The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently made a startling revelation that has left millions of Americans in a quandary. The FDA announced that a key ingredient in some of the most common cold medications is ineffective, leaving us without reliable cold and flu remedies. This news has sparked a renewed interest in natural remedies, with doctors suggesting alternatives to these over-the-counter drugs.
One such alternative is chicken soup, a remedy that has been recommended for decades. According to Dr. Stuart Fischer, an internal medicine doctor in New York City, chicken soup is one of the best things to alleviate the symptoms of a cold or the flu. The broth, salt, and chicken fat in the soup are vital to alleviating an illness. The broth helps to keep the body hydrated, while the salt draws water into the body’s cells, rehydrating them. The chicken fat acts as a surfactant, opening and closing air sacs deep in the lungs, aiding in breathing.
Which is why the FDA is now trying to tell us cold medicine doesn't work. What a joke.
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Another recommendation from Dr. Fischer is the use of probiotics. Probiotics, considered ‘good bacteria’ in the digestive system, can help fight off harmful bacteria that can lead to illnesses. They can be found in foods like yogurt, cottage cheese, and kimchi. Dr. Fischer believes that taking probiotics is an effective way of preventing colds.
In addition to these natural remedies, there are also pharmaceutical options that can help alleviate symptoms. Regular Benadryl, which only contains diphenhydramine and not phenylephrine, can help people suffering from sinusitis by drying out the mucous membranes in the nose. Similarly, a cough syrup like Robitussin is recommended as it is essentially harmless.
FDA advisers deemed a cold medicine ineffective this week. The conclusion came after 30 years of prodding by a group of pharmacy professors at the University of Florida. This is the story of why it took so long. https://t.co/yMGKn5JCec
— The New York Times (@nytimes) September 16, 2023
Dr. Fischer also suggested N-acetyl csyteine (NAC), an antioxidant derived from the amino acid L-cysteine, which could help people feeling under the weather. NAC is thought to possibly play a role in preventing cancer and is used to treat acetaminophen poisoning. People also commonly use it for a cough and other lung conditions, as well as the flu and dry eye.
The FDA’s ruling has led to pharmacy giant CVS pulling over-the-counter cough and cold products containing phenylephrine from its shelves. This move is seen as a positive step by Dr. Fischer, who believes that the side effects from these medications outweigh any small benefits the drugs may have.
This development serves as a reminder that sometimes, the best remedies are the simplest ones.
As we navigate through the cold and flu season, let’s remember to take care of our health naturally and responsibly. After all, Grandma may have been right all along: Chicken soup might just be the perfect remedy.