In the four years since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, many potential remedies for the respiratory illness have been touted online over the years.
A wide variety of possible treatments for the virus have long been shared online—from wormwood to drinking your own urine—with little indication as to whether they might actually provide relief for those sick with the virus. (Medical professionals agree that you should not drink urine.)
One of the latest over-the-counter remedies being recommended online is Cold-Eeze, a lozenge intended to ease the symptoms of the common cold. TikTok user Amanda Jean (@cheesesmom) says she swears by the zinc-based treatment and that it helps her bounce back from any respiratory illness, not just COVID. As a double-lung transplant recipient who’s currently waiting for a second lung transplant, Jean has more reason than most to be vigilant about respiratory disease.
“This is not sponsored, I wish they would sponsor me,” Jean says in the video. “I don’t know what’s in these f*ckers, but—I’m at work right now—these saved my life not only when I had COVID-19, but right now. I don’t know what they do, but I can take one, and then 20 minutes later, I feel like a brand new person. Any congestion that I have? Gone. Chest pain? Gone. Stuffy nose? Gone. Sore throat? Gone.”
“They’re just like cough drops, but they’re magic cough drops,” she continued. “They’re the Cold-Eeze lozenges. If you have any sort of respiratory illness right now, and are just feeling like sh*t, I recommend these to everyone. Get them, I swear they saved my life.”
My mom randomly gave me these when i had the vid and theyve been my saving grace ever since i needed to share the info♬ original sound – Amanda Jean
The company that makes the lozenges, which retail for around $10 at most major stores like Target, claims they prevent the common cold virus from replicating in the mouth, thus shortening the duration of symptoms. According to Health.com, this may prove an effective method of managing symptoms of COVID, as it is in the same family of viruses as the common cold. But the data is not definitive.
Taking zinc as a treatment for COVID is the subject of ongoing studies, and medical officials in the U.S. have not given the treatment the green light. In 2021, the National Institutes for Health recommended that folks keep their daily zinc levels within normal ranges, outside of clinical trials.
Several viewers commented on @cheesemom’s video to share that they also rely on the lozenges to treat respiratory funk.
“I’m in medicine and I swear by Zicam and coldeeze!” one person wrote. “The zinc in both inhibit viral replication to shorten viral illness.”
“I always use these as soon as I feel like I’m getting sick,” another commenter wrote. “It’s the zinc in them. Works like a charm.”
“I swear by them. If you can catch whatever it is on the first day, they’re like magic,” a commenter wrote.
The Daily Dot has reached out to @cheesesmom via TikTok direct message regarding the video.