Onion juice benefits – not for the faint of heart, but wonderful for your health

Onion juice!  That’s not likely to be the first thing that springs to mind when you imagine sipping a refreshing cold glass of juice on a hot summer’s day.  But if you’re reading this article, then chances are you’re at least contemplating the idea of trying onion juice. Well done for getting this far.  Maybe I can help you get up the bravery to take the next step – drinking some.  😉

Onions are truly an amazing vegetable.  Belonging to the allium family, they are pungent, anti-bacterial, anti-cancer, antioxidant, and anti-fungal.  Try not to get stuck on the pungent factor, as blended with other vegetables, the onion juice taste does not come through as strongly as you may expect.  For your information, one medium-sized onion will give you about 3 tablespoons or 45ml of onion juice, meaning that one onion will not significantly bulk out your overall juice batch amount, but it will certainly pump up your juice with amazing natural chemical properties.  Let me go on…

Onions, especially yellow and red onions, contain one of the richest known dietary sources of quercetin, which is a potent antioxidant and phytochemical which has strong cancer-inhibiting properties.  When you drink onion juice, you are helping prevent cancer – that’s a huge gain and reason to throw in an onion now and then when you make a juice.  You probably won’t want onion every time you make a batch of juice, but the health benefits of onion juice are definitely worth putting up with the pungency and strong taste occasionally.

Another benefit of drinking onion juice is that onions help to prevent thrombosis, so if you’re heading out on a plane flight some time, maybe knocking back some juice blend with onion juice in it a few hours before would be a good idea (unless the very thought makes you feel queasy, in which case, maybe try it out at home a few times first before drinking onion juice right before hopping on a plane!)  It’s really not that “bad”, though – just strong.  The trick is to put onions in with other vegetables as if you were making a raw soup – that way, the onion taste “fits”.  You will probably find that mixing onion juice with most fruits produces a rather strange and incongruous brew – although there are some combinations which do work surprisingly well.

But I digress – the onion’s health benefits when juiced!  High blood pressure can be reduced by drinking onion juice, and blended with beetroot juice this is one of the most ideal blood-pressure-reducing “food medicine” tonics that you could consume.  And it’s totally safe!

Onion juice also helps lower blood sugar, so if you’ve overdosed on sugary foods after a party or something, then knocking back some onion juice can definitely help you there.  Who likes the feeling of a blood sugar “crash”?  If you’re going to make a blood-sugar-lowering tonic, then maybe add in some root vegetables which contain complex starches so that the body can start using those starches and converting them into slow-release sugars for brain food.  That’s right – your brain runs on glucose – but it’s better to get glucose in a slow-release form than in sugary hits of cake and soda.  So while you’re trying to treat a high blood sugar scenario with some onion juice, add in some root vegetables as well for some slow-release energy that will help prevent you from feeling “off” suddenly as your blood sugar comes back down to normal.

Another thing that onion juice does finely is to counteract inflammatory responses.  So if you’re prone to eczema, or hives, or hay fever, then it may benefit you to drink some onion juice when those allergy responses start up.  You probably know them from a telltale “tingly” itch on the skin or a tingly feeling in the back of the throat that you know is likely to turn into a sneezing fit.  Time to run to the kitchen and juice an onion or two!

When juicing onions, keep a few things in mind.  Firstly, you can leave the skin on, but do cut off the bottom where the lump of roots remains.  Also, choose vegetables which go with onions in cooking – such as carrots, parsnips, swedes, pumpkin or squash, turnips, zucchinis, celery.  I’d advise against mixing onion juice with sweet fruits such as peach or mango or orange, because personally I find the taste a bit too bizarre!  But you might like it, so once you’ve tried onion juice with veggies, then why not pluck up the courage to come up with some combos of your own.  You never know – you might hit on the next new world-famous flavour combo… let’s see… Apricot and Onion Juice anybody…?!  😉  Haha, maybe not….  But you never know!   Don’t let my bad sense of humour keep you from trying new things.  Especially where juice is concerned.

Because remember… yep I’m saying it again… any juice is better than no juice!

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About Laurie Kavanagh