I just had an awful shingles outbreak that lasted weeks.
Q. Dear Terry, “I just had an awful shingles outbreak that lasted weeks. The pain was excruciating and I was unable to work for most of that time. Are there any things I can take or do to help prevent outbreaks in the future?” — Rosh K., Sioux City, IA
A. Dear Rosh, Shingles strikes most when your immune system is weakest. To keep your immune system functioning optimally – to naturally defend against viruses (like the one that causes shingles) – I recommend elderberry. Elderberry works against viruses by neutralizing the virus particles so they cannot enter our cells. Additionally, elderberry helps with immune system activation and can assist in controlling the spread of viral infections. Look for an elderberry extract that is freeze-dried and standardized to anthocyanins, to help give your immune system that extra boost.
I also think that vitamins A, C, E, and D3, along with calcium, magnesium, zinc, selenium, and bioflavonoids work synergistically with elderberry and can help keep your immune system functioning optimally. All of these ingredients have antiviral, antibacterial, or immune-supportive properties.
I would take elderberry plus the other supportive ingredients once or twice per day.
I believe you would also benefit greatly by taking a combination of nutrients for nerve health like B vitamins, biotin, alpha lipoic acid, chromium, zinc, and boswellia. B vitamins (B1-B3, B6, B12, Folate, and Pantothenic Acid) help nerves function more effectively, delay damage to nerves, and reduce the frequency and intensity of any pain-related shingles symptoms. Alpha lipoic acid (ALA) can boost levels of glutathione, one of the body’s natural antioxidants, which helps protect delicate nerves from oxidative damage. I would take these ingredients twice per day.
Additionally, you may also want to consider taking propolis. Propolis is great at fighting bacteria, fungi, and viruses. Look for a clinically studied propolis that is purified and contains no beeswax. Propolis can be used both orally and topically on the skin.
Terry . . . Naturally