Wednesday, February 23, 2011


I tend to cook a lot with onions and I always wonder what the exact nutritional benefits of them are.  I really don't like to include food items in my meals that have no nutritional benefit, so I've been really curious about food lately.  Onions don't look nearly as healthy as spinach or tomatoes, for example, which are so bright in color.  Because of this, I have decided to do some research on onions and have found out some very interesting things!

Onions have been featured in movies and books, like Louis Sachar's, Holes, in which they are an anecdote for the danger Stanley faces.  Onions are in the lily family, the same as garlic, shallots, chives and leeks.  They are used as food and medicine!  It is the thiosulfinates, sulfides and sulfoxides that exhibit antimicrobial properties.  They kill bacteria such as salmonella and E. Coli.  Onions have been used to treat cough and colds in indigenous cultures for hundreds of years.  

But in regards to how onions stack up compared to other veggies, I was happy to find out that they do!  They are a rich source of oligomers, which help suppress harmful bacteria in the colon.  The sulfides in onions are also known to lower blood pressure.  Also, they are a good source of flavonoids , which are known to protect against cardiovascular disease.  

Also, onions provide protection against tumor growth in all parts of the body, but especially in the digestive system, such as the stomach and colon. 

If you want all of these amazing benefits, you should try and get yellow onions, which have a much higher antioxidant content than their white counterparts.  The stronger the flavor the more health promoting properties the onions seem to have.  So I guess everyone had better increase their onion intake to fight cancer and keep your heart healthy :)


  1. Wow- that is so interesting. Honestly I never even think of onions as having any benefit or meaning except the taste :P And I loved the Holes reference <3

  2. Yumm! Onions have a place right alongside corn in the vegetable diet! (And don't tell me corn's not a veggie...) ;)