LINKED UP: Because I Couldn’t Say it Better Myself

When we had a cough, my grandma always gave us a spoonful of honey before bed. Although sometimes my brother and I self-diagnosed and took a swig of the readily available Robitussin (darn, I LOVED that flavor. I tended to pour on the generous side). But back then, meds like those were not frowned upon by pediatricians. It was a down-whatever-it-takes-to-get-that-kid-to-stop-coughing mentality.

Now a new study–out this month–in JAMA Pediatrics, shows that honey and agave and all sweet naturals (sort of) work! You pick your placebo. The bottom line: Anything sweet and soothing goes down nicely, plus if you tell your kid it will make them feel better–they’ll believe it. You basically have amazing powers of persuasion over this underdeveloped mind.

The experts conclusion in JAMA Pediatrics:

In a comparison of agave nectar, placebo, and no treatment, a placebo effect was demonstrated, with no additional benefit offered by agave nectar. Health care professionals should consider the potential benefits and costs when recommending a treatment with only a placebo effect for infants and toddlers with nonspecific acute cough.

The power of the mind. Now that’s comforting for parents who have been hectored on skipping the cough syrup–which in many cases, works as well as the honey! x, Carolina

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