Healing Power of Onions: Can Onions absorb Bacteria, Viruses and Flu?
The Almighty Onion…is she more powerful than we previously thought? This is an interesting topic that I discovered online several times in various forms, all relating to the theory that if you put an onion in the room of a person who is sick, the onion will ‘absorb’ the illness, and sometimes in just a few hours, the person is better. It seemed unbelievable, but I thought to myself, “Remember that one Jennifer, and if you ever need it, you have nothing to lose by giving the onion theory a try.”
All information in this article is for educational purposes only.
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.
A few points to note on Onion Healing:
This is not a new idea. Onions were used by certain individuals in Europe to successfully fight off the plague in the early 1900’s. Ayurvedic medicine has been using an onion poultice for the chest or feet to cure coughs, fevers and flus for centuries. They also use the onion poultice to reduce pain and inflammation in the joints. Homeopathic doctors also use the healing power of onions to heal from viruses and illness. I even know people in the North American Hutterite community, a pacifist community similar to the Amish whose traditions date back to the 16th century, who tell me it is common practice to place onions in their homes during winter flu season and to use cut onions in the room of an ill person to relieve their symptoms quickly and naturally.
It is said that white onions work better than red onions. Yellow onions would be an acceptable alternative, but white onions, with the latin name Allium Cepa, work best.
The onions need to be peeled if left around the home as a preventive measure against flu and viruses. Many people do this during flu season and find that no one gets sick, whereas in previous years with no onions, they had several members of the family fall ill. If placed around the home for prevention, the onions should be replaced every 3 months.
If someone falls ill with a cough, flu, cold or fever, immediately place a peeled white onion cut in half in a bowl in their room. The onion needs to be cut in half in order to expose the most amount of ‘healing power’ from its pungent odor.
Cut onions can also be used to eliminate mold smells in a closet, drawer or room.
It’s best not to leave a cut onion open in the fridge (to eat later) because as soon as an onion is cut, it will start to absorb bacteria, etc. So, if you cut an onion for a salad, either use the whole thing or put the other half in your garage or basement to absorb bad smells! Once the onion is in a salad in a sealed container, it is safe and can be eaten at a later time.
Perhaps the most interesting onion remedy is the Sock Onion. This is a ‘modern-day’ version of the Ayurvedic poultice, and involves cutting the white onion in half and placing one half on the bottom of each foot so that the cut onion is against the skin. Place a sock on top of the onion so it stays secure in place and leave the ‘Onion Sock’ on overnight. This is especially good for flus and fevers. One of my twitter followers recently shared her success with the Sock Onion:
Health Benefits of Onions
Onions are rich in sulfur-containing compounds that are responsible for their strong odor. Sulfur is a powerful detox element and helps the body to release toxins, especially for the liver. Foods naturally high in sulfur also help the body to detox from heavy metals like lead, arsenic and cadmium.
The onion is the richest dietary source of quercitin, a powerful antioxidant flavonoid that has been shown to thin the blood, lower cholesterol, ward off blood clots, and fight asthma, chronic bronchitis, hay fever, diabetes, atherosclerosis and infections and is even linked to inhibiting certain types of cancer.
Onions are also naturally anti-inflammatory, antibiotic and antiviral. That, of course, is when you eat them!
Onions to Heal: First to Remove Odors
Fast-forward to me being in Vilcabamba, Ecuador where I’m here renting a house for 2 months to do an extended water fast. In the first few days in the house, we noticed a very bad septic smell coming from both toilets which never got better, no matter how many times we flushed or cleaned the toilets. After we started the water fast and became more sensitive to smell, I thought to myself, What can we do which is completely natural and will still take this smell away? Then I remembered everything I read about the Almighty Onion!
That night, we sliced 2 white onions in half, placed 1 onion in each of 2 bowls and put one bowl in each bathroom overnight. The onion smell at first was very strong, but that is actually a great smell when you are water fasting (we dreamed of tomato gazpacho with onions!). The next morning, to our complete amazement, there was no more onion smell, and guess what? There was no more septic smell either!!!
