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Tiffany Haddish’s Turpentine Use Stirs Others to Share Their Home Remedies

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Tiffany Haddish swears by using turpentine to prevent illnesses. (Photo credit should read VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images)

After Tiffany Haddish opened up about the health benefits of turpentine, many other Black people are sharing their own stories of the wonders of unusual medicinal items. They’re also stepping in to drop facts about why jokes about the comic’s use of the chemical compound are no laughing matter.

Haddish told GQ in a new profile that once she learned about the solvent’s benefits on YouTube, she purchased some on Amazon late last year.

“A teaspoon of turpentine will not kill you,” she said. “The government doesn’t want you to know that if you have a cold, just take some turpentine with some sugar or castor oil or honey and it’ll go away the next day.”

She added that the product, which she said also treats “worms inside your body,” improved her onstage act saying, “everything just felt so much better, clarity-wise.”

While the writer noted that turpentine, which today is commonly used as paint thinner, is poison, a 2016 article in Bridgewater State University’s Undergraduate Review on 19th-century slave medicine noted enslaved Black people brought medical practices from the motherland to use in America, but some plantations suppressed the use of those methods.

It also noted turpentine acted as an antiseptic and was used much like Vick’s VapoRub to open nasal passages. However, it also states it can be harmful to breathe directly into the lungs and causes “bad rashes” to the application site.

Such issues likely led people to tweet their opposition, apparently without knowing the history behind its use.

“Tiffany Haddish insists drinking small amounts of turpentine is good for you,” someone tweeted. “Tiffany is just as stupid as Stacey Dash. They should run as Republicans against Donald Trump in 2020.”

“I’m still thinking about Tiffany Haddish and the turpentine,” one person said. “The TL is not discussing it enough. Tbh it renders all other parts of that interview obsolete — this woman is drinking TURPENTINE! ON A REGULAR BASIS! AND SUGGESTING IT TO OTHERS!!!”

“Why tf is anyone talking about who bit Beyoncé when in that very same interview Tiffany Haddish discussed the fact that she thinks drinking turpentine is a healthy and sensible thing to do??” someone else said.

However, several Black people began sharing stories about remedies their grandmothers had for medical ailments while detailing the long history the Black community’s relationship with doctors.

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