Skooter reporting 09/01/12
Allium family is a member of this healing food. Garlic, leeks and chives are its cousins. It normally induces tears or watering in our eyes. We are referring to the plain onion of course, and are loaded with flavor and nutrients. A new study has put a significant change on the onion, bringing to mind that we think twice first before throwing the onion’s skin away as waste.
You know onion skin could be used as food cure, according to scientists. It is rich in fibre and flavonoids especially the brown skin and external layers while the discarded bulbs contain sulphurous compounds and fructans. All are beneficial to human health.
In many countries, onion waste is on the increase, so much so it is becoming an environmental concern. That may have encouraged the recent study, which found that onion waste is a natural source of elements with high functional usefulness.
Researchers in the lab performed tests to reveal the substances and potential uses of each part of the onion. Basing on the study, they found out that the brown skin could be used as a functional ingredient high in dietary fibre, mainly the non-soluble type, and phenolic compounds, such as quercetin and other flavonoids (plant metabolites with medicinal properties). Fibre and flavonoids are also found in the two outer fleshy layers of the onion.
Some quick tips about these substances: (compliments from Jeff Jurmain, MA)
- Fibre reduces the risk of heart disease, gastrointestinal complaints, colon cancer, type-2 diabetes and obesity.
- Phenolic compounds help prevent coronary disease, have anti-carcinogenic properties and in high levels inside onion waste, become strong antioxidants.
- Fructans are prebiotics, which have beneficial health effects as they selectively stimulate the growth and activity of healthy bacteria in the colon.
- Sulphurous compounds reduce the accumulation of platelets, improving blood flow and your heart’s health in general. They may also act as antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.
The study says their outcomes prove that it would be helpful to separate the different parts of onions produced during the industrial process. In regards to consumer level, it is recommended to work out how to prepare and cook onion skin and onion bulbs so that you can drenched up their nutrition.