Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Gluten-Free Cough Drops

My battle to avoid the flu that hit my husband seems to have failed, but instead of the horrific stomach flu he had, I got a touch of stomach flu and a persistent head cold. The result has been a lot of coughing. Then more coughing.
Last night, I slept about half the night on the couch to avoid keeping him awake with my coughing. And, my couch is cushioned enough that I can sleep sitting up, so the draining sinuses were less irritating to my throat and I could sleep in two hour bursts.
So, what has this got to do with gluten-free living?  Apparently, a lot.
As I mentioned previously anything that needs a thickening agent often uses wheat gluten, so many medicines have gluten in them. This week, we went searching for gluten-free cough drops.
Several sites online can provide you with lists of gluten-free foods and their manufacturers, though it's always a good idea to check the label yourself. Since cough drops are not food, they don't have a nutritional label or a complete list of ingredients. They list the medications involved.
I had to rely on a list I foudn online. And the only cough drops I found, though there may be others that my cold-fogged brain didn't see, were Hall's Sugar Free Cough Drops.
Now, if you are trying to erase gluten from your diet as part of a weight control plan, sugar-free cough drops might not be a problem. But we are much more interested in foods with fewer refined chemicals, so sugar-free was not high on the list.
And, they are expensive. I can get a bag of a hundred Kroger brand cherry menthol cough drops for a couple dollars or a bag with 25 of the sugar-free ones for about $4. Ugh. 
Cough drops being cough drops I wasn't concerned about the taste, but the price --combined with the dayquil and nightquil I've been consuming every four hours left me depressed.
Gluten-free is healthier for me, but it sure isn't cheap.

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