Does L-lysine help with cold sores?

In the cold season, your overall resistance may be somewhat less. Because you are not feeling well, you can suffer from a cold sore. Strengthening your immune system can work effectively against this. Or fight this virus infection with L-lysine.

A cold sore is no fun. It itches or even hurts and it looks so incredibly ugly. No, no one is happy about this. Ideally, you want to prevent this cold sore and otherwise get rid of it as soon as possible.

What is L-Lysine?

L-lysine is an amino acid. Because it is an essential amino acid, your body cannot produce it on its own. You have to get lysine from the proteins in your diet. If this is not sufficient, you can consider taking a dietary supplement.

Amino acids and their action

E are 22 amino acids, of which essential, semi-essential and non-essential. These are the building blocks of your body. You get them from proteins. This allows your body to build up some non-essential proteins on its own.

The nine essential amino acids are: lysine, tryptophan, leucine, isoleucine, histidine, phenylalanine, threonine, valine and methionine. Semi-essential are: arginine, asparagine, glutamine, glycine, serine and proline and non-essential: cysteine, glutamic acid, alanine, tyrosine, aspartic acid and hydroxyproline.

Amino acids are necessary for creating new cells in your body. Further tasks include the transport and storage of nutrients, the provision of energy and the maintenance of strong bones and muscle mass.

What is L-lysine good for?

L-lysine is important for the production of enzymes, hormones and antibodies. It is also important for the production of collagen and strong connective tissue. If you get enough L-lysine, your body can better absorb calcium and iron. It is essential for healthy bones and strong muscles. Children, athletes and the elderly really cannot do without it. You also need this amino acid for your resistance and to fight viral infections. It can also help with stress, anxiety and intestinal complaints.

What does lysine contain?

Your body can get proteins from animal and vegetable products. Lysine is mainly found in animal proteins and you get it by consuming meat, chicken, fish and dairy. The amount of lysine is limited in vegetables and grains. In addition, the quality of vegetable proteins is less.

Vegans and vegetarians can therefore have a lysine deficiency. A shortage of carnitine, a semi-essential amino acid that is partly formed from lysine, is also possible.

You need 0.83 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight daily. As you have already read, vegetarians and vegans should get more protein. Athletes, children and the elderly can also generally use a little more protein.

Help fight infections

The amino acid L-lysine is said to have a beneficial effect on combating viral infections, among other things. It inhibits the growth of viruses and can be used if you suffer from cold sores or shingles. You are more susceptible to a herpes infection if you have a reduced resistance. Stress is also a culprit.

What is a cold sore?

A cold sore often starts with a tingling sensation on your lip. Then you get a red spot with multiple blisters on or around your lips. They can itch or hurt. The vesicles are filled with fluid. After a few days they dry out and scabs appear. Cold sores eventually go away on their own. A cold sore usually appears around the lips but can also appear on your nose, chin or eyelid. Do not touch the blisters. The moisture is highly contagious.

Does l-lysine help with cold sores?

Little arginine

The herpes simplex virus needs the amino acid arginine as a nutrient. This stimulates the virus and thus causes an outbreak. Lysine in a cold sore can prevent the infection from spreading by inhibiting the uptake of arginine. It is the intention that you take in enough lysine and leave products with arginine.

Products that contain a lot of arginine are, for example, chocolate, grains, nuts and seeds, soybeans, mushrooms and bananas. Because it is a semi-essential amino acid, your body can also produce some of it itself. Less arginine can prevent the cold sore or make it go away sooner. The herpes virus always remains in your body and becomes active again if your resistance decreases or factors that can trigger an outbreak such as sunlight, menstruation, fever, illness and stress.

L-lysine capsules

L-lysine capsules or tablets could therefore provide relief from a cold sore. They contain a high dose of l-lysine and the best absorbable form. The supplements should reduce the severity of the outbreak and speed up healing. The cold sores may also come back less often.

L-lysine supplements often also contain vitamin C or B6. Both vitamins promote the absorption of L-lysine and are good for your immune system. You could also benefit from an amino acid complex. L-lysine capsules are available at the Orthokliniek, among others.


There are more products for sale against a cold sore, for example acyclovir cream, zinc ointment and Lidocaine vaseline cream. There are also all kinds of home, garden and kitchen remedies to get rid of cold sores. To name a few: cat’s claw, liquorice, apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil, black tea, garlic, milk, aloe vera and ice cubes.

Increase resistance

Another solution to prevent cold sores is to increase your resistance. This way you prevent the virus from being triggered to break out. Resources that can help you are: zinc, selenium, copper, vitamins C and D and a good multivitamin.

Vitamin D helps the immune system. A large group of Dutch people are already advised to use vitamin D supplements, including people with dark or tinted skin or men and women who do not get enough outside. Pregnant women should also take extra vitamin D.

Vitamin C can also support your body’s defenses. Vitamin C contributes, among other things, to maintaining good resistance in a cold environment and during and after physical exertion. It also contributes to the protection of cells against external influences.

If you think you can use both extra vitamins and minerals for extra resistance, then you choose a good quality multivitamin. Prevent too much stress, watch out for the sun, eat healthy and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Sources: Complaints- Diseases/Koortslip#how-recognize-ik-koortslip sore/

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My name is Marijke Lentferink I have been working as a Naturopathic and Orthomolecular therapist since 2006. I do this from my own practice called Orthokliniek Ootmarsum. In recent years I have followed many studies about health, completing the ‘Bachelor of Nutrition’. I have been working with the Biohcg Original diet for over 20 years. We regularly adjust the diet based on the latest insights. In addition to losing weight, we help our customers with smoking cessation, food and allergy tests, among other things. See also our website

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