I recently came across a person who told me he had not ate onions in over twenty years. He went on to explain to me that no one should be eating them because the only thing they were good for was bad breath and they caused cancer. Needless to say, he was so convinced that he did not want to hear about the science behind onions or listen to the truth.
When I was in medical school, I had two years of Botanical medicine. We learned about onions and the many things onions are good for. Onions may get a bad rap because they can give you a potent breath smell and they can make you cry when you cut or chop them. However, for those who think onions are all bad, let me try to re-introduce them to you.
Onions real name is Allium cepa and come from the botanical family called Liliaceae.
Onions can be found world wide, not just in specific areas. The energetics of onions are mostly warm and sweet and the Oriental Doctors and Naturopathic doctors believe onions are good for the lungs, kidneys, and heart meridians and organs.
The pharmaceutical constituents are volatile oil, allicin, allicin, flavonoids, phenolic acid, and sterols. The pharmaceutical actions of onions are expectorant, a stimulant, a diuretic, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, anti-rheumatic, and a carminative. Yes, I know those are big words, but let me just say, if you look them all up, its good medicine.
The following is a short list of things we were taught in medical school that onions are good for. Let me remind you that if you need to see a doctor, please do. This article is for information only. ( You know what I mean)
Respiratory problems- Onions can be good for colds, the flu, cough, bronchitis, hoarseness, and mild fever.
Skin problems- an onion poultice can drain pus from a wound.
Kidneys- Onion juice may help with cystitis.
Gastrointestinal- It was taught to us that onions can help with flatulence (gas).
General things- Onions may help prevent oral infections, tooth decay, helps with ear aches (warm juice in the ear).
I know it may sound a little weird but sometimes the “old fashion” medicine worked just as well or better than some of our modern medicine.
Here are a few ways we were taught that onions can be prepared.
For respiratory conditions, you can bake, then crush or mash the onion and place on a gauze.
For decoction, boil a medium chopped onion in 1 1/2 cups of water until 1 cup of liquid remains. Take 1 teaspoon as needed.
Cover and bake a large onion at 400 degrees for 40 minutes.Remove and mix the juice with an equal amount of honey. Take 1 to 2 tsp an hour up to 8 times a day for mild fever.
You can soak a chopped onion in 1 cup of water for 24 hours and strain. Drink 1/2 cup a day.
It has been said that onions were used as far back as 4000 BC as a cure-all for many diseases.
I hope I have shed a little light on the possible uses of onions other than just on a sandwich or giving one bad breath. It can be amazing what natural things planted on this earth can do for us. Lets take nothing for granted.
-Dr Fredda Branyon