How I Eliminated Shingles Naturally Without Rx Meds

by Todd Walker

How I Eliminated Shingles Naturally Without Rx Meds -

Last November DRG and I drove up to Vogel State Park to hike some trails at the base of Blood Mountain. The weather cooperated with a nip in the air. I wore a wicking base layer top which, by mid-way through the hike, seemed to irritate the skin on my chest with a tingling, itchy sensation.

Was my skin reacting to the synthetic fabric… or maybe DRG had used a new washing detergent? The discomfort was bearable but annoying. We hiked on enjoying the beautiful fall weather.

After returning home late Saturday evening, I stripped down to shower and noticed a few red splotches had begun to form near the base of my sternum eventually forming a sporadic line to the left around my chest.

What had I gotten into? I didn’t remember romping through poison ivy.

Being the stubborn man that I am, I went to school that Monday against DRG’s advice. Tuesday, same thing. Halfway through that day, however, I went to the doctor when blister lesions appeared. Not to get the pharmaceuticals I knew they’d prescribe, but to have my itching suspicions confirmed.

Before removing my shirt, I told my doctor that I had shingles and needed a medical confirmation. She took a quick look and confirmed my self-diagnosis. The circular splotches of rash had wrapped under my left arm pit hellbent on reaching my spinal column while whipping my body with its belt of pain.

How I Eliminated Shingles Naturally Without Rx Meds -

The least disgusting photo in the beginning of the outbreak

Doc wrote me the orthodox Rx of pain killers, antivirals, steroid cream made with petro-chemicals, and even an anti-depressant. I almost told her to save the paper but I wanted to attempt to read what she scribbled on the square pad. I couldn’t. She told me.

Having never swallowed antidepressants before, I wasn’t about to fill the script or take any of the other meds. My premeditated decision was firm.

Note: This is not medical advice. I am not a physician nor do I play one on TV. Your mileage may vary with modern pharmaceuticals. I chose a natural path to eliminate my shingles outbreak. You choose your path carefully.

Here’s how I treated and eliminated shingles naturally in under a week.

Natural Shingles Protocol 

If you’ve ever had chicken pox or the vaccine, the shingles (herpes zoster) virus lurks within waiting for an opportunity to show up through a weak immune system. Apparently, my immune system was compromised and the virus woke up from a 47 year hibernation like a hungry mama bear… and in a very foul mood!

My research reveled that herbal remedies have little to no effect on the herpes family of viruses. Abandoning my typical herbal strategy for ailments, I focused on a diet high in lysine-rich foods, topical treatments for pain and drawing, and stuff that would kill this painful scourge.

Topical Treatment

  • Raw Apple Cider Vinegar – Bragg’s Organic ACV applied on the lesions via a cotton compress daily (as needed for pain).
  • Cayenne Pepper – Sprinkled on the rash before covering with the damp ACV compress. (Taken internally as well)
  • Bentonite Clay – In powered form, mix with water to create a thick poultice. A pancake batter consistency is too runny to apply. Think of mud pies that kids make after a rain storm. Cover the entire affected area. Wrap the poultice with a roll of gauze bandages to hold in place. I tried equine tape the first time and it rolled up under my arms and chest pulling body hair out by the roots. Go with cotton gauze! Change the dressing twice daily. Remove as much of the clay poultice as possible and shower to remove the rest. Dry off and reapply. The drawing properties of bentonite clay dried up the lesions in 3 to 4 days.
  • Colloidal Silver – Apply to lesions once daily with a Q-Tip or cotton ball, twice if I remembered. CS is anti-viral. Viruses are harmed and killed by silver. (Taken internally as well)


Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” – Hippocrates

One bit of knowledge I found and didn’t like was that my diet was high in L-arginine (amino acid) which feeds the herpes family of viruses. Being a nut lover, I had to give up eating my daily dose of cashews and the occasional dark chocolate topped with almond butter.

Nuts and chocolate are high in L-arginine. To swing my system back in balance, I needed to eat foods high in L-lysine until the outbreak cleared. I found this helpful list of lysine-rich foods over at Health Wyze. My intake of high lysine foods was already in place. Just needed stop eating nuts and dark chocolate!

