Examining the evidence: herbal remedies for winter colds

Many patients will be coming in with colds these winter days and the advice, as usual, is to stay warm, drink plenty of fluids and rest. 

However, many people also seek the help of over-the-counter products from the chemist.

While some of these contain products such as paracetamol and phenylephrine (a decongestant), others such as EASEaCOLD contain herbal remedies that promise to reduce the symptoms associated with a cold or even reduce the length of a cold.

But is there any evidence these herbal preparations actually work?