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Foods Containing the Amino Acid Lysine

Foods Containing the Amino Acid Lysine
Nuts are high in lysine. Photo Credit: BSANI/iStock/Getty Images

Your body can't make the amino acid lysine, so you need to get it through your diet. Some people, including those suffering from herpes, may want to consume extra lysine. Reducing your intake of the amino acid arginine and consuming more lysine can help minimize herpes outbreaks, according to an article published in "Alternative Medicine Review" in 2006.

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Recommended Consumption

Woman eating nuts.
Woman eating nuts. Photo Credit: Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images

The normal recommended lysine consumption is 12 milligrams per kilogram of body weight per day, which is about 818 milligrams per day for someone weighing 150 pounds. The typical dosage for preventing or treating herpes is 3,000 to 9,000 milligrams per day during flareups and 1,000 milligrams per day to prevent recurrences, according to University of Maryland Medical Center.

Foods High in Lysine

Pork is high in lysine.
Pork is high in lysine. Photo Credit: AlexPro9500/iStock/Getty Images

Foods containing lysine include pork, beef, cod, sardines, poultry, eggs, dairy products, lentils, soy beans, brewer's yeast and nuts. A 3-ounce serving of top-round roast provides 3,068 milligrams of lysine, a 3-ounce serving of braised lamb shoulder provides 2,667 milligrams and the same amount of roasted turkey wing meat provides 2,643 milligrams. A 3-ounce serving of rotisserie chicken has 2,519 milligrams of lysine, 3 ounces of cooked bluefin tuna have 2,335 milligrams and 3 ounces of pork chops have 2,214 milligrams. Vegetarian foods tend to be lower in lysine, with boiled soybeans providing 1,906 milligrams per cup, part-skim ricotta cheese providing 1,678 milligrams per 1/2 cup and oil-roasted peanuts providing 1,477 milligrams per cup.

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