Will Drinking 7UP Really Cure a Cold?

We're all looking for a fast cure when a cold strikes, but is white soda really the answer? Find out if Mom was right, and 7UP cures a cold!

When it comes to getting rid of colds, there are a lot of theories out there. Some people take Vitamin C tablets like they’re going out of style, others opt for zinc. Others still turn to 7UP to counteract seasonal bugs. Is this soda cure just another old home remedy, though?

Does 7UP Really Work?

Most of us just think of 7UP as a tasty drink or maybe even a secret ingredient for tender cakes and sparkling punches, but Mom saw more. She thought that the comforting combination of a little sugar, hint of citrus and carbonation was just what you needed to put a little pep back in your step. And if you weren’t normally allowed to drink soda, maybe it was the special privilege of forbidden fruit that had you feeling better.

However, we encourage Dr. Mom to check her chart again. Sure, drinking white soda or ginger ale might help an upset stomach, but it doesn’t have any healing properties when it comes to the common cold.

Drinks to Soothe a Cold

Rather than soda, focus on fluids like water, tea and soup broth. Staying hydrated will help loosen up your congestion and ease a cough. Because soda can make dehydration worse, it’s best to thank Mom for her advice, but skip the 7UP and other sodas. Alcohol and coffee will also cause dehydration, so best to skip all the fun drinks for now.

Infused Water

If you’re missing 7UP’s flavor, try infusing cool water with fruit for a sweet taste and extra hit of vitamin C. Combinations to try include apple, lemon and carrot, as well as strawberries, lemon and mint. Fill a pitcher with the fruit of your choice, pour water over it, and allow to chill in the refrigerator for a few hours. Then sip on your sweet concoction all day while resting on the couch and having loved ones wait on you hand and foot.


Warm lemon tea is also a great option and will soothe your aching throat. Stir in some honey to coat your throat and ease your coughing. Drinking (caffeine-free!) tea with honey before bed can help you relax and get some much-needed rest.

Hot Toddy

It’s not the whiskey in this drink that’ll help your cold, but the citrus, honey and spices. Mix up this recipe at home (with our without the tipple) and curl up on the couch.

A little 7UP probably won’t hurt, but it’s best to stick with water, rest and plenty of handwashing until you’re feeling back to yourself.

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Carrie Madormo, RN
Now a freelance health and food writer, Carrie worked as a nurse for over a decade. When she isn't hunched over her laptop with a baby in hand, you will find her cooking her grandmother’s recipes, lacing up her running shoes or sipping coffee in the bathroom to hide from her three young children.