Mistaken Medical Miracles

Several years ago My Big Fat Greek Wedding took our country by storm as ladies drug their men into movie theaters to see one of the funniest romantic comedies to hit the silver screen in ages. Not only did the movie expose you to the crazy intertwining of a large Greek family but it also played up some funny ways people try to heal ailments. “Just put some Windex on it” was a popular phrase throughout the movie that made its way into many homes across the U.S. My bet is that some families are still quoting that phrase and recommending that someone spray Windex on any bump, bruise or questionable spot that appears.

Foods and products once thought to have ‘healing’ powers

coke-once-thought-to-heal
Coke is one of the many products once marketed as a “health drink.”

Windex isn’t the only substance that’s been mistaken as a miracle medicine over the years. Until the 1960s, Lysol was considered a feminine hygiene product and used as a form of birth control. Coke, Dr. Pepper and other soft drinks have a history of being marketed as either a health drink or “pick me upper” over the years. Fig Newtons were used for problems related to going “number two” and Heath Bars were said to be healthy. (If only that were true…)

Read more about 10 snack foods originally sold as medicines.

Finding the source of wellness

Of course now that it’s 2013, we look back at the medicinal uses and claims of cleaners and soft drinks and realize how silly they were. It also makes me wonder what types of foods, drugs or routines currently accepted in our society will one day be taboo.

While products will continue to improve and go on-and-off the market, one thing is sure to remain constant – the way to check wellness and determine health. Wellness tests that determine levels like cholesterol, blood counts, sugar levels and hormone levels are a sure way to determine how healthy someone is and if changes to diet or lifestyle need to be made. You might already know that Lysol will not prevent conception; however, maybe you don’t realize that your cholesterol is high or hormone levels are low.

As you head into 2013, make it a healthy year by requesting a baseline wellness test and tracking your progress all year long. Need a wellness center – no insurance required? Find the nearest one to you!

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25 Comments

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  1. Well I hope that people will soon come to realize that most foods labeled “sugar-free” and “fat-free” doesn’t mean they are healthy, the same with diet soda. I have heard about the Lysol thing, Google some of the ads they used to have for it, its crazy.

  2. I read an article once that talked about Lysol’s previous use. I can’t believe women believed that!

  3. Interesting post! It’s funny to think about what we used to believe and how that’s changed now

  4. I loved My Big Fat Greek Wedding, but I never took the father’s advice in using Windex to treat bumps and blemishes on my body! It’s crazy the things people using to think was helpful for their health.

  5. The previous/original use of Lysol is horrifying. Wow!!

  6. The remedies that people will use is pretty amazing. Eastern medicine has its uses, but so does science. How funny would it be to see someone spraying Windex on their son at a ballgame??

  7. I’m curious as to how Lysol was a form of birth control. And who got the idea to market Coke as a health drink? Times have sure changed.

  8. That’s very odd about the Lysol, I can’t believe they thought a cleaning supply would be a feminine product.

  9. Soda still is a pick-me-up for me! But probably not in a health related way.

  10. It is amazing what we once thought of as healing agents. I am glad I live in this day and age.

  11. I have found, that Windex is really useful at trying to get stains out of carpet. As unusual as that may sound.

  12. The dad also knew the origin of every word..greek. Great movie.

  13. What about “rub a little dirt on it” for scrapes and cuts? I have heard that one all my life.

  14. I’ve heard that there are like a million and one uses for baking soda. I’m surprised this article didn’t mention it.

  15. It is amazing that people once believed in these remedies. It shows the value of the placebo effect.

  16. I love that movie! The dad was hilarious and his Windex theory is something to live by. Well, not in the case of cuts and bruises.

  17. The dad from Big Fat Greek Wedding was hilarious. I love how he used Windex as a cure-all. It’s very interesting that there are really products that are used for unintended purposes like that.

  18. How funny is it that we followed some of this nonsense? I’m sure this still happens in today’s society. We just don’t know for sure on what’s working and what doesn’t. We’ll be reading about something similar in 10 years, just wait.

  19. I’ve heard all kinds of crazy cure-alls like these. You really have to think about what people tell you sometimes, and whether it is really true or not.

  20. In the future it will be interesting to look back on health products today and see if they are still being used, or if we look at them like we do the products in this blog.

  21. Soda being marketed as a ‘pick-me-up’ I can see but a health drink?! That’s just crazy!

  22. Windex, oh goodness. I can’t imagine what would ever make someone think a soda is a health drink! Even Diet Soda is FAR from healthy.

  23. Oh my gosh, this makes me laugh! Lysol, Coke, Windex… we as a society are easily shaped into believing items like these are beneficial for our health (or were). We need to take a stand and do our own research into what is good and what isn’t, and not believe immediately what they say in advertisements.

  24. The things people thought were good for them, and some still do! Pretty crazy.

  25. It’s funny how many things we thought were healthy but were so far from it. Thanks for the tips for really finding what is healthy.

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