Getting over a cold can be a real challenge. You can drink all the tea in the world and sleep for days, but sometimes it’s just not enough. You’ve got to reach for the meds. But according to a new study by the University of Florida in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, those over-the-counter meds might not be doing anything for your sniffles at all.


Turns out that after cold meds were moved behind the counter to combat shadesters picking them up for less-than-kosher uses, drug companies needed to put something out that was safe: phenylephrine. The study showed that giving participants 10-40mg of phenylephrine had the same effect as a placebo (which is to say, no effect at all).

The solution? The study recommends asking for the hard stuff behind the pharmacy counter. These meds contain pseudoephedrine and are proven to work. Remember to bring your identification, as you’re still limited to how much you can buy and how old you have to be to buy it. And good luck with your cold!

Share any natural remedies for cold and flu season in the comments!

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