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July 12, 2017
By Susan Callahan, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist
By the time you finish your day and get ready to sleep, 44,000 new
people will have become infected by sexually transmitted disease in the
US. Annually, there are 16 million new cases of STD infections,
according to the CDC. The good news, when it comes to herpes, is that
the new cases are expected to total "only" about three quarters of a
million people. The bad news is that those are only the people who
know that they have herpes.
Sadly, most people who have herpes don't know it. Today, there are 45
million people in the US infected with herpes simplex II, the virus that
causes genital herpes. Another 208 to 214 million --- 65% of us ---
have been exposed to herpes simplex 1, the virus that causes cold
sores. These people who carry herpes simplex I can also cause genital
herpes though it is rare.
These infected millions continue to have sex, spreading herpes, quite
I say "unintentionally" in most cases. I personally know of a case
where a man spread herpes intentionally. He infected my friend. She
tearfully explained that he didn't tell her he had herpes until after they
had become engaged and had had many episodes of unprotected sex.
His sociopathic explanation could be summarized something like this ---
herpes is forever but so are we. This guy told my friend that he knew
they were going to be married and faithful for life so neither of them
would ever infect anybody new. Even after she had been duped by this
sociopath, my friend ended up marrying him and, to no one's surprise,
he of course cheated on her soon thereafter. Now, they are legally
separated and plan to divorce. Well, at least herpes is forever.
It's this kind of wilful ignorance and flat out sociopathy that is fueling
the spread of sexually transmitted diseases such as herpes.
So, what is standing in the way of the herpes epidemic? Herpes is a
permanent, incurable disease for now, at least by traditional medicine.
But there is one promising source for a possible cure, one that is found
in many kitchen cabinets --- curcumin. Scientists have learned that
curcumin, the spice that makes curry yellow, actually inhibits the ability
of herpes simplex virus to infect your genitals.
Curcumin Is Kryptonite to the Might Herpes Virus--- What's the Proof?
Curcumin is well-known as a potent remedy for a range of intractable,
deadly diseases. For years, scientists have been tallying study after
study that have demonstrated curcumin's ability to interact with, inhibit
and suppress the processes that lead to cancer development and
As a 2010 a study from Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire
du Cancer, Hôpital Kirchbergin found, most anti-cancer drugs only
target a single aspect or weakness of the chain of events that allow
cancer to start and to grow, while curcumin appears to target multiple
avenues of cancer growth. Curcumin disables multiple pathways that
cancer uses to thrive. Curcumin is also believed to be the active
compound behind curry's ability to fight the progression of Alzheimer's
in some studies.
Now, scientists have begun to learn that, in addition to fighting cancer,
curcumin is a powerful inhibitor of viral infections. The first inkling of
this potential in curcumin was discovered in " by scientists from the
University of California who reported that curcumin is a "modest
inhibitor" of the virus that causes AIDs, HIV . This was followed by
other studies such as one in 1999 by a team of scientists from the
University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. The team, led by Dr. K. Z.
Bourne, discovered that curcumin, when added to a viral preparation,
reduced the ability of the herpes simplex virus to infect.
These studies led to others efforts to try to discover exactly how
curcumin was inhibiting herpes simplex II. A 2006 study from scientists
at Michigan State University observed that curcumin appears to
interfere with viral replication by denying the ability of the virus to
"recruit" RNA enzymes the virus needs to grow. It noted that no one
has yet been able to crack the exact chemical code that allows curcumin
to disable or interfere with the herpes simpex virus.
Curcumin, also called "Curcuma longa" or "Curcuma domestica"
actually is a chemical compound whose technical name is
"diferuloylmethane". It's important to remember that this powerful
spice is a chemical, first and foremost, that also happens to make
certain foods taste better.
The reason it is important to keep curcumin's chemical nature in mind is
because you will read many accounts around the web heralding
curcumin's powers as a "natural" remedy for high cholesterol, prostate
cancer, breast cancer, HIV and, yes, herpes. What you will not hear
much about are the potential side effects of this "natural" remedy.
But side effects it does have, and some of them are serious.
What Are the Side Effects of Taking Curcumin to Cure Herpes and
The most overlooked quality of curcumin is that it is a powerful
blood-thinner. When taken as a natural supplement in combination with
other prescription blood-thinners such as statin drugs, curcumin can
cause internal bleeding. Curcumin can create hemorrhages in your
brain, as the New York Times Magazine has reported.
On the other hand, if you already have a clot, a "hematoma" in your
brain, curcumin can help. If you have a blood clot in your brain,
curcumin actually may be used, with other therapies, to dissolve the
clot, a study from the Department of Neurosurgery, Medical College of
Georgia found. This study found that curcumin "attentuates hematoma
size and neurological injury" after a brain hemorrhage in mice.
When it comes to using curcumin to fight herpes, can you apply it
directly to your genitals? Currently, no studies have found any side
effects to using curcumin directly on the skin but none have examined
its use on the sensitive skin of your genitals either. Curcumin is an
intensely yellow colored spice and is likely to stain your skin after
prolonged use, however.
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|Curcumin inhibits the ability of herpes
simplex virus to infect.