General advice on disease prevention and a healthy lifestyle can be found in the library article "General Advice - for healthy as well as for ill ones" in the VitaHealth section under Focus Articles. You can also test your health by taking our "Health Check".
Most remedies against herpes only provide symptom relief. If you do not take care of yourself and make sure to minimize the different stress effects in your daily life, your immune system can be weakened. This can lead to bacterial infections and new viral infections - hence, a viscious circle involving reduced resistance which in time can develop into tiredness, exhaustion, and reduced resistance towards other infections.
There are many indications that people who are exposed to stress, are depressed, have a hostile attitude, or easily get upset have more herpes outbreaks than others because these attitudes can have a suppressing effect on the immune system.
Being busy does not have to be a problem in iself - it is the person's reaction to and handling of the strain of the stress that is determining for his/her physical and mental well-being.
You can reduce stress by:
- Lying relaxed in your sofa and undisturbedly listening to calm music for a minimum of twenty minutes.
- Staring out of the window, at the sky, the birds, or your garden.
- Being in nature, in your garden, by the sea, or in the forest.
- Making sure to eat regular, nutritious meals and reduce your consumption of sugar and coffee.
- Caressing your dog, cat, or sweetheart.
- Resting and relaxing - you can also buy relaxation exercises on a cd or tape.
- Visualizing - visualization exercises can also be bought on cd or tape.
- Immersion and meditation.
- Yoga and exercising.
In order to achieve healthiness, you have to prioritize your mental well-being, your immune defence, and focus on your diet- and exercise habits. Sugar stresses the body and weakens the immune defence. Consumption of only 100 g. of simple carbohydrates like e.g. sugar reduces the mobility, effectiveness, and appetite of the white blood cells by 50% for up to several hours.
It is important to get several complex carbohydrates from vegetables and cereals which also provides you with fibres, vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. It is important to get as many vitamins and minerals as possible through your daily diet, but dietary supplements are necessary when the immune system is strained.
Acute outbreaks of herpes often can be stopped in their tracks by taking one-time therapeutic doses of 600 mg vitamin B6 and 600 micrograms selenium.
Stress drains us of the amino acid Taurine and therefore increases our need for this amino acid which also increases the absorption of zinc.
The micro-mineral Lithium is necessary in small doses in order to maintain an optimal nerve function and hormone system. Research has shown that lithium has a beneficial effect on herpes. Lithium can be found in sea salt, sea algae, seaweed, thyme, and natural spring water.
Quite a few homeopathic remedies, including homeopathic thyme extract, have shown to have a good effect on herpes.
There are indications that people who carry the herpes virus have an increased tendency to react to lectins which are plant defence substances which can be found in almost all food, but particularly the lectins in wheat, tomatoes, potatoes, peanuts, and raw beans are aggressive.
The herpes virus can only propagate under the influence of the amino acid Arginine and its growth is stimulated by iron. Much food contains arginine to a smaller or larger degree. The essential amino acid lysine, on the other hand, reduces viral growth - just like garlic, vitamin C, and zinc also have a growth-inhibiting effect on herpes. For this reason, the food that you eat can be a tremendously important factor in your well-being and you should be aware of especially the mutual relationship between the amino acids arginine and lysine.
In case of an acute herpes infections, it is a good idea to eat food with a high lysine content.
Food with a high lysine content are:
Apples, avocado, azuki beans, bananas, beef, beetroot, brewer's yeast, cantaloup, carrots, cheddar cheese, chicken, eggs, fish, green beans, lamb, lentels, peas, pineapple, red beans, rice, salad, shellfish, soy beans, and turkey.
Foods with a high content of arginine which is generally ill-suited for people carrying the herpes virus are:
Almonds, blueberry, buckwheat, chickpeas, coconut, nuts, oats, oranges, raisins, seeds, sesame seeds, and wheat. Please note! Chocolate, nuts, and gelatine are extremely herpes-provoking foodstuffs! Seaweed has shown to have a neutralizing effect on herpes. You can boil it and use it in food or take it as tablets.
You can avoid frequent herpes outbreaks by avoiding the foods mentioned above and by keeping your consumption of coffee, cocoa, sugar, beer, and sweet softdrinks down to a minimum. Sometimes, not more than 60 g. of peanuts or chocolate or just a minimal amount of gelatine are required in order to provoke an outbreak of herpes.
Some people can stop an attack by placing a small cell salt tablet no 9 - Natrum Muriaticum (Sodium chloride) - under the tongue on an empty stomach and 15 minutes later drink 1 litre of pure water. Herpes attacks occur more frequently if you do not drink enough water. You should make sure to get approx. 1½ - 2 litres of water a day.
A special gel by the name of Dioxychlor OXY-C2 which contains sodium chloride produced by the American pharmaceutical firm American Biologics in California can be smeared onto the herpes wound twice a day. The reports about the use of this gel (which can be ordered via the internet) have been good.
Remember that herpes wounds need air in order to heal. You can wear loosely fitting clothes made of non-synthetic materials like cotton. Moreover, urine - in case of herpes wounds in the crotch - can irritate open herpes wounds.
You can relieve and heal herpes wounds externally with:
- Ice cubes - has a soothing effect: 10 minutes followed by a 5 minute break - in 3 turns every 4th hour when experiencing symptoms.
- Bathing the wound with chamomile tea promotes wound healing.
- A tea bag with black Earl Grey te with Bergamot oil (placed in warm water and then cooled down) placed on the herpes wound for a few minutes promotes wound healing.
- Red wine rubbed into the herpes wound - a constituent of the wine counteracts the herpes virus.
- Put a cut clove of garlic, Allium sativum, on the wound - you can do this several times a day.
- Cabbage leaves that have been made soft with an iron can soothe the pain and protect the skin.
- Baby powder - without harmful chemical substances - can keep the wound dry.
- Ointments with tea tree oil, Malaleuca alternifolia, for smearing onto the wound 2 - 4 times a day - if you can tolerate tea tree oil, that is!
- Ointments containing sulphur or extract of lemon balm, aloe vera, camphorated oil and/or one or several of the herbs mentioned above.
- Lignum vitae, Guaicum officinale, is used as a decoction made from the wood chips and is used against herpes sufferings. It also has a cleansing effect on waste products.
The essential fatty acids (EFA)
Omega 3 fatty acids can be found in wheat germ, cod-liver oil, fatty fish and fish oil, purslane, rape, green vegetables, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and oil, soy beans, flaxseed and flaxseed oil, and walnuts. 1 tbsp. of cod-liver oil or 1 tsp. of ground flaxseed or walnut oil every morning is cheaper than fish oil capsules. If you want, you can add a couple of capsules of vitamin E to the flaxseed oil to avoid rancidity. (Do not eat seeds or nuts if you are in danger of having a herpes outbreak!)
Omega 6 fatty acids (GLA) can be found in borage, cold-pressed maize-, rape-, sesame-, sunflower-, thistle-, and evening primrose oil, plus nuts, almonds, and seeds. (Do not eat seeds or nuts if you are in danger of having a herpes outbreak!)