In a famous mid-20th-century study in Salisbury, England, a group of volunteers walked through cold corridors in wet socks and bathing suits"for half an hour or as long as they could bear it" every day for two weeks, while a second group was kept warm and dry. Researchers dripped infected mucus into the nostrils of volunteers in both groups, Norris told the Penn students. After two weeks, volunteers in both groups caught colds at the same rate.
Later studies have found similar results, indicating that cold weather is not directly to blame for transmitting cold viruses. And yet, people are indeed more likely to catch colds when the weather is cold. Physicians suspect this is partly because we spend more time indoors exposed to other people's germs. Dry air also may play a role -- perhaps because dry mucous membranes are less effective at warding off germs, or because viral particles stay aloft longer in dry air.
And here’s another myth: that herbal remedies can stop a cold. Generally, the evidence for echinacea and other such "treatments" has not held up to the scrutiny of science, Norris said. Nor can pharmaceuticals, so stop asking your doctor for antibiotics you don't really need.