In this article I will provide the information you need in order to control herpes recurrences and the effects of recurrences to as high a degree as possible. Not only can you gain some measure of control through knowing your own body and anticipating problem situations, but you will also be able to work towards reduced frequency and duration of outbreaks.
- 1 Dormancy
- 2 Effects of Herpes
- 3 Top 10 Herpes Triggers
- 4 General Physical Well-being
- 5 Eating and Sleeping
- 6 Boost Your Immune System
- 7 Trigger Factors
- 8 Conclusion
In most cases, herpes seems just to “go away” (become essentially dormant) in a few years. For many, this disappearance occurs much more rapidly; for others, the adaptation process is less successful. Nothing just goes away by itself! Something happens to cause diminished symptoms. But you can play a large role in the process of reducing symptoms to their physiological minimum, which is permanent or close to permanent dormancy.
The focus will be on three main areas: general health if and well-being; the prodromal and trigger mechanisms for recurrences and how you can eliminate some and use others to your beneﬁt; and ﬁnally, stress, that blanket category for a host of factors that inﬂuence recurrences, recovery, and adaptation in general.
Effects of Herpes
The effects of herpes symptoms on the emotional and behavioral areas of life is quite clear. This also also occurs in the opposite direction to a large degree. Things you do, think, and feel often can take on the capacity to feed back into the physical aspects of the problem. This channeling of life issues into symptoms is, at least for a while, very common. It’s as if herpes becomes the path of least resistance for stresses of the world until that link is broken. This section should help alleviate that problem and the information will be applicable to the many areas of your life that can be touched by herpes.
For some, herpes outbreaks act similarly to the red light on your car’s instrument panel that lights up when the engine is overheating.
Symptoms then become a signal that your body is overwhelmed and that it’s time to make some changes. The good news is that there are changes you can make in your life to elicit healing, both physical and emotional.
Top 10 Herpes Triggers
Here are the top 10 triggers your doctor never told you about:
1. You’re too stressed out – Stress is the number one contributing factor to chronic disease. Stress depresses your immunity and therefore impacts your ability to keep herpes at bay. Managing your stress is one of the number one things you can do for yourself and your overall health and well-being
2. Your diet is high in arginine – Foods and beverages high in this amino acid are known to trigger herpes. One should also avoid caffeine, sweets and alcohol. Some foods known to be high in arginine are coffee, chocolate, nuts and seeds, wheat and protein shakes. Increase your intake of foods high in lysine to counterbalance the arginine. Foods high in lysine are eggs, meats, and most fruits and veggies. Dairy is also high in lysine, but many people are allergic to dairy. If you are prone to joint pain or inﬂammation, omit nightshade vegetables from your diet.
3. You’re Dehydrated – A body cannot function properly when it is dehydrated. In keeping yourself well-hydrated, caffeinated and sugary drinks don’t count! You need to be drinking at least eight glasses of clean water a day. If not… fatigue, tight muscles, decreased brain function and immunity, increased pain, inﬂammation and toxicity set in. Dehydration will slow down your healing process.
4. You’re Too Hot – Too much friction and heat are triggers, be it in bed, at the spa or at the gym. Consider the friction and heat generated by biking, running, vigorous sex, hot yoga, saunas, hot tubs, bathing nude, and sunshine (if your outbreak area is exposed to the sun). Beware.
Tip: if you suffer from genital herpes, don’t hang out in your wet, sweaty tights too long after exercising. Herpes likes wet environments, too. Get chub rub when running? Use talc powder or a natural oil to decrease friction.
5. You’re Exercising Too Much or Too Intensely – This can be just as stressful on the body as not enough exercise. It can cause the adrenal glands to go into overdrive, producing a stressful state in which the herpes virus thrives. Consider taking at least one day off a week from your exercise regimen. Choose to do more gentle, nourishing workouts like yin yoga, swimming or tai chi until you get your outbreaks under control.
6. Hormonal Imbalance – A stressed out and overwhelmed hormonal system can trigger outbreaks. This might be true if your herpes outbreaks are at the same time every month. If so, considering ﬁnding an alternative healthcare professional to balance out your hormones.
