Bogus Herbal Meds

I went out looking to see if there was anything new my husband hasn’t tried for his cold sores.  He doesn’t get them often, but when he does, they make him miserable.  Because he’s been sick, he now has a cold sore. 

I found this and I’m going to spend a couple of minutes debunking them.

They list their ingredients – Viranox Salve ingredients: Leptospermum scoparium oil,
Aloes Methol, Clove, Eucalypt, Thyme, Comfrey Root, Lanoline,
Plantain, Potassium Chloride, Hydrogen Peroxide, H20, Beeswax,
Olive oil, Vitamin E Oil, Vitamin C, Salt.

Ingredient #1 – Leptospermum scoparium oil – fancy word for Tea Tree Oil – Leptospermum scoparium is the latin name for the New Zealand Tea Tree
Ingredient #2 – Aloes – I’m sure that they mean Aloe Vera
Ingredient #3 – Menthol – The same stuff you get in your linament & vapor rub
Ingredient #4 – Clove – The same stuff you put in your pumpkin pie
Ingredient #5 – Eucalypt – I’m sure that they mean Eucalyptus which
in your linament & vapor rub
Ingredient #6 – Thyme – The same stuff you have in your kitchen.  Great on roasts, btw. 
Ingredient #6 – Comfrey Root – This is standard herbal stuff, but still quite dangerous.  It has several active compounds and has been shown to cause pre-cancerous conditions in rodents.  Rodents and humans have quite similar immune systems.  It can cause liver failure.  I’ll refer to you to the wikipedia article on it.
Ingredient #7 – Lanoline – I’m pretty sure you know this as lanolin and it comes from sheep.
Ingredient #8 – Plantain – This basically the wild, un-hybridized version of your big yellow grocery store banana
Ingredient # 9 + #16 – Potassium Chloride & Salt  – Regular table salt is Sodium Chloride.  Some people are sensitive to sodium in their diet so they eat salt that has been “cut” with Potassium Chloride.  It still looks and mostly tastes like “regular” salt but it’s usually called Lite Salt. 
Ingredient #10- Hydrogen Peroxide – You know this as the stuff in the big brown bottle you pour on cuts
Ingredient #11 – H20 – I’m that what they mean here is water.  You know – you get it from your faucet. 
Ingredient #12 – Beeswax – Bees make it – candles to cosmetics- human use it.  This is starting to sound a lot like the lip balm I use now. 
Ingredient #13 – Olive Oil – If you don’t really should have this in your kitchen.  It can be quite good for you. 
Ingredient #14 – Vitamin E Oil – Well, vitamin E doesn’t come in any other form and odds are you have this in your medicine cabinent already. 
Ingredient #15 – Vitamin C – Odds are you have this in your medicine cabinet. 
Ingredient #16 – see #9

There’s not $5 worth of ingredients in this and they’re selling it for $23.95, claiming that it will stop cold sore outbreaks completely.  Cold sores are a viral illness and we’re just beginning to develop antiviral medications.  Why would pharmaceutical companies spend billions of dollars developing antiviral meds when you can whip something up in your kitchen for $5? 

I’m not saying it doesn’t work for some people.  There’s this thing called the placebo effect.  You can give some people a sugar pill, swear to them it’s drug, and they’ll get better.  That’s why drug companies do this thing called “double blind” testing.  That means that neither the person giving the medication nor the person taking it know which is real and which is fake. 

I just don’t think that charging people $23.95 for a placebo that shouldn’t cost more than $5 is very fair.  Still, if people are stupid enough to pay, more power to the guys at Viranox. 

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One thought on “Bogus Herbal Meds

  1. I’d recommend Turmeric (an ingredient in curry) or directly applying clove oil. My mother had cat scratch fever, a nasty mix of stuff, and Turmeric cleared it up right away, in about 20% of the time it takes for the $80 antibiotics to work.

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