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Over the Christmas/New year period I came down with a bad case of tonsillitis. My doctors were shut so unable to get antibiotics I took to my local Tesco (when it was open) and brought anything and everything that I thought could possibly help.
These extra strong lozenges were first introduced in 1865 to fisherman working in extreme Icelandic conditions.
I purchased these from Tesco for just 70p. They are currently on offer at 2 for £1.20. I purchased the 45g version and you receive approximately 36 lozenges. These are also available in a 25g pack.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE
This product is not recommended for children under 5 years. There are no dosage instructions on the packet, so I just took them when I felt necessary. It does state on the box that excessive consumption may induce a laxative effect.
I haven't tried the original flavour but I was advised that the blackcurrant version were more pleasantly tasting. So I picked these ones, I do believe there is also a cherry flavour available.
The lozenges are quite small in comparison with others such as lockets. They are white in colour with purple bits inside. Each one in indented with the letters 'FF'.
As soon as these enter your mouth the blackcurrant flavour is evident, it's strong and the menthol power certainly packs a punch. The flavour is apparent throughout and the lozenge takes me around 10 minutes to fully consume. One finished to breathe my mouth felt cool and the pain was definitely reduced. My tongue, roof of my mouth and throat all felt quite numb. This was exactly what I needed because my tonsils felt like the size of golf balls and to swallow was incredibly painful. The numbness lasted a reasonable amount of time, and out of all the tablets and medication I tried these were the only thing that gave me some relief.
Not only was my throat pain reduced massively, my airways felt completely clear. Breathing was easy and the 'bunged up' feeling had subsided for a little while.
I took one lozenge every couple of hours and each time they were extremely effective.
These get five stars and a very high recommendation from me. They are very cheap and you get a fair amount of lozenges inside. They taste nice and gave me relief when I needed it most. They unblocked my nose and sinus' too so that was a bonus. I will always make sure I have a packet of these, for when disaster strikes.
My husband has the incredible ability to suck on two Fishermen's Friend's Throat tablets at once. I can barely keep one in my mouth for any longer than ten seconds, so goodness knows how he manages this. I have tried to eat the original ones for years as I know that given half the chance they will decongest and help me when I have a really bad cough. I am a bit of a wimp though and suck on a Strepsil instead - that's about as daring as I get.
Then I spotted Blackcurrant flavour Fishermen's Friends and I thought they might be slightly milder and more palatable. I was wrong - very wrong. The packaging is similar to the original flavour but the colour is different. Price-wise they are the same at about 65p for a little paper packet. You only get 12 sweets in a pack.
I tried one for the first time a few weeks back when I was driving the car. I was sitting at the traffic lights waiting to pull away on my way to work when it caught on the back of my throat and really made me cough and splutter. Bearing in mind I had a ticklish cough to begin with and this was my primary reason for taking one, I wasn't best pleased. I had to spit it out - it was just far too strong.
These Fisherman's Friends are really not a lot different to the original variety. The only slight difference is the very mild blackcurrant flavour but the overriding flavour is still that of super industrial strength menthol. I really cannot bear it and it makes my eyes water.
On the one or two occasions I have actually managed to let a whole tablet dissolve on my tongue, I can say that they do actually work for me in terms of numbing the back of my throat to the point whereby I can no longer feel it and in turn, this seems to have the weird knock on effect of actually killing my ticklish cough for a while.
If you fancy a bit of a change from the 'normal' Fisherman's Friend lozenge, give these a try, but please don't expect them to be any milder - they are not !
WHAT ARE THEY?
Throat and chest lozenges for when you have a sore throat or problem with your chest and breathing. They come in a small paper packet and the lozenges are small but very powerful.
The main taste when you put one in your mouth is blackcurrant and that is very strong at the beginning. If you don't like blackcurrant flavoured things then you shouldn't buy these because it is a very strong and natural flavour that isn't hidden by anything else in the lozenges. There is a menthol flavour that you can taste all the way through the lozenge and that clashes badly with the blackcurrant, these two flavours don't taste nice together but the menthol has to be there as it's this that helps to clear your chest and throat.
HOW DO YOU USE THEM?
Just suck one until it has all gone for relief of a sore throat and chesty cough. It's always best to suck them because as you swallow while the lozenge is in your mouth you'll be swallowing the menthol and that will help soothe your chesty symptoms.
DO THEY WORK?
As long as you can stand the taste in your mouth while the lozenge dissolves then they are quite effective. They don't help with the pain of a sore throat but they make it feel a little bit numb and that provides relief. If I have a chesty cough it stops that a little bit, the lozenges won't get rid of a cough completely but they stop the soreness I get in my throat when I have a spell of coughing.
These Fishermans Friends are very hot tasting and if you are feeling nauseous they can make you feel very sick, if you eat too many they can also give you diarrhoea. They work though so when I have a chesty cough and cold I suck on one and the effects will last for about an hour, but that's ok as at that time I can use something else to prolong the relief.
A packet of blackcurrant Fishermans Friends costs about 60p and for that you'll get 12 sweets.
4 Dooyoo Stars.
What Are Fisherman's Friends???
They are basically a strong tasting lozenge, which is designed to help with colds and flu's, by clearing the congestion in the throat and nose.
The Blackcurrant Flavoured lozenges are sugar free (although they do contain sweeteners) and they come in a small white paper packet with numerous purple stripes going diagonally across the packet. Each packet contains about 20 small lozenges, which are shaped in a small flat kind of shape - which to be honest if you had just heard the name of this product, and opened the packet up, you could be easily mistaken into thinking that Fisherman's friends are actually some sort of fishing bait!