Onions to Heal: Taking the Onion Sock Test
I became so excited with this discovery that I wanted to try to Onion Sock theory. Luckily, we still had 1 onion left in the house, so the very next night, we cut the onion into 4 lateral thick slices (each slice about 1/2″ thick). I use 2 slices on my my feet and gave the remaining 2 to my boyfriend who willing put them on his feet. (Yes, he is a willing participant in all of this stuff including the water fast because, one, he is very open to try new things and he trusts my skills and experience, and two, because he lost his mom to cancer 8 years ago and knows that clean diet, clean body and clean mind are the keys to good health).
Now, the interesting part of this story is that we were on Day 5 of a water fast when we tried the Onion Socks. Mainly, I wanted to see if the onion could be used as a tool to amplify the detox effects. Especially with the body being so clean, the fumes from the onion could theoretically be absorbed through the skin and pass through the body more quickly, and perhaps eliminate internal bad bacteria or even parasites.
With Onion Socks on, we waited anxiously to see what would happen. Note that both of us were feeling good all day and I felt great when we placed the onions on our feet. My boyfriend was feeling pretty tired and weak after his evening enema but had felt really good earlier in the day.
Results of the Onion Sock Experiment
After about 30 minutes with the Onion Socks on, I started to feel distinct quivers in my calves and a twitch on my left side at the rib cage. 20 minutes later, I started feeling heartburn! That was amazing. I have not had any acid reflux at all during this water fast (although is was an issue during my last water fast, all of which I explain in my ebook: Water Fasting Guide & 40-Day Journal). Shortly after that, I started to feel hot in the head. In another 10 minutes, my eyes started to tear as if I had just cut an onion, although a much milder sensation but clearly a distinct tearing.
5 minutes after that, my boyfriend told me he had the taste of onion in his mouth!
So clearly, something was happening, even if it was only onion fumes passing through our bodies and nothing else.
The next morning, we compared notes about how we felt. My boyfriend had a terrible night and barely slept and felt that the onion fumes had upset his intestinal worms (which we are sure he has and are hoping the water fast will eliminate). I felt tired and weak, the first day for me to feel that way, but I did feel better. I don’t think it was the placebo effect as I am very open to trying something and saying it doesn’t work.
And the real reason why I think it worked is because 90% of my hay fever and allergy symptoms disappeared overnight!! That is the best part of this story so far. Ever since we arrived to Vilcabama, I have been sneezing like crazy, scratching my nose all the time with excessive mucous coming out of my nose almost constantly. Well, they say that raw foodists don’t have allergies so I could not understand what was going on and I was hoping that the water fast would help. But, we went through Day 1-4 with absolutely no change and no relief, still sneezing up to 50 times a day easily. Well, after the Onion Socks, I did not have any mucous, and I went through the whole day with no itchy eyes and no itchy nose and I think I sneezed only 2 times the entire day!! Now, that is no placebo effect! Anyone who suffers from allergies can appreciate how wonderful the sense of relief is, and to find a natural ‘cure’ and experience allergy relief from 1/2 of an onion?! Wow!!
Today we went out and bought 10 more onions and we are going to continue with the Onion Socks intermittently during our water fast. I’ll update later with more results. Meanwhile, consider trying this yourself at home. I mean, what do you have to lose except for the cost of a few onions? In my opinion, it’s a safe and effective method with nothing to lose and a lot to possibly gain.
UPDATE: I did the Onion Sock again the next night, and that was it. One month later, eating again, and all sign of hayfever are still gone! I recommended this to a Natural Hygiene Raw Foodist in Vilcabamba who was also having hay fever allergies, and he had noticeable reduction of symptoms after 24 hours.
This article is not meant to diagnose any disease. For any serious medical concerns, always consult with your doctor.
Read more information on the liver and liver cleansing here:
Liver Flush Detox Drink – Recipe for a Daily Liver Cleanse
Gallstone Liver Flush – Recipe & Cleanse Info
How to Do a Coffee Enema at Home
How to Do a Castor Oil Pack for Liver Cleansing
How to Eat Clean: Start with Green Smoothies!
Check out my book Green Smoothies for Dummies – I’ve got loads of recipes using dark leafy greens and many delicious combos without any chemical additives, flavorings or refined sugar. It’s so easy!
Clean your body from the inside out and watch your skin improve, your hair and nails get stronger, your eyes look brighter and your waistline slim down….all naturally and effortlessly! It’s simply amazing and your only regret will be that you didn’t start drinking green smoothies sooner.