How I Eliminated Shingles Naturally Without Rx Meds -

Info source: The Health Wyze Report

Internal Stuff

  • Apple Cider Vinegar – A lot of the stuff I used topically I ate/drank as well. ACV in a shot glass down the hatch twice daily. Takes your breath away but helped with the pain. If you’re not that hardcore, mix ACV with water to get it down.
  • Cayenne Pepper – DRG bought some capsules and we filled them with cayenne pepper. I popped 4 or 5 of these each morning. The capsules allowed me to swallow large doses without setting my throat and mouth on fire.
  • Colloidal Silver – One teaspoon twice daily (morning and evening). The CS we bought was labeled as a dietary supplement with 15 ppm with no additives. No, my skin didn’t turn blue.
  • White Pine Needle Tea – Without knowing the cause of my discomfort, I harvested a batch of needles from White Pines along the trail and roadside to enjoy at my leisure when we got home. The Eastern White Pine needles contain the highest amounts of Vitamin C in the pine family. However, all pine needles contain Vitamin C. Little did I know how much I’d need these until my condition was confirmed.
  • Lysine Dietary Supplement – The recommended dosage was 3 tablets daily. I doubled up. The brand was Super Lysine + which contained Vitamin C, Echinacea, Licorice, Propolis, and Garlic.
  • B-Complex Supplement – The bottle said to take one “Easy-to-Swallow” capsule daily. I choked down four not-so-easy-to-swallow tablets each day. They were the size of horse pills! Each capsule contained Vitamin B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, Folate (folic acid), Biotin, and Pantothenic Acid (calcium D-pantothenate)… manufactured by Bluebonnet Nutrition Corporation in Texas.


This information is purely my experience. The natural remedy described here is limited to what I researched and employed. Even with modern medicines available, I personally would choose the natural route again if they ever return, God forbid. I was pleased with my outcome.

The lesions dried up within 3 to 4 days. Once scabbed over I stopped applying the clay poultice and other topical treatments. I continued taking the internal protocol and eating foods high in lysine throughout the ordeal.

Phantom pain (post-herpetic neuralgia) continued with an occasional shockwave to the affected area gradually disappeared in two weeks after the initial outbreak.

Having no way to compare conventional medical treatment to my natural remedy, I can’t say which is better… and hope to never find out with another outbreak. I have read reports of people experiencing multiple bouts and even chronic cases lasting months and even years. I can’t begin to imagine having to deal with this virus longer than a week or two.

If any of our readers have gone through multiple shingles outbreaks and tried conventional and home remedies, please share your experience with both methods. And, if so, my sympathies go out to you!

Keep Doing the Stuff of Self-Reliance,


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Categories: Doing the Stuff, Homeopathy, Natural Health, Preparedness, Self-reliance, Silver | Tags: , , , , , , , | 50 Comments

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50 thoughts on “How I Eliminated Shingles Naturally Without Rx Meds

  1. Reblogged this on sondasmcschatter.


    • Bert

      Thanks for sharing. My shingles also started shortly after I got a rash in my neck from a shirt. My shingles is on my face.


  2. Liked your article and pleased you resolved your shingles so readily. Just wondering did you consider St Johns Wort? I have not had shingles but it is the first herb I would consider for a patient as it is specific in fight the virus. What are your thoughts?


  3. Caroline Cooper

    Thankfully, I’ve never had shingles. Sounds horribly painful. I wonder if activated charcoal would have helped?

    Ionic silver works very well on viruses. I used it on my daughter’s very large wort (papillomavirus) on her hand. I have since found out that ionic silver also works on herpes simplex 2.

    Ionic silver has replaced antibiotic cream in my household first-aid kit. Great stuff!


    • I’m sure it would Caroline. Jim uses activated charcoal in his bentonite clay internally as he mentioned in his comment.

      BTW, I haven’t forgotten about your email. Thank you for your sending it… I’ll write back soon 🙂


  4. JimWatkins WatkinsStumpage

    Very Good Sherpa. Bentonite Clay with activated charcoal internally works against many problems. Wifey and I indulge in medical “pottery”. Potentially even can prevent colon cancers. Live Free Jim


  5. Linda

    My shingles outbreak hit the sciatic nerve in my right leg. Pain pills will not touch this type of pain, but capsaicin cream will. Do not apply on blisters!!!!! but the other areas you can get some relief from the muscle pain with this arthritis aid.


    • Kathy

      I had shingles several years ago, on my scalp, down my forehead, eyelid and cheek. I had blisters under my eyelid that scratched my cornea. I used capsaicin cream on the blisters (not near my eye) and it was a relief. Just remember that you will need to wash your hands very well, or use a rubber glove, because if you forget and rub your eye or lips, it burns like crazy.


  6. radarphos

    My (now) 65y/o wife had a shingles outbreak about five years ago and took some RX, along with an RX/vaccine that supposedly warded off Shingles for many future years. My wife’s shingles cleared up in a couple of weeks and she has not had another episode; but she does enjoy a lot of the L-arginine rich foods. I decided to also take the expensive vaccine ($250ish at that time) the next time I saw an M.D; and have never had shingles that I know of. I have known other Sr’s who have had it for a month or longer. I appreciate the article and everyone’s comments, since I now have on hand many of the natural ingredients mentioned by article and comments.


