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Antioxidant Found in Onions May Reduce Colorectal Cancer Risk

Researchers from the University of Aberdeen, Ireland's National Cancer Registry Ireland and the University of Ottawa recently found that an antioxidant found in onions, called quercetin may reduce the risk of colorectal cancer.

Quercetin is a phytochemical with powerful antioxidant, anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory properties. It is found naturally in the skins of red apples, red onions and grapes and has also been isolated and used as a dietary supplement.

For the study researchers used a food frequency questionnaire to determine the total flavonoid intake (antioxidant compounds like quercetin found naturally in plants) among 264 people with confirmed colorectal cancer and 408 healthy, cancer-free controls.

The researchers found no association between total flavonoid intake and risk of colon cancer but when they looked solely at quercetin intake they found a 50% reduction in risk of colon cancer.

These findings show that increased dietary intakes of foods high in quercetin like red onions, cherries and grapes, may help prevent colorectal cancer. Colorectal cancer is responsible for nearly 10% of new cancer cases worldwide.

The powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-histamine properties of quercetin make this compound great for helping to relieve allergies, alleviate arthritis pain, and even reduce symptoms like fatigue, depression and anxiety.

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