Southern Remedies

One thing that I’ve noticed from working in healthcare is that everyone has their own solution to problems. In the south, advice and solutions begin coming the moment your mother announces that she is expecting. Every woman seems quite confident that she can instruct you on how to best care for your baby. And then there are the solutions for childhood illnesses. Tips for cleaning the house. Remedies for ridding your yard  from pests. Tricks to keep that young and beautiful radiance. The Farmer’s Almanac to instruct you in planting your garden and harvesting crops. Signs for predicting the weather. Advice and remedies never run scarce down here.

I know that the following remedies and tips will barely scratch the surface (my Great Grandma would have been much more qualified to write a post like this), however, I truly believe that there is value in more than a few of these tips! Others I simply included because I found them somewhat amusing.


Cures for the Common Cold and Other Illnesses

1. Sweat it out: Hydrogen Peroxide and Ginger Detox bath

1. Run a hot bath. (It  supposedly opens pores and prepares body for cleansing.)

2. Add three pints of hydrogen peroxide (3%). This oxygenates the body and helps purge toxins. It’s also antibacterial and antiviral.

3. Add two ounces of ground ginger, a natural anti-inflammatory that increases blood circulation and helps promote the elimination of toxins through sweat.

4. Soak for about 30 minutes.

5. Drink lots of water; You need to replenish what’s being pulled out of your system because you will begin to sweat profusely.

2. Caster oil


Still not sure, but some sources suggest that it aids with skin and hair health, muscle aches, and constipation.

3.  A “Hot Tottie”

A hot brew that consists of equal parts whiskey (or tea, preferably green tea, if you would like to drink it), honey and lemon juice.   This can also be made for homemade cough syrup.  You can take them hot or cold from what I have read.  Usually about 2-3 tsps at a time (about 1/2 oz).

4. Eat Garlic

After looking into it, Research has shown that garlic is an antioxidant and can shorten the life of a cold. Also, Allicin, an ingredient found in garlic, is a decongestant that will help clear your blocked nose and sinuses.

5. For a congested chest:

Smear a sheet of brown paper or flannel in goose fat/lard and stick it to the patients chest before bed. Some people say that sprinkling it with nutmeg also helps. An earlier incarnation of rubbing Vick’s on the chest, perhaps?

Cures for getting rid of Pests

6. Grits 

I hate fire ants. There is no worse way to ruin the summer barefoot experience. So how would grits kill them? Well, the scout ants or whatever they are called, bring the grits into the colony, they get fed to the queen, and she expands after eating them and basically explodes. For some evil reason, that brings a smirk to my face.  Is that bad? The colony can’t live without their queen and they all end up dying.  Or eating grits and you get more explosive ants.
Go get ya some ants.  Southern Style.

7. Salt

Personally, I hate this one. I hate watching the poor little slugs shrivel up from a fatal chemical reaction. But it works.

8. Ivory Dish liquid

Ivory liquid dish washing detergent can act as a natural insecticide. Dilute with water until it is a 1 or 2 percent solution and then spray on plants.

Other Stuff…

9. Aspirin

Crush up aspirin and add water to make a paste that will relieve itchy bug bites. Ammonia has been said to work as well.

10. Aloe Vera

Growing up we had a huge one of these in a pot on the back porch. Whenever we burned ourselves we just broke off a piece and rubbed the gel on the burn site. This is the same plant gel that is sold to soothe sun burns. Apple cider vinegar can also be used to relieve burning, especially the pain from a jelly fish sting.

11. Duct Tape

You aren’t southern unless one of your solutions is Duct tape. It can be used to fix anything and everything. Some people even claim that if you leave duct tape on a wart for 2 weeks, it will kill it.

12. Frozen vegetables

…they make great ice packs for injuries. Or headaches.

How about you? Have you tried any of these? If so, what were the results? I would love to hear your additions and comments bellow!