View Full Version : Zinc and the Common Cold
What's the latest on zinc as a treatment for the symptoms of the common cold? Does it really help? Also, most or all cold medicines with zinc in their name seem to be homeopathic, which I think means they don't actually contain zinc. If zinc does help, are there any non-homeopathic sources, or should I just buy a bottle of zinc tablets?
02-09-2000, 01:18 PM
Perhaps if you think something will work, it really will. I felt a cold coming on a couple years ago, sore throat and runny nose starting out of the blue - drove directly to the drugstore, spent $15 hard-earned on zinc and also echinacea, took both right there in the store. Still got the cold, but it didn't last very long, no sinusitis followed. Now that I heard "natural cures" don't really work, I guess I'll be really sick with colds from now on...
02-10-2000, 12:10 AM
Here is a site with links to the various reports and studies. It looks like most of them are at least a year old though.
02-10-2000, 12:21 AM
Cecil wrote a column (http://www.straightdope.com/columns/980206.html) about this. A recent Mailbag item about the Nocebo effect (http://www.straightdope.com/mailbag/mnocebo.html) also discussed it. There's a thread (http://www.straightdope.com/ubb/Forum6/HTML/000248.html) over in Comments on Mailbag Answers discussing it.
Last I heard, though, they're ineffective. Sorry!
02-10-2000, 11:14 AM
No virus lasts the same length of time. So, maybe you got a three day one?
Zinc is a metal, it may indeed have some positive benefits but chicken soup works better.
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