Cold sores being vegan

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Hello everyone! I know this is not a professional medical consult, but I'd appreciate your opinions and input on this topic as fellow vegans.

I became vegan a little more than a year ago. Up until then, like a high percentage of the global population, I'd get occasional cold sores that would go away around the two-week mark, no fuss. I eat whole foods mostly and have cut my sugar intake naturally, I don't experience much stress, and other conditions around me considered herpes simplex triggers haven't changed either, the biggest change has been my diet.

Now, in the past I've struggled with an eating disorder, and at times I relapse with bingeing. One of those episodes happened sometime in July, and I specifically overindulged with nut butters, which apparently have high levels of arginine. Long story short, I got a cold sore on the middle of my bottom lip. It was very painful and unsightly since it spread, but a little more than two weeks later, it gave every indication of going away as usual. However, just as it was clearing up I got yet another cold sore, also on my bottom lip, also spread all over my lips (I usually get them like this, seemingly extremely chapped with a bit of bleeding). This one lasted even more. Being extremely worried, but knowing there is no cure for cold sores, I didn't go to the doctor. What I did was watch what I ate focusing on healthy, non-processed, low in arginine foods, increase my vitamin C intake, take L-Lysine supplements daily, take the recommended oral dose of Acyclovir, hydrate, sleep well, exercise, avoid sun exposure, I did everything that is usually advised. But the shedding phase took forever. Not only that, but to this day my lips haven't healed, they are incredibly sore and I need to apply a special balm to keep them from stinging as well as apply topical Acyclovir since I feel the infection is still very much ongoing.

I thought my immune system was at its prime since I don't get colds and seem to be doing okay for the most part. The last time I had exams done was well over a year ago, and my white blood cell count was low, which, according to Dr. Greger is not unusual for vegans since we have lower inflammation going on than carnists, and when under attack our immune systems should act accordingly to protect the body.

I've been doing research all this time, but there's not much on the internet about this issue. I did find a video that talked about angular cheilitis on vegans, but it was anecdotal and, again, just one point of view. It stated certain deficiencies cause some vegans to suffer from this. Honestly, I don't know what to do. I'm always afraid the herpes will spread because I'm only human and I may accidentally touch my face after touching my mouth, I use special utensils and plates, I get very angsty about reusing my own plastic bottles, I'm going through tooth brushes faster than anyone, I stopped eating nuts and chocolate, I wash my hands constantly or sanitize them with gel, and I'm in a crappy mood because it's been two months of cold sores. I'm good at not thinking about it since it's become routine, so I don't think it's the stress. In short, I'm numb to having cold sores, but I do want it to go away. I want to be back to normal.

I fear a visit to the doctor would end up in getting recommended to eat animal products, if just to rule it out, and at this point I don't know if that would actually help or not. I'm against animal products like any other vegan, but I also understand our aim is to reduce animal exploitation as far as is possible and practicable. This is my health, and I really want to believe the two things are not related, but I've ruled out everything else. I'm lost.

Please tell me what you think or if you've experienced anything similar.
 

silva

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I had to look up angular cheilitis. Sounds like something my mother had, or similar--she was not veg and had a typical diet. Her doctor suggested she stop using a flouride toothpaste, I think she went with Toms? Anyway, that did relieve it and it didn't come back

I've never had cold sores, but I used to get cracks at the sides of my mouth, chapped lips, canker sores. I actually haven't had any since going vegan

You mentioned Dr Greger--do you follow a wfpb diet? Supplement B12, and D? Have a source of iodine?
 

David3

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I've never had cold sores - it sounds very uncomfortable.

Have you thought about taking a vegan multivitamin? It can be a good way to fill in any nutrition "gaps".
 
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veegan

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I had to look up angular cheilitis. Sounds like something my mother had, or similar--she was not veg and had a typical diet. Her doctor suggested she stop using a flouride toothpaste, I think she went with Toms? Anyway, that did relieve it and it didn't come back

I've never had cold sores, but I used to get cracks at the sides of my mouth, chapped lips, canker sores. I actually haven't had any since going vegan

You mentioned Dr Greger--do you follow a wfpb diet? Supplement B12, and D? Have a source of iodine?
Thanks for replying. I too use fluoride-free toothpaste, supplement B12, get vitamin D and for an iodine source I'd just say iodized salt.
No, I do not follow WFPB, but I consume a small amount of processed foods and focus on whole ingredients.
 
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veegan

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I've never had cold sores - it sounds very uncomfortable.

Have you thought about taking a vegan multivitamin? It can be a good way to fill in any nutrition "gaps"
I'll look into the multivitamin, thanks for the idea. Still, at some point I'll have to get my exams done again and see if there's any specific deficiencies. Thanks.
 

silva

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I'll look into the multivitamin, thanks for the idea. Still, at some point I'll have to get my exams done again and see if there's any specific deficiencies. Thanks.
Thing about vitamins is they work with and against each other:

"Another problem with taking nutrients in supplement form is that they often work closely together, and levels of one vitamin affect how another vitamin works. For example, if Vitamin X relies on Vitamin Y, but you have a lot of X and not enough Y, it’s as if you have too little of both.

