Though all vegetables are important for health, certain kinds offer unique benefits.
Onions are members of the Allium genus of flowering plants that also includes garlic, shallots, leeks and chives.
These vegetables contain various vitamins, minerals and potent plant compounds that have been shown to promote health in many ways.
Red onions get their bite from the many sulfur groups they contain.
These sulfur groups include the diallyl sulfides: DMS, DDS, DTS & DTTS. These sulfur groups help produce cysteine within the body that aids in weight loss, detoxification and cancer prevention. Additional research has shown that sulfur compounds have a strong anti-oxidant capacity that inhibits blood cell clumping.
Here are some benefits of red onions :
Red Onions are Rich in Chromium
Red onions are also a fantastic source of chromium which lowers blood sugar and enhances cellular insulin sensitivity.Nearly 50% of the US population is deficient in chromium which is greater than any other developed nation. This is due to over cropping that has stripped the land of chromium and processed food consumption. Chromium deficiencies lead to diabetes and heart disease.
The anti-oxidant flavonoids are extremely rich in the outer layers of the onion. Many people will peel off the first few layers and lose much of these critical nutrients. Be sure to utilize the outer, fleshy edible portions as much as possible. Over-peeling, by taking off the outer 2 layers of flesh will cost one about 20% of its quercetin and over 75% of its anthocyanins.
May Benefit Heart Health
Onions contain antioxidants and compounds that fight inflammation, decrease triglycerides and reduce cholesterol levels — all of which may lower heart disease risk.
Their potent anti-inflammatory properties may also help reduce high blood pressure and protect against blood clots.
Quercetin is a flavonoid antioxidant that’s highly concentrated in onions. Since it’s a potent anti-inflammatory, it may help decrease heart disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure.
A study in 70 overweight people with high blood pressure found that a dose of 162 mg per day of quercetin-rich onion extract significantly reduced systolic blood pressure by 3–6 mmHg compared to a placebo.
Onions have also been shown to decrease cholesterol levels.
A study in 54 women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) found that consuming large amounts of raw red onions (40–50 grams/day if overweight and 50–60 grams/day if obese) for eight weeks reduced total and “bad” LDL cholesterol compared to a control group.
Additionally, evidence from animal studies supports that onion consumption may reduce risk factors for heart disease, including inflammation, high triglyceride levels and blood clot formation .
Loaded with Anti-oxidants
Antioxidants are compounds that inhibit oxidation, a process that leads to cellular damage and contributes to diseases like cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
Onions are an excellent source of antioxidants. In fact, they contain over 25 different varieties of flavonoid antioxidants (12).
Red onions, in particular, contain anthocyanins — special plant pigments in the flavonoid family that give red onions their deep color.
Multiple population studies have found that people who consume more foods rich in anthocyanins have a reduced risk of heart disease.
For example, a study in 43,880 men showed that habitual intakes as high as 613 mg per day of anthocyanins were correlated to a 14% lower risk of nonfatal heart attacks.
Similarly, a study in 93,600 women observed that those with the highest intake of anthocyanin-rich foods were 32% less likely to experience a heart attack than women with the lowest intake 14).
Additionally, anthocyanins have been found to protect against certain types of cancer and diabetes.
How many red onions to eat
Simmering onions in a soup or broth will damage some of the anthocyanins but not the quercetin. The quercetin moves into the soup or broth. The lower the heat the more nutrients will be contained in the soup or broth. Studies have shown that 4-7 servings of red onions each week (equivalent to about 2-3 onions) has been associated with the greatest benefit in reducing colorectal, oral, laryngeal, esophageal & ovarian cancer.
Red onions should be stored in a cool, dry area with good airflow. Until they are opened they should not be stored in a refrigerator or plastic bag as both of these have been shown to speed up spoilage. Once opened, it is best to store in refrigeration. Avoid any onions that are wet, soft, bruised or have dark spots or mold on them.
In fact, the medicinal properties of onions have been recognized since ancient times, when they were used to treat ailments like headaches, heart disease and mouth sores.
NUTRI CRAFT Exports fresh onions to Europe, USA, New Zealand, Australia, Bangladesh, Srilanka, and Malaysia. Our onions are cultivated in our own farms using all the latest means of technology and packed in our own state of the art pack house maintaining hygienic conditions throughout.
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