These days, what with the drastic changes in the weather, everyone seems to fall sick. I was not exempted. Caught a cold this week! But one of the things that have been speeding up my road to recovery and preventing my cold from turning into a full blown flu is…. the good old ONION.
No. Not for ingestion. Although that helps too. But I’d rather eat my onions mixed with meat or a salad.
There’s an old wives’ tale that keeping slices of onion in a dish in the place where you sleep allows the onion to absorb the virus. My father was a staunch supporter of this tale and used to leave onions in our room among our stuffed toys when we were kids. As long as the onion wasn’t all shrivelled up, and he always remembered to put a fresh batch, we actually never got sick. He said he read it from an Encyclopedia of Indian Home Remedies.
It’s a strange idea but every single time I’ve done it, I always ALWAYS seem to feel better the next day. In fact, the moment I feel a cold coming on, I slice up onions and keep them by my bed side and I avoid the flu altogether or if I’m in the middle of one, it seems to magically disappear in 2 days, without the intake of any medicine.
I decided to conduct a little research and found that my father may have been on to something.
Apparently, “onions are high in sulfuric compounds such as thiosulfinates, sulfoxides, and other odorous cysteine sulfoxides. These compounds give onions their pungent flavor and are what make you cry when cutting them. Research shows that thiosulfinates are toxic to harmful organisms. Sulfuric compounds also play a role in cancer and heart disease prevention, and therefore act as a great immune-boosting food for general disease prevention.
Onions are also extremely high in the antioxidant quercetin. Quercetin helps the body fight free-radicals, and boosts the immune response. A recent study from the British Journal of Nutrition showed that individuals who ate foods high in quercetin (onion soup was used in the study), had better immune responses and less likelihood for cardiovascular disease.
The Delmar’s Integrative Herb Guide states, “Onions help break up or clear mucous and other substances that block the immune system from doing its work.” –Global Healing Center
There’s also a story of a girl who put onions in her socks and slept with these socks on overnight to reveal astonishing benefits! Read here: Healthy Bliss
While there are no studies to prove this, I have advised my friends who are down with the flu to do the same and every one of them had amazing results. That’s not even an exaggeration. When I was taking the Bar Exam to become a lawyer, I caught the flu at the worst time a few days before the exam. I did the onion trick and was well enough to take the exam on a Sunday!
It might sound ridiculous but it’s worth a try. I completely SWEAR by this! It’s a cheap trick too! Nothing to lose right?