  7. JayJay

    Most of these foods to avoid apply to fever blisters(herpes I).


  8. Jan Morrison

    I had a similar experience. Severe itching on the back of my right thigh – like something biting me, the first day. Then a burning sensation the next day. I suspected shingles – even though I did have the vaccine. I didn’t wait for the blisters to start – I began taking my Elderberry Tincture. Woke up on the morning of the third day, all symptoms completely gone. Did my vaccine kick in on the 3rd day, or was it the elderberry? Don’t know, but I swear by the elderberry for other viruses. Quite a few of my family members take it too, at the first sign of illness.


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  11. kim

    When I had shingles I went to an iridologist in Toronto who prescribed an herbal salve called BFC, Bone, Flesh and Cartilage, made by dr. Christopher. The salve contains comfrey root and wormwood along w other herbal ingredients. The itching and pain disappeared quickly. I also reduced meat intake and ate vegetarian diet. Shingles cleared in 3 weeks! Had phantom twinge occasionally for a year.


  12. Mike Mc Donald

    Hi, great comments. I too developed shingles. It was about five days before I went to see a doctor as I thought it was an infection. What did I know? Doc said shingles, he offer medication which I refused two weeks later gone. All on its own.


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  15. Caroline

    Thanks for this post Todd. I remembered seeing this post when I got shingles and referred back to it. This post was very helpful.

    I did get over my shingles in about two weeks. I didn’t go see a doctor. I did some research on the internet and from my home library about home treatments for shingles.

    The protocol I used: 3000mg L-lysine (1X daily), 1T homemade elderberry syrup (3X daily), 200mg Advil (3-4X daily), and I applied as needed homemade bird’s eye pepper salve with essential oils. I used lavender, tree tea and peppermint during the day and frankincense and tree tea in the evenings. (The peppermint essential oil kept me awake if I used it too late in the day.) The salve would temporarily stop the nerve pain.

    I also tried some woo woo homeopathic remedies but these are individual and wouldn’t likely help others. I had success with Bryonia 30c and Ran-B 200c.

    I had a bit of nerve pain after the two weeks. It would come and go but it’s now gone.


    • Dang, I hate to hear you had shingles. Glad you found the protocol for treating yours. The bentonite clay was a huge help in drying the lesions. I want to make some elderberry syrup next year.

      DRG and I want to wish you and your family a very merry Christmas and prosperous new year! BTW, a very dear friend just moved to BC this year. We are contemplating a visit up your way. 🙂


  16. Crystal

    Hi there! I’m currently about a week in battling shingles. It’s awful! I too thought I had a rash until the blisters and went to the MD who gave me an antiviral. Did research for more remedies and I’m following a lot of what you have posted including diet, ACV, lysine and b complex. It helps to know I’m on the right track, thank you!


  17. Brittny

    Growing up I had an outbreak every year around the same time in the same spot! I have tried both prescribed medicine and lysine supplements. I find that as soon as I feel the breakout if I take lysine right away it is very effective and sometimes stops the breakout all together. There has been times where I did not catch it fast enough and needed to go to the doctor for prescription medicine because the lysine didn’t work as fast as the medicine once the outbreak was full blown. But I have never used all your other recommendations which may have even better results. Thanks for sharing it was very interesting to read as someone who has been through this their whole life.


  18. Pingback: Home Remedies that Eliminate Shingles - Holistic Health Herbalist

  19. Todd, I must have 50 of your similar posts saved in “favorites”. I always appreciate the good information, Thanks from “somewhere in South Georgia”.


  20. Rhonda

    I read an artical years ago that said use Maalox. I have told many about using it. They came back & told me thank you because it was the only thing that cooled them. Malox was used years ago before drugs was introduced. Coat each blister with it as often us needed.


  21. Very Useful details share by Author ,All about Internal Shingles, its signs and symptoms, cure, remedy or treatment. Tests and diagnosis are also included here. –


  22. Barbara A Dukes

    Why o you say tomatoes are not good when they have a high lysine content?


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  24. Jim

    Good advise I am having a very similar occurrence and following some of your protocol
    Showing good results to kick this in one week from outbreak of rash


  25. Diana Gunderson

    I got the virus and have been having crazy pain. I hope this is my only bowt with it. I am also one who prefers natural over pharmaceuticals. I chose lemon balm for a cream to help heal and started taking l-lysine. But after reading your article, I’m going your route. I always have Braggs ACV in my cupboard so I took my first shot. WHOA!!!!!!! It does take your breath away!! I also have Bentonite clay for facials and wounds.
    I’ll let you know how it goes.


