Onions may not seem like something you just want to run out and get but the healing ways of an onion are probably more powerful than you had originally thought.
When I was pregnant with my son, I craved a salad of iceburg lettuce, red onions, cucumbers, oil and rice vinegar. An odd craving yes, but maybe my body was trying to tell me something.
Benefits of Onions
There is a large amount of polyphenols in onions. Polyphenols are phytochemicals naturally found in many foods that have been shown to be protective against the development of cancers, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, osteoporosis and neurodegenerative diseases. You know that bitter taste and odor that onions have? Well, some scientists feel that it’s those amazing polyphenols! Onions also contain quercetin, an antioxidant that has been proven to fight against cancer, inflammation and diabetes as well.
- vitamin C
- vitamin B6
Hmmm, well, 2 nutrients right there, that are important especially during pregnancy. As your baby grows your blood volume increases bringing your daily needs of iron up to 27mg. Thats an increase of nearly 50% compared to non-pregnant women. And was with anyone, a deficiency in iron will make you feel sluggish, weak and your immunity will surely suppressed. There is also a risk of your baby being of low birthweight.
I am fairly certain if you have ever been pregnant or been close to someone who has been through a pregnancy, you know how important it is to be eating the right foods containing folate as well as folic acid supplementation. Folate is associated with inflammation and neural tube defects. During the last trimester if your intake of folate is lower, you are at an increased risk of preeclempsia and delivering too soon.
My Favorite Way to Prepare an Onion
There are truly so many ways to incorporate onions into everyday cooking and into EVERY meal…really! One of my favorites in when cooking breakfast. You can slice some onions and bell peppers and saute them for a scramble. You try! And if you want more recipes straight to your inbox, be sure to subscribe to my emails.
- 1/2 onion (don't be afraid, it's going to be cooked)
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 whole egg
- 2 egg whites
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 cup spinach
- 2 tablespoons feta cheese crumbles
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Slice onion and pepper, thinly while skillet heats over medium. Drizzle in olive oil and watch for it to shimmer. Once it shimmers, add the onion and pepper slices. Cook and occasionally stir for 5-6 minutes. The onions will begin to caramelize. Remove from skillet and clean off as much of the bit as possible.
- Whisk eggs and water. Add cooking spray to the same skillet and heat over medium. Once a small amount of water sizzles in skillet, add the eggs. Allow to cook before stirring; 3-4 minutes. Gently stir to scramble. Cook until no longer runny.
- Add cayenne and spinach as well as the onion and pepper slices; remove from heat. Stir together so spinach will wilt. Add feta and pepper. Serve hot with oatmeal, quinoa or my favorite, Ezekiel bread. Enjoy!
Eating Expectantly by Bridget Swinney, MS, RD