Behold the power of the pickle!

Monday, July 2, 2018

July is National Pickle Month, a time to celebrate the thrill of the dill.


We acquired a new appreciation of the humble pickle as we planned this year’s BayCare Clinic Century Bayshore to Lakeshore bike tour.


“We want pickles at the rest stops!” long-distance riders told us after our first event last year.


Why pickles?


They help keep bike riders hydrated. Pickle juice is a great sports drink. It’s high in sodium and potassium, replenishing electrolytes that are lost while sweating during a workout. The hydration gained from chomping on a pickle spear also helps prevent cramps, especially in hot, humid weather.


You don’t need much pickle juice – an ounce or two, or pickle spear or two – to benefit from it.


Even though athletes and active people swear by pickle juice, research hasn’t pinpointed why – or even whether – it’s so effective.


Regardless, we added pickles at some of our rest stops, much to the delight of our BayCare Clinic Century riders.


We’re not the only ones answering pleas for pickles. Sonic Drive-Ins are offering a Pickle Juice Slush this summer. Last year, a Wisconsin pickle company, Van Holten’s, started offering Pickle-Ice. That’s frozen pickle brine with added electrolytes, sort of a pickle frozen pop.

If you’d like to make your own pickles, here’s an easy recipe.


Refrigerator Dill Pickles



3½ cups water

1¼ cups white vinegar

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon sea salt

4 cups cucumber spears

2 cloves garlic, whole

2 heads fresh dill



Prep time: 10 minutes. Cooking time: 15 minutes. Ready to eat: 3 days.


Stir water, vinegar, sugar and sea salt together in saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Let it cool.


Combine cucumber spears, garlic cloves and fresh dill in a large glass or plastic container. Pour cooled vinegar mixture over cucumber mixture. Seal container with lid. Refrigerate for at least 3 days.


Nutrition information

Per serving: 13 calories, 0.1 g fat, 3.1 g carbohydrates, 0.4 g protein, 0 mg cholesterol, 444 mg sodium.


Source: All Recipes

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BayCare Clinic,, is the largest physician-owned specialty-care clinic in northeastern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It is based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. BayCare Clinic offers expertise in more than 20 specialties, with more than 100 physicians serving in 16 area communities. BayCare Clinic is a joint partner in Aurora BayCare Medical Center, a 167-bed, full-service hospital. Follow BayCare Clinic on Facebook and Twitter.