Last Modified on Jul 10, 2015
The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is part of the herpes family of viruses and a very common infection. In many cases infection causes no symptoms, but in late youth the infection can cause infectious mononucleosis (aka mono or "the kissing disease"). Later in life, EBV infection seems related to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. The virus is further associated with two forms of lymphoma and with multiple sclerosis.
Most people have in fact been infected by Epstein-Barr but developed antibodies that protect them from disease development. For those that develop symptoms from Epstein-Barr later in life the exposure simply did not occur in childhood. Exposure later in life may not result in symptoms, but for some it can create life-threatening or otherwise impactful health conditions.
Home Remedies: If the Epstein-Barr virus has created Chronic Fatigue symptoms, some have tried Essiac Tea, colloidal silver, and olive leaf extract to kill off the virus. Natural anti-inflammatory treatments should also be considered for those with active infection by the Epstein-Barr virus.
I wanted to let you know that I am on day 2 of trying BHT for Epstein Barr Virus (EBV). I haven't been able to find much information about whether BHT will work for EBV, but figured I'd be the guinea pig and give it a try for a few months if possible.
I got mono in high school decades ago now and have felt intense sleepiness descend on me rapidly every day since that rough time. I finally got a blood panel a few months ago and asked the doc to test me for EBV. Sure enough, I have a high EBV viral load, with the markers indicating a chronic (rather than a new) infection. No big surprise there, but I am sorry I didn't test for this much sooner! My immune system was really clobbered last fall with a series of viruses and a mild shingles outbreak, so I want to work on lowering the EBV viral load to help my immune system.
I bought 350 mg food grade BHT capsules and started with 1/2 capsule in water on an empty stomach yesterday morning and then again this morning. Within 20 minutes, I got a pressure in my head and then a headache. It lasted all day yesterday but got better overnight. But then again this morning after taking a new dose of BHT, same side effects returned. I have NOT taken any aspirin as I don't want it to interfere with the BHT. I will hydrate even more today and see if that helps. Hopefully these side effects will ease after a few days!
I plan on waiting 3 months before doing another blood panel to see if my viral load drops unless you recommend another time frame.
I know you don't recommend taking any other supplements whilst on BHT, but there are a few that I'd like to continue taking, at least a few times of week (ie potassium iodide and a b-complex liquid). Is that okay?
Thank you so very much, Oscar!!
Replied by Deirdre
I recently read that people who suffer from chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia benefit remarkably from cortisol treatments (75 per cent showed significant improvement, and 62 per cent reported substantial improvement). This is because they have adrenal dysfunction, meaning their adrenal glands, which produce sex hormones and cortisol, don't work effectively. I suspect this is due to viral damage. Cortisol is that stress hormone...you get a shot of it in fight or flight situations for a quick burst of energy, decreased pain sensitivity, etc. Proper levels are important for proper glucose metabolism, regulation of blood pressure, insulin release for blood sugar maintanence, immune function and inflammatory response. Maybe this is why when you exercise it makes it worse because your cortisol levels should increase with aerobic exercise to help deal with the wear and tear. The bulk of cortisol release happens when we sleep, which would also explain why you might not wake up feeling refreshed. If you read up on cortisol, you'll see that if you don't have enough, you just don't have access to energy to burn.
I would definitely try the cortisol therapy, but perhaps there is a more natural way to stimulate the adrenal glands. Research has found that the nutrient Phosphatidylserine (PS) helps balance both high and low levels of cortisol. Usually our brains manufacture sufficient levels of PS, but if there is a deficiency of folic acid and vitamin B12, or of essential fatty acids, the brain may not be able to make sufficient PS levels. So get lots of fish, ridiculous amounts of dark green vegetables, and even rice and soy (or lecithin, I imagine). You can find PS supplements...they used to make them from cow's brains, but now they make a soy lecithin-derived one. (Phew!) At the very least, this nutrient would help with brain fog.
