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Using L-Lysine Against Shingles

L-lysine, an amino acid, can be taken as a supplement to ward off an attack of shingles.

Q. My body gives me a warning before an attack of shingles: I get pain on the skin in the area where I had full-blown shingles before.

I have found if I take L-lysine as soon as I get that signal, I don’t have to deal with shingles again. I start taking L-lysine three times a day with plenty of purified water and black tea and zip zap, no outbreak! The pain subsides within a few hours.

I now use 500 mgs of L-lysine a day as a preventative, and it has been years since I’ve had an attack of shingles. I hope this helps others.

A. As far as we can tell, there have been no studies of the amino acid L-lysine against shingles. The virus behind shingles, varicella zoster, is in the herpes family, and a number of studies indicate that L-lysine can help reduce herpes virus outbreaks, both cold sores and genital lesions (Alternative Medicine Review, June 2007).

L-lysine does not seem to have serious side effects at the dose you are using, and we see no reason not to try it.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.”.
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