Laypeople have long known that bacon can cure innumerable ailments: depression, unwanted thinness, tastelessness of lentil. And new research suggests that the cured meat has medical applications that have nothing to do with the heart and stomach. It seems that bacon -- used in a very unusual way -- is one of the best cures out there for a bloody nose.
We know what you're thinking: the cure must involve bacon fumes. Surely, the delectable smell of bacon sizzling its way to crispness in the frying pan must be so miraculous that it can dry up nasal hemorrhages as surely as it stops diets!
Nope, unfortunately not. The real cure doesn't even involve cooked bacon. Instead, to cure a nosebleed using bacon, you actually have to stick a piece of bacon up the bloody nostril. It turns out raw "cured salt pork" (read: basically bacon) is as effective a nasal tampon as we have. It works especially well for treating certain conditions that lead to chronic nosebleeds.
The new enthusiasm among doctors for bacon-as-nosebleed-remedy has deep roots. It was long considered a folk remedy, with medical professionals only intermittently recommending it. More often, bacon has been depicted in medical literature as an absurd and improbable cure for nosebleeds, the butt of a joke rather than a serious suggestion.
Stuffing bacon up your nose might not replace pinching it and tilting your head back as a first line of defense against bloody noses. But if that doesn't work, and you realize you have some extra bacon lying around, the bacon method might be worth trying out the next time you have a nosebleed.
Wait a second, though -- who has has ever had "extra bacon lying around"? That's like extra vacation days or spare cake. There's no such thing!
UPDATE: As it turns out, our conflation of "bacon" and "cured salt pork" may have been overzealous. The new study confirmed the efficacy of the latter as a nosebleed cure, not the former. Should've remembered back to "Oregon Trail"! And it's possible that the extra fattiness and decreased smokiness of salt pork would make a difference when determining the cured meats' respective ability to staunch bloody noses. The point being: if you want to stuff a wad of bacon up your nose the next time you're bleeding, go right ahead, but don't blame us if it doesn't go well!