“What happened to you? Sore throat again? Quick, go and take Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa” is a common refrain many of us hear while growing up.
As with taking essence of chicken on the morning of school examinations, the Chinese herbal syrup prevails as many families’ go-to remedy for common ailments like a cough or sore throat.
Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa is a sweet, thick, honey-like syrup with a cooling sensation. And chances are, whenever we had a cough or suffered from sore throat as a child, our parents would proffer us teaspoons of the syrup (it is suitable for children aged three and above to consume), telling us to keep it in our mouths and let the rich, soothing liquid slide down the throat slowly.
After a couple of days, it always seemed like our phlegm would be gone and our throats would be feeling good again.
A heart-warming origin story
The recipe for this well-loved traditional Chinese cough syrup was first developed during the Qing Dynasty, according to Ms Cherry Ma, product manager at Nin Jiom Medicine Manufactory (H.K.) Limited.
“A young provincial commander named Yang Xiaolian had been searching high and low for a cure for his mother’s chronic cough, when he met a famous Chinese physician who gave him a secret formula for a cough syrup that helped alleviate his mother’s symptoms,” says Ms Ma.
“Following his mother’s last wishes, Yang reproduced this cough syrup and made it available to the public. He named it Nin Jiom, which means “in memory of my mother”. This story later inspired the Nin Jiom logo, which shows a son serving his elderly mother. It symbolises the virtue of filial piety.”
A trusted household name
Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa’s centuries-old proprietary blend contains 15 natural herbs, loquat and honey extracts to help dissolve phlegm, relieve coughs and soothe sore throats.
It acts as a throat demulcent (think of it like a lozenge), and helps loosen phlegm so you can cough it up and clear your airways.
Says Ms Ma: “At the same time, these herbs — such as Bulbus Fritillariae Cirrhosae, Folium Eriobotryae (loquat leaf) and Radix et Rhizoma Glycyrrhizae (licorice root) — also serve to nourish the lungs, reduce body heat and relieve hoarseness. Although you may not be able to see the physical effects, it will help nourish your lungs.”
A constant companion to maintain your health
As working adults, we are not immune to the occasional sore throat and cough (thank you, late nights and stress). At times like these, turning to this all-natural herbal remedy may help to relieve the symptoms before they worsen.
For example, an easy way to instantly soothe a scratchy throat or relieve a chesty cough is to add a dollop of Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa to a cup of warm water to prevent dryness in the throat.
To avoid busting your daily sugar intake, opt for the No Sugar Added formula. Containing sugar substitute Maltitol, it is suitable for those who are conscious about their sugar intake.
And when you’re on the go or travelling, consider keeping several sachets of Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa’s Convenient Pack in your bag so that you can take it whenever you feel like your voice is turning hoarse, or when your throat is feeling dry due to the cold weather or air conditioning.
As a pioneer of traditional Chinese medicine, Nin Jiom Medicine Manufactory believes in continuously striving to develop quality products, and has since come up with a range of herbal candy and other health supplements, alongside its signature Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa.
All these are available at major supermarkets and pharmacies, so be sure to have some on hand to keep healthy in all seasons.