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Herpes simplex

MagazineJanuary 1997 (Vol. 7 Issue 10)Herpes simplex

Herpes simplex is best known for the recurrent appearance of bothersome cluster(s) of tiny fluid filled blisters around the mouth, eyes or nostrils, and a stinging, burning sensation

Herpes simplex is best known for the recurrent appearance of bothersome cluster(s) of tiny fluid filled blisters around the mouth, eyes or nostrils, and a stinging, burning sensation. But the virus Type II Herpes simplex is also the most frequent cau

The Type II virus is largely involved in genital herpes, while Type I is primarily found in the non genital sites. Once infected, you have the virus for life, and recurrent outbreaks can be caused by things such as fever, catarrh, sun bathing, menstruation, drugs, food allergy, excitement or stress.


Herpetic eye infections can be successfully treated with infrequent, high potencies of Zincum sulphuricum.2 On other parts of the body, the topical application of the same remedy can reduce the symptoms quickly and inhibit recurrence.3 One of the following clinically proven remedies depending upon your symptom picture should also be taken: Acidum nitricum, Acidum sulphurosum, Arsenicum album, Cantharis vesicator, Cornus circinata, Glaphimia glabra, Hedera helix, Nepenthes distillatoria, Sarsaparilla, Tellurium, or Urtica urens.


It is vital for you to have a fully functioning immune system to avoid Herpes simplex virus (HSV) outbreaks.4 Food allergies can depress immune system function, so it is vital to rule these out. The white cells' capabilities will be dramatically reduced for six hours after consuming as little as 75 g of any form of sugar (ie, honey, table sugar, glucose, maltose, fructose, dextrose).5 Compulsive chocolate eaters should take note, but equally, drinking three glasses of your usual unsweetened fruit juice will provide you with the same amount of sugar in the form of fructose.

Those who have a history of recurrent HSV cold sores are often iron deficient.6 They may also have abnormally low levels of the naturally occurring enzyme Adenosine 51 monophosphate (AMP), which plays an important intermediate role in the cells' synthesis of nucleic acid.7 Although supplementation with small doses of AMP may be beneficial, too little is known about its toxic effects. What is known is that 75 mg of AMP can immediately bring on heart palpitations.8

One experimental double blind study demonstrated that supplements of 200 mg vitamin C and 200 mg bioflavonoids, four times daily starting with the appearance of the characteristic tingling which proceeds an outbreak, can halve the time from onset to remission.9

Outbreaks can be controlled by balancing levels of two amino acids, arginine and lysine, with the balance in favour of lysine.10 Be aware, however, that large doses of lysine may raise your cholesterol levels.

Regular application of an ointment containing lithium, together with a little vitamin E and zinc, can reduce the pain duration of genital herpes. It also reduces the outbreak from seven days to about four days and smaller amounts of HSV are shed from the lesions.11 Lithium can also be used topically alone,12 but should not be used orally.


A simple ointment of Melissa officinalis has demonstrated its effectiveness in treating HSV cold sores, as well as genital herpes.13

Genital herpes can also be treated with Herpestat, a naturopathic cream, although people who are allergic to bee or wasp stings should not use it as it contains propolis. It is available from the NutriCentre in the UK or from Morrison & Merrill in Winnipeg, Canada.

Harald Gaier

Harald Gaier is a registered naturopath, homeopath and osteopath.


1 P Rubin, Clinical Oncology (6th ed), Washington: American Cancer Society, 1983.

2 W Boericke, Pocket Manual of Homoeopathic Materia Medica, 9th ed (Philadelphia: Boericke & Tafel, 1927): 686. Boericke quotes McFarland.

3 Br J Dermatol, 1981; 104: 191-213.

4 H Bader & N Souter, Pathophysiology of Dermatologic Disease, New York:McGraw-Hill, 1984.

5 Am J Clin Nutr, 1977; 30: 613; and Dent Surv, 1976; 52: 46-8.

6 Am J Clin Nutr, 1991; 53: 1087-1101.

7 J Am Med Ass, 1977; 237(9): 871-2.

8 CFS Forum, April 15, 1989; 2(3).

9 Oral Surg, 1978; 45: 56-62.

10 Dermatologica, 1987; 175: 183-90.

11 Lancet, 1983; 2: 288.

12 Med Microbiol Immunol, 1980; 168:139-148.

13 Phytotherapie, 1981; VI: 229.

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