straight bodies be eaten?


Summer is approaching, and fresh cucumbers that are crispy and moist are on the market in large quantities. When buying cucumbers, people like to choose ones with flowers and thorns on the top, thinking it is a sign of freshness. However, there is also a popular science saying online that cucumbers with small yellow flowers on their heads and straight shapes have been injected with hormones, and eating them regularly is very unfriendly to the human body. Is it true that this is the case? During an interview with reporters, Ruan Guangfeng, Deputy Director and Associate Research Librarian of Kexin Food and Health Information Exchange Center, stated that cucumbers with thorns on their heads and a straight figure may be a natural occurrence or a result of modern technology. For the latter, in terms of safety, the "efficacy" of plant growth regulators is only targeted at the target plant and will not affect the human body. Meanwhile, because plant growth regulators only require trace amounts to achieve their effects, the residual amount of fruit is negligible. Ruan Guangfeng explained that cucumbers belong to monoecious and cross pollinating plants, which means that the flowers of cucumbers are basically unisexual, either female flowers (with only pistils in the flowers) or male flowers (with only stamens in the flowers). The flowers of cucumbers can pollinate and bear fruit with the help of wind, gravity, or human labor, or they can form fruit without pollination. Generally speaking, after pollination and pollination, the flowers of cucumbers sometimes do not fall off immediately, but wait for the fruit to regenerate for a long time before falling off. Therefore, to some extent, the existence of the "top flower" can be used as a marker to determine whether cucumbers are tender or old. And for cucumbers that can bear fruit without pollination, the small yellow flowers at the top stay longer. Of course, in the actual planting process, people sometimes apply anti abscisic acid - an exogenous plant hormone called p-chlorophenoxyacetic acid - to the stem of cucumbers to prevent young fruits from falling off. If this plant hormone is accidentally applied to the flower, it can cause the flower to adhere more tightly to the top of the cucumber or simply not fall off. Later on, growers discovered that such cucumbers were actually more favored by consumers, so using anti abscisic acid to treat cucumber flowers became a standard procedure for some cucumber cultivation. So, cucumbers with thorns and flowers may occur naturally, or they may be the result of modern technology. Similar to the situation of cucumber top flowers, under natural conditions, cucumbers can grow straight or curved. Apart from the variety, it mainly depends on the growth conditions. When the temperature, light, water, and fertilization are suitable, the plant grows vigorously and the proportion of straight cucumbers is higher. On the contrary, if conditions such as light, water, temperature, and fertility are not ideal, the growth of cucumber plants is relatively poor, and the proportion of fruit bending will be higher. How to improve the growth of cucumbers, increase yield, and reduce the proportion of bent cucumbers? Through experiments, scientists have invented plant growth regulators that can meet this goal. So, is cucumber that uses plant growth regulators really "unfriendly" to the human body? Ruan Guangfeng explained that plant hormones play an important regulatory role in plant growth and development. It has both endogenous, which is naturally present (secreted) in the plant body, and exogenous, which is produced through artificial synthesis, plant extraction, or microbial fermentation. Approved plant growth regulators have been widely used worldwide. In terms of safety, on the one hand, plant growth regulators only have an effect on the target plant and will not have adverse effects on the human body under normal use. On the other hand, plant growth regulators only require a small amount to achieve their effects, so the residual amount on the fruit is generally negligible. So, whether the cucumber has flowers at the top and a straight body, whether it is natural or using plant growth regulators, it can be consumed with peace of mind. (Lai Xin She)

Edit:GuoGuo Responsible editor:FangZhiYou

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