Consumer Reports asked doctors and other experts what health items they stock in their own homes to come up with a list of the 10 health-related products you need in yours. All of them are easy to find and cost less than $60 as a group.
10. Witch hazel
Use it to relieve discomfort from hemorrhoids and the stinging and swelling that can occur after bug bites.
9. Shea butter
Pure shea butter lotion is a natural way to clear up rashes and relieve dry skin without the irritation associated with moisturizers that have multiple ingredients.
8. Plain petroleum jelly
Rub it on minor cuts in place of an antibiotic ointment. Petroleum jelly forms a barrier to infection without the sting and without the risk of allergic reactions.
7. Neti pot
If you have allergies, rinsing your nasal passages with a saline solution using a neti pot can help relieve congestion.
6. Meat thermometer
Prevent foodborn illnesses by measuring the temperature of meat when baking, grilling or frying. Steaks and roasts should ?be cooked to an internal temperature ?of 145 degrees, while ground meat and egg dishes should be 160 degrees and poultry 165 degrees.
5. Measuring tape
Use it to measure your waist just above the hip bones every few months to keep tabs on your weight and your risk for heart disease. Waists measuring more than 40 inches around for men and 35 inches around for women indicate a higher risk for heart problems.
4. Distilled white vinegar
Instead of messy calamine lotion, blot a dab of undiluted white vinegar on bug bites to take the itch away. It's also a simple nontoxic cleaner when mixed with water or baking soda.
5. Measuring tape
3. Cigarette rolling papers
They're much smaller and tidier at stopping the bleeding from shaving cuts than tissues or paper towels. And they're cheap at only $1 for 100 sheets.
2. Baking Soda
Out of toothpaste at 5:30 a.m.? Wet your toothbrush and put some baking soda on it. Baking soda is a mild abrasive and will whiten teeth like a mild bleach.
It may be a lifesaver when you have a bad headache, but aspirin could also save your life in the event of a heart attack because it's a blood thinner. After calling 911, chew four low-dose aspirin tablets while you wait for help.
To read more about Consumer Reports' list of the health items every home needs, click here.
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