Food blog

Peanut Butter as a Hiccup Cure: Fact or Fiction?

Can peanut butter really cure hiccups?

Understanding Hiccups

Hiccups can be uncomfortable and embarrassing, but they are usually nothing to worry about. To effectively get rid of hiccups, it’s important to understand what they are and how they happen. According to The Washington Post, hiccups are a spontaneous disruption in the breathing process that originates in the diaphragm. When we exhale, the diaphragm contracts to push air out, and when we inhale, it relaxes to let air in. Sometimes, however, this balanced rhythm is disrupted, causing the diaphragm to contract out of sequence with the breath. This causes the larynx to tighten and the epiglottis to close, resulting in the characteristic “hic” sound of a hiccup.

Relax the diaphragm

To stop hiccups, it is necessary to relax the diaphragm so that the epiglottis stops clicking shut and breathing can return to its normal rhythm. While there are various folk remedies and home techniques that claim to cure hiccups, they are more like tools to help reset breathing than actual cures.

The role of peanut butter

One popular remedy for hiccups is to eat a spoonful of peanut butter. According to a segment on 9 News, this remedy works by distracting the phrenic nerve, which controls the diaphragm. By keeping the nerve busy with other tasks, such as swallowing, the irritation to the diaphragm is reduced, allowing breathing to return to normal. It is important to note, however, that peanut butter and other remedies are not guaranteed to work for everyone.

Other home remedies

In addition to peanut butter, there are several other home remedies that people have found effective in relieving hiccups. Reader’s Digest has compiled a list of 19 such remedies:

  1. Hold your breath: Taking a deep breath and holding it for a few seconds can help reset the breathing pattern and relieve hiccups.
  2. Stick out your tongue: This action stimulates the muscles in the throat and can interrupt the hiccup reflex.
  3. Take 10 quick sips of water: Drinking water quickly can help regulate breathing and possibly stop hiccups.
  4. Take a teaspoon of water: Swallowing a small amount of water without breathing may help stop hiccups.
  5. Sipping hot sauce: The strong taste and sensation of hot sauce can sometimes interrupt the hiccup reflex.
  6. Suck on a lemon: The sour taste of a lemon can stimulate the nerves and stop hiccups.
  7. Acupressure: Applying pressure to certain points on the body, such as the palm of the hand or the top of the thumb, may help relieve hiccups in some people.

It is important to remember that the effectiveness of these remedies may vary from person to person. What works for one person may not work for another, so it may take some trial and error to find the remedy that works best for you.


While hiccups can be annoying, they are usually harmless and will go away on their own. Various home remedies, including eating peanut butter, have been found to provide relief for some people. However, it’s important to note that these remedies are not scientifically proven cures and may not work for everyone. If hiccups persist for an extended period of time or are accompanied by other symptoms, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional for further evaluation and guidance.
Remember, the key to stopping hiccups is to relax your diaphragm and allow your breathing to return to its normal rhythm. Whether you try peanut butter or some other remedy, the goal is to find a distraction or technique that works for you and helps alleviate the discomfort of hiccups.


Is peanut butter an effective treatment for hiccups?

While peanut butter is a popular home remedy for hiccups, its effectiveness varies from person to person. It may work for some people by distracting the phrenic nerve and allowing the diaphragm to relax, but it is not guaranteed to work for everyone.

How can peanut butter help with hiccups?

Peanut butter, when eaten, can distract the phrenic nerve from other tasks, such as swallowing, which reduces irritation to the diaphragm. This distraction can help reset the breathing pattern and possibly alleviate hiccups.

Are there any risks or side effects to using peanut butter for hiccups?

In general, peanut butter is considered safe. However, people with peanut allergies should avoid using this remedy. It’s also important to watch portion sizes, as eating too much peanut butter can cause discomfort or digestive problems.

Are there any alternative remedies for hiccups?

Yes, there are several alternative remedies for hiccups. Some common options include holding your breath, drinking water in a certain way, sucking on a lemon, or applying acupressure to certain points on your body. These remedies may provide relief for some people, but their effectiveness may vary.

How long should I try peanut butter or other remedies before seeking medical help for hiccups?

In most cases, hiccups will go away on their own in a short period of time. However, if hiccups persist for an extended period of time, occur frequently, or are accompanied by other concerning symptoms, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional for further evaluation and guidance.

Can hiccups be a sign of a more serious underlying medical condition?

While hiccups are usually benign, persistent or chronic hiccups could potentially indicate an underlying medical condition. If you experience hiccups that last longer than 48 hours or are accompanied by difficulty swallowing, severe abdominal pain, or other concerning symptoms, it is recommended that you seek medical attention for proper evaluation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *