We had a wonderful visit with my brother and his family yesterday!!!! Lots of great food and fantastic company! And of course WINE!
Somehow we got onto the conversation of the variety of home remedies that have been around for hundreds of years for colds, I mentioned I’d read something about placing sliced onions in the “sick room” and my #1 sister-in-law said that her mother would put onion slices in her socks and at the end of the bed when she was sick and how it had really worked!
Did I mention she’s my only sister-in-law?
I’ve had a stuffy nose for a couple of days, so when we came home last night I sliced up some onion and put it on my night stand, it did smell pretty bad and I think the clothes in the closet may have an odor today….but I woke up this morning with a clear nose, it is starting to get a little stuffy again as my morning goes on, I’ll give it a few more nights to really give it a chance.
Last year I posted a recipe for Lemon Honey Tea Mix which also works wonders, as soon as I feel a scratchy throat or stuffed up nose I have a mug or two of this tea and within a day or two I’m feeling much better, it’s the “go to” tea when anyone in the house starts to get sick, and soon the onions will be too!
Here is the story I found online:
In 1919 when the flu killed 40 million people there was this Doctor that visited the many farmers to see if he could help them combat the flu. Many of the farmers and their family had contracted it and many died.
The doctor came upon this one farmer and to his surprise, everyone was very healthy. When the doctor asked what the farmer was doing that was different the wife replied that she had placed an unpeeled onion in a dish in the rooms of the home, (probably only two rooms back then). The doctor couldn’t believe it and asked if he could have one of the onions and placed it under the microscope. She gave him one and when he did this, he did find the flu virus in the onion. It obviously absorbed the virus, therefore, keeping the family healthy.
The idea that onions may ward off disease through their potent therapeutic properties extends back thousands of years. Ancient Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine revered onions for their congestion-relieving properties. The Ancient Greeks rubbed onions on sore muscles and the Native Americans used them to ward off the common cold and flu. In fact, the World Health Organization has even recognized the onion for its ability to help relieve flu symptoms including coughs, congestion, respiratory infections and bronchitis
Some traditions have even recommended placing sliced onions beside the bed at night, or even just around the house, to help prevent yours from getting the flu. The theory was that the raw onion would absorb germs in the air, preventing them from entering the body. Even though, it must be noted, that one of the most common ways to get the flu is by contact with contaminated surfaces or people. So remember to wash your hands, especially before eating or scratching your eyes.
In an early 1900′s Los Angeles Times article, the following suggestion was offered to the public:
- “In a sickroom you cannot have a better disinfectant than the onion. It has a wonderful capacity for absorbing germs. A dish of sliced onions placed in a sickroom will draw away the disease; they must be removed as soon as they lose their odor and become discolored, and be replaced by fresh ones.”
Onions have many benefits. They 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 the thiosulfinates in onions are responsible for their potent properties. Thiosulfinates have even been shown to kill off salmonella and E. coli. 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 that, “Onions help break up or clear mucous and other substances that block the immune system from doing its work.”
This season, if you feel a cold or flu coming on, make yourself a big pot of soup using this simple recipe.
Onion Soup Recipe:
- 3 large organic yellow onions
- 3 organic cloves of garlic
- 1/4 cup of fresh, finely-chopped organic oregano
- 4 cups of purified or distilled water
- Add Himalayan salt, to your taste.
Preparation: Chop the onions and garlic into cubes. Bring water to a boil and add onions, garlic, and oregano. Let simmer for 15 minutes, or until you notice that the onions are translucent and soft. Drink the hot soup and allow the body temperature to rise enough to induce mild sweating.
- 15 Health Benefits Of Onions (noliesradio.org)
- Help prevent the flu (healthnutnation.com)
- Can onions cure the flu (dailyjournalonline.com)