Dill pickles are made from cucumbers, soaked in a brine of water, vinegar, salt, and dill weed or dill oil. Cucumbers lend themselves especially well to pickling, as they're mild in flavor and their flesh is spongy and mostly water. Pickling occurs through simple osmosis - the cucumbers absorb the salt and seasonings yet retain their snappy crunch. Pickling is a type of fermentation, thereby giving your pickles both the health benefits of cucumbers along with the benefits of eating fermented food. The sodium in the salty brine can also help regulate your body's electrolytes, essential for many functions.
Pickles are low in calories - just 20 per serving - and full of water and fiber, both of which help you remain fuller, for longer. In fact, eating fibrous, fleshy vegetables helps regulate your appetite. The water and fiber both help move your food through your gut slowly enough to allow nutrients to be fully absorbed. The fiber also helps regulate your blood sugar, avoiding spikes and crashes that can lead to unhealthy cravings Dill pickles can add crunch to sandwiches and even make up a side dish instead of higher-calorie potato chips. They're also a great additive to compound salads, helping reduce the overall calories per serving of chicken or tuna salad by acting as a low-calorie "filler" food.
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