Since so many of you enjoyed the White House Cook Book recipes, I’m posting some of my favorite “health suggestions” from the book. Some of these “cures” are humdingers.

Diphtheria: A gargle of sulphur and water has been used with much success in cases of diphtheria. Let the patient swallow a little of the mixture. Or, when you discover that your throat is a little sore, bind a strip of flannel around the throat, wet in camphor, and gargle salt and vinegar occasionally.

Colds and Hoarseness:

Borax has proved a most effective remedy in certain forms of colds. In sudden hoarseness or loss of voice in public speakers or singers, from colds, relief for an hour or so may be obtained by slowly dissolving, and partially swallowing a lump of borax the size of a garden pea, or about three or four grains held in the mouth for ten or fifteen minutes before speaking or singing. This produces a profuse secretion of saliva or “watering” of the mouth and throat, just as wetting brings back the missing notes to a flute when it is too dry.

If you’re not in the mood for Borax, here’s another suggestion:

An old time and good way to relieve a cold is to go to bed for and stay there, drinking nothing, not even water, for twenty-four hours, and eating as little as possible. Or go to bed, put your feet in hot mustard and water, put a bran or oatmeal poultice on the chest, take ten grains of Dover’s powder, and an hour afterwards a pint of hot gruel; in the morning rub the body all over with a coarse towel, and take a dose of aperient medicine.

Don’t forget to stock your medicine cabinet with oatmeal.

Relief From Asthma: (I swear I’m not making this up).

Sufferers from asthma should get a muskrat skin and wear it over their lungs with the fur side next to the body. It will bring certain relief. Or, soak blotting paper in saltpetre water, then dry, burning at night in the patient’s bedroom.

How do you get a muskrat to stay in your medicine cabinet and not come out until you need it?