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Good Old Cures

Most people have medicine cabinets in their house, where they keep anything from eye drops to skin creams and bandages to cotton swabs. Interestingly enough, this was not always the case.

Medicine cabinets had an entirely different look to them back in the day, and amazingly, some of those remedies still work today. For instance, if you have an earache and want to relieve the pain quickly, disinfect the ears from the various pollutants accumulated inside them. Then squeeze a lemon, dip some cotton in it, and gently clean the ear canal. This works well because of citric acid in lemons, also used in many industrial drugs, which inhibits the development of bacterial infections.

I have travelled a great deal and have encountered many people who suffer from travel sickness. Usually, this is caused by uneven movement and may happen in a car, bus, cruise or flight. This can cause us to suffer from nausea, dizziness, and vomiting. Next time, before you travel, eat a few olives before you set out. Olives are rich in tannins, which help dry out excess saliva produced by the body when we suffer from nausea, which stimulates the vomiting reflex.

We do not suffer much from spider bites in this area, but they can take a long time to heal when they happen. Grandma’s remedy, which has been scientifically proven, perfect for relieving the nasty itch, is placing a piece of raw potato on the inflamed area and bandaging it for about half an hour.

Chewing gum is a great way to get rid of bad breath, but did you know, celery works much better? This is because, in addition to its health benefits, celery is rich in fibre and helps to remove the accumulated plaque on the teeth, which causes bad breath.

Do you remember those times when, as kids, we would avoid nettles because they sting and cause our skin to be irritated? Who knew that nettle leaves are also a great medicinal plant which contains a variety of health properties, including the ability to prevent hair loss? All you have to do is brew six nettle leaves in a cup of boiling water, wait until they cool, put the brew through a sieve, and rinse the scalp with the remaining liquid once or twice a week. The benefits of nettle leaves are derived from their vitamins A, C and D content, and part of the vitamin B group which strengthens the hair and acts as anti-inflammatory agents to relieve scalp irritations, which weaken their roots. I’m not sure if it grows hair back, but I’m game to give it a try.

If you suffer from arthritis, place a handful of raisins in a bowl of gin overnight and eat them the next morning. Raisins are rich in powerful antioxidants, and gin, which is also rich in antioxidants, breaks up the various chemicals found in raisins and helps them absorb more easily. Just don’t go crazy with the gin.

I should mention checking with your doctor or medical professionals before trying any home remedies.

Jonathan van Bilsen is a television host, award-winning photographer, published author, columnist and keynote speaker. Watch his show, ‘Jonathan van Bilsen’s photosNtravel’, on Rogers TV, the Standard Website or YouTube.

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