Only In Asia (OIA)

Published on February 1st, 2013


Stray Asian Anecdotes: Medical Miracles


No, not relevant to this post, but it’s a kewl creative commons pic, no?

New TL post category: SAA  (i.e. various ‘n sundry Stray Asian Anecdotes. Indeed, as I simply go about my normal and (otherwise) humdrum life here in Vietnam, there seems to be an ever reliable stream of little quips and happenings most every blessed day. Yes, I do already have the post category of “OIA” (Only In Asia), but..

These SAAs just don’t quite measure up to a full blown OIA, yet they nonetheless seem oddball and/or curious enough to deserve mention here – if only to round out a full picture of what life can be like amid a g-forsaken rice paddy on the other side of the globe.


Towit: today’s (inaugural) SAA:

Medical Miracles


Vitamin C plus a POUND of salt…

Clearly I’m becoming quite the connoisseur (guinea pig?) of Asian alternative medicine here. First there was a week of acupuncture with a gazillion teensy needles firing minute pulses of electricity deep into the muscles my sore shoulder each day (’tis better now thank you, but I’m not altogether sure if it wasn’t more the the post-acupuncture massages that were the true remedy), and now…

So today I woke with my voice mostly gone (now some might say that’s actually a blessing on the world), but in any case…

My dear landlady Mai, had JUST the remedy: she just now brought me a dish of… I believe they’re kumquats from the garden, cooked til soft and then mixed with a smidge of sugar and… a TON of SALT!

My instructions are to eat two of these morsels, three times a day. While the salt makes sense (i.e. gargling with salt water always helps a sore throat) and the citrus, no doubt a boost of vitamin C. But I must say, I’m not so sure SWALLOWING that much salt in a given day is all that good for you.

Nonetheless, I shall give it a go…

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About the Author

Off-the-beaten-path travel is my passion,and I’ve always lived life “like-a-kid-in-a-candy-store” – eager to sample as many flavors as I can. Indeed, my life motto has long been: This ain’t a dress rehearsal, folks!

8 Responses to Stray Asian Anecdotes: Medical Miracles

  1. I couldn’t find this photo after first reading this post. Turns out it was hiding in plain sight. Photo taken in the Philippines 4 years ago.

    • TravelnLass says:

      PERFECT, FLN! Clearly an example of truth in advertising. Yes, apparently in many parts of the world, too little iodine can lead to mental retardation.

  2. Gail Snyder says:

    Make a tea of cinnamon and honey: ratio of honey and cinnamon one tablespoon honey 1 tsp. cinnamon. Get well!

    • TravelnLass says:

      Well dear Sis, I must say – if your medical advice is as good as you culinary tips on substituting beer for baking powder, then I’ll most certainly give your cinnamon/honey remedy a go. Besides, it sounds yummy, and I do believe I’ve actually spied cinnamon spice here in Dalat.

      btw, so do YOU too remember that tub of honey w/ shredded carrots that Gram used to keep in her pantry in Chicago? She’d feed us a spoonful whenever we had a cold, yes?

  3. As a high school athlete I found out the hard way that some people react to a ton of salt (salt tablets in our case) by soon vomiting. Never touched them again. YMMV.

    • TravelnLass says:

      Yes FLN, I know that too much salt isn’t good for one’s blood pressure, so I’m not at all sure swallowing a full tablespoon of it in a single go is the best medical advice. But I’ve now taken my “prescribed” dose of kumquats ala iodine (which, lack of the latter btw, I’ve just now learned from wikipedia leads to mental retardation in a couple billion people worldwide – who knew?) with no ill effects. And this morning – I must say, my voice seems to be coming back.

      Furthermore, I do believe my IQ is a smidge higher today too! 😉

  4. Feel better soon! (And drink lots of fluids?) Last time I had a sore throat, all the Vietnamese told me not to drink ice (on the other hand, the Mayo Clinic says sucking on popsicles is good for a sore throat… Go figure!)

    • TravelnLass says:

      Thanks James. And yes, amazing how many of the “alternative” potions are pretty much the same as Western medicine and/or what you’re grandmother gave you.

      Mine always handed out a spoonful of honey mixed with lemon peel and shredded carrots for a sore throat that she kept in the pantry just for that purpose. Once again same-same (as they say here in VN) 😉 vitamins and soothing honey. Shoot, we kids would often fake a sore throat just to get a spoonful!

      Now… if I could just find a POPSICLE here in Dalat! 😉

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