Remedy – Fort Worth, Texas

Remedies/ Fool Proof Medicine

To help your joints: You dice up garlic and leave them on toes. This is said to help alleviate joint pains.

To get rid of splinters: You take the skin off garlic and cook it in the oven for an hour. You then stick your finger in the cooked garlic and let it sit their overnight. In the morning, the splinter should fall out (the juices in the garlic makes the skin expand and loosen the splinter).


Lauren learned the first remedy from her grandmother, Mamon Barzorg, which means “Big Mother” in Farsi. She lived in Lauren’s house in Forth Worth, Texas and used to perform the remedy pretty regularly to help her toe joints and kill the fungus on her toes. Lauren has also tried the remedy before and it seemed to help a little bit. Both her mother and father are confident that it is a fool proof remedy. Compared to the splinter removal remedy, she thinks the act of putting a finger in an onion seems “weirder” for lack of a better word, but “if it works, it works!”

Lauren learned about the onion remedy from her father who is full Iranian and came to the US when he was 15. He told her about it during dinner after he had gotten a splinter earlier that day. He said that the splinter fell out and has worked on almost every other occasion. She says, “It’s the kind of thing people with no nurse or health center at grade school have to do when they get home, cause they don’t have tweezers or something…I don’t know.” She is not sure whether these remedies are unique to Persian culture or not, but finds them interesting nonetheless.

I guess one’s repertoire of folk medicine or fool proof remedies depends on the frequency and type of illness one experiences on a regular basis. I never used to get sick, but since I’ve come to college, constantly come down with a sore throat and common cold. When over-the-counter or homeopathic medicine doesn’t seem to be working, I always resort to my mom’s “tea with honey and lemon,” which seems a lot less farfetched of a concoction than Lauren’s fool proof remedies. The honey dissolves the phlegm and the lemon soothes any soreness in the throat. Because I am a hypochondriac and admit that I self-induce the illnesses I come down with, I force myself to think that certain remedies will work over medicine.