Stumper Detail

Date: Monday, January 1, 2001 
Question/Topic: Onions and crying 
Answer/Pointer: Q. Why do my eyes water when I chop an onion? A. Cutting into an onion releases a gas that wafts upward and makes contact with fluids that are normally in your eyes to keep them moise. A chemical reaction occurs, producing dilute sulfuric acid, and tears well up to get rid of the irritant. To block your eyes from the offensive compound, try wearing safety, ski or swim goggles. Another idea: Put on a pair of glasses (regular or sun) and tie a scarf around your face so that it covers the bottom of the rims. Also keep your hands away from your eyes. Source: American Health, 9/93. 
Librarian: LCLCPL 

Close this Window