CHOICE has shared 10 popular over-the-counter medicines, supplements and health products that are best left on the shelf.
In no particular order these are the 10 products you really shouldn’t bother wasting your money on, according to CHOICE.
Vitamin lollies and goat milk chews
These are essentially treats with little nutritional value. Save your money and buy real food and milk (lactose-free or goat) instead.
Blooms Back, Neck & Shoulders +
Even if this turmeric and magnesium supplement works, oral medicine can’t target pain in specific areas of the body.
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Dick Wicks Magnetic Knee Support
There’s no good quality evidence to show that magnetic bandages work any better than regular bandages, which are a lot cheaper.
Melatonin helps some people with sleep problems, but there’s no evidence homeopathic melatonin such as Bioglan Melatonin works.
Toddler and junior formula
Apart from being more expensive than fresh or powdered milk, some toddler and junior formulas contain less protein and calcium, and filling up on these may discourage healthy eating.
Combined paracetamol and ibuprofen pills
Combination pills offer a convenient, though more expensive, type of painkiller that may be more effective than paracetamol or ibuprofen alone. However, they’re not suitable for all types of pain, and confusion around dosage has raised concerns.
Sudafed PE and others
Studies have found that phenylephrine, or PE, the active ingredient in various decongestant medicines, isn’t effective.
Eye drop products with benzalkonium chloride
These can cause eye irritation in some people, and there are concerns that long-term use can damage the surface of the eye.
Many so-called “natural” toothpastes don’t contain fluoride which, when used as recommended, is a safe and effective treatment to prevent dental cavities.
Last but not least – cough medicine.
CHOICE says there is a surprising lack of evidence that cough medicines even work.
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