I've always believed in Western Medicine. I used to think that anything could be cured with a doctor or a pill. But as I've matured, I've recognized the problems in our healthcare industry and that not everyone in those professions may be looking out for my best interests.

As I've started eating better and found that healthier food and regular exercise have made me feel better--inside and out--I realized that our abuelitas may have been right about some of their crazy-seeming home remedies. Seriously!

Read more ¿Qué más? Those abuela-birth myths have some truth to them

I've spent a lot of my personal time reading and studying holistic methods and cures. I still don't think that they work for everything, but I've seen first-hand how eating more greens helped a friend defeat cancer and how former president Bill Clinton recovered from his quadruple bypass surgery by going on a vegan diet (meaning, he doesn't eat any animal products—including no dairy or eggs). But beyond these dietary methods of healing, there is also the home remedies that many of our Latin American-raised grandmothers provided for us.

I'll never forget the day that, as a tween, I had a pretty nasty stye in my eye. It was painful and unpleasant but what was even more disgusting was when my mom told me that the best way to cure it was with human spit. Um, what?! I yelled at her. But, wanting to avoid further pain, I washed my eye out with saliva and—miraculously enough—my stye was gone in just a few hours and I was pain free. Trust me, I know how gross this sounds but, hey, it totally worked! So I've learned to trust and, at the very least, try out the home remedy before turning my nose up at it.

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Some of my other favorite Latin home remedies include garlic soup for a sinus infection, placing raw slices of potatoes underneath eyes to get rid of dark circles, drinking chopped onion with honey (marinated overnight) to cure a sore throat and (of course) jumping in the ocean when you have a scrape or a cut, since the salt water is a "natural antiseptic that helps clean and sterilize open wounds", according to Huffington Post Latino Voices. With the growing popularity of holistic healing methods, I'm comforted by the fact that at the end of the day, I don't really have to spend hours reading about the latest cure—I can just ask my abuela.

Do you have any great tried-and-true home remedies from your grandmother? Do you think these Latin home remedies really work? Share with us in the comments below!

Image via LN/flickr

About the author

Irina Gonzalez is a Staff Writer for MamásLatinas. She loves pop culture, social media, photography and, above all, discovering new places. She's also a foodie eating healthy and learning to enjoy exercise.

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