(My interest in chronic fatigue stems from having the Epstein Barr virus. I couldn't shake the fatigue for years and years. I did find getting fish oil and a teaspoon of chlorella everyday finally produced some results, which I would recommend to absolutely everyone!)
Replied by Susan
Hi how come you don't have a section on Epstein Barr Virus? I would really like to know what people have been doing for it. Thanks!
EC: Thanks for the suggestion, Emily. New page has just been created for EPV!
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Laguna Woods, CA
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[YEA] I have battled chronic fatigue for more than 20 years. Sometimes it's baffling; it comes and goes. However, I have managed to keep working all this time because of the natural remedies I've used. The XMRV viral connection makes sense to me. I had Epstein-Barr virus. I treated this with the essiac fomula very successfully, and I am due for another brewing. It might be worth a try. It turns my energy around with a week of taking the brew morning and night on an empty stomach. Essiac is said to kill viruses and cancer cells in the bloodstream. I'd like to add that I took the essiac formula to my cousin and his partner, who had come down with AIDS many years ago. To this day, they still take it, and it has been a literal life saver for them. Chronic fatigue can also have a thyroid component, and also adrenal exhaustion may play a part, or a combination. A homeopathic doctor told me years ago that my mitochondria were dysfunctional. The mitochondria are organisms that live in our cells. They consume sugar and release energy, giving us energy at the cellular level. If this is not working correctly, you will not have any energy being supplied to your body. The mitochondria can be effected by viruses, candida, etc.! I'm currently looking into how to support the mitochondria. Anyone out there have any suggestions for that?
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Fountain Inn, Sc
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Anyone know how to treat Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis caused by EBV virus?
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Replied by Sarah
[YEA] I am in month 8 of fighting a reactivated Epstein Barr infection. I am gradually starting to feel better, although not 100% yet. Here are my strategies for combating the illness:
1) Cut way back on sweets, sugar hampers your immune system.
2) Ate a lot more fruits and vegetables.
3) Limit caffeine, switch from coffee to green tea.
4) Quit alcohol.
5) After about month 5, I quit using my steroid nasal spray. Steroids lessen your immune function. Also I believe it was adding to my anxiety.
6) From month 3 to month 6 I took L-lysine - 2 500mg pills 3 times per day.
7) Olive leaf extract, 1 500mg capsule 4 times per day for its antiviral properties (started in month 5).
8) Monolaurin, 1 capsule 4 times per day - antiviral (started in month 4).
9) Astragalus, 1 capsule 4 times per day for immune help (started in month 6).
10) A multivitamin 1 per day.
11) I take about 2 tablespoons of coconut oil every day.
12) Apple cider vinegar, a tablespoon in a pint of water daily.
13) I recently started magnesium, 1 250mg tablet 4 times per day. It is supposed to have a calming effect and promote restful sleep.
14) Also, I recently started fish oil, 1 1200mg capsule 4 times per day. Among its many benefits, fish oil is said to help brain function and lift one's mood.
15) Pray...a lot. ask others to pray for you too.
I am not sure which, if any, of these supplements/strategies helped. Maybe it is just the passage of time and my body's own healing process that is making me feel better, but I want to help that process along as much as I can.
Replied by Terri
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Replied by Julia
The easiest treatment and simplest treatment for herpes is to use fresh olive leaf or use olive leaf extract. However, in practice I used more than one just to make sure they don't come back again.
Since I am talking about olive leaf, this is also used against Epstein-Barr Virus and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome as well, due to its antiviral properties. As a result, I have cut and paste portions describing in more details the oleuropeins found in olive leaf -- see below. I suspect that olive leaf extract when mixed with apple cider vinegar would increase its antiviral potency, especially when you have the common colds or pneumonia coming.
For those already against vaccination the olive leaf can be eaten regularly as a protection against other deadly viral diseases as well.
EC: Read more about Ted's remedies for herpes here: http://www.earthclinic.com/cures/genital_herpes.html#TED