When you take care of your whole body, you get whole body health.
When you let your food be your medicine, you are always moving towards better health.
Find the book Green Smoothies for Dummies on iTunes or amazon.com!
For more on how to achieve your health goals and actually start feeling great, book a private health consult with me via Skype.
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More on pH health:
- What is an Alkaline Diet? Know your pH Health
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- What are the symptoms of a Herxheimer (Detox) Reaction?
- 3 BEST Detox Bath Recipes to help release toxins
- Detox Reaction vs. Allergic Reaction or Intolerance – Which one is it?
- How do you know when it’s time to STOP fasting
- Can your eyes change colors on a juice fast?
More on anti-Aging:
- Vilcabamba, Ecuador: The Raw Food Valley of Longevity… or Just Hype?
- Aloe Vera: Nature’s Alternative to Botox!
- Why I still love my Daily Green Smoothie…
- Top 10 Secrets for Good Health and Longevity: How to Create Your Personal ‘Blue Zone’
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Ok, I tried this last night with lower back pain. I put the onion slices directly on my skin. But they were hard to keep on my back all night because, I am mostly a side sleeper. So just wondering if in the sock would still help your back? BTW, I was absolutely pain free through the night and until about 10 am this morning. Thanks for all this good info!! Onions are way cheaper than copays and way healthier than meds!!
would love to try some of these but I am deathly allergic to onions. the smell makes the back of my throat blister. If one touches my skin it instantly blisters. Do you think garlic would work instead?
I have just cut a onion in half and cut half half in my socks going tell u results wen i wake up in 8 hours time
i have this situation where there is a dead animal in my surroundings dont know what it is but the smell is abnoxious so i cut some onioons in a container with cool water and the smell has died down,now i smell the onion instead when i go outside.so i decided to try the onion slice under my feet and put socks on i suffer from allergic rhynitis and i would be sniffing alot but about 1 hr with the onion sock on there is no sniffing i’ watching it if it works i will never be out of onions again
The onion sock is ABSOLUTELY AWESOME!!! During 12 hours I was relieved of muscle, joint and tendon inflammation and pain in my back, my knees, my shoulders, my fingers and wrists. WOW!!!! It really works.
Thanks to the onion sock I can continue to get relief and keep. My IBS and other pain and inflammation under control at an affordable price. I’m so happy that I saw the article posted on Facebook about a mother who tried this on her son who was I’ll w/ fever. She was feeling sick as well, she decided to try the onion sock. Both were feeling great the next day. I thought it was very cool! I couldn’t wait to start detoxing with onion
Sock. Fabulous discovery indeed.
June 22, 2014
I’m trying the sock method now and it’s been about two hours in but my eyes are watery and I taste it,the bad part is I have heart burn. But I’m going to keep going to see if this works. I’ll keep you posted.
After two days of the flu I remembered about the onion. I cut one in half and placed it in a bowl in the room I was convalesing in. Within an hour I felt energy returning and felt alert again. I’ve yet to try the poultice to relieve my asthma.
Wow I too stumbled across this web site and am so glad I did. I fell down some wet steps a couple of days ago breaking two toes and fracturing my ankle in 3 places. I read the article and comments about the onion being good for toxins and inflammation….I tried it last night and I was so amazed this morning to see and feel the swelling had gone down drastically… when I first applied the large onion slice to my ankle and one to the bottom of my foot near my toes…I felt this cooling sensation in my ankle and my toes…I was skeptical about the onion helping with inflammation…..but it really worked!!!! I won’t be without white onions ever again…. Thanks for sharing this information:)
Wonderful information from everyone, thankyou. Will be telling the family about this and they will love the remedy as some of these bugs can be life threatening in very young and the elderly- and how wonderful to be able to go to the pantry for a healthy remedy! So simple!
