Tuesday, August 19, 2008

My new best friend: Throat Coat

In the main, I tend to be skeptical of folk remedies, homeopathic medicines, and such like. (I think astrology is bunk, too.)

I'm a convert, though, to Throat Coat, an herbal tea from the fine folks at Traditional Medicinals. Because I make my living using my voice, I'm game to try anything that might help me preserve its function — especially when I'm battling some kind of upper respiratory bug, as I have been lately. Throat Coat came highly recommended by colleagues in the speaking business, as well as a number of professional vocalists, so I decided to give it a whirl.

What do you know? It works. And despite the word "medicinal" in the company name, it's perfectly palatable from a flavor perspective. It's slightly sweet, with a hint of earthy spiciness.

According to the box, Throat Coat contains as its key ingredient something called slippery elm. I'm certain that, now that I'm ingesting the stuff on a regular basis, some scientific study will soon appear, indicting slippery elm as a root cause of esophageal cancer, nervous system dysfunction, and early-onset Alzheimer's. But for the moment, I'm enjoying the fact that it keeps my throat lubricated without creating phlegm.

Uncle Swan's bottom line: Throat Coat isn't exactly a miracle panacea, but it does make my throat feel better. If you're a yakker or singer -- or, like myself, both -- try steeping yourself a cup and see whether it helps.

It probably can't hurt.


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