Blackberries for diarrhea?

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DEAR DR. GOTT: I am a 98-year-old man. I have been reading your column and am getting tired of hearing about people having trouble with diarrhea. So I am writing to tell you and all these people the best remedy I learned about more than 70 years ago. Eat half of a 15-ounce can of blackberries when you get the first signs of diarrhea. That will cure it. This is not a scam, and I am not a blackberry salesman. I have used it many times in my life, and it has always worked.

DEAR READER: And who could argue with a 98-year-old’s tried-and-true cure? I must admit I have neither purchased nor seen a can of blackberries. If they aren’t in season in my neck of the woods, they aren’t generally available unless from the freezer case at my local grocery. I was able to find some online, however.
Diarrhea can be the result of a number of causes, including bacteria in food, viruses, parasites, ingesting an excessive amount of fruit or greasy foods, stress, food poisoning and a great deal more.

Home/folk remedies for prevention include a teaspoon of apple-cider vinegar mixed with a teaspoon of honey in water 30 minutes before each meal, bismuth subsalicylate taken following an attack, the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon in a glass of water up to four times a day, 6 ounces of red wine, psyllium capsules, bee pollen taken several times each day and — last but not least — several fresh or frozen blackberries. The whole berries can be substituted with blackberry juice, a shot of blackberry brandy or blackberry wine. To this list, we can now add your recommendation of a half can of blackberries. Thanks for the suggestion, which I failed to mention in earlier columns.

To provide related information, I am sending you copies of my Health Reports “Compelling Home Remedies” and “More Compelling Home Remedies.” Other readers who would like copies should send a self-addressed stamped No. 10 envelope and a $2 check or money order for each report made payable to Newsletter and mailed to Newsletter, P.O. Box 167, Wickliffe, OH 44092-0167. Be sure to mention the title(s) or print an order form off my website at

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