How to Take Lysine for Herpes

A woman points to her lips where she might have herpes

How to take Lysine for Herpes is an essential question if you have HSV.

Not too much, not too little. And at the right time.

Lysine for Herpes – A Track Record of Success

People have taken Lysine for Herpes and Shingles for decades. Being a sufferer myself, I depend on Lysine as ONE supplement to help manage the Herpes virus. Along with diet changes and other key supplements.

Lysine and Arginine amino acids (proteins) counteract each other. The virus “feeds on” and is triggered by excess Arginine.

A low-Arginine Diet and Lysine supplements help keep Arginine under control. This article and podcast detail foods to add or avoid.

I use and sell Pure Encapsulations Lysine as it has NO fillers, binders or excipients. It’s clean and simple.

What is an Essential Amino Acid?

Lysine is one of nine “essential amino acids”. There are 22 primary amino acids. We can make most of them internally or get them in food.

The nine “essentials” however MUST COME FROM FOOD OR SUPPLEMENTS.

We cannot make them…

A Grain-Based Diet Causes Lysine Deficiency

Foods high in Arginine cause a relative Lysine deficiency.

GRAINS are very high in Arginine and very low in Lysine. Grains are grass seeds, and store their nutrients in Arginine especially.

When you eat bread, pasta, corn, oats, soy or rice, you are causing a relative Lysine deficiency.

I ask all my Clients (whyever they work with me) to eat grain-free. That fits with our Human biology – we never grazed on grass. Not the food of Hunters but of our Prey.

Nuts, seeds, grains, bone broth, collagen, coconut meat, chocolate and most protein powders are all HIGH in Arginine.

How can Vegetarians and Vegans get Lysine?  Pure Encapsulations L-Lysine

Lysine is only available in great excess of Arginine in animal foods: Meat and Dairy especially.  There are small amounts of Lysine in many foods, but Arginine is hugely dominant in grains, soy, corn, wheat and beans.

Eggs are fairly equal in Arginine and Lysine.

Seafood has abundant Lysine for semi-vegetarians.

Vegetarians MUST supplement Lysine as well as B12. Even if you do not have HSV.

Recall that Lysine is an Essential Amino Acid…

How to Take Lysine for Herpes and When?

The general rule is: Lysine (and all other amino acids such as Glutamine) are best away from food, on an empty stomach.  It can work better as a THERAPY and not just be part of the amino mix of your meal.


I sometimes take Lysine BOTH with and between meals. 

Because I personally am so sensitive to Arginine, I generally take 500 mg. Lysine on arising, and 500 mg. at bed. The other supplements in the Herpes Control Pack go with meals as well.

Since many vegetables, grain-free cassava and other foods still have some Arginine, I ALSO take 500 mg. Lysine with meals that contain a fairly high amount of these foods.

Here’s why….

I have a rare genetic Immune Disorder called “Primary Immunodeficiency”. Part of my immune system is missing. I have poor immune response to viruses and bacteria.

I work hard every day to control my Herpes (for 50 years) so I know the viral triggers, diet and supplements well. I offer excellent support for controlling this virus in Consults. Understand how to manage it by reading and listening to my other articles and Podcasts on Herpes.

So I am more careful than most people have to be. But while YOU are getting the virus under control (first with diet, then with my supplements), learn how to be extra careful.

How to Dose Lysine For HSV Outbreaks Herpes Cold Sore

If I feel an outbreak coming on (pro-dromal tingling, burning, itching) I increase Lysine to 2000 mg. a day until clear.

Lysine Before Bed?

Most people do fine with Lysine on arising and at bed.

However, those with overactive thinking, anxiety or restless sleep might find Lysine before bed can be stimulating. I personally avoid it after 6 PM.

This stimulating effect may be associated with Lysine’s help creating Carnintine. Carnitine converts fatty acids into energy and helps balance cholesterol. That “energy” part may be what affects me. We’re all so different!

Lysine Helps Absorb Calcium

Lysine helps the body absorb Calcium and also reduces Calcium excreted through the urine. This may help prevent Kidney Stones.

Here’s a PubMed article on this.

Is Lysine All I Need to Control HSV?

If you only have an outbreak once or twice a year for 2 days, an occasional Lysine should be enough along with reducing grains.

If you have constant or recurring outbreaks, there is work to be done first with diet, and the CORRECT supplements to take once diet is right. This is what I do with Clients every day.

Check the Herpes Control Pack for the 8 supplements I think most important (along with Vitamin D/K2 and a good Probiotic).

Three other articles and Primal Diet – Modern Health Podcasts on managing HSV include:

(1) Using the Lsyine – Arginine Ratio for Herpes Viruses

(2)  How Stress Triggers Herpes Outbreaks

(3) Managing Herpes Without Prescription Medications


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