Summer is in the air! Finally. With summer comes opportunity for health and wellness. Ever since you were a kid you’ve probably heard ‘wives’ tales’ of summer. Today we’re debunking three ridiculous summer myths.
1. Farmer’s markets are expensive.
The truth is that farmer’s markets are CHEAPER than most grocery stores. It’s really a simple business model. Cut out the middleman, and there are fewer people to take a cut of the profits. Plus, customers travel further and often on specific days of the week to find farmer’s markets, cutting down on the costs it takes to run a brick and mortar grocery store every few miles. That being said, there are ways you can cut down your costs even further when visiting your local farmer’s market. Here are three:
Try something new - The concept of supply and demand remains relevant at farmer’s markets. So, if everyone is looking for the typical salad bland, I mean blend, of romaine lettuce, carrots, tomatoes and cucumbers, chances are the prices will be higher. Instead grab something unusual like romanesco or dandelion greens.
Think outside the ‘cash’ box - Farming is older than cash. And some farmers are still open to the idea of bartering. If you build websites, do taxes or are a handyman, your local farmer might need your services. Why not strike up a conversation and offer a trade?
Purchase in quantity - Buying in bulk during peak season means plenty of bounty during off season. For example, nabbing a couple cases of tomatoes doesn’t have to mean Caprese salads for every meal. Whip up some simple marinara, can or freeze it and have it for use all winter long.
2. Pee on your friend’s jellyfish sting.
What is a jellyfish sting, anyway? Let’s examine the biology of a jellyfish. First, there are certain kinds of cells on the surface of their tentacles called ‘cnidocytes’. Within each cell is a tube filled with venom. Attached to each cell is a microscopic hair that, when disturbed, triggers the release of the venom. This venom lands on the skin of prey, or an unfortunate ocean vacationer.
Peeing on the wound can actually make things worse. Most likely, when the sting occurred, there were a few tentacles left on the victim’s skin. The first thing to do is get rid of these as to not make things worse. That doesn’t mean use your fingers to pick them off; you’ll only get stung on your hand too! And that certainly doesn’t mean urinating on the wound, the salt content in your excretion can cause the undisturbed venom to release. And sure, once that process is over, a super-concentrated urine concoction could (maybe) help (a little bit). But unless the urinator is severely dehydrated, it’s not going to do any good. Instead, keep a small bottle of white vinegar in your beach bag. That’ll help curb the pain if things go awry at the beach. If no vinegar is available, splash some seawater on the wound and skip the golden shower.
3. Poison ivy rashes are contagious.
You’d have to be VERY intentional to spread a poison ivy rash to another person. That is, you’d have to immediately, upon coming into contact with the poison ivy oil, furiously rub the oil from your skin on to theirs. Sounds far-fetched, and it is. In fact, the rash doesn’t typically show up until two to three days after exposure. So, the infectious oils are most likely washed clean by that point. That delayed reaction is what spurs this summer myth. The illusion that the rash is spreading lends to the theory that the rash is also contagious. Take a shower. Wash your clothes. You’ll get over it eventually.
There is no ‘cure’ for poison ivy aside from your body’s natural healing process. But there are some home remedies that may help ease the pain. Lemon juice, baking soda, tea and oatmeal can all help relieve the relentless itching you’ll encounter in the several days following a poison ivy encounter.
Stay fit, healthy and happy this summer. Enjoy your fun in the sun.