Foods to avoid with cold sores are foods that are high in arginine and low in lysine. Get to know these specific foods and you will be amazed how quickly cold sores disappear.
Lysine and arginine are two common amino acids found in foods. They are the two most widely researched nutrients that affect cold sores.
Here is how they work.
The herpes simplex virus is the root cause of all cold sores. A virus particle will enter a nerve cell at the surface and force it to create new virus. It will then explode the cell to release the cloned virus thus creating a huge open wound.
Herpes simplex virus is pure protein and arginine is the main building block needed to create new herpes virus. Your cells have a specific storage area where it stores additional arginine.
Lysine and arginine compete for the same storage space. The cell cannot create new virus using lysine.
If you have a diet rich in lysine, your cells will discard some arginine to store more lysine. The herpes virus, looking to clone itself, will avoid the cells that cannot support the cloning process.
A high lysine content in your cells often causes the herpes virus to give up and return to hibernation. You have just prevented a cold sore. Quite often you won't even know it.
Here are some common foods to avoid with cold sores. These foods are known to contain high levels of arginine.
---- Anything that contains chocolate
---- Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, pecans, peanuts
---- Most seeds such as sunflower, pumpkin and sesame
---- Any seafood that has a shell such as shrimp and oysters
---- Grains such as wheat and oats
---- Oranges, grapes and other fruits and berries
---- Some vegetables to avoid are carrots, broccoli, onions, squash, rutabaga and peas.
Avoiding certain foods can be hard. Some foods above are very important for your health needs. They are considered nutrient dense essential foods. Quite likely you could go a week or so without them during the cold sore event without harm.
Keep your immune system strong by not avoiding these foods for more than a couple weeks. This avoidance program works as a treatment for a current cold sore. It is not healthy for a prevention program. If your immune system weakens, you could end up with more, not less, outbreaks.
An excellent alternative solution to avoiding foods you love is to increase your lysine during your cold sore event. Increasing intake of lysine will also help prevent future cold sores.
Here are some high lysine foods that are good any time you have a cold sore. They are especially good for balancing out some of the foods to avoid with cold sores.
Beef, fish (especially flounder), chicken, cheese, eggs, yogurt, apples, pears, mangos, apricots, and summer squash. Your goal should be a diet that provides about twice as much lysine as arginine.
Following a restricted diet, or intolerance of dairy products, may make these diet recommendations difficult or impossible for you. Vegetarians would certainly have problems with a cold sore diet.
A great way to reduce cold sores without the bother of a restricted diet is the use of a lysine supplement. Lysine usually comes in 500 mg. capsules and can be found anywhere. It is common to take 2000 mg. (4 caps) to 4000 mg. (8 caps) daily during the cold sore and two capsules daily as a maintenance dose to prevent cold sores.
Is large dose lysine safe?
Lysine is perfectly safe. Eight capsules daily is only 4000 mg., or 4 grams. No bad side effects have ever been noted. You often exceed this just by eating food alone. A four-ounce serving of flounder, for example, will provide the equivalent of 4 to 5 grams of lysine. The capsules are just more convenient.
Yes - you can have your chocolate and eat it too. Keep in mind that you just need to increase your lysine intake to heal or prevent cold sores and balance out those high arginine foods to avoid with cold sores.
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