Hi, have been dealing with parasitic infections (internal and external) contracted at my rat infested office’s in Soho, NYC. Hoping that I don’t have Lyme from flea, tick bites etc. I’ve been having the most terrible pain in my feet have tried this as was having the weirdest fluttering sensation and swelling in my right foot. Not sure if the sensation is nerve damage caused by parasites or nerve damage caused by the medications or Lyme. I have been trying to deal with this horrible situation using both wholistic methods of healing and western medicine. In any case, in desperation from the pain, swelling and fluttering sensation in my foot, I put a slice of organic yellow onion in white socks. I cut it in half and put a half on the middle of each foot. The next day I had significant improvement. I tried it again last night and even put a peeled, cut in half onion in a bowl by my bed as I was smelling mold ( I don’t know from where) in my bedroom and know that it’s not good to breath that in. I have to report that although the fluttering sensation is still in my right foot, it seems to stop sometimes and when it starts again it’s weaker. The pain in my foot is much better as well as no swelling. I wore my cute shoes and not my loaf of bread shoes 🙂 … I intend to do this every night until all clear. I will keep you posted. I found out about doing this from my cousin who was very worried about my health and in desperation I tried it. I stumbled across this site by mistake as well and so glad that I did. Thank you for all the shares! Good luck to all of you on your journey to maintain your health or restore it.
I have been sick with a really bad cold for 4 days now. I have tried different otc medications and heard about the sock onion. I tried it over night but now have a red spot on my foot that hurts. Has this happened to anyone else?
my son became sickly from the moment he started daycare at age 1.5. I must’ve been on antibiotics once to twice a month with ear infections, upper respiratory infections etc with fevers as high as 106 degrees (pretty scary but that’s how high he runs when he is sick). Anyway, out of desperation one night with a fever of 105 for about 4 days and being unable to break with alternating Tylenol/Motrin , I googled “ways to reduce fever” and came upon onions on feet. With nothing to lose and seeing my son suffer, I tried it. It was a miracle!! His fever went from 105 down to 99.5 in 2 hours and when I checked the onions, they were practically COOKED and the fever did NOT come back and he was back to normal the next day. He is now 6 years old and has not been on antibiotics since he was 3!!! I always do the onion socks when he comes down with something and I truly believe that the onions cure him. Everyone laughed and thought i was crazy but if that’s all I have to do to save my kids from frequently taking antibiotics, so be it!!
Tried the onion sock last night. I had no particular pains but I did notice that I didn’t have night sweats ( dealing with menopause) as much as other nights. Will try it again tonight to see if the sweating is reduced even more or gone. Keep you posted.
when my children were very young, babies, at the first sign of a sniffle or a sneeze I would fly for a white onions and take a slice to the bottoms of their feet. Within a few hours they were better and the flu or call or whatever was trying to get into them would never fully mature. I have never heard of anyone else doing this so I really did not know if it really worked or if the children just weren’t really sick. So I thank you for sharing your story. I now have an arthritic condition and I think I’m going to try eating more onions in my diet.
Yeah it really is hilarious how concerns like this one begin looking amazingly insignificant compared to the world news. The next chapter of the cold-war, the actual authentic war that erupts, Russia-China gas offer axis… Nonetheless here we’re with your social-media difficulties, – can we see the globe has transformed? I’m not indicating everything you write about is irrelevant, Iam stating a certain amount of detachment is balanced. Thanks, Sarah
I find your comment perplexing and interesting, especially since you put an link to an anti-aging cream at the end of your post (which I deleted). Clearly, a spam comment. The interesting part for me is the ways in which spammers try to soil the web with their links to miracle cure products. I’ll stick with an onion, thanks!!
Is there a scientific study to claim that everything written about onions is reliably true
Thanks for sharing this story about onions will try this one for m family.. More power!From now on I’l be your avid fan! 🙂
Hi i tried using the onions under my feet a few nights ago as I been having some problems with health. I saw the next day after using the onions a blue black spot under my left foot. It looks somewhat like a blood clot. I will be happy to know if that is normal. I used the onions directly under my feet with socks on. It has been a week now and I still saw spot on foot. I heard the onions take out toxic fron body. I was thinking maybe it left a bruise as it pulled toxic off.
I want to try the onion thing tonight, which is the best, white or purple/red onion. Thank you Florence
Can I use the onion in sock while pregnant? I’m 27 weeks today. I’ve got inflamed ribs and also started with flu so am willing to give this a try only if baby will be ok.
Can you eat onions when you are pregnant? If yes, then it’s probably ok to put them on the skin.