  26. Marisa Strachan

    Thanks so much for this! Really helpful. I was diagnosed with shingles on Monday and am also eating a high lysene low arganine diet. Having my usual shot of wheatgrass every morning and maringa capsules twice daily with some arnica for good measure. Yes, horse tablets too! Seems to be clearing up and the pain is less unbearable. Nasty, disgusting, foul illness…hope it never returns.


  27. Bridgette Pettichord

    I got shingles in 2011 first time it was very painful, it hit my left side back to under left brest, first pain the the rash, i took a round of antiviral steroids and pain meds, it lasted 3 weeks. Then in the same year it came back same area, this time i took monolaurin, lysine antiviral, it was gone in 2 weeks, the rash and pain were bad, the the 3rd time i used a steriod cream and monolaurin, lasted 2 weeks but was bearable, in the interm i got the shot. Now its 2017 and it came back left side this time face and neck area,i am using antiviral, steroids and home remedies, as its to close to my eye to mess around, when it goes away i am getting the newest shot its supposed to be better, the rash on my face is scarcer then the back but doest hurt as mucj, i am taking L-Arginine for blood pressure, i plan to quite and cut out the foods mentioned in this article. I am 55 and have a pretty normal life i have no idea why i keep getting it, but am hopeful it will run its course and give my another 6 peaceful years


  28. Ken

    Thank u for posting this!! I had a mild case of shingles pop up on the underside of my arm and it was awful because I’m going on vacation soon. I read about the clay u used and I had some here at home I bought in Death Valley…I have been using Just Bentonite clay I’m in 24 hours and 3 applications the bumps are nearly half their size and less redness and most of all they are already starting to dry up!! I noticed it was especially effectIve when I let the clay dry when I slept and in the morning i it took a lot of the pain swelling and redness away!


  29. Taryn Slater

    Was wondering if the topicals were all done together or at separate times? For example do I do the cayenne and ACV first ? And wait for that to dry and then do the Clay? And then finish with the colloidal silver ?

    Let me know! Starting this today!


  30. Thank you for helping me learn more about how to treat shingles naturally. I new apple cider vinegar was good for a lot of things. Knowing that it might help with shingles is something I need to learn more about.


  31. I have shingles and it’s about to blister now I can tell as I have the usual symptoms. I too don’t use Dr stuff. I plan to try the bontonite clay this time as well as my usual, which is the lysine u recommended and activated charcoal.


  32. Abby

    The primary treatment for shingles is literally just time. Frankly, as a medical scientist (not a doctor, I’m a researcher) I think the doctor made an error by prescribing anything at all except over-the-counter topical creams if you were having some unpleasant itching, or recommending you took over-the-counter pain medicines if the fever was unpleasant.

    You don’t NEED medication for shingles unless you’re a high-risk patient. It’ll literally just go away on its own. The same is usually true for chickenpox, unless you’re an adult in which case talking to a doctor just in case is a good idea (since in severe cases there might actually be a good case for antivirals).


  33. Tabitha

    A friend sent me here. Thanks for the natural ideas, I’ve tried a few.. My husband has recurrent shingles. We’re on our 7th bout in 3 years. It’s the worst yet. 😦 I’ve tried topical colloidal silver, essential oils with coconut oil-the oils caused a staph infection. UGH. The only thing that helps is keeping a fan on his back once the blisters form. Even with that he’s completely out of commission for 3-4 days from the pain. I’ll see if I can talk him into the clay.


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  35. Robyn Brown

    Thank you for this information! I am having a flare through the left eyebrow and radiating out. Applying anti viral essential oils on the face and internally. Thank you Young Living. Sulferzyme as well. B5 and 1000 mg Vit C every few hours a day. Thanks for the note on nuts and chocolate. Will stop immediately. Had those all yesterday and tomatoes in my dinner.
    Proclaiming the healing Word of God over my life as well.!


  36. Charles

    I’ve had shingles going on four days. Didn’t know you could get it so young at being 32. Went to ER and got some RX. But used the paste too all day and it’s already looking so much better. Thank you.


  37. Caroline. Nie

    I just discovered I have shingles from one lesion last night and a cluster this morning .
    Last night I thought it was a bite and put neem oil on it.
    This morning when I woke I found more lesions growing and immediately put colloidal silver gel on it .
    I than took activated charcoal.

    Started googling and saw one can use Apple cider vinegar , etc.

    I was also thinking to intake collodial silver but not sure if charcoal will cancel out the effect.

    I took a shower to go see doctor and use a collodial soap on the area. It was so soothing .

    Than I went to see TCM chinese doctor and they suggest western medicine which I detest .

    My GP also suggested Antiviral meds .

    I wanted to go the natural route and reading yours gives me hope .

    I might have the western meds just in case and keep the natural way and see if I can be cured .

    How bad was hour shingles in what area ?


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