Monday, April 25, 2011


Something I didn't really consider until recently is the relatively high carbohydrate content of onions.   It's kind of obvious when you think about it because it is a root vegetable, after all.  Yet most people wouldn't automatically associate its spicy and watery texture with sugars.

According to Fit Day, one medium onion contains a little over 10g of sugars, of which almost 2g are dietary fibre. 

I know that's not earthshatteringly much, but it isn't trivial either.  Especially if, like me, you automatically start almost every dish with a couple of onions.

In case you are thinking of throwing out all the onions in your kitchen, you should be aware that they are also credited with a host of other nutritional benefits, including a number of sources that claim that onions are excellent for reducing blood sugar.

For example, the Readers Digest tells us:
In one Egyptian study of diabetic rats, onion juice reduced blood sugar levels by an amazing 70 percent. One of few published studies in humans, from India, dates back some 30 years, but it found that people with diabetes who ate 2 ounces (60 g) of onions a day experienced a significant drop in blood sugar levels.
The vagueness of this particular unreferenced quote is a great example of what often passes for fact.

Perhaps onions do have amazing nutritional benefits, though the skeptic in me continues to wonder why diabetics aren't encouraged to reduce their carbohydrate intake in the first place.

Conclusion?  Well, I'm not going to stop cooking with onions, but I'll probably think twice before chopping them up in large quantities.  My eyes certainly won't be complaining.

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