To your health,
I’ve been wheezing off and on since New Year’s Eve. I remember over some 25+ years ago my then husband from Haiti had told me to put some sugar in a bowl and slice some onion up and let it dissolve. After it dissolved, I drank the liquid and I did feel better. Reading your site brought it back to my remembrance so when I go home tonight I am going to try the onion sock and his concoction and see the results. Thanks for the information on your site.
My Partner was complaing of sore knees.from exercising and the work does in her employment, ( she is a 53 year old )
Miss J had heard of the onion in the sock method and tried it over night.
The next morning she felt so much better ,soreness reduced and seemingly had more flexibility in her knees. We have no other explanation how her condition improved .Miss J beleives that the onions did the trick. Now Mr K will try it to improve my lower back pain,who knows ?
My son is really sick with the flu at the moment and has a birthday party to go to tomorrow. I am considering this onion method to see if it will work but to also help my son make it to his party. I will try the socks and the bowl tonight and update in the morning. I am confident this will work but am still a bit skeptical. Fingers crossed.
My 4 year old has had a high fever for 4 days she is always sick but this is diffrent I don’t know what is wrong we have been to the doctors 4 times in last week and half 2 diffrent antibiotics she has been on the second one for 3 days and still bad fever even the motrin 4 hours later Tylenol isn’t working that great I’m starting to get worried so I put white onion in room and in her socks and mine cause I have bad sinus I really hope this works..
I’m wanting to subscribe to your news/blog but the promised email didn’t arrive…I’m still holding my breath!
I received your email about 10 minutes after this post saying that you received the promised email…so everything is ok and you can breathe again! Thanks for your amazing patience and welcome to your Healthy Bliss!
This is going to sound really weird but would it work to get rid of warts too?
My 3 yo has kept me up for the last couple of nights. Crying and so stuffy he can’t breath. I myself have lost my voice due to a constant cough with sticky green plegm. I made a spicy dinner tonight to try and help. I was cutting up the onion and remembered hearing about this. I am excited to give it a go this evening. We will both have onion socks and one sliced onion in each bedroom.
I learned about using a slice of onion on wasp stings years ago and believe me it works! My daughter got stung and had baseball sized swelling. 30 minutes of the onion slice and the inflammation was COMPLETELY gone. So I have a cyst on my finger called a Heberden’s cyst. (It is related to arthritis). On a whim I decided what the heck, I’ll try it. So I sliced a tiny fleck of onion, placed in on the cyst and wrapped it with sticky gauze. I have changed it twice in 24 hours and voila it is almost completely GONE.
Thanks for sharing even more ways to use the healing power of onions – wow, that’s so great. Happy to hear of your success!
To your health,
i am trying the onion sock and onion in all the rooms even the hallway for the first time today and as i only had a red one am using that, so far after a hour all i can smell is onion and taste it, and as my 5 year old is sat next to me we have both coughed less, and im feeling my throat not so scratchy and swollen, so would def recommend this to anyone, and will be telling my sons teacher in the morning about it as alot of the kids are or have had illness lately, thank you from what was a very achy poorly mum xxx
So….I’m still not coughing and he isn’t wheezing. He thinks it’s funny having onions in his socks. This has made a believer out of me!!!
Thanks for sharing your success! It does seem crazy but definitely works!
Blessings to your health,
I’ve been coughing viciously for a week. Today I cut slices of white onion …placed them on my feet with socks. After three hours..there is no coughing. My daughter noticed the difference immediately. We are now trying this on her asthmatic son
my wife uses it and so far no colds or flu for the kids… some problem with science is that they say you need to “buy” medicine… its always about money 🙁
scientific or not… my wife uses it and so far no colds or flu for the kids… some problem with science is that they say you need to “buy” medicine… its always about money 🙁
I am trying this for the first time right now out of desperation. I get really bad sinus headaches sometimes and I don’t know if its my body trying to fight off illness or what, sometimes I get sick and sometimes I don’t. So I want to see if this helps me feel better tonight.
I believe we should all try these natural healing remedies beats the meds that kill us slowly
My 3 year old is so sick with a terrible cold! I hate loading him up with medicine and ive always wondered if the onion thing could actually work. So tonight I am doing the onion sock as well as placing a sliced onion in the room. I will definitely update with the results!
