Dave in Minnesota writes, “Does it prevent colds?”

Airborne is a blend of herbs and vitamins that claims to “boost” your immune system. Without exception, I’ve found that any supplement that claims to “boost” anything is mostly boosting money out of your wallet.

But my bias aside…

Dr. James Steckelberg writes, “Only 3 of these ingredients have been studied as possible cold treatments with mixed results.”

  • Echinacea: Does little to prevent or shorten colds.
  • Vitamin C: Doesn’t appear to prevent colds, but might shorten a cold’s duration, although the optimum dose isn’t clear.
  • Zinc: Can reduce the duration of cold symptoms but doesn’t prevent colds.

He concludes with the caveat “there is just not enough quality research available to make a decision regarding any actual benefits of Airborne.”

Well. I guess that puts the ball in your court.

5/5/07 17:52 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.