Does an onion within the sock work for a chilly?

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Placing a uncooked onion inside a sock and sleeping with it in a single day is a treatment that some folks consider can deal with a chilly or the flu. However is there any scientific proof to counsel it really works?

Based on the Nationwide Onion Affiliation, the declare that uncooked onion can deal with the flu is a idea that dates again to the 1500s. Lately, many articles on-line have claimed that this folks treatment is efficient.

Right here we discover the origins of the onion sock house treatment and whether or not there may be any proof to help its effectiveness. The article additionally considers the well being advantages of onions and different remedies accessible for chilly and flu.

Contents of this text:

  1. What are the origins of the treatment?
  2. What science says
  3. Well being advantages of onions
  4. Treating chilly and flu
  5. Takeaway
Quick information about onion within the sock for chilly and flu:

  • The treatment dates again to the time of the plague when folks believed illness unfold by way of “noxious air.”
  • It’s also linked to the Chinese language medicinal apply of reflexology.
  • There isn’t a scientific proof to help the declare.

What are the origins of the treatment?

woman with cold laying in bed blowing her nose
The assumption that uncooked onion can deal with flu is believed so far from the 1500s.

The notion of “noxious air” developed earlier than scientists understood the germ idea of illness. Right this moment, the position of germs in illness is now not a idea and is backed up by scientific proof.

Earlier than scientists recognized germs as being accountable for sickness, folks believed that uncooked onions might purify the air within the room. When positioned in opposition to the pores and skin of the foot and stored in a sock, folks thought that onion might cleanse the blood. Individuals claimed this purification course of might remedy the widespread chilly or the flu.

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Fashionable articles that help this folklore declare it’s the odorous sulfuric compounds in onions that give them their therapeutic properties.

In the same strategy to reflexology, this historic apply focuses on particular factors within the foot primarily based on a perception that every level impacts the well being of a special inner organ.

What the science says

one whole red onion and one sliced in half
Though onions do have some well being advantages when eaten, there haven’t been any scientific research to again the onion in sock treatment.

A 2002 evaluation on the well being advantages of onions notes that they’re certainly wealthy in sulfuric compounds. Nevertheless, that is so far as the proof to help the onion in sock house treatment goes.

That mentioned, there haven’t been any scientific research which have checked out this particularly. Most articles on-line that suggest onion in a sock as a remedy for colds and flu don’t cite any scientific proof.

Any claims of effectiveness are primarily based on anecdotes moderately than analysis.

It’s also price noting that there’s little proof to help reflexology as an efficient remedy for sickness. This 2011 evaluation concludes that medical proof fails to reveal that reflexology is an efficient remedy for any medical situation.

Aromatherapy can be a rising evidence-based apply the place stimulation of scent receptors assists therapeutic.

Well being advantages of onions

Though uncooked onions are usually not confirmed to remedy a chilly when put in opposition to the soles of the toes, onions do have some well being advantages when eaten. They’re a low-calorie, high-fiber, high-nutrient meals and include vitamin C. Consuming onions could:

  • Scale back the danger of most cancers: This 2015 evaluation discusses the hyperlink between consuming Allium greens (which embrace onions) and diminished danger of most cancers.
  • Help pores and skin and hair well being: Onions are excessive in vitamin C, which helps the manufacturing of collagen wanted for wholesome pores and skin and hair.
  • Scale back melancholy: Onions include vitamin B9 (folate), which can assist help psychological well being and scale back the danger of melancholy.
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Treating chilly and flu

These contemplating utilizing the onion in sock house treatment to remedy a chilly or flu could discover one of many following house treatments to be extra helpful:

honey lemon and fresh ginger
Together with honey and lemon or contemporary ginger in drinks could ease chilly and flu signs.
  • Consuming tea with honey and lemon: This may ease a sore throat and researchers have discovered honey to be an efficient cough suppressant.
  • Consuming sizzling water with contemporary ginger: This may scale back emotions of nausea related to the flu.
  • Gargling with salt water: This research discovered that gargling would possibly assist forestall higher respiratory tract infections.
  • Over-the-counter paracetamol: This may scale back a fever and aches and pains related to chilly and flu.


The onion in sock house treatment has origins in western folklore and is tons of of years outdated. It additionally has hyperlinks to the Chinese language apply of reflexology.

Many individuals declare that the onion in sock treatment is an efficient remedy for a chilly or the flu. Regardless of these claims, there isn’t any scientific proof to help this. There are not any confirmed well being advantages to this treatment, however it’s not identified to be dangerous.

Onions provide a spread of well being advantages when they’re eaten as a part of a balanced food plan.

If an individual is on the lookout for methods to deal with their chilly or flu at house, there are a number of treatments that do have confirmed advantages. It’s a good suggestion to attempt remedies which can be identified to be efficient earlier than attempting house treatments which can be much less evidence-based.

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When contemplating new remedies for chilly and flu, it’s at all times a good suggestion to talk to a health care provider first.

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