Attaching a Slice of Onion to the Feet Will Not Cure Your Diseases Overnight

“Note: A correction was made directly in this story at the request
of an independent fact checker for Facebook”

There have been plenty of inaccurate articles circulating round the social media in recent years that claim that attaching a slice of onion to your feet can cure your diseases overnight.

The origins of this folk remedy

These false claims, according to National Onion Association, date back to the 1500’s when a wives tale had claimed that spreading raw pieces of onion round the house could protect its residents from the bubonic plague. People also thought that onion kept in a sock could cure cold or flu. Before scientists discovered that germs were the cause of disease, people believed disease spread through miasma or “noxious air”.

Many folk medicine proponents that support this folk remedy claim that onion’s healing benefits are result of the sulfuric components they possess.

No scientific evidence

Many online articles have claimed that attaching a slice of onion onto the feet and leaving it overnight may be effective in reducing the symptoms of fever and colds and it may encourage the removal of toxins from the body.

However, these claims are not backed by science. Most of them are based on anecdotes than actual facts and research. These sites that recommend this remedy do not cite any scientific proof behind these claims and can not be considered an effective treatment for cold and flu.

Links to reflexology

According to Medical News Today, these claims are also connected to the Chinese alternative medicine called reflexology. Proponents of this practice claim that each body part is represented on the hands and feet and that pressing on specific areas on the hands or feet can have healing effects in other parts of the body. 

However, there is no evidence that support reflexology as an effective treatment for any medical condition.

Health benefits of onions

These vegetables are packed with various vitamins, minerals, fiber and low in calories. They are rich in vitamin C and B including folate and pyridoxine, good source of potassium and antioxidants. Onions also possess antibacterial properties and promote digestive health, which may improve immune function.

Medical News Today
National Onion Association

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