BBC Science: The Truth About Over-The-Counter Medicine

Dr Chris van Tulleken - Image Credit: BBC/Boundless/Pete Dadds

Dr Chris van Tulleken – Image Credit: BBC/Boundless/Pete Dadds

Each year in the UK we collectively spend a massive £2.3 billion on over the counter medicines, with the aim of treating anything from headaches to athletes foot or indigestion to the common cold. But how much does the general public really understand about how these products work? And are they worth all that money?

Using stunts and demonstrations involving members of the public from around Britain, ‘The Truth About Over-The-Counter Medicine’ investigates the science behind some of the countries biggest selling over-the-counter remedies, which promise to deal with our everyday medical complaints.

Airing on the BBC and presented by Dr Chris van Tulleken, this one-off 60-minute special will reveal how these favourite shop-bought medicines are intended to work in our bodies. Chris will also look into whether or not certain home remedies can do the job just as well, or better.

In addition to drawing on the latest scientific research, Chris will also be quizzing the public to find out exactly what they’re buying and why, revealing which types of over-the-counter medicine we’re spending the most on.

Dr Chris will also be explaining what causes common afflictions such as indigestion and colds, plus he’ll be seeking out the reality behind some long held home remedy myths and beliefs.