Thursday, November 13, 2008

Snopes and the Phenylpropanolamine (PPA) Recall


We haven't used any cold, cough or fever reducing medication-- especially Tylenol-- in the last 18 months since I realized changing my kids diets and healing them worked better than treating their symptoms. Although we live an urban life in New York City, our life has been very much a return to the 18th century in terms of what things go into my kids. If my grandmother didn't have it available to her or wouldn't recognize it, we don't use it. What this mostly means for my family is that chemicals in foods (and medicines) don't go into my kids bodies. I read labels and package inserts and reject anything that has chemicals I can't pronounce and/or don't understand.

A friend sent me an email today that products containing phenylpropanolamine (PPA) have been recalled by the FDA. The Phenylpropanolamine (PPA) Information Page from the FDA website has the history of this product which explains in detail why PPA has been reclassified as unsafe. Snopes.com has some more info on this recall (which is true but outdated.) Anyway, even though the info is outdated it's nice to see the FDA actually recalled something back in 2006! If you get an email that says "important send to everyone", check it out on Snopes.com to see if it is true.

It looks like you need to read the ingredients of any over the counter medicine carefully to make sure that it doesn't contain unsafe chemicals--including phenylpropanolamine. And while you are at it check out Snopes.com to see if the things you hear are true. Interestingly, the last line of the Snopes report on PPA made me chuckle:

"Barbara 'Better a head cold than six-feet-deep-cold' Mikkelson"