A recent study, involving 437 subjects, suggests that the herbal supplement, Echinacea neither prevents colds, nor reduces cold symptoms
The subjects were monitored for a period of 5 days, and the subjects who were given Echinacea were just as likely to get a cold, and there was no noticeable difference in their symptoms.
Some scientists, however, believe that the issue is not closed just yet. Dr. Rudolph Bauer, one of the researchers involved in this study says that the study should be repeated with other varieties of Echinacea, in different doses. He added that he himself often takes Echinacea, and will continue to take it.
Whether the curing properties of Echinacea are a scientific fact, or a simply a myth may never be definitively proven, but there is little question that scientists from both sides of the argument will keep trying.
According to the American Botanical Council, Americans spent approximately $155 million on Echinacea products in 2004.