Foods that Speed Up the Healing of Cold Sores

Cold sores go by many names, including fever blisters and herpes. They are caused by type 1 or type 2 herpes simplex virus, and approximately 40 to 85 percent of Americans have suffered a cold sore at some point, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. Foods that speed up the healing of cold sores work by boosting the immune system and stopping the replication, or spread, of the dormant herpes virus. encourages a healthy, well-balanced diet to assist the body in repairing itself during cold sore outbreaks.

Eating healthy, immune-boosting foods can help to stop cold sores. (Image: Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images)


Cheese is rich in L-lysine, a substance known to stop cold sores. (Image: Fuse/Fuse/Getty Images)

Fruits, vegetables and some proteins contain an amino acid called L-lysine. This amino acid works to inhibit the effects of L-arginine, an acid required by the herpes virus to replicate, according to Such dairy products as milk and cheese, eggs, chicken, fruits and fish have naturally occurring L-lysine and should be eaten during a herpes outbreak, according to Choosing the foods highest in L-lysine content will stop the herpes virus, such as yogurt, with 706mg of L-lysine, or pork ribs, with 4,730 milligrams, according to

Immune Boosters

The vitamin C in a green, leafy salad can help get rid of cold sores faster. (Image: Jacek Chabraszewski/iStock/Getty Images)

In their whole, raw form, fresh fruits and vegetables provide the body with vitamins and nutrients necessary to heal. encourages eating mangoes, apricots and beets to heal the cold sores. Oranges, dark green leafy veggies and green peppers are rich with the vitamin C antioxidant, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Vitamin C assists in skin and wound healing, which can decrease the healing time needed to remove any trace of that cold sore.


Fruits high in alkaline such as grapes and pineapple can slow the spread of cold sores. (Image: Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images)

The body's acid and alkaline balance is affected by dietary choices. says that a diet high in alkaline foods may assist cold sores in healing and stop the replication of the herpes virus. Avoid highly acidic foods, such as chocolate and sodas, and replace them with alkaline foods like grapes, kiwi, pineapple and lemons daily. encourages drinking an 8 ounce glass of water with a squeeze of fresh lemon during herpes outbreaks to provide alkalinity and to counteract any acidic foods that were ingested that day.

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