One of the most universal recommendations specific to the management of herpes is to be mindful of the two amino acids arginine and lysine in your diet. Herpes outbreaks and many other chronic viruses are triggered by high amounts of arginine. Arginine feeds herpes and encourages its growth and reproduction. Lysine, on the other hand, boosts immunity and offers up protection from future outbreaks. Lysine is an antiviral that helps you heal naturally. To sum it up….
Lysine is your FRIEND
Arginine is your ENEMY
Ideally, you want to decrease the foods that are high in arginine and increase the foods that are high in lysine. The higher the ratio of lysine/ arginine, the greater its impact on keeping herpes dormant.
Should I Supplement Daily With Lysine?
Although many people use lysine supplements, I do NOT recommend them as a daily protocol for months at a time. Too much supplemental lysine will impair your immunity as much as too little lysine. I recommend using lysine at the onset of any symptoms of a herpes outbreak. This could be itching, redness, tingling etc. At the first onset of symptoms, I use 500mg-1000mg of Lysine every few hours until symptoms subside Daily lysine supplementation also poses the risk of heavy metal toxicity. Food consumption is much more natural and totally safe. It has been shown that the effects of lysine supplementation is no better than the use of garlic, a much safer alternative.
What should you do if you have frequent herpes outbreaks?
Keep it simple. Increase foods high in lysine and decrease foods high in arginine when symptoms are not present.
What foods are high in Lysine?
Most Vegetables and fruits
Dairy based products including cheese, milk and yogurt
Fish, Chicken, Lamb and Beef
What foods are high in Arginine?
All nuts and nut products
Nut butters (peanut butter, almond butter etc.) Caffeine Chocolate Seeds (except hemp and flax) Oatmeal Brown Rice Raisins Whole Wheat and White flour Carob Lentils Wheat germ
Dried beans including soybeans and tofu
Protein shakes, multivitamins and body building supplements that contain arginine
The above food recommendations are meant to point you in the right direction towards managing your outbreaks and living a vibrant, healthy life. As discussed, there are many known triggers when it comes to herpes and certain foods. Each person with herpes is unique in their body and what things trigger a herpes outbreak. For those who are sensitive to foods, I highly recommend a Paleo style diet.
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