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To treat herpes and prevent recurrent infections, you should eat a diet that includes foods rich in lysine, which is an essential amino acid that is not synthesized by the body and must be ingested through food or supplementation, some sources of lysine are meat, fish and milk.
In addition, consumption of foods rich in arginine should be reduced, which is an amino acid that, unlike lysine, favors the replication of the herpes virus in the body, which can make recovery slower.
It is important to mention that foods rich in lysine also contain arginine, because both amino acids are found in foods in foods rich in protein, so one should choose those that contain a greater amount of lysine than arginine.
Foods to eat
To avoid recurrent herpes attacks, the following foods should be included in the diet:
1. Foods with lysine
It is believed that lysine can help prevent recurrent herpes and help speed up its treatment, as it slows down the replication of the virus in the body, strengthening the immune system. Lysine is considered an essential amino acid, because the body is not able to produce it, and therefore it must be ingested through food.
Sources of lysine are milk, yogurt, eggs, avocado, beans other than black, peas, lentils, beef, liver, chicken and fish.
2. Foods with Vitamin C
It is also important to include foods rich in vitamin C in the diet, as it stimulates the immune system, protecting the body from infections, as well as contributing to collagen formation and skin regeneration, favoring wound healing that arise during a herpes outbreak.
Some food sources rich in vitamin C are orange, kiwi, strawberry, lemon and pineapple. Discover more foods rich in vitamin C.
3. Foods with Zinc
Zinc is a mineral that performs several functions in the body, which in addition to strengthening the immune system, also favors wound healing. Some foods rich in this mineral are oysters, meat and soy. Learn more about zinc and its functions in the body.
4. Other foods that strengthen the immune system
Other foods that help boost defenses are those rich in omega-3, vitamin E, probiotics and selenium. Some examples of these foods are flaxseeds, olive oil, garlic, sunflower seeds, kefir and ginger.
Foods to avoid
To prevent herpes, foods rich in arginine should be reduced in the diet, which is an amino acid that stimulates the replication of the virus and increases the frequency of the crisis.Some of these foods are oats, granola, wheat germ and almonds, for example. See more foods rich in arginine.
Another important measure is to avoid the consumption of coffee, as well as white flour and foods rich in sugar, such as chocolate, white bread, cookies, cakes and soft drinks, because these are pro-inflammatory foods, which make it difficult to recovery.
Furthermore, it is also important to avoid smoking, consuming alcoholic beverages and unprotected sun exposure, as these are factors that weaken the immune system and increase the risk of the virus manifesting itself.
It is believed that lysine supplementation can help prevent recurrent herpes and treat lesions faster. In general, the recommended dose for the prevention of recurrent herpes is 500 to 1500 mg of lysine daily.
In cases in which the virus is active, it is recommended to take up to 3000 mg of lysine a day during the acute period, and a doctor should be consulted to indicate the most appropriate dose for the case in question. See more details on lysine supplements.