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Got poison ivy? Go bananas!

A couple of days after a nice fall day walk in the woods I had that dreaded realization -- no, not the gross-out tick discovery (that was earlier in the summer) -- the other one, the want-to-rip-your-skin-off poison ivy discovery.

What's worse is that I am very careful. I had multiple miserable experiences with poison ivy as a kid and would rather wear 18 layers of clothing on a 90-degree day if there was the slightest chance I'd come in contact with the dreaded weed.

So I was wearing long pants, full socks and hiking boots as Sue and I headed through our usual path in the small patch of woods for a simple walk down the dirt road near our house.

Apparently, once I got home and took off said socks and boots, whatever oils brushed up against my pant leg was transferred to my skin... And I end up with an ankle full of large, itchy red welts that one doesn't realize is poison ivy until one has scratched the hell out of them for a day or so.

The itching was driving me berserk. I tried a bunch of store products: Tecnu, Calahist, etc. Sue suggested soaking my foot in an Epsom salt bath. No luck.

As we tend to do when all is lost, we search the Internet. And there -- on the website Live Health Online ( -- was the solution. Under the headline Poison Ivy Home Remedy Relief were five possibilities. Number 3 reads: "Rub a banana peel or a watermelon rind over the rash and don’t rinse it off. Allow it to dry naturally. This will help get relief from the itchiness caused by the rash."

Weird, I thought, but what the hell do I have to lose?

Voila! Once the banana goo dries on your skin, the itch magically stops! I have found the Epsom bath before rubbing the banana peel actually works the best, but what a revelation!

Click HERE to read the entire article.

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