The underground onion bulb belonging to the Allium family can be grouped into two main classes; the immature, not fully ripe version called scallions or green onions and the mature version known as dry onions. The yellow onion with its pale colored skin, strong taste and white flesh is the most common variety. Red onions are a more mild variety with purple toned skin and reddish flesh. Green onions are characterized by their long green leaves and underdeveloped bulb. They are typically used in salads and soups.
To gain maximum health benefits, it is best to remove as little of the edible portion of the flesh as possible when removing the topmost, layer. The layers immediately below the brown paper layer contain the maximum nutrients and even removing tiny amounts of extra flesh can lead to a loss of significant amounts of vital nutrients.
Minty Sweet Onion Juice
- 1 small onion
- A handful of fresh mint leaves
- 3 large carrots
Juice all ingredients until smooth, pour in tall glasses and enjoy.
A one cup serving of onions, is very low in sodium, and contains not fat or cholesterol. It contains only 48 calories and delivers a significant amount of fiber. They contain more polyphenols than garlic, tomatoes, leeks and carrots. Onions juice also contains ample amounts of vitamin C, B6, and folic acid along with minerals like calcium, iron, phosphorus, chromium and magnesium. The trace amounts of sulfur found in onions are accredited with many health benefits.
Health Benefits of Onions
The variety of sulfur compounds housed in onions counter the effects of a number of cancers like esophageal, breast, renal, laryngeal and prostate. Sulfur is also one of the vital hair growth compounds.
When consumed on a regular basis onions lower cholesterol levels as well as the level of homocysteine, a possible cardiac stroke risk factor. Quercetin is a natural antihistamine found in onions that averts symptoms of allergies and asthma. Clinical studies show that the compound allyl propyl disulfide brings down blood sugar levels while the chromium aids in improving glucose tolerance. The dietary fiber, inulin aids digestion and is a food source for healthy bacteria. Consumption of raw onions is recommended for averting colds while its oils help to dissolve mucus.
The antibacterial properties of onions help in preventing tooth decay. According to research chewing on raw onions for a few minutes kills all germs in the mouth. A drop of onion juice eliminates ear aches, and used as a dressing diminishes boils, wounds and bruises.