No major drama is anticipated in this post, but I’m gonna talk about onions … yep that bastard veggie that will make you cry every time you cut it and will make your breath stink every time you eat it… Evolution at its best!
While chopping an onion, we are destroying the cell walls and releasing their content. This is when Sulfenic Acid comes in contact with Lachrymatory Factor Synthase enzyme and gives a volatile end-product named Propanethiol s-oxide. When the latter sulfur-containing volatile compound comes in contact with your eyeballs it will be transformed to Sulphiric Acid, better known as BATTERY ACID!
This acid will burn your eyes, which will cause the brain to signal and induce tears drop to wash it off. hence, the waterworks start and everyone around start with the never-ending crying-baby jokes.
The key to avoid those unnecessary tears is decreasing the volatility of those Sulphuric compounds released from the onion, so here are few tips from a chef on how to chop onions without crying Via Chowhound:
I’m not sure about the bread thing, and how much it’s effective, but the ice will definitely hinder the escape of sulfur compound from the onion.
Likewise, several sulfur-containing compounds are also behind that foul smell that the onion will leave in your breath… I have say that those sulfur-containing compounds are just nasty bastards!
Those chemicals are readily absorbed from the GI tract to the blood stream and eliminated in the lungs, sweat, urine… The latter is the same as the “Sulfur Gang” that we discussed in our pervious post about Garlic Breath where we also tackled the best ways to eliminate or at least decrease the absorption of those smell-producing compounds.
Finally, onions are an essential component of our diet with tons of health benefits, but my advice to you is: Eat it “responsibly!” and that’s to avoid uncalled-for crying and social rejection because of your “aroma”. Cheers!
Give Science Bar a Like on Facebook, and never miss an update.