As we enter into the beautiful, yet dangerously contagious, fall season I usually have one thing on my mind: avoiding colds. After being diagnosed with herpes, this concern weighs on my mind even more. As most of us know, the herpes virus shows up when our immune system has been compromised. There can be many causes for this including stress, another virus like the common cold or the flu, or perhaps even lack of sleep.
As my body was still trying to build up immunity to the herpes virus, colds had a substantial effect on my experience with outbreaks. For the first year of my diagnosis, every time I caught a small cold, an outbreak would follow days after the cold arrived. Because of this, I have found that it is extremely important for me to take care of myself and keep my immune system strong in order to avoid herpes outbreaks. This blog post will go over some simple, yet key points on how to boost your immune system during the cold season in order to avoid herpes outbreaks. The first step you can take to avoid herpes outbreaks by boosting your immune system is take Omega-3s on a daily basis.
In Dr. Kelly’s book, Live, Love, & Thrive with Herpes, she suggests 2000 mg or more a day. Omega-3s are a great way to boost your immune system as well as balance your hormones, and support cardiovascular and brain health. Zinc Chelate is another easy supplement to use to boost your immunity. Dr. Kelly’s book suggests 50 mg a day. Not only will taking Zinc on a daily basis support a strong immune system, but it will also promote skin health and tissue repair: two benefits that are amazing for herpes outbreaks. Vitamin D3 is also a great supplement to build immunity. The suggested dose listed in Dr. Kelly’s book is 5000 IU’s a day.
Women are often deficient in Vitamin D3 and new research is showing that it acts as a hormone, signaling cells to boost immunity. If you are osteoporotic, then D3 is required for you to be able to properly absorb your calcium supplements. Probiotics are another supplement to add to your regimen or diet, not only during cold season, but all the time. Probiotics help the “good bacteria” in your body to thrive so that they can fight off the “bad bacteria.” You may be able to get all the probiotics you need from your diet. A few of the foods known to be rich in probiotics are yogurt, sauerkraut, kefir, and kimchi.
One last supplement you should always take to support your health and immune system is a multivitamin. In Live, Love, & Thrive with Herpes, Dr. Kelly suggests a multivitamin that has at least 750 mg of calcium and 450 mg of magnesium. If you are already taking each of these supplements daily, congratulations! If you are not, now would be the perfect time to start. Cold season is among us, and supporting our immune systems is extremely important to avoid herpes outbreaks as well as for our overall health and happiness. I hope these suggestions find you well and that you all have a happy and healthy cold season.