MUST-HAVES Echinacea (tincture or pills), aconite, honey, hydrogen peroxide, benzonatate
If your fever is less than 104 degrees and you have no other symptoms, don't worry about it, says Lisa Samet, N.D., a Montreal naturopath. "Bacteria and viruses die at high heat, so fever is your body's defense. When you take aspirin, you're disarming those defenses. Instead, you need to encourage your body's defenses by taking herbs like echinacea."
Take 3,000 mg of echinacea per day, but check with your doctor if your fever doesn't subside within a few days, advises Ogura. Another option recommended by both naturopaths is the homeopathic remedy aconite. "It triggers the immune system," says Samet. Take one 30 CH dose in pellet form three times a day until your symptoms subside, suggests Ogura.
"For sore throats, try honey," says Merrell. Honey contains a compound called pinocembrin, as well as enzymes that fight infection. Eat a teaspoonful straight, or add it to a cup of tea three or four times a day. Merrell also recommends gargling with hydrogen peroxide diluted with three to four parts water: "It can even kill streptococcus, the kind of bacteria that cause strep throat, if you use it early enough."
For coughs, ask your doctor to prescribe benzonatate, or Tessalon perles. This nonnarcotic drug numbs the sensors in the lungs that trigger coughs. Since coughing actually protects the lungs by clearing them of excess mucus that can carry infectious bacteria and viruses, Koffler advises treating only nighttime hacking.