The People's Perspective on Medicine

Chocolate Cured Serious Hiccups

Q. Chocolate works for hiccups. My father was recovering in the hospital for several weeks last summer, and many, many times he had lengthy bouts of severe hiccups. As he was recovering from abdominal surgery, these were extremely painful.

His doctors tried anti-spasmodic drugs to end them, and the drugs did not help. I read about this remedy in your book, bought him a bag of chocolate chips, and voila, it worked. He is in his seventies and a skeptic. When he mentions this cure to his doctors, they think he is making it up. Anyway, he was thrilled.

A. We first heard about eating a few chocolate chips to stop hiccups from a listener to our radio show. Her Danish grandmother had always used this remedy and she continued the tradition with her children.

Another traditional remedy for hiccups is a spoonful of granulated sugar swallowed dry. It stimulates the phrenic nerve and often interrupts the hiccup reflex.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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The absolute best cure I’ve ever found for hic-cups is CHOCOLATE. Chocolate releases ‘endorphins’ from the brain that will quell your huc-cups in a matter of minutes Don’t believe me? Try it. Keep some 70-90% Cocoa Dark chocolate (Lindt is good) on hand. Smooth a bite of the chocolate on the roof of your mouth and be amazed at how fast your hic-cups disappear!!!!
No worries about ‘chocolate isn’t good and it’ll make me fat’. Unsweetened dark chocolate will NOT make you fat no matter how much you eat and is actually beneficial to your body. Milk chocolate. not so good for dieters. You’ll thank me for this cure….. pass it forward.

I hope you will publish this hiccup cure as it never fails. I was tormented by hiccups for years. They were so loud they could be heard up the block. Once I was in a car with a friend for ten hours and hiccuped the whole time — he never believed I couldn’t help it and that ended our friendship!! I tried sugar, scaring, lots of things, then in college I found something that has never failed. I never worry about hiccups anymore as I can always get rid of them.
The simple solution is to drink water while standing up and holding the ears closed. (Leaning over, as with a water fountain, will not work.) After years of being helped with this, having a second person hold my ears or help with the water, I realized I could do it myself. I hold my ears closed with my thumbs, and hold the water glass with the four fingers of each hand. (I like the solo method MUCH better, prevents spitting the water out in laughter, for one thing.) How much water depends on how bad the hiccups are. One glass usually works. If not, a second will do it. I think only once in decades have I had to use a third glass.
If there is only a fountain around, hold the water in your mouth, stand up and swallow, then repeat. Finding this cure was worth the price of my senior year college tuition — I learned it in nutrition class.

I have had hiccups for the last six months, I went to see a gastroenterologist and he prescribed omeprazole a month ago but is not helping, why? Sometimes I get a sore throat after an episode of hiccups.

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