Health & Wellness

11 Arginine Foods to Avoid with Herpes

Looking for Arginine foods to avoid with herpes. Living with herpes can be challenging and requires careful attention to various aspects of one’s lifestyle. It is important to remember that HSV can be managed effectively by adopting a healthy lifestyle and making conscious dietary choices.

One key factor in managing this condition is the intake of certain amino acids, particularly arginine, linked to promoting viral replication and triggering or exacerbating outbreaks.

So if you have herpes, you must be mindful of your diet and avoid or limit arginine-rich foods as much as possible. With the right knowledge, you can still lead an active life!

This article will explain Arginine foods to avoid with herpes to help you make educated dietary choices that help you manage and lessen the effects of herpes outbreaks.

In This Article

  1. Arginine Foods to Avoid with Herpes

Arginine Foods to Avoid with Herpes

Here we have listed foods to avoid with herpes outbreak

Arginine Foods to Avoid with Herpes

1. Nuts

You may have heard that nuts are not the best choice for people with herpes because they contain arginine, which can increase HSV replication and trigger outbreaks.

So if you’re trying your best to keep your outbreaks under control, try avoiding high-arginine foods like nuts and other nut products as much as possible!

2. Soybeans and Soy Products

Soybeans and other soy products should be avoided if you have herpes. This is because they contain arginine, an amino acid that can stimulate the replication of the herpes virus.

Arginine helps many viruses grow and multiply, including HSV, which causes cold sores and genital herpes. So it’s best to avoid them for now!

3. Seeds

Did you know that pumpkin and sunflower seeds contain relatively high arginine levels? Arginine is an amino acid that may worsen herpes outbreaks.

Studies have shown that it can promote the replication of the herpes virus, leading to increased viral activity and a potential worsening of symptoms.

So if you have been diagnosed with herpes or think you might be at risk for developing it, try limiting your intake of these seeds!

4. Raisin

Raisins are often listed as foods to avoid if you have the virus because they contain relatively high arginine levels and low lysine levels.

Arginine is an amino acid that can stimulate the replication of the herpes virus, potentially leading to more frequent outbreaks or worsened symptoms. On the other hand, lysine has been shown to inhibit viral replication and may help reduce outbreak frequency and severity.

5. Chocolate and Cocoa Products

I’m sure you all love chocolate and cocoa products as much as I do. Unfortunately, it’s important to know that these foods are not recommended for individuals with herpes due to their high arginine content.

So if we suffer from herpes, we should avoid chocolates or other cocoa-based products!

6. Protein Supplements Containing Arginine

I wanted to let you know that if you have herpes, it’s best to avoid protein supplements that contain arginine. Arginine is an amino acid the herpes simplex virus needs for its replication process and can promote the spread of the virus.

7. Coconut and Coconut Products

Coconut and coconut products are often included on lists of foods to avoid because they contain relatively high levels of arginine, an amino acid that can promote the replication of HSV – which is responsible for causing herpes outbreaks. So just keep this in mind when making food choices!

8. Gelatin Desserts

Gelatin is a protein derived from collagen found in animal bones and connective tissues. It’s interesting because it contains all nine essential amino acids, including arginine.

While this can benefit some people, it should also be noted that arginine has been linked to the replication of the herpes virus, which could lead to more frequent or severe outbreaks.

9. Whole wheat Products

Whole wheat products are generally higher in arginine and lower in lysine. Since arginine promotes the replication of the herpes virus, it is advisable to limit foods high in arginine and increase those high in lysine for better control over outbreaks.

10. Grapes and Grape juice

It’s best to avoid grapes and grape juice if you have herpes. Grapes contain more arginine than lysine, which can potentially increase the replication of the virus and make outbreaks worse. It’s always best to be cautious, so keep this in mind next time you reach for a snack!

11. Peanut Butter

Foods to avoid with oral herpes is peanut butter. It is high in arginine, an amino acid that can promote the replication of the herpes simplex virus (HSV). This virus causes herpes, and certain dietary factors like arginine-rich foods may trigger or worsen outbreaks.

Q. Why is arginine bad for herpes?

Ans– Arginine can help the virus replicate and multiply in your body’s cells, leading to increased viral activity and a potential outbreak of symptoms. So if you have herpes, try avoiding foods with high arginine levels as much as possible!

Q. Is arginine good for herpes?

Ans– No, arginine is not recommended for herpes. It may exacerbate the condition. Lysine, on the other hand, is often used to help manage herpes outbreaks.


It’s so important to remember that managing herpes involves more than just medical treatments – a well-balanced diet can be incredibly beneficial too.

Specifically, foods high in arginine have been identified as potential triggers for outbreaks since they can promote the replication of the virus. So if you or someone you know has herpes, try to limit your intake of these types of food and focus on eating healthy meals instead!

Be sure to read


  1. Assessment of dietary intake of lysine and arginine in patients with herpes simplex
  2. Lysine for Herpes Simplex Prophylaxis: A Review of the Evidence
  3. Effects of L-lysine and L-arginine on in vitro replication of feline herpesvirus type-1

Dr Maria

MD. Board Certified physician. Fellowship In Family Medicine UK. 8 years of medical experience in Lifestyle-related health disorders. Graduated from AIIMS – All India Institute Of Medical Science, INDIA

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