Ever had the hiccups while trying to do a live radio show? No? Well, I certainly have haha. It was stressful! There’s nothing more aggravating than getting repeatedly interrupted by yourself in the middle of a conversation. And those hiccups are hard to hide.
CNN recently talked to doctors about various at-home hiccup remedies . . . and there's actually science backing a lot of them, including holding your breath, drinking water, sucking on a lemon, and even "thinking about cows ...."
Hiccups start in your diaphragm. If it gets irritated, it’ll spasm, causing you to unexpectedly suck in air. Luckily, there are some natural remedies you can use to kick those annoying hiccups to the curb, and some will even work in a pinch! Some are even backed by science!
1. Holding or Taking a Breath. Forcing any kind of unnatural breathing can be beneficial because it's activating the diaphragm AND the phrenic nerve. In a way, this "tricks" your body, and makes it "forget" about the spasm.
2. Drinking Water. The remedies involving drinking in different ways can be effective because swallowing triggers the vagus nerve. And adding something a little complicated while drinking . . . like standing on one leg or drinking from the wrong side of the glass . . . can also distract your brain from the hiccups.
3. Downing a Spoonful. Eating a spoonful of sugar or peanut butter could also work . . . because those things don't go down easy, they require suction, which stimulates the swallowing muscles and the vagus nerve. Suction can also explain why plugging your ears might also work.
4. Sucking on a Lemon. Citrus and acidic or sour things also activate the vagus nerve.
5. Scaring Someone or Thinking About Cows. These seem too silly to be backed by science, but they can. Being scared is another trigger for the vagus nerve . . . and even though cows have nothing to do with hiccups, it puts your concentration somewhere else.