It is that time of the year again where seemingly everyone and their mother is coming down with the common cold. It seems to be one of the most unavoidable things each and every year, despite how much we keep advancing in the field of medicine.

Common Cold Treatments – Do They Work?

Obviously, finding solutions to the common cold aren’t a high priority as it is a relatively mild “illness” and there are plenty of remedies for it. And that is what this article is going to focus on since there are a lot of remedies out there and some are good and effective and others are bad and useless. It is time to drop the truthbomb on the following supposed remedies for the common cold.

Chicken Soup

This remedy is about as old as I can remember. When I was a kid, I was always made chicken noodle soup to make me feel better and it always worked. And there is a scientific explanation behind it as well. Warm fluids such as the hot broth in chicken soup are very good for your nose and help to relieve congestion.

Not to mention the hot fluids are good at hydrating you and relieving a sore throat, one of the common symptoms of the cold. I found an interesting little nugget while doing my research, though. A couple years ago, a university conducted a study and found that chicken soup that had different kinds of vegetables in it actually had some substances in it that helped relieve a wide range of cold symptoms, including congestion, sore throat, cough, and a clogged nose.

What’s the verdict on this remedy?

– It works and I strongly recommend it!

Cold-Eeze / Zinc

You may have seen commercials for Cold-Eeze lozenges and wondered if they actually worked. Well, science does not seem to have an answer for us which kind of sucks. Two studies were conducted to figure out how effective zinc (the main ingredient of Cold-Eeze) is at treating cold symptoms and they had conflicting results. A study in 1996 showed positive results for zinc as a treatment for cold symptoms, but a study in 1998 showed that zinc was an effective treatment.

What’s the verdict on this remedy?

– Give it a try, but don’t expect it to relieve your symptoms right away.

Vitamin C

This is another remedy that has a lot of conflicting science behind it. It is well-known that getting plenty of vitamin C is highly beneficial to your health, but how effective is it at remedying and even protecting you against the common cold? Well, science isn’t quite sure.

A thorough study was conducted to figure this out in 2004 and concluded that vitamin C was ineffective in reducing your chances of getting the cold and reducing how long the cold lingers for and how severe it is. But, another thorough long-term study was published in 2006 and found that a daily intake of 500mg of vitamin C reduced the chances of getting three or more colds in a five-year duration by over 60 percent. The long duration of this study may give it a leg up over the 2004 study.

What’s the verdict on this remedy?

– Consume plenty of foods that contain vitamin C and even give vitamin C supplements a try! There’s no harm and you may even reduce your risk of contracting the pesky common cold, among other health benefits.

Oscillococcinum

What is this?! Well, this remedy originated in the early 20th century by physician by the name of Joseph Roy. Basically, it is duck liver and heart diluted at a ratio of 1:100. Sounds disgusting, right? But does it work?

Kinda… I guess. Two studies were conducted to test the effectiveness of oscilllococcinum and found that it is entirely ineffective at protecting you against the common cold or the flu, however, it is effective at reducing how long you have to deal with the cold and flu. The reduction is about 7 hours, so it’s not anything to get excited about.

What’s the verdict on this remedy?

– Pass.

Echinacea

This is a very popular herbal supplement that is widely used to relieve the symptoms of the cold and flu. But it seems like a lot of people are falling for the hype and burning their money. Why do I say that? Because science seems to disagree that it’s effective at all at fighting the cold and flu.

A 2006 study showed no difference between the effectiveness of this herbal supplement at relieving cold symptoms than a placebo. Some studies did show some promising results as it pertains to a certain preparation of this supplement being able to treat colds in the early stage, but it’s nothing to write home about.

The verdict?

– Pass on it until more research is done. I wouldn’t waste my money on it.

Airborne

Airborne is basically a bunch of helpful minerals, herbs, and vitamins all blended together. So it can’t really be bad for you, right? Well, yeah. But the effectiveness of it as it pertains to treating the cold is up in the air.

There is no science backing Airborne as a proven treatment for the common cold and any indication that it may be effective in doing so may be due to the high concentration of the aforementioned vitamin C in this superpill.

Verdict?

– I’d suggest just getting vitamin C on its own rather than spending more for this. You won’t get instant relief and it just seems like a waste to me.

Cold Treatments Conclusion

And there you have it. Some of the common remedies for the common cold being held up to the standards of truth. Some fared well under the microscope and others proved to be failures and wastes of money. I hope you now have a better understanding of what you can do to remedy a cold so that you aren’t going to suffer this season or burn a hole in your wallet trying not to suffer.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here