Supplements: Cure for the Common Cold?

zinc and vitamin c help with coldsI can’t believe it. It’s the middle of summer, and I have a cold. Isn’t that supposed to be a winter or spring illness? I suppose I can’t dictate to the rhinovirus when it is allowed to take up lodging in my lungs, but I have three kids, and in the immortal words of YouTube sensation Sweet Brown, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”

Rummaging through my medicine cabinet, I find various bottles of supplements, cough drops, herbal remedies, and cold medicines. I repress the urge to take them all at once. More, as they say, is not always better.

I settle on a cough drop and some vitamins. But as I’m sitting here on my couch, feeling lousy and staring at the pile of dishes that need to be washed, I wonder if these remedies that I put faith in actually do any good.

Will Zinc cure the common cold?

Research leads us to conclude that zinc can reduce the length and severity of a cold. How?  By preventing the rhinovirus from binding and multiplying in the nasal mucous. It also suppresses inflammation. Some studies conflict in their results, but overall, according to the National Institute of Health, zinc appears to be beneficial under the right circumstances. Lozenges and syrups containing zinc seem to work well, since the supplement comes into direct contact with the rhinovirus this way. Though researchers can’t claim that zinc can cure the common cold, it does seem to reduce the duration of the cold symptoms.

Will Vitamin C shorten the common cold?

Research is a little less convincing with vitamin C. Though we do know that overall, vitamin C is great for our body’s immunity, the only thing that research has proven is that those who take vitamin C on a regular basis may have slightly shorter colds or milder symptoms when the rhinovirus hits. Still, when taken in the recommended dosage, vitamin C certainly can’t hurt.

Everyone is different, and of course, you should check with your doctor so he or she can give you tailored advice for your situation. Remember, though, if you’ve been unfortunate enough to catch a cold this summer, Brian’s Pharmacies is here to help you with cold medicines, supplements, and natural remedies. Whatever you need to get you through your cold, we’ve got it.

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