Article by Angela Haldane
Q. I keep getting cold sores and as I am getting married soon, I'm worried I'll get a cold sore on the day. How can I prevent this with natural therapies?
A. Cold sores belong to the herpes simplex enveloped virus family – type 1 (HSV1). They usually occur on and around the lips as single or multiple clusters of small blisters. These blisters eventually burst, leaving small, painful ulcers that heal in 10-21 days. The virus then reverts to its dormant state. Outbreaks commonly occur at times of stress, or after exposure to sun or cold winds.
Avoid chocolate and nuts as these are rich in arginine which can accelerate the cold sore virus.
Treat your stress leading up to the wedding with B complex vitamins and relaxing herbal tonics such as the Natural Ange Ltd Stress Less herbal formula available on this website. You can also treat the cold sore specifically by using St Johns Wort (also relaxing and uplifting for the nervous system). Topical herbal creams containing lemon balm and licorice have been shown to inhibit the virus and accelerate healing. The herbs echinacea and astragalus have also proved effective against HSV1 – as have green tea polyphenols.
Taking lysine (1000-3000mg a day) as an amino acid supplement limits the occurrence and severity of cold sores. Zinc also helps heal sores. .