The humble onion is a staple in every kitchen. It becomes the flavor base for everything, from soups to luscious pies. Once cooked, onion adds a subtle sweetness and immense flavor to the dish.
While the onion is packed with nutrients, those on very low carb diets might consider checking its net carb content.
Is onion keto-friendly? Read on to find out.
Onions on Low-Carb Diets
In total, there are 27 different types of onion. The most-commonly used onions are red onion, green onion, and spring onion.
Since there are different types of onion, you’ll need to calculate the net carb for each type. To do this, subtract the total carbs from the fiber content.
Here is a list of popular serving sizes of onions and their net carbs:
- 1 tbsp chopped onion – 0.91 g
- 1 slice onion – 1.22 g
- 1 small-sized onion – 6.08 g
- 1 medium-sized onion – 9.62 g
- 1 large onion – 13.06 g
- 1/2 cup chopped onion – 6.99 g
- 1 cup chopped onion – 13.98
For every half-cup serving of onion, the net carb is as follows:
- red onion – 6.99 g
- green onion – 2.37 g
- spring onion- 2.37 g
- cooked onion – 9.11 g
- sauteed onion – 9.17 g
- creamed onion – 10.05 g
From the lists above, we can see that the amount of net carb in 1 cooked onion is 9.11 g. For someone who is on a strict keto-diet, that’s not a lot of net carbs. Besides, most ketogenic diet guidelines recommend you to consume 15-39 g of net carbs per day. It is also unlikely that you consume 9.11 g of onion a day as most recipes only call for a tablespoon of chopped onion.
Furthermore, it’s worth noting that the most suitable onions for a low-carb diet are green and spring onions, as they only have 2.37 g of net carbs each.
Benefits of Eating Onions
This cry-inducing vegetable offers a myriad of health benefits:
Cancer Prevention. The most significant benefit of eating onion is the prevention of cancer. It has compounds and nutrients that can save you from breast cancer, colon cancer, stomach cancer, and prostate cancer. The quercetin and sulphur compounds in onion hinder the growth of tumours by making the environment unfavorable for cancer cells to communicate. Eventually, the cancer cells will kill themselves.
Researchers believe that we can prevent up to 40% of cancer, so including onion in our dietary habits is, therefore, a life-saver.
Anti-Inflammatory-Properties. Onion contains higher concentrations of sulphurs which are effective anti-inflammatory agents. Also, onion contains quercetin compounds that reduce the inflammation in branch-like areas of the body. If you have allergies or asthma, onion can serve as an antihistamine and help relieve your symptoms.
Healthy Heart. The benefits of sulphur in onion extends to keeping your heart healthy. It acts as a natural blood thinner and keeps your platelets from forming a clot. When your platelets stick together, you could suffer from a heart attack or stroke. Furthermore, the antioxidants in onion slow down bad cholesterol, boosting blood circulation in return.
Better Hair and Skin. Onion has Vitamin C, which is vital for the production of collagen. This collagen is responsible for better hair production. If you are struggling with hair growth, get a good dose of Vitamin C from the onion.
If you want to get rid of dark spots and skin pigmentation, create a DIY facemask using onion. Try mixing the same amounts of natural yoghurt and onion juice. Massage the mask into your skin for 15 and be patient with the smell. Additionally, you can use onion for treating your acne and spots. Its antibacterial properties of onions can help fight acne-causing bacteria.
Better Mood. The folate found in onion can help with anxiety, depression, and sleeping problems. Folate keeps homocysteine from building up. This harmful compound prevents nutrients from getting to your brain. It also hinders the production of the happy hormones, dopamine and serotonin. But by eating a healthy amount of onion, the Folate will help put you into a better mood.
In a nutshell, onion is keto-friendly because it is usually eaten in moderate amounts due to the strong flavor. Unless you use 3 large onions for dips and salads, you should be fine. While the onion is acceptable on a Keto, we recommend that you keep an eye on other ingredients. If possible, make recipe substitutions.