Have you ever wondered, how are onions good for weight loss? If not, you are in the right place to learn about the incredible weight losing properties of onions.
From curries to salads or snacks, onions are useful in almost all food items around the world. However, it is also used for medicinal purposes in many cultures from ancient times.
Furthermore, several studies demonstrated that it can prevent the accumulation of fat in the body. As a consequence, it prevents weight gain and related diseases that mainly occur due to overweight, such as hypertension, diabetes, and dyslipidemia.
What are the different types of onions?
Onions vary according to their size, shape, and colors. The most common of them are yellow, red, white and pearl onions.
Yellow or brown onions are by far widely available and used in standard cooking. It provides a rich, dark brown stain when caramelized. Additonally, yellow onions are responsible for the sweet taste of French soup.
Red onions, also known as purple onions, are appropriate for a fresh application. Slices or rings of red onions are used in salads, sandwiches or hamburgers. It livens up any dish with its purple appearance. Interestingly, red onions are surprisingly good for weight loss.
Pearl Onions are mostly used in the Indian subcontinent especially in Bangladesh for everyday cooking. These are smaller in size and red, white or yellowish in color with a mild flavor.
White onions are used in Mexican cuisines and famous for their flavor. There are other types of onion such as scallions. It has a sweet flavor and mainly useful for Chinese foods.
Excellent sources of nutrients
Onions are full of Vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. They are rich in vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and Folate (B9).
Vitamin C, an antioxidant, is an important component of immune function and maintenance of skin and hair.
Vitamin B6 is essential for the synthesis of red blood cells, whereas folate has a vital role in cell growth, especially needed for pregnant women.
Furthermore, onions contain a high amount of potassium. It is a basic elements for normal cell function, more importantly for cardiac muscles and kidney function.
Moreover, several phytochemicals such as quercetin, anthocyanin and sulfur compounds make onions protective against multiple dangerous diseases.
Quercetin is an important flavonoid; anthocyanin present in many fruits and vegetables and is responsible for their colorful appearance.
Are onions good for weight loss?
Obesity has become one of the major health issues globally. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2016, globally 39% of men and women of 18 and over were overweight.
Since obesity is related to some dangerous diseases such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and other cardiovascular diseases, scientists are approaching in every possible way to tackle this issue.
However, onions can play a vital role regarding this issue. Surprisingly, various research says that onions have multiple methods to prevent weight gain.
A 12 weeks study on 72 people done in Korea by giving 100 grams of quercetin rich onion peel extract daily. After 1 year of eating onion peel extract, overweight people showed a significant decrease in weight and body fat, particularly, fat in the arm.
Another study published in a journal, nutrition, and metabolism, where onion oil was administered in rats for 60 days.
They demonstrated that oil can suppress high-fat diet-induced weight gain. While the oil decreased triglyceride, total cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein, it increased high-density lipoprotein. The later one is beneficial for health.
They concluded that onion oil has anti-obesity properties. It can counteract the effects of a high-fat diet on body weight, adipose tissue weight, and blood lipid profiles.
Moreover, several studies proved, weight losing properties of eating onions. Therefore, anyone can benefit from this daily cooking material.
How onions are good for weight loss
Research shows, there are several methods, how onions are good for weight loss.
Quercetin rich onion act as a pancreatic lipase inhibitor. Pancreatic lipase is a digestive enzyme. It is secreted from the pancreas and is responsible for digestion and absorption of fat. Therefore, inhibiting this enzyme means less fat absorption and less fat accumulation in the body. As a result, it can act as a vital instrument to prevent weight gain.
Furthermore, onions have the ability to prevent adipogenesis. It is a process of producing new adipocytes that store energy as fat. That means less production of fat in the body.
Moreover, quercetin rich onion peel extracts greatly inhibit the activity of an enzyme called glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase. It is an important enzyme and involved in fatty acid production.
In addition to that, quercetin in onion also increases energy expenditure within cells and further burn extra fat.
Quercetin is a flavonoid that mostly comes from fruits and vegetables. Onions are loaded with it and red onions are the richest source. Therefore, onions, especially red ones, can act as a natural remedy for weight loss.
Other health benefits of eating onions
Ancient Roman people believed that onions have the ability to improve sleep, ocular diseases and heal a wide variety of other ailments such as dysentery, oral sores, toothaches even dog bites.
Over the years many research papers published focusing the health benefits of onions. They contain high amounts of quercetin and other antioxidants. Quercetin has shown surprising anti-cancer, anti-obesity and anti-microbial properties.
A study published in Food Research International demonstrates that quercetin directly kills cancer cells. Whereas, anthocyanin enriches the scavenging properties of quercetin molecules. Particularly in stomach and breast cancer.
“Onions activate pathways that encourage cancer cells to undergo cell death. They promote an unfavorable environment for cancer cells and disrupt communications between cancer cells which inhibits growth” said Abdulmomen Murayyan, one of the lead researchers of the study.
Furthermore, one study found that onions can kill Helicobacter pylori and Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Helicobacter pylori is the main causes of stomach ulcer and sometimes leads to stomach cancer.
In addition to that, multiple studies in animals proved, onions have the ability to lower blood pressure as well as blood sugar.
A study in 84 people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes demonstrated that 100 grams of onion intake can lower blood sugar by 89 mg/dl and 40 mg/dl respectively.
Moreover, onions have the ability to increase sperm production and sperm motility in humans. It can improve skin and hair conditions, may boost bone density and has many more health benefits.
Side effects of eating onions
Eating onions may cause problems for some people. According to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse, eating onions often cause gas and bloating.
Furthermore, when eaten raw, it may worsen heartburn in people who already have gastric reflux disease.
However, these conditions are not serious enough to quit eating onions.
Although onions have been used as vegetables or spices for thousands of years, the health benefits of onions are still neglected. However, in recent years scientists made tremendous progress to discover health effects of onions.
Since it is used in every households, people can greatly benefit from this vegetable, especially to lose weight. As a result, it will undoubtedly prevent a variety of diseases that are directly related to overweight and improve living standards.