7. Your Body is Toxic – Our colon, liver, kidneys and skin all work to process toxins. Did you know that the skin, aka the integumentary system, is the largest organ in the body? If it’s struggling to eliminate toxins, then it will be challenged to keep herpes dormant. Some hidden toxicities might be found in your water, cosmetics, tampons, food, supplements, cleaning supplies or environment. Toxins depress your immunity and impair your body’s ability to heal herpes. This is especially true if you have never done a cleanse or you’re constipated (not having at least one bowel movement a day). If you are constipated, you’re reabsorbing your toxins. Is it time for you to do a cleanse and clean up your SAD (Standard American Diet)? Get your greens on!
8. Zinc Imbalance – Zinc is paramount for proper skin health, immunity and digestive health. White spots on your nails or indigestion could indicate a zinc deficiency.
9. Your sex life is ‘arginized’ – Condoms, spermicides, jellies and sexual enhancement gels often contain a secret herpes trigger: arginine. Be sure your sexy time is free of arginine. Tip: Consider using a personal lubricant with the active ingredient carrageenan. This has been known to decrease the spread of S’I‘D’s.
10. Trauma in the Pelvis – I have found that emotional and physical trauma in the pelvic area can trigger genital outbreaks. This trauma can be physical, like a car accident or surgery, or it can be emotional, i.e. sexual abuse. If the trauma is physical, I suggest chiropractic or craniosacral work. If the trauma is sexual, I recommend seeking somatic (body-based) therapy. Meditations, yoga and chakra rebalancing are also quite supportive.
General Physical Well-being
Eat well, sleep well, exercise properly, and behave with your body’s best interests in mind. You can consult. If your physician or a good book on diet for nutritious and balanced eating habits. But be careful. There are as many myths around what is good and bad for you in the way of food as there are about herpes. A normal well-balanced diet provides everything your body needs to energize and renew itself. A rapid shift in diet will take some time for your body to adapt to. Dieting without supervision can compound already existing problems, lead to nutritional deficiencies and create additional difficulties simply through the effect of rapid change. Change without preparation involves a shift in psychological patterns, one of the cornerstones of stress. If you are concerned about nutritional deficiencies, consult your physician.
Don’t self-diagnose or self-treat
Cigarettes, marijuana, alcohol, and sugar are all examples of immunological suppressants – they can lower your immune system responses. However, the problem really is one of overdoing, especially when there are indications that you should he taking care of yourself. Your body adapts very well to a moderate, constant intake of substances which, if taken in excess or in isolation can depress your immune system resources.
While stopping smoking will deﬁnitely make you a lot healthier in general and protect you somewhat from lung cancer and cardiac problems, you probably won’t see a direct and clear effect on herpes and certainly not for some time. Excess, chronic, and sudden insult to the system is really what we are worried about here. In the simplest terms, don’t hurt yourself. Don’t burn yourself out too often, especially when you have prodromal signs! Having a good time is one thing – overdoing it is another. Incidentally, oversleeping is just as bad as under-sleeping. Your body balance gets out of tune.
Keep yourself in reasonable shape. It’s irrelevant how, at least as far as herpes is concerned. Do what’s good for you to keep your mood, energy and physical well-being in as good condition as possible.
Eating and Sleeping
Eating well, sleeping well, exercising well, and acting for your own benefit all interact very strongly with how you think.
1. Eat a healthy, balanced diet for a strong immune system
Eating a balanced diet that contains a large amount of raw, fresh fruit and vegetables and a minimum amount of processed and reﬁned foods (such as reﬁned sugars, white ﬂour and white bread, deep fried and junk foods) can be a positive start to giving your body what it needs to function best. Broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts and cauliﬂower have beneﬁcial properties that are particularly good for warding off herpes breakouts.
With herpes, it can also be helpful to reduce foods high in the amino acid Arginine and increase foods that are high in the amino acid lysine. Lysine restricts the viruses’ “food” (arginine) which helps your body control the virus. This is why I recommend lysine supplementation in my herpes regimen.