This is especially true with the B vitamins, which are highly dependent on each other. Yet, it’s common for B-complex supplements to contain 50 milligrams of each individual vitamin. That means it has 3,333 percent of the thiamin you need each day, but only 17 percent of the biotin. The potential imbalance could be even greater if you take supplements of a single B vitamin"
From :


The book "Whole" by Colin Campbell breaks down the difference between nutrition from whole plant foods and supplements
 

Emma JC

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canker sores run in my family and when I was a child I had sties (in the eyes), boils and cankers - I had my last boil when I was about 9 and it was so large, on my leg, that the scar is still there - the sties also ended at that time but the cankers persisted - I started taking B2 riboflavin about 25 or so years ago and am happy to report that I never had another canker after that - they are inexpensive although sometimes hard to find - I would suggest taking one a day and see if it helps you as it may be a similar deficiency...

iodine was what my mother would put on the sties and the boils to relieve them - I now get my iodine from putting wakame in my porridge/soups/noodles etc

Emma JC
Find your vegan soulmate or just a friend. www.spiritualmatchmaking.com
 

silva

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canker sores run in my family and when I was a child I had sties (in the eyes), boils and cankers - I had my last boil when I was about 9 and it was so large, on my leg, that the scar is still there - the sties also ended at that time but the cankers persisted - I started taking B2 riboflavin about 25 or so years ago and am happy to report that I never had another canker after that - they are inexpensive although sometimes hard to find - I would suggest taking one a day and see if it helps you as it may be a similar deficiency...

iodine was what my mother would put on the sties and the boils to relieve them - I now get my iodine from putting wakame in my porridge/soups/noodles etc

Emma JC
Find your vegan soulmate or just a friend. www.spiritualmatchmaking.com
Canker sores are not caused by the herpes virus. They aren't related
 
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Lou

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I fear a visit to the doctor would end up in getting recommended to eat animal products,
I don't think that is worth worrying about. I'd start off with seeing a doctor and seeing what he says. He may know something you don't.

I kind of doubt that animal products are the cure - however in a way it might not be a bad idea to try and rule them out.

---

Since cold sores are caused by a virus, I don't think there is that much you can do about them. There are anti-viral medications but I don't know much about them or even if you could get a prescription for them.

It pretty much comes down to your immune system. I'm very skeptical about anything that claims to be an immune system booster.

However there are lots of things that may reduce your immune system to below 100%. IMHO, a good diet, good sleeping habits, regular exercise and a positive state of mind is the best way to make sure you immune system is as effective as possible.

You might chart those things and the occurrence of your cold sores and maybe establish some patterns.

Also, (and I say this to everyone new,) is to try CronOmeter for a week or two. If there is something missing in your diet, Cronometer can pinpoint it.

If you any questions or problems with CronOmeter, just shoot me a PM and I'll see if I can help.
 
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Cold sores/Herpes 1 & 2 are miserable conditions that have infected friends and family alike. So you are not alone in this, and our heart goes out to you with healing relief in mind. Speaking from experience, we suggest you research MMS for internal systemic viral infection. Search duckduckgo for 'chlorine dioxide and herpes'. Chlorine dioxide sounds terrible, but it's a Non-Toxic molecule (ClO2) that releases oxygen (O2) as it breaks-down in the body, having the effect of oxygenating the blood that in turn stimulates the immune system against Herpes and more. It can take some time though (approx 3-6 mos) of mild daily doses, it tastes/smells terrible (opinion), and one needs to follow protocol to avoid a Herxheimer reaction (detox sickness), but it's very inexpensive, vegan and completely non-toxic. That's why the dis-info is so strong against it. However, for topical relief around the mouth, our water-based OPTI•MIST Topical Gel is also completely non-toxic and works wonders on sores. Best wishes...🙏
 

Susan W

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As several people have commented B1, B2 and B4 are indicated for skin problems.
I take a supplement containing these called Chocola BB.
I live in Japan so this a Japanese product. It is so popular here that you will probably find it in any large Japanese/Asian market or pharmacy.
I only take it for a short time when I have a cold sore, say, a week or so. It works like a miracle.
 

Brian W

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Cold sores/Herpes 1 & 2 are miserable conditions that have infected friends and family alike. So you are not alone in this, and our heart goes out to you with healing relief in mind. Speaking from experience, we suggest you research MMS for internal systemic viral infection. Search duckduckgo for 'chlorine dioxide and herpes'. Chlorine dioxide sounds terrible, but it's a Non-Toxic molecule (ClO2) that releases oxygen (O2) as it breaks-down in the body, having the effect of oxygenating the blood that in turn stimulates the immune system against Herpes and more. It can take some time though (approx 3-6 mos) of mild daily doses, it tastes/smells terrible (opinion), and one needs to follow protocol to avoid a Herxheimer reaction (detox sickness), but it's very inexpensive, vegan and completely non-toxic. That's why the dis-info is so strong against it. However, for topical relief around the mouth, our water-based OPTI•MIST Topical Gel is also completely non-toxic and works wonders on sores. Best wishes...🙏
This sounds horribly like advertising and defending a bad product.

That's why the dis-info is so strong against it. However, for topical relief around the mouth, our water-based OPTI•MIST Topical Gel is also completely non-toxic and works wonders on sores.

I don't trust you.