Looking to put some onions on a burger, a salad, or whatever else you’re cooking today? A new study suggests you should opt for red instead of white if you want to ward off cancer.
Researchers at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada, tested extracts from five different kinds of onions on lab-grown colon cancer cells. What they found was that red onions, particularly the Ruby Ring variety, were adept at fighting off cancer. Red onions overall, however, killed three to four times more cells than lighter-colored onion varieties, regardless of the specific variety.
Red onions have high concentrations of the flavonoid quercetin, and they also contain anthocyanin. Researchers believe both of these properties contribute to their cancer-fighting abilities. The compounds in these onions encourage cell death among cancer cells and also protects healthy cells from harm by “inhibiting the production of reactive compounds that may damage otherwise normal cells.” Until further research has been conducted, the best way to reap these benefits is to eat your red onions raw.
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