The humble onion that is used in the everyday diet is a very beneficial vegetable that is known to cure many health ailments. Onions are a staple accompaniment with chapattis, dal, and sabzi in all North Indian households. Their meal is never complete without a raw onion by the side. There is a scientific reason behind the addition of onions to North Indian dishes. A Punjabi friend of mine said that every summer vacation when he used to visit Punjab, his grandma made sure to add a whole squashed onion to his meal. It is said to cool down the body temperature in excessive heat and give some relief. Besides this, onions also can boast of its number of health benefits.
Let’s first check out the nutritional value of a cup of chopped onions –
• Calories - 64
• Carbohydrate - 15 grams of
• Fat - 0 grams of
• Fibre - 3 grams of
• Protein - 2 grams of
• Cholesterol - 0 grams of
• Sugar - 7 grams of
• 10% or more of the daily value for vitamin C, vitamin B-6, and manganese.
• Small amounts of other nutrients like calcium, iron, folate, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium and antioxidants quercetin and sulfur.
Health benefits of onions:
Prevents heart diseases –
A past study had shown that raw red onions lower the level of LDL (bad cholesterol) that leads to heart attacks and strokes. Along with removing bad cholesterol, it improves the count of HDL (good cholesterol) that protects the heart against the risk of many diseases.
Lowers risk of cancer –
Onion belongs to the allium family of vegetables that are said to have preventive and beneficial effects on stomach cancer and colorectal cancer. Some researches have found that they inhibit the growth of a tumor and prevent mutagenesis. Being a rich source of Vitamin C, onions also fight free radicals that can cause cancer.
Improves mood –
Onions have small amounts of folate in them that help to reduce depression. Homocysteine is a chemical produced in our body that interferes with the production of hormones like serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine which are named as feel-good hormones. These feel-good hormones not just improves mood and sleep pattern but also increases our appetite. Folate in onions prevents the buildup of Homocysteine in our body.
Detoxifies liver –
If you have a fatty liver condition, onions can help. Onions are sulphur-rich vegetables that contain amino acids, potassium, fiber phytonutrients and flavonoids that help to detoxify the liver and get rid of all the toxic chemicals.
Lower body temperature –
Onions have an amazing quality of bringing out body temperature. Cut an onion in half and put it underneath your feet in your socks when you have a fever. It will automatically bring your body temperature down.
Include a few slices of raw onions in your diet regularly to help you get rid of health ailments.