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I do simple experiments on my body and have discovered several things about heat treatments. For example, Poison Oak itching stopped with hot air. It’s free, so there is no incentive for the drug industry to support the advertising of that technique.

A friend of mine, Steve B., has been telling me about heat shock proteins for many months, and I have been trying one of the treatments he has been talking about. The idea is that infrared light triggers the skin to produce more of the things that make it healthy and that ultraviolet light triggers the things that make it deteriorate. It is easily observed that old people who have spent a lot of time in the sun have coarse wrinkled skin. This is caused by ultraviolet sunlight which can be reduced by wearing sunscreen products, covering the skin with opaque materials, or spending a minimal amount of time outdoors during the daytime.

Along with ultraviolet light, the sun also produces prodigious amounts of infrared light and that is the source of most of the energy that makes the skin feel warm when exposed to sunshine. Infrared light is what makes a glowing electric stove element feel warm from a moderate distance and proportionally hotter as one gets closer. If the infrared light is beneficial, then getting close enough to a glowing infrared heat source to warm the skin should give the desired benefits. How intense this treatment should be isn’t documented, as far as I know, but I have been warming the feeling of my skin to just below where it feels any heat pain, for about three minutes. I move closer in and further out in about a fifteen-second cycle, staying just outside the zone where I feel any heat pain.

I have treated the back of my eighty-three-year-old hands this way after applying a few drops of lemon juice squeezed directly out of a lemon. That is most easily done by pounding gently on a ripe lemon to make it soft, rolling it around to make it even softer, and then poking a small hole in the side. A few drops squeezed out onto a Formica tabletop or into a porcelain sink makes a good puddle of lemon juice to dip a finger into, and that is just right for dabbling the juice onto troublesome skin. Age spots, common on the back of old people’s hands, like mine, responded well to that treatment.

It appears to me that the lemon juice and infrared light helped make the back of my old hands age-spot free.