I am 11 weeks pregnant and in the past couple of days haven’t been able to hold any food down. It hits me really bad every day at about 3pm. Today I started feeling it coming on and decided I would try and put the onions in my socks and lay here to see if it would help in any way. Just the smell of the onion to begin with eased my queasiness, but I am about 30 minutes in and am feeling ok. I am really excited and going to keep them on to see if it helps the rest of the afternoon. The past couple of days I have been beyond miserable, but feel so much better right now. I will update later.
Wow! That’s amazing! Please keep us updated on your progress and thanks for sharing!
To your good health,
Don’t know much about the SCIENCE part of this, but I do know as a child when me or one of the other kids in our family had a fever the first thing my grandma did was head for the onions it worked 100% of the time – didn’t really enjoy the smell or the feel of onions in my socks but the fever always went away and as a grandma myself now I’d rather go for the onion
Does anyone here understand science? None of this makes any sense. How on earth could a dead vegetable fight disease?
That is a pretty interesting comment using the word science and “dead vegetable.” Actually a raw onion is a live food, because technically (we’re talking science now so brace yourself!), you can plant it in the soil and it will continue to grow. Science has proven the disease-fighting effects of Vitamin C and countless other anti-oxidants that are found in (drumroll please) raw fruits and vegetables to reverse and prevent many types of cancers not to mention colds, coughs and flus. I hope that someday you can pull the wool from over your eyes. Thank you!
I heard about the healing properties of onions and the sock onion a few days ago. I suffer from urticaria as a result of type 1 diabetes. Normally I have to take anti-fungal tablets for 10 days and then wait for 14 days for it to clear. I put the onions in my socks and over night my urticaria was reduced to almost nothing. I did this the following night and had some emotional garbage released as well and in the morning the urticaria had completely disappeared. I also noticed my itchy nose (due to hayfever at present was no longer itchy either.). I am a believer.
I was always getting colds, flu and bronchitis whenever the weather changed here in NY. About 2 yrs ago my father in law told me to place a cut onion in a water bowl in each room in my apt. and i havent gotten sick since. It really works, beleive me i am amazed by this and swear by the healing powers of the onion.
Its no bull…this works..I had the flu,nose running like a river,and Bronchitis to boot…I never had the white onions so I used the red onions.
Woke up the next morning..It was unbelievable. Everything was gone.All except the bronchitis.I’m doing this again with the white onions…
Ok, I tried this onion business last night. I can’t tell yet if my sinuses are any better this morning but I can tell you that my entire apartment smells like sweaty gym socks. I dreamt of body odor last night. It’s disgusting. How can I get rid of the onion smell without destroying the properties of the onion? Also, how long do I keep the onion out, uncovered, by my bed?
My 16 year old son was sick last night and feeling very dizzy. I went under his bed and found an array of moldy food and removed it. I then placed a half an onion in his room, and he woke up this morning feeling fine and off to school.
I am placing onions in my entire house, my desk at work, even hotels…and we never got sick since the last 6 years. It really works!
I am just like you in the fact that, I’m up to trying something to test if it works, with the open mind that it may be crock…but the onion sock is not a crock! I woke up this morning with the flu and stuffed sinuses. Put two onion socks on and within a half hour, my sinuses were clear! I have a new litter of puppies we are caring for right now, so I had to take the socks off to do some whelping box cleaning and such, and within the hour of taking them off, my sinuses started plugging up again. I have just finally within the last 20 minutes put my onion socks back on for the night, and am already feeling my sinuses clearing up again! The onion sock works!!
Great info,I’ll be trying this,thanks,and have a good day!
i will try it,i believe it can help so much and very cheap medicine for indigent people
I understand Garlic will absorb into your system through the skin as well.
We had a friend turn up one day with strong Garlic breath yet she claimed to not have eaten any Garlic, instead, go to bed at night with a crushed clove in her sock.
When I was 10 years old, I had a terrible cold. I was alone at home as my parents both worked. I felt miserable and as I sat bemoaning my state of being ,I recalled my father saying that his mother always gave her children onions (and cabbage) to ward off illness. She was a Polish immigrant. I made a concoction of chopped onion, pepper, and vinegar. I ate it all, had a bit of an upset stomach…but … I began to breathe better and the next day my cold was GONE! I have been sold on nature’s power in integrating the body’s health with the natural principles the earth provides. I eat onions nearly every day, raw or cooked, they have unique properties.
Wow! Thanks for sharing your story Mary!