Prevent herpes with L-lysine
Herpes always occurs when you least need it - e.g. just before a job interview, a first date or an important presentation. But it doesn't always have to be expensive medication or ointments. Natural remedies such as the amino acid L-lysine can also help to prevent unwanted breakouts.
Table of contents
- What is herpes and why does it develop?
- Herpes and lysine
- The correct intake of lysine
- Herpes prevention the right way
What is herpes and why does it develop?
Herpes is a widespread infectious disease caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV for short). There are two types of virus: herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1, in humans: HHV-1) and herpes simplex virus 2 (in humans: HHV-2)
HSV-1 primarily causes the typical cold sores, while HSV-2 usually causes genital herpes. In principle, however, both virus types can cause herpes on the above-mentioned parts of the body. Other diseases caused by other herpes viruses include chickenpox, shingles and mononucleosis.
Up to 80% of people in Germany are carriers of HSV-1, as it is transmitted within the family as early as infancy. HSV-1 is usually passed on through saliva contact, for example when kissing or sharing cutlery or glasses. HSV-2 is mainly transmitted during sexual intercourse in adolescence. In addition to the typical herpes blisters, symptoms of a herpes infection can also include feverish illnesses. Herpes is contagious for about a week.Once infected with the virus, it remains in the body for life, more precisely in the nerve ganglia. If the body is weakened, the viruses can repeatedly migrate to the surface of the skin and cause the typical herpes symptoms. This process is known as reactivation. How often such reactivation occurs varies greatly. Herpes can reappear several times a year or never. Reactivation occurs when the immune system is weakened, e.g. due to disgust, stress or allergies. Therefore, the weaker the immune system, the more frequently herpes infections occur.
Herpes and lysine
L-lysine is an essential amino acid, i.e. the body cannot produce it itself. If just one amino acid is missing in the body, no protein can be produced. It is therefore extremely important to get all essential amino acids from food. As many plant-based foods are low in lysine (with the exception of pulses such as peas, lentils and soya), vegans in particular should ensure they have a sufficient intake of L-lysine.
L-lysine and L-arginine are antagonists
The amino acid not only plays an important role in collagen synthesis and muscle growth, but also has a crucial function within the immune system. L-lysine has positive effects on numerous diseases, including herpes.
Scientists have discovered that L-arginine and L-lysine have opposing effects on herpes, as both amino acids compete for the same transport system. Apparently, the herpes virus requires a high arginine content in the body in order to multiply. A high concentration of lysine inhibits this replication, as shown by various cell studies. This is because an excess of lysine causes the herpes virus to incorporate lysine and growth is halted.