Just remember, it is not all about balancing your amino acids. The most important thing is to eat a nutritious diet that supports your individual body and its needs.
2. Get Adequate Sleep
A lack of sleep can bring on a breakout. If you have noticed that certain situations tend to aggravate the HSV for you, counteract them with an approach that will reduce the impact they might have on your body.
For example, if you are going to drink alcohol have a nutritious meal beforehand, get adequate rest and drink lots of water. If you are letting stress consume you, breathe deeply, meditate (clear your mind) and consider taking panax ginseng and a B-group vitamin supplement. If you can’t avoid the trigger, have “moderation” in mind.
Good rest, exercise and avoiding toxins such as alcohol and cigarettes will be beneficial in strengthening the immune system and therefore can help to prevent a relapse of symptoms.
Boost Your Immune System
If a person experiences very mild outbreaks (or no outbreaks at all) it can be contributed to their immune system and its ability to deal with the virus. This can be inﬂuenced by many things, including what strand of the herpes virus was contracted, the location of the infection, genetics, lifestyle, diet and mental attitude.
Why does the immune system have a connection with Herpes?
Your body’s ability to get on top of the herpes virus and control recurrences is directly related to the state of your immune system. Without a strong immune system the body can become overwhelmed by the herpes virus, sometimes allowing severe and persistent outbreaks to surface.
Your immune system is the very reason why many symptoms (such as fever, headaches and ﬂu—like illness) are usually only experienced during the “primary” outbreak or ﬁrst exposure to the virus.
During a ﬁrst episode, the immune system develops antibodies and other weapons against the virus. During a recurrence, then, this “immune memory” can help to ﬁght off infection more quickly. As a result, as time goes on there are usually fewer sores, they heal faster, and the outbreak is less painful. Some people never experience another recurrence.
Many people do not experience a recurrence until months and sometimes even years after their ﬁrst primary outbreak. When the recurrence does happen it is oﬁen related to a time when the immune system is weakened or under pressure, such as from an illness, vaccination, change in medication, stressful event or period, poor diet or lifestyle, fatigue, surgery, etc.
With a strong immune system, you can expect to have greater control over the herpes virus and any symptoms that go with it. This can mean fewer sores, longer spaces in between each episode and less severe symptoms when they happen.
Gaining control over herpes means two things first, being able to anticipate events and cope with them; and second, playing a direct role in symptom reduction. There are no guaranteed prescriptions to abort outbreaks, but there are many things that can be done to help reduce the internal and external factors that influence them.
The first step in gaining control is to know your own body. Your body’s hormonal, immunological and neural machinery work very much as a dynamic interrelated unit to produce the physical feelings you have as well as your emotional tone, thinking processes, and behavioral patterns. Knowing how your body and mind respond and deal with viral invasion, with life’s changes, with happy and sad circumstances is the best source of information for coping with your life in general and herpes in particular. Learn to discriminate among different feelings.
Once you are sensitive to your own body and emotions, your awareness of changes becomes automatic, and you won’t need to obsessively observe every sensation. Instead, you will become tuned in to changes related to herpes. You won’t even have to think about it, you’ll just “know.” Later, you’ll be able to use that information to shift your personal focus away from herpes. But let’s stand with that set of initial signs that provide the information you need to begin to gain control over herpes.
The information in this article consists of a number of helpful tips, hints and techniques which will allow you to free yourself of cold sores forever. And while some of these ideas may seem hard to implement all at once, the best thing is that you don’t need to completely change your life around to do so.
Start out with the supplements I recommended. Once you are at the point where taking them regularly is something you do without thinking, start to gradually change the rest of your lifestyle. You could start by drinking more water, for example. As time goes by, you will see that you have slowly used most if not all of the information that was given. You may also see that your cold sores are not coming back and your body is growing stronger.
These are the beneﬁts that you will ﬁnd by using the techniques given in this article over the long haul. That’s right — this post is for long term usage. There is no need for you to absorb everything given here all at once and try everything immediately. Use this information slowly and see how each section can be of help to you in your ﬁght against herpes.