How to Add Garlic and Onions To Your Day

by Dr. Leo Galland

How to Add Garlic and Onions To Your Day

Since ancient times, onions, garlic and scallions have been prized around the world for their culinary uses.  Because of their durability, onions have been shipped and traded across long distances.


According to a study from the UK, when it comes to horticultural crops, onions are the second most important after tomatoes.


The minimum effective amount is generally two teaspoons a day of garlic or two tablespoons of onions or scallions, chopped or crushed.


When shopping, look for the freshest bulbs. Onions should be very firm with an intact outer layer.  For garlic, look for a bulb with tightly packed cloves.  Pick scallions that are bright green and skip any that are wilted.


Read What Makes Onions and Garlic Special?


In the kitchen, chopped onions or garlic are the starting point for many cooked dishes, and add robust flavor to main courses, soups and omelets. A sprinkle of chopped scallions or chives makes a perfect garnish to add flavor to dips, sandwiches, salads and grilled dishes. Cooking does not diminish the protective effects of garlic, onions or other alliums.


Caramelized Onion


For a savory side dish my son Jonathan Galland wrote this simple recipe for caramelized onion.


Simply slice one large onion and sauté slowly in a half teaspoon of olive oil on medium heat, stirring frequently. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook until the onion turns soft and golden, which brings out the natural sweetness.  For more delicious ways to enjoy onions and garlic, including a one-day free trial of recipes visit


What are your favorite recipes with garlic and onions? Let us know.

I hope you enjoy the healthy pleasure of onions and garlic now and throughout the year.


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References and Further Reading:


J Natl Cancer Inst. 2002 Nov 6;94(21):1648-51. "Allium vegetables and risk of prostate cancer: a population-based study." Hsing AW, Chokkalingam AP, Gao YT, Madigan MP, Deng J, Gridley G, Fraumeni JF Jr. Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD 20892-7234, USA.


Eur J Nutr . 2000 Oct;39(5):213-23. "Absorption and DNA protective effects of flavonoid glycosides from an onion meal." Boyle SP, Dobson VL, Duthie SJ, Kyle JA, Collins AR. School of Pharmacy, The Robert Gordon University, Schoolhill, Aberdeen, Scotland.


J Nutr. 2001 Mar;131(3s):1027S-31S. "A historical perspective on garlic and cancer." Milner JA. Nutrition Department, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802, USA.


Environ Mol Mutagen. 2009 Apr;50(3):247-65. "Biological properties of garlic and garlic-derived organosulfur compounds."Iciek M, Kwiecień I, Włodek L. Chair of Medical Biochemistry, Jagiellonian University, Medical College, Kraków, Poland.


Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2009 Jun;49(6):538-51. "Garlic: nature’s protection against physiological threats." Butt MS, Sultan MT, Butt MS, Iqbal J. National Institute of Food Science and Technology, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan.


Environ Health Perspect. 2001 Sep;109(9):893-902. "Allium vegetables and organosulfur compounds: do they help prevent cancer?" Bianchini F, Vainio H. Unit of Chemoprevention, International Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France.


Amino Acids. 2011 Jun;41(1):103-12. Epub 2010 Mar 6. "Allyl sulfur compounds and cellular detoxification system: effects and perspectives in cancer therapy." Melino S, Sabelli R, Paci M. Department of Sciences and Chemical Technologies, University of Rome "Tor Vergata", Italy.


J Agric Food Chem. 2007 Dec 12;55(25):10067-80. Epub 2007 Nov 13." Onions: a source of unique dietary flavonoids." Slimestad R, Fossen T, Vågen IM. PlantChem, Saerheim Research Centre, N-4353 Klepp station, Norway.


Phytother Res. 2002 Nov;16(7):603-15. "Onions–a global benefit to health."
Griffiths G, Trueman L, Crowther T, Thomas B, Smith B. Department of Plant Genetics and Biotechnology, Horticulture Research International, Wellesbourne CV35 9EF, UK.


Full Text: “Diet and Inflammation” Leo Galland, MD, Nutr Clin Pract December 7, 2010 vol. 25 no. 6 634-640


Power Healing: Use the New Integrated Medicine to Cure Yourself Leo Galland, 384 pages, Random House, (June 1, 1998)


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