Herpes & Cold Sores
WHAT IS HERPES?
Although many think of herpes as a skin infection, it is actually an inflammation of the sensory nerves. In between outbreaks, the herpes DNA survives in nerve centers at the base of the brain called ganglia. During outbreaks, the DNA replicates, forming a virus. The virus passes down the nerve to the skin, where it causes lesions.
Herpes patients should avoid foods high in arginine -- chocolate, nuts, peanut butter, and jello -- and eat a diet rich in lysine, according to Cory Servaas, M.D.. Dairy products, fish, eggs, and turkey are among the foods with high lysine concentrations.
Also encouraging are results attained with topical application of lysine, through lysine-based creams and ointments. "Many herpes sufferers report that lysine cream helps dry up their sores fast," reports Eve McClure of Quantum, the manufacturer of several popular lysine ointments.
"Exercise, a healthy diet rich in nutrition, weight control and stress management are still the first line of defense against herpes," according to Herpes Resources .
So, while science continues to search for cures, lysine therapy, common sense, and prevention remain the most powerful weapons in the war against herpes.