December 17, 2019
Countering Viruses with L-Lysine, Vitamin C, and DL-PhenylAlanine
By Frederick Cheng (RPh), and Christine Cheng (RPh)
Viruses are responsible for a plethora of infections, ranging from the common cold/flu to shingles to cold sores. Natural remedies such as Vitamin C, L-Lysine, and DL-PhenylAlanine have shown some promise in managing such infections.
Vitamin C is a potent anti-oxidant, and effective immune booster. It is often used in high doses to shorten the duration of cold symptoms. Vitamin C is abundant in many fruits and veggies, especially citrus fruits, but the high sugar content of fruits make them less than desirable as your daily high dose of Vitamin C. Keep in mind that some acid-reducing medications and alcohol would deplete dietary sources of Vitamin C. A trustworthy form of Ester-C supplement, such as those by “Sisu”, are great alternatives; not only are they highly absorbable, but they are also available in various formulations to include synergistic ingredients such as Quercetin for maximizing respiratory health.
L-Lysine is an essential amino acid, one that your body cannot make. It is most often obtained through meats, fish, dairy, eggs, soy, and some legumes. The oral and topical versions have been shown (especially when used in combination) to reduce the severity and healing time of cold sores (caused by the herpes simplex virus). It has been observed in studies to counter the growth of the herpes simplex virus. Lysine is also effective in reducing the reoccurrence of outbreaks. Many believe that a similar mechanism of action applies when high-dose lysine is used as a treatment and prophylaxis of shingles. A trustworthy brand of L-Lysine is “New Roots”.
The D-form of the amino acid PhenylAlanine (ie. D-PhenylAlanine) is synthetic and is believed to have analgesic effects, hence its popular use in managing nerve pain, such as during and after a shingles outbreak. L-PhenylAlanine is an essential amino acid, found mostly in meats, fish, dairy, eggs, soy, and legumes. It is a synthetic molecule that is thought to play a role in alleviating the mood/mental and even depressive aspects of nerve pain via its metabolite, 2-phenylethylamine. Both forms of PhenylAlanine can be found in DL-PhenylAlanine by “Life Choice”.
Vitamin C, L-Lysine, and DL-Phenylalanine are generally safe to try. They can be used alone or at the same time to treat as well as prevent viral infections. Be sure to consult your physician for a professional diagnosis and consult your integrative pharmacists at Cloverdale Pharmasave and Pharmasave Steveston Village before self-medicating.