First off, Lili I love your hypothesis that Virastop may be working to breakdown foreign proteins in the blood! The body will attack any foreign proteins that appear in the blood because, usually it's a pathogenic invader and the immune system is primed to stop this invader. Any person that is experiencing food sensitivities, whether an allergy or an intolerance, will react because of the protein that the immune system has tagged as an invader that must be destroyed.
With regards to food, undigested proteins are not supposed to enter the blood stream, but of course this can happen for a variety of reasons. The most popular reasons are due to having poor digestion (lack of specific digestive enzymes, low HCL) or Leaky Gut Syndrome. Most certainly a person can have combination of the two, as may be seen with those that have Celiac's Disease or went through an acute stressful phase or are simply chronically stressed (whether you feel it or not) as this will inhibit your ability to properly digest foods. With regards to developing Leaky Gut Syndrome, we know there are a variety of ways, but one such possibility is the presence of some type of systemic yeast in the body.
Certain types of yeast can cause a host of neurological, gastrointestinal, immunological (can mimic chemical and food sensitivities esp. gluten) and physical (i.e. acne, psoriasis, rashes) symptoms in the human body when out of balance. If it's present in your gastrointestinal tract, it actually starts weaving itself in your intestinal walls, thus...the development of leaky gut. Ways you can increase the presence of yeast is overconsumption of refined carbohydrates, weak immune system, antiobiotic abuse (and no high potency probiotic), excess alcohol consumption (feeds yeast), glucocorticiods (prednisone, dexamethasone), birth control, heavy metals, hypothyroidism, diabetes, constipation, chronic stress (increases cortisol a glucocorticoid & depresses immune system), parasites and....the breakdown/reduction of viruses and bacteria!
I've had customers and clients tell me repeatedly that they have had chronic yeast problems for years and that over time, their symptoms and sensitivities worsened. Some people have shared that they experience die off symptoms or increased activity (which could possibly still be die off) when they consume foods or supplements are sometimes known to improve digestion, but most importantly the inhibition/elimination of yeast (ginger, xylitol, Candidex, Grapefruit Seed Extract/GSE, Probiotics etc.). These symptoms include...headaches, fatigue, nausea, mild sore throat or other cold/flu-like symptoms that may last a few days or a few weeks.
So the conundrum appears to be two-fold with Virastop, correct? Some people have ceased taking it because it did one or both of the following: possibly increased breakouts or made them feel sick. Well, there are a few thoughts with regards to die off reactions:
If you are experiencing a die off reaction, then what you are taking is working! If you are experiencing a die off reaction, then what you are taking is too strong for your body to handle. Try reducing the dosage or frequency and slowly build up to the suggested amount.If you are experiencing a die off reaction, then you may not be supporting your body in the detoxification and elimination process. Try enhancing this process by increasing water consumption, taking soluble (inulin, acacia, glucomannon) and insoluble fibers (psyllium, chia, flaxseed) and Bentonite Clay (binds viruses, bacteria, toxins) or Activated Charcoal, to help absorb and flush these toxins out of the body.
Granted, there is another possibility. That possibility is that some of you are not experiencing a die-off reaction, but perhaps increased yeast activity! Enzymedica's ViraStop does not contain any enzymes to help breakdown fats or carbohydrates and according to this source below, that still leaves the carbohydrate component of a select virus or bacteria available as food for yeast! http://www.enzymestuff.com/conditionviruses.htm#10
In this case ViraStop, containing systemic or proteolytic enzymes, is breaking down components of a virus, bacteria and/or fungi, breaking down products that clog the blood that will help increase circulation & tissue repair, and decreasing acute and chronic inflammation, all further supporting the immune system, but unlike other immune supporting products, does not activate the immune system. So if you are feeling sick, it is not because it's heightening your immune response (inflammation, sore throat, mucous production, etc), something else is going on. Although, it does free up the immune system so that it can function better, so it may feel like it made you sick or prolonged your cold when instead it allowed your immune system to function more optimally. Of course...if it is breaking down products that are not being eliminated properly or inadvertently feeding certain types of yeast, this can also mimic signs of the flu or a cold. Additionally, if your body contains a virus (like HSV-1) you may also experience die off symptoms from that as well. Just a thought...
So yesterday I spoke with our demo person for Enzymedica and he felt that if digestion is the problem you need to take digestive enzymes. Of course, this company is among the best out there regarding enzymes, it's predominately all they do! You may be a person that needs to take both a digestive enzyme and a systemic enzyme. For something more specific, the company (among others) makes an enzyme product to breakdown the gluten protein, Glutenase, for those of you that eat out and are concerned with cross-contamination. Actually, I received a sample bottle of a Digest Gold + Probiotics that contains a small amount of DPP-IV (which is the enzyme that breaks down gluten), but it does not do what ViraStop does, yet some of you may want to try consider one of the two when eating out. If you have chronic inflammation going on, acne is an inflammatory skin disorder that can certainly be a sign of another chronic inflammatory condition, than he recommended doing ViraStop over Repair Gold. Both work on reducing inflammation, but he felt the ViraStop would do a better job, especially for chronic inflammation.
Furthermore, since acne has multiple forms of inflammation involved in the development, including histamine production, you may want to consider something that reduces or balances histamine. Remember Histadelia? Enzymedica makes a product called, Allerase that does just that. Our demo person said that it would work for those that have food sensitivities as well. In fact, there's another product on the market known as Histame, which works by providing an enzyme that regulates histamine levels to prevent over accumulation, especially with regards to consuming high histamine foods. Of course, you can also reduce the over production of histamine by taking a combination known as QBC (quercitin, bromelian and vitamin c) or just plain Quercitin. If you take the QBC form, take it on an empty stomach (1 hr before or 2 hrs after eating) so the bromelian will help breakdown inflammation.
Personally, I love my job! My company hires nutritionists to provide free nutritional education and counseling for staff, customers and members of the community, among other things, and as a result I get to work with so many different types of people. So if any of you live near a Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage, I invite you to come in for a visit or setup an always complimentary coaching session with the nutritionist there. As for the prices that have been quoted so far for Enzymedica products, we have those beat! If you do not live near one, we do have a website that you can always shop from as well: Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage and hopefully it will help further support your savings in this economy.
Additionally, I mentioned a product called Histame. We don't sell this product and it is quite costly (you do get one free)...but if it works...it's probably worth it. Their website: Histame
Remember, acne can exist for many reasons and whether you do or donâ€™t have a diagnosis as to why yours exists, it can still be a trial and error process. Getting to the root of the problem should always be the goal and, again, Iâ€™ve met people that have done so via the same methods as some members of this board: series of detoxification & cleansings, liver flushes, balancing systemic yeast, healing leaky gut and/or desensitization for food/chemical sensitivity. For those that ViraStop did work for and especially those that it didnâ€™t, you want to think about what you were doing:
When were you taking it? How many a day did you take? Were you already showing signs of a cold? (There are some customers and employees that LOVE this product, taking it for therapeutic use at least two days as directed, or more frequently, eradicates the flu for them) Do you know whether you have food sensitivities? If so, thatâ€™s a huge one, but this entire post covers possibilities for you. Do you know whether sugars breaks you out? Perhaps if itâ€™s only sugars than things that help support balanced blood sugar levels and perhaps histamine regulation may be of benefit. Did you do anything differently when you tried this product? Were you eating foods you normally would not?What was the total length of time you took the product? Let's say it works by treating chronic inflammation, you would need at least 4 - 6 weeks to see if it really works.
Those are just some thoughts for some of you.
Best of luck!