In several recent studies, placebos have performed as well as drugs that Americans spend millions on. In most cases, the larger the pill, the stronger the placebo effect. Two pills are better than one, and brand-name pills trump generics. Capsules are generally more effective than pills, and injections produce a more pronounced effect than either. Colored pills are more likely to relieve pain than white pills; blue pills help people sleep better than red pills. A new institute at Harvard is exploring the idea that placebos might be deployed as medicine in clinical practice.
—”The power of nothing,” Dec. 12 New Yorker
MEDICATION: Pretendia (pre-TEN-di-a) 500MG tablets
DIRECTIONS: Take 2 tablets by mouth twice daily, or any number whenever.