For Indians it is a common site to see lemons and chillies tied together by a thread and hanging outside the shops and doors of homes & offices, even in vehicles like rickshaws and trucks. Today, let’s investigate if this superstition has any scientific basis to it.
If you ask people the reason for putting this up, they may reply with the story of Alakshmi, (sister of Goddess Lakshmi, who takes away the prosperity from household). As per this superstition, Alakshmi likes sour, hot and pungents substances. People believe that if Alakshmi comes to their door, she would eat her favorite food, and leave without entering their shop or house. As a result they are not deprived of prosperity.
<B>Can there be any logical or scientific reason behind it? YES!
Both lemon and chillies are rich in Vitamin C. So when a cotton thread is pierced through these substances, the cotton absorbs their nutrients and gradually vaporize them in air. Inhaling this air has health benefits.
Besides, the aroma (smell) from lemon and chillies keep insects and other pests away from the place. Therefore, this trick was used by our forefathers to keep microbes away, as there were no pesticides back then.
Today, however, there are many options of pesticides available to keep the environment free of microbes, thus hanging chillis and lemons is no longer required.