The cost of these packets vary from place to place, but I usually pay around 70 - 80p for a pack of these, from my local petrol station or newsagent.
A bit of history on Fisherman's Friends:
The name for the product comes from back in 1865 in the town of Fleetwood, in Lancashire on the North West coast of England, which was a thriving fishing community.
Fishermen young and old from the region used to depart on long fishing voyages from Fleetwood into the hostile and un-welcoming conditions of the North Sea and the Arctic Circle. Many of the fishermen would suffer from coughs, colds and bronchial problems from the prolonged freezing cold conditions. James Lofthouse a young pharmacist from the area created the formula, but in liquid form, which he then decided to turn the liquid form into a lozenge to make it easier for the fisherman to transport it around with them. These were much favoured by the local fishermen, who soon began referring to the miracle lozenges as their "Friends" and would not leave shore without them. It was therefore these fishermen who gave the name Fisherman's Friend.
That to me is a very interesting bit of history, and just by popping one of these lozenges into my mouth, I can almost picture the scene! Unsurprisingly Fisherman's Friends are now sold in over 100 countries worldwide!
They have a main taste of blackcurrant to them, which you would expect, but slightly masked by the blackcurrant flavours, there is a taste of peppery, liquorish, menthol kind of flavour, and they have a bit of a kick to them.
The lozenges are quite hard in texture, and so it is easy to suck on them without the temptation of biting straight into them and chewing them, which makes each lozenge last a while. The taste does stick with you for a long time after finishing the lozenge, and keeps the mouth warm and fresh for some time. I find that they are good for helping to clear the airways, and they do also help to relieve a sore throat.
Other than the Fisherman's friends ' Blackcurrant sugar free Lozenges ' flavour, there are lots of other flavours, which are well worth trying.
Other flavours include:
Original Extra Strong Lozenges
Refreshing Mint Lozenges
Cherry Menthol Lozenges
Aniseed flavour Lozenges
Refreshing Lemon Lozenges
Refreshing Mandarin Lozenges
Sweet Licorice Lozenges
Refreshing Citrus Lozenges
I love a pack of these - especially on a cold winters day when I'm outside, perhaps watching a football match or something. They really warm up the throat and mouth, whilst helping to clear the nose.
There are a few words of warning on the blackcurrant sugar free lozenge packaging which basically warn against consuming too many of the lozenges as they can have a laxative effect. Also the packaging warns that the lozenges are not recommended for children under the age of 5.
Please check out the website for more details, including more on the history of the product, and some interesting facts, such as '4,000,000,000 fisherman's friend lozenges are sold each year'!
Thanks for reading.
© L500589 2011
I have mentioned in a couple of reviews recently, that last week I had a terrible sore throat - far worse than I had ever experienced before, and one that actually kept me from sleeping soundly at night. The added complication however was that I am pregnant and thus more restricted as to what I can and can't take to ger relief from it. THe basic paracetamol which I was allowed to take did nothing for my sore throat, and so I relied heavily or honey drinks and lozenges.
In the past, my husband would always have had a packet of strepsils in the cupboard but I never had much success with these before, even prior to pregnancy, and so being recommended Fisherman's friend, I decided anything was worth a go, to gve myself some relief, albeit short term.
Whilst in Savers, I noticed they had a 25g pack of these for what seemed like a good price, although I have nothing to compare the price to, as I have never purchased these before. I decided to go for the blackcurrant flavour, partly to give some taste, but also because I have been given an original fisherman's friend before to suck and I wasn't that keen on the taste, so I thought these might suit me better.
The lozenges come in a little paper pack, and since they are blackcurrant in flavour they packaging reflects this with purple and white stripes. It also states on the front of the packet that these lozenges are sugar free, although rather ironically at the bottom of the pack, it say 'with sweeteners'. So don't be fooled. THe usual fisherman's logo, which seems to don all the various packs is of a fisherman's boat.
On the back of the pack, there is more information about these lozenges, informing users that these are 'extra strong' lozenges, as well as giving a little bit of history to the product, which I actualy found quite useful, since I always thought the name of the product was a little odd. Given that these were used in some of the harshest climatic conditions, it does instill some confidence in their ability to relieve a sore throat.
This product is not recommended for children under the age of 5, and there is a further warning that too much consumption of these lozenges can have a laxative effect.
Now, I cannot claim to have ever been a fan of lozenges before, and usually a stronger paracetamol would have been enough to give relief for a sore throat, but as I said, I was ready to try anything. As soon as you put one of these small lozenges into your mouth, the blackcurrant flavour is very strong and unavoidable, so you would really need to like blackcurrant before buying these. I wasn't so keen however on the strong menthol flavour that seemed to cool my mouth and throat however I realise that this was these lozenges are all about, and this is necessary to give some relief - and I have to say, that they worked. No, it didn't relieve my sore throat for hours by any means, but it definitely gave me some welcome relief from my sore thraot which did last, possibly a good half hour - well worth it in my eyes. THey are not the most pleasant things to have to take, but I do really feel that they worked for my throat, far more than the likes of strepsils ever did in the past. It was ony a pity that I couldn't have taken them during the night, when my throat was at its worst, but I was scared of choking on them.
All in all, not the nicest tasting product, although the blackcurrant helps with this, but nonetheless, it effectively does relieve a sore throat (for a little while anyway!!).