Many people love onions, an important food staple in most cultures. Many cuisines have specialty dishes that highlight their pungency and intense flavor, and they can be found in everything from salads to curries.
However, many vegetables are acidic and can trigger symptoms like heartburn in people suffering from acid reflux, or GERD.
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Are Onions Acidic or Alkaline?
With a pH of between 5 and 5.8, onions are acidic. Although cooking onions does not cause significant changes in their acidity, using non-acidic ingredients with onions neutralizes their effects.
The pH of Onions
Red and white onions have a pH of 5.8, whereas yellow onions are closer to 5.6.
Onions' pH may change slightly as they cook, but they'll still be acidic.
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Are Onions Good for You?
Onions are rich in vitamins, minerals, and potent compounds that benefit your health.
A medium onion only has around 40 calories but contains a good amount of vitamin C, which boosts your immune system, aids collagen production and iron absorption, and supports tissue repair.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant, protecting against cellular damage from free radicals.
Onions also contain vitamin B, which helps regulate your metabolism, supports red blood cell production, and aids nerve function.
The Health Benefits of Onions
Anti-inflammatory compounds in onions can help reduce high blood pressure and blood clots.
An antioxidant in onions, quercetin, lowers your risk of high blood pressure and heart disease.
One study found that in a sample of 70 overweight people, a daily dose of quercetin-rich onion extract reduced their blood pressure significantly.
Another study had 54 women with polycystic ovarian syndrome consume 40 to 50 grams of raw red onions daily, reducing their bad cholesterol levels.
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Will Eating Onions Give You Heartburn?
If you suffer from acid reflux, onions may trigger your heartburn, but this varies from person to person.
Cooked onions are less likely to do so than raw ones. This also depends on what you mix onions with.
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China is the leading producer, with 11 million tons produced annually. Next is India, followed by the U.S.
The average Libyan eats 66 pounds of onions per year.
There are dozens, if not more, of onion varieties.
The best way to eliminate onion breath is to eat parsley.
When you cut an onion, enzymes mix with the sulfur in the onion and form a sulfonic acid, syn-propanethial-S-oxide. This evaporates quickly and causes a burning sensation in your eyes.