Zinc is thought to be incorporated into cell membranes, thereby reinforcing them. It has also been found to possess antiviral properties in test tube situations as other heavy metals do. In 1978 a laboratory test was done on mice. The mice, all infected vaginally with herpes simplex virus, were divided into three control groups. One group was treated topically with a zinc sulfate compound. A second group was treated internally. A third group was not treated at all.
The group of mice receiving topical zinc fared best. The group receiving no treatment and the group receiving dietary zinc fared poorly. It was felt the zinc was not able to dietary zinc had the most deaths (herpes can be fatal to a mouse). This may be attributed to a lowering of the animals’ immune responses.
With the animal studies came nothing encouraging. For patients with a zinc deficiency a dietary supplement may be suggested. If you contemplate supplementing your diet, consult your physician for a sensible program. High levels of zinc can be toxic.
Can Zinc help treat Genital Herpes?
Zinc has been show in the laboratory to kill HSV-1 and HSV-2. The type of zinc used play a significant factor with zinc lactate deactivating herpes at a rate of 92% and zinc gluconate (a common form of zinc) was only 30% effective. Read the full study.
One study with HSV-1 showed that a zinc ointment applied to the skin at the first sign of an outbreak led to significantly faster healing of the lesion.
Another study* gave a zinc supplement (22.5 mg zinc sulfate twice a day) to 20 patients with more than 6 outbreaks of oral herpes per year, and found a 50% reduction in the number of outbreaks.
How To Treat Herpes With Zinc
You can naturally increase your intake of zinc by consuming foods that are high in zinc.
- Oysters (78.6 mg per 100 gm)
- Crab and lobster
- Beef and lamb (12.3 mg zinc per 100 gm)
- Pumpkin seeds (2.9 mg per ounce, or 28 gm, of seeds)
- Sunflower seeds, chia seeds and flaxseeds are also high in zinc.
- Dark chocolate
Nutrients from natural sources are better absobed and bio-available.
Zinc Supplements to Treat Herpes
While there are several different forms of zinc you can take supplementally the most popular are chelated forms of zinc, such as zinc orotate and zinc picolinate because they are in a more usable form for your body. It is recommended that you use a supplement such as Mediviral that contains several different forms of zinc and taken with a meal to improve absorption.
There has been some interest in several vitamins as therapy for herpes simplex. Vitamin C has received more attention than the others. There has been double-blind, placebo-controlled study that showed a marginal improvement in severity of sores. Abnormal dosage levels of vitamin C can be toxic. If you want to use vitamin C to lessen the severity of sores, consult a physician for the proper dosage.
A powerful antioxidant, Vitamin C supports the immune system and helps reduce the spread of the herpes virus. It also supports healthy skin and boosts the healing of lesions and sores.
This is a relatively new technique that employs a laser beam to destroy tissue infected by herpes simplex virus. The word “laser” is an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. technique involves directing a beam of light to a precise area , concentrating intense heat and power when focused at short range.
The laser focuses thousands of watts of energy onto a cell. This creates sufficient heat to boil and then vaporize the cell. The cell is virtually destroyed by a tiny explosion. Because of the precise aim possible with a laser, it can destroy diseased cells without touching surrounding healthy cells.
To date there has been little of a concrete nature written in medical journals of the procedure. It has not been widely accepted because it has not been proved particularly effective. It is doubtful that it will have any effect on recurrent infections.
Dimethyl Sulfoxide (DMSO)
DMSO was discovered early in this century and is a carrier of other substances, both good and bad, deeper into the tissues. It has been talked about as a cure for a wide variety of ailments, from simple aches and pains to cancer.
The substance itself is a colorless liquid used as a carrier to take medicines from outside the skin to the tissues benefit the skin. This has advantages and disadvantages. While can facilitate absorption of a desirable medicine, it will all take any slight impurities and carry them along into the tissues as well.
This is particularly hazardous when nonpharmaceutical grade DMSO is used. The DMS generally available at health food stores, hobby shops at other retail outlets is of commercial grade. Pharmaceutic grade DMSO is available by prescription only. The commercial grade is sold as a solvent for hobbies and is n» pure. It follows, then, that any use of the commercial grade DMSO will introduce impurities to the deep tissue Currently DMSO is licensed by the FDA only for the treatment of chronic interstitial cystitis, a bladder disease.
There have been no studies linking DMSO to treatment for herpes, although it has been used conjunction with antiviral agents in an effort to transport them deeper into the tissues. Until the right agent is found and DMSO is proven to be the carrier of choice, there is little the product can do for you unless you have a certain bladder disease.