Did You Know Your Favorite Margarita Recipe Could Cause More Damage Than a Hangover?
I can't think of a better summer duo than a Margarita and a pool. Honestly, I'll usually accept a Margarita in any weather at any location, but the refreshing citrus and crispy tequila is a perfect way to relax in this heat. In fact, as I was floating in the water on the Fourth of July, I came across some shocking news! My beloved favorite could be hazardous to my health and yours. Jimmy Buffett failed to mention the risks involved with wasting away in Margaritaville!
What is Margarita Burn?
I didn't want to believe it was true, but I found multiple reports from the National Library of Medicine regarding this painful condition's scientific term Phytophototoxic Dermatitis. It turns out that exposure to ultraviolet rays with citrus juices on the skin can cause a serious reaction similar to a severe sunburn. In more serious cases, dermatologists have reported patients suffering from second-degree burn lesions. Ouch!
Who can get Margarita Burn?
While this is named "Margarita Burn" it's not only caused by the adult beverage. Limes just seem to be the most occurring culprit as folks make this popular summer drink while spending time in the sun. Unfortunately, kiddos can also be harmed by this combination. For example, a young entrepreneur cutting and squeezing lemons for a lemonade booth situated in direct sunlight could mean a trip to urgent care.
How to Avoid Margarita Burn
When cutting produce containing the enzyme furocoumarins like limes, lemons, grapefruits, celery, and even some herbs and plants like Queen Anne's Lace or Parsley, use caution and be sure to wash with soap and water before spending time in the sun. You won't know you've been affected until it's too late, but depending on the severity of the burn it can be treated at home. Of course, if you experience any dehydration, serious blisters, or pain it's time to see a professional.
For loyal marg drinkers, I know it's gonna take more than the risk of skin irritation to cut them out completely, but my fair-skinned self is gonna think about reserving Margaritas for nighttime consumption. Y'all be safe out there whoopin' it up!
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