Pungent and penetrating, raw onions have strong laxative, diaphoretic and antibacterial properties.
The qualities of cooked onions are somewhat different than those of raw onions. The longer they cook the sweeter and less Pitta aggravating onions become, and the more beneficial they become for Vata. Cooked or raw, onions stimulate desire (Rajasic), and are considered an aphrodisiac.
Yellow onions are the standard onion in western grocery store shelves. White onions tend to be sweeter and crunchier. Red onions are best if raw onions are required.
Taste: pungent, sweet
Natural Attributes: Light, Slightly oily
Tissue impact (Vipak): sweet (nourishing)
Thermal impact (Virya): warming
Dosha impact: Increases Pitta, slightly increases Kapha, decreases Vata
Digestive impact (Agni): hard to digest (raw), easy to digest (cooked)
Channels (Srotas): opens
Strength (Bala): bestows strength and vitality
Mind (Manas): Rajasic
Effect: diaphoretic, alkalizing, Galactagogue, anti-carcinogenic
Chinese five element impact: Metal and Water
Chinese medicine syndromes: strengthens Kidney Yang, moistens the Lungs and Large Intestines
- Nourishment (rasa): lactation, dysentery, inhibits allergic reactions
- Blood-circulation-liver: lowers blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, liver stagnancies, facial edema
- Vital essence: inhibits malignant cell growth
- Skin: (topically) insect bites- to draw out swelling and pain
- Respiratory system: decreases catarrh, common cold, cough, bronchial inflammation, chest congestions, phlegm in lungs
- Digestive system: aids digestion, neutralizes toxins