Chinese cucumber
Chinese cucumber


Chinese cucumber is an herb. People use the fruit, seed, and root to make medicine.

Chinese cucumber ROOT is taken by mouth or injected for HIV/AIDS, cough, cancer, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses. There is also concern that using Chinese cucumber root is unsafe.

Chinese cucumber FRUIT and SEED are taken by mouth for cough, diabetes, and other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.
When taken by mouth: Chinese cucumber FRUIT is POSSIBLY SAFE for most people when used as food. The fruit can cause some mild side effects such as diarrhea and upset stomach. There isn't enough reliable information to know if Chinese cucumber FRUIT, SEED, or the unprocessed ROOT extract are safe when used as medicine.

When given as a shot: Unprocessed Chinese cucumber ROOT is LIKELY UNSAFE. Injections of unprocessed Chinese cucumber root can cause severe side effects, including allergic reactions, seizures, fever, fluid buildup in the lungs and brain, bleeding in the brain, heart damage, and death.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It is UNSAFE to take Chinese cucumber root, fruit, or seed by mouth or to have Chinese cucumber root administered by injection. Chinese cucumber ROOT can be toxic. Chinese cucumber FRUIT and SEED might cause an abortion or birth defects.

There isn't enough reliable information to know if Chinese cucumber root, fruit, or seed is safe to use when breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Surgery: Chinese cucumber might lower blood sugar levels. It might interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop using Chinese cucumber at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.


Natural Medicines rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions
  • Osteoarthritis.
  • Cough.
  • Fever.
  • Tumors.
  • Diabetes.
  • Causing an abortion, when the root is given as a shot or the fruit is applied to the vagina.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of Chinese cucumber for these uses.

Dosing & administration

The appropriate dose of Chinese cucumber depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for Chinese cucumber. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

Medications for diabetes (Antidiabetes drugs)

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

Chinese cucumber root might decrease blood sugar. Diabetes medications are also used to lower blood sugar. Taking Chinese cucumber root along with diabetes medications might cause your blood sugar to go too low. Monitor your blood sugar closely. The dose of your diabetes medication might need to be changed.

Some medications used for diabetes include glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (DiaBeta, Glynase PresTab, Micronase), insulin, pioglitazone (Actos), rosiglitazone (Avandia), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase), and others.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

Herbs and supplements that might lower blood sugar levels: Chinese cucumber might lower blood sugar levels. Using it along with other herbs or supplements that have this same effect might cause blood sugar levels to drop too low. Avoid this combination. Some herbs that might lower blood sugar are devil's claw, fenugreek, garlic, guar gum, horse chestnut, Panax ginseng, psyllium, and Siberian ginseng.

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.


Chinese cucumber ROOT contains a chemical that might cause abortions when injected during the first trimester of pregnancy. Chinese cucumber SEED might help decrease pain and swelling (inflammation). The FRUIT might also help protect against stomach ulcers.
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This monograph was last reviewed on 18/11/2021 23:06:33 and last updated on 22/01/2022 03:16:26. Monographs are reviewed and/or updated multiple times per month and at least once per year.
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