Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Friday September 15, 2023
Over-the-Counter Cold Remedies: A Quackery Quandary
In the wake of the FDA’s recent revelation challenging the effectiveness of common over-the-counter cold and flu remedies containing phenylephrine, a long-standing dilemma has surfaced. While the FDA’s verdict on the limited efficacy of phenylephrine, a prevalent ingredient in these medications, has created a buzz of uncertainty, there’s a nostalgic and enduring remedy that deserves our attention – the warm embrace of Bubbe’s chicken soup.
The FDA’s pronouncement about phenylephrine delivers a sobering blow, casting doubt on the potency of some of our most trusted cold and flu treatments. Brands like Benadryl, Mucinex, Sudafed PE, and Tylenol, once hailed as saviors during the sniffle season, may be on the brink of obsolescence as manufacturers race to revamp their formulas. But what if these colourful pills we’ve reached for throughout the years are nothing more than sugar-coated placebos?
In stark contrast, Bubbe’s chicken soup, a timeless remedy with roots reaching back generations, may lack the scientific rigor some demand, yet it consistently offers a comforting refuge when illness strikes. While it may lack the stamp of approval from clinical trials, it boasts an undeniable ability to make us feel better. As we grapple with the uncertainty surrounding modern cold remedies, perhaps it’s time to heed the wisdom of tradition and embrace the enduring comfort of Bubbe’s tried-and-true chicken soup. (AI.) Editorial cartoon published in the Toronto Star.