There is almost nothing more embarrassing than waking up to find a gigantic cold sore on your lip. No amount of makeup will hide these massive, mortifying, and telltale signs of the herpes virus—but there may be a way to cure them quickly and easily with the use of a supplement containing lysine.
Lysine is one of the twenty amino acids that, together, form a molecule that is the basis for protein—the strength building nutrient you find in meat, beans and dairy products. Lysine is referred to as an “essential” amino acid because your body does not produce it naturally—but you still need to have it. That means it is essential that it is part of your diet. But what does all of this have to do with herpes? Some studies have indicated success when using lysine to slow the progress of the herpes virus. It also has been shown to stop herpes from replicating and causing a huge break out. Lysine also helps to make your skin stronger, which also prohibits the visibility of cold sores.
Of course, retarding the growth and proliferation of cold sores is not the only trick up lysine’s sleeve. Lysine is also extremely important in the fight against cholesterol because it helps to break down fatty acids and convert them into usable energy, thus reducing their ability to build up in your body and block off your arteries. It can also keep you looking young since it helps your body in the creation of collagen, which can also result in fewer joint injuries in those who consume enough of it because the collagen helps keep joints and cartilage strong. Lastly, lysine assists your body in absorbing and keeping calcium, a great help in the fight against osteoporosis.
So what foods can you find L-lysine in? Two of the most lysine rich foods include hemp seeds and the seed of buffalo gourd (a form of squash). You can find smaller amounts of L-lysine in red meat, soy beans, lentils, eggs, spinach and buckwheat. If you would rather, you can buy L-lysine in supplement form as a cream, a liquid or a pill.
When using supplements to obtain additional amounts of lysine, remember that it is unknown whether the supplements are more or less effective than the natural sources of lysine. Sometimes, vitamins and nutrients supplied to the body by a capsule do not get absorbed as thoroughly as they do when they are eaten in their natural form. Some additives and preparation routines could reduce the effectiveness of your supplement. While lysine also comes in a topical cream format, there is no proof that it can actually work this way. While many cold sore topical treatments advertise lysine in the ingredients, research has not show lysine to be effective in slowing the growth of the herpes virus or strengthening your skin when applied topically rather than taken orally.
No matter how you decide to get your additional lysine, make sure you visit your primary care physician before you begin taking or applying supplements. Not all supplements are as safe as they labels imply, and you should never take chances with your health. The wrong supplement with the wrong herbal ingredient could have a negative effect on other medications you are on. Your physician should be able to discuss your L-lysine supplement with you and give you an idea of its safety and efficacy.
If you are unsure how much additional food to eat in order to get additional lysine the natural way, make an appointment with a nutritionist. He or she should help you get enough L-lysine naturally while avoiding weight gain and unhealthy eating habits.
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