We here at ASIS Massage Education are all about alternative treatments, so we did a bit of research and found this great article in Prevention magazine that lists 20 little known remedies that you can try easily at home. Here’s a list of our top five! Salud!
Swallow 1 to 2 teaspoons of sugar. The dry granules stimulate and reset the irritated nerve that is causing the spasms of the diaphragm. Any coarse substance, such as salt, can work in a pinch, but sugar tastes best. (Find out 6 things your hiccups are trying to tell you.)
–Expert: Jacob Teitelbaum, MD, medical director of the Fibromyalgia and Fatigue Centers and author of From Fatigued to Fantastic!
Soothe a sore throat
Gargle twice daily with a solution of six pressed garlic cloves mixed into a glass of warm (not hot) water. Follow the regimen for 3 days. Research shows that fresh garlic juice has antimicrobial properties that fight pain-causing bacteria. The warm liquid soothes inflamed tissue.
–Expert: Ronald Hoffman, MD, medical director of the Hoffman Center in New York and author of Alternative Cures That Really Work
Curb a cough
Indulge in a square or two of dark chocolate. Researchers found that chocolate’s theobromine compound is more effective than codeine at suppressing persistent coughs without the side effects of drowsiness and constipation.
To calm a nagging cough that keeps you awake at night, take 2 teaspoons of honey (1 to 2 teaspoons for kids; don’t give to children younger than 1), along with 500 mg of Ester C 30 minutes before bed. The vitamin C (nonacidic Ester type won’t upset stomachs) boosts the immune system in the early stages of your cough. Research shows that honey works better than either a cough suppressant or no treatment at all for relieving children’s nocturnal cough and promoting sleep.
–Experts: Jacob Teitelbaum, MD; Mark Moyad, MD, MPH, Jenkens/Pokempner director of preventive and alternative medicine at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor
Stop foot odor
Soak feet nightly in 1 part vinegar and 2 parts water to eliminate odoriferous bacteria. Or take a daily foot bath in strong black tea (let it cool first) for 30 minutes. Tea’s tannins kill bacteria and close the pores in your feet, keeping feet dry longer; bacteria tend to thrive in moist environments. You’ll see results in a few days to a week. One caution: Do the soak only when your feet are free of cuts.
–Expert: Laurie Steelsmith, ND
Sweeten bad breath
Gargle with a small cup of acidic lemon juice to kill odor-causing bacteria. Then eat a bit of plain unsweetened yogurt, which contains beneficial lactobacillus bacteria. These so-called probiotics compete with and replace the reeking bacteria. (They also make you prettier—check it out!) The lemon-yogurt combo instantly neutralizes odor and lasts 12 to 24 hours.
–Expert: Mark Moyad, MD, MPH
For the full list, click here.