Sugar for Hiccups? Eggplant for Labor? Dr. Sanjay Gupta Sets the Record Straight on Internet Cures

The host of CNN's Chasing Life has his doubts about a few online health hacks

Every actual medical professional will warn you against going to “Dr. Google” for health advice — but some of that information is legit, says Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

The neurosurgeon and chief medical correspondent for CNN has a new show for the network, Chasing Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta, where he searches the globe for the “secrets to living a longer, healthier and happier life.” But before that kicks off, Gupta is debunking a few of the health hacks going around online in this exclusive clip.

Gupta goes through a few “curious cures” that you can find online, like eating eggplant to induce labor (that would be a no) or eating sugar to stop hiccups (yes!).

“Sugar is actually something that’s been studied, and they find that it works pretty well — about 95 percent of the time people either slow down or completely eliminate their hiccups,” he says.

Gupta also gives a thumbs up to using cinnamon boost circulation, increase blood flow and lower pain.

“Even though you may not have heard about it in this country, it’s used all over the world, just about every day,” he says.

Another good one? Using honey to treat burns.

“Honey has good antibacterial properties, meaning it can help fight infection,” he says. “You may have seen now that they’ve put honey in some band-aids. It’s something that has good science around it; I think that here in the States we’re just now starting to catch up.”


But there are plenty of tips that Gupta says are just false, like sitting upside down to lower a fever.

“I don’t know how you do that,” he says. “No. a fever is your body’s natural response to fighting an infection of some sort. If anything this might make it worse.”

And putting duct tape on warts is mostly useless.

“Duct tape doesn’t kill warts, but what’s interesting is a wart is caused by a virus, and one of the big concerns is that virus can move around your skin,” he says. “What duct tape is really good at is isolating the wart so that the virus doesn’t spread, but it’s not going to treat the wart at all.”

Gupta also says there’s no truth to putting sliced potatoes on your head to…cure a headache?

“There’s no reason why putting potato slices on your head will do anything to cure something inside your skull,” he says.

But the best news of all — Gupta is fully on board with the health benefits of red wine.

“You can’t believe everything you read on the internet, but you can believe some of it,” he says.

Chasing Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta premieres April 13 at 9 p.m. ET.

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