Onions, like garlic, are members of the Allium family, and both are rich in sulfur-containing compounds that are responsible for their pungent odors and for many of their health-promoting effects. A wide variety of allyl sulfides are found in onion, including the four major diallyl sulfides: DMS (diallyl monosulfide), DDS (diallyl disulfide), DTS (diallyl trisulfide), and DTTS (diallyl tetrasulfide). Also present are a wide variety of sulfoxides, including ( ) S-methyl-L-cysteine sulfoxide (MCSO), ( )-S-(1-propenyl)-L-cysteine sulfoxide (PRENCSO), S-methyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide, S-propyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide, and S-propenyl-l-cysteine sulfoxide. Onions are an outstanding source of polyphenols, including the flavonoid polyphenols. Within this flavonoid category, onions are a standout source of quercetin.
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