As those of us who have read Dr. Kelly’s Book Live, Love & Thrive with Herpes know, diet can have a huge affect on how our bodies experience the herpes virus. Whether it’s the balance between lysine and arginine in our bodies, or simply eating well to support our immunity, it is important to actively support our bodies through our diet. This is a key to managing our herpes symptoms. In this blog, I will go over some of the fall vegetables you can eat to support your body in suppressing future herpes outbreaks. I strongly suggest referring back to Dr. Kelly’s previous blog on lysine and arginine for reference, as it explains how and why lysine is helpful in preventing outbreaks and arginine can be a trigger for outbreaks.
Root vegetables and squash are common fall vegetables that are delicious and nutritious for our bodies! Most vegetables have fairly high amounts of lysine. Did you know that wheat and other grains contain high levels of arginine? This is why it is not uncommon for people diagnosed with herpes to go gluten free. If we can replace our grains (which contain high levels of arginine) with vegetables high in complex carbs, our bodies will likely thank us. Of course this is a personal choice, but if you suffer from constant outbreaks, you can always test out this method to see if it helps you!
Some fall vegetables I love that are either higher in lysine than arginine or about equal in amounts of the two according to the sources I have researched are: beets, turnips, select squashes, and potatoes (white and sweet).
A great way to get the most out of these delicious fall foods is to pair them with foods we know are very high in lysine. One amazing recipe that comes to mind is roasted beets with goat cheese. If you have never tried roasted red beets with goat cheese, I suggest you do so soon. If your recipe calls for nuts, you should omit them, since nuts are another known herpes trigger.
Another great and super easy recipe is roasted acorn squash filled with yogurt. Yogurts containing probiotics in the form of live cultures can also help boost our immunity to better manage herpes symptoms (assuming you are not dairy free). If this is the case, there are dairy free yogurts made with coconut milk. High levels of probiotics and lysine in this meal, or dessert, make it an excellent and healthy choice for the season. Since sugar affects the body in a way that prevents us from fighting off viruses, it is important to minimize our intake of sugar to prevent future outbreaks. This is one of many delicious squash recipes that can easily double as a sweet dessert.
One last recipe that incorporates fall veggies with other foods containing high amounts of lysine is this Italian fagioli soup recipe. This recipe is great for those cold and busy months and is packed with root veggies and squash. The ground turkey is a great addition, as turkey is one meat in particular that is very high amounts in lysine. You will even get some lysine from the parmesan cheese on top! I urge you all to take a look at some of the different recipes you can try to incorporate some of the seasonal vegetables into your diet throughout these colder months.
Keeping veggies in our diet consistently is so important for our health, regardless of living with herpes or not; but of course if we can decrease our herpes symptoms at the same time, why wouldn’t we do it?
Make sure to check out Dr. Kelly’s book to learn more about how diet and supplements can support your body as you learn to navigate your herpes symptoms!