HIV AIDS supplement vitamin herb information - Natural therapy and treatment
November 2 2016
by Ray Sahelian, M.D.

HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. When it enters your body, it moves inside white blood cells called "CD4 lymphocytes." HIV takes over the CD4 cells and makes billions of virus pieces each day. The virus pieces spread through your body. Your body tries to defend itself against HIV by making antibodies (these hook on to the virus and keep it from making virus pieces) and by special cells called macrophages and natural killer T-cells. These cells help you to get rid of some of the virus pieces. If antibodies against HIV show up in your blood, you know your body is trying to protect you from the HIV infection you have picked up.

After acute HIV infection, your body works hard to attack the virus. With your body fighting, the virus can't make so many virus pieces. Even though you still have HIV infection, you'll begin to look well and feel well again. The usual blood tests will be normal. However, during this time, the virus pieces are still attacking your lymph nodes. Lymph nodes are the centers of your body's immune system. The virus may also attack your brain tissue and slowly cause damage there. Over 10 to 15 years, HIV would kill so many CD4 cells that your body could no longer fight off infections. At this point, a person is diagnosed as having AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). Once you have AIDS, you can easily get many serious infections. People infected have more heart attacks and have them earlier in life.

HIV Natural Treatment of Prevention options - supplements herbs vitamins
There are no natural therapies that are endorsed by the medical profession for the prevention or treatment of HIV infection. However, studies (mostly test tubes) have shown several nutrients and herbs to have antiviral properties. It is difficult to predict what clinical effect, if any, these herbs and supplements have in the natural progression of HIV, but it appears that some herbal and nutritional compounds -- at least in test tubes -- have anti-HIV activity. We also have little idea how these supplements interact with antiviral drugs. Please discuss with your doctor regarding the use of these supplements to see if they are appropriate for you. You can find some of the research at the bottom of this page or by clicking on the appropriate links in blue.

Antioxidant - There is evidence suggesting that patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus are under chronic oxidative stress and thus may benefit from antioxidant vitamins.
Vitamin D - HIV carriers with vitamin D deficiency are more likely to die than those with sufficient vitamin D in the blood.
Multivitamins - Research from Africa suggests that basic multivitamin and selenium supplements lower the risk that untreated people with the AIDS virus will get sicker over a two-year period. Nov. 27, 2013, Journal of the American Medical Association.
Green Tea - Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), one of the components of green tea has been suggested to have antiviral activity. To determine the effects of EGCG on HIV infection, peripheral blood lymphocytes infected with HIV were incubated with increasing concentrations of EGCG. EGCG strongly inhibited the replication of the HIV virus.
Glutamine, the amino acid, could be helpful for those on anti-HIV medicines.
Glutamine-antioxidant nutrient supplementation can increase body weight, body cell mass, and intracellular water when compared with placebo in HIV patients.
Mangosteen
is sold online on the internet.
Hyssop
has antiviral activity against herpes simplex and HIV-1.
Licorice may be helpful.
Olive Leaf extract has anti-HIV activity
Rooibos tea has anti-HIV activity.
Echinacea herb may be of some benefit.
Ginseng CD4+ T cell counts in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-1-infected patients are maintained or even increased when treated with Korean red ginseng. High doses of ginseng can be overly stimulating and cause insomnia.
Catuaba, an Amazonian plant, has anti-HIV activity.
Bovine Colostrum may reduce the severity of diarrhea in HIV patients.
Marigold herb
Fish Oils - Fish oil (omega-3 fatty acid) diet supplements appear to be an effective way to lower high triglyceride levels that are associated with antiretroviral therapy in HIV patients. HIV therapies and HIV itself can cause concerning increased in triglycerides, which may place the individual at risk for cardiovascular disease. Fish oil has been found in people without HIV infection to reduce triglycerides and also to prevent cardiovascular disease.  It's probably best not to exceed 3 capsules a day.
Zinc for children with HIV

DHEA in low dosage is useful to treat mild depression in those with HIV.

There is very little information on how these herbs interact with antiviral medicines used to treat HIV or AIDS.

Zinc, HIV and Children
Zinc supplements could be a simple and safe way to reduce illnesses such as diarrhea in children infected with HIV.

DHEA, HIV, and Depression
The dietary supplement DHEA seems to relieve the symptoms of minor depression in patients infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. DHEA may be appropriate for patients who refuse to take antidepressant drugs or for patients with mild chronic depression who are particularly enthusiastic about alternative medicine strategies. DHEA, which stands for dehydroepiandrosterone, is an unregulated steroid-like supplement to treat a variety of conditions. People take DHEA to build muscles, reduce abdominal fat, improve blood sugar levels and as an antiaging remedy, among other reasons. However there is no proof that DHEA has anti-aging benefits, and it could have a lot of side effects.
     Dr. Rabkin from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York and colleagues assessed the effectiveness of DHEA in an eight-week trial involving 145 HIV-positive adults with mild depression. Two thirds had a diagnosis of AIDS. Participants were randomly assigned to placebo or DHEA tablets, starting at 100 milligrams per day, and increased up to 400 milligrams per day over 4 weeks if symptoms did not improve and if there were no side effects. The response rate was higher for DHEA patients (56 percent) than for placebo patients (31 percent), and women and men responded equally well to DHEA. DHEA treatment was associated with a significant increase in testosterone levels in women, but not in men. DHEA did not significantly affect CD4+ cell levels, a standard measure of immune function, or HIV viral load. American Journal of Psychiatry, January 2006.
     Dr. Sahelian comments: these dhea dosages to treat HIV depression are extremely high and are bound to lead to side effects sooner or later.

HIV AIDS symptom
The only certain way to determine for sure whether you have HIV / AIDS is to be tested. You cannot rely on symptoms to know whether or not you are infected with HIV. Many people who are infected with HIV do not have any symptoms at all for several years.
     The following may be warning signs of infection with HIV. Potential HIV symptom list  : rapid weight loss, dry cough, recurring fever or profuse night sweats, severe fatigue, swollen lymph glands in the armpits, groin, or neck, persistent diarrhea that lasts for more than a week or two. Another HIV symptom could be white spots or unusual blemishes on the tongue, in the mouth, or in the throat. These oral signs need to be put in perspective since many other illnesses can cause these problems. Red, brown, pink, or purplish blotches on or under the skin or inside the mouth, nose, or eyelids could by other HIV symptoms. Memory loss and depression can occur, but there are so tons of other medical conditions that can lead to memory loss and depression.

HIV testing determines whether or not you are infected with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). Testing is recommended if you think you may have been exposed to the HIV; you received a blood transfusion between 1977 and 1985, or a sexual partner received a transfusion and later tested positive for HIV' you are uncertain about your sexual partner's risk behaviors; you are a male who has had unsafe sex with another male.

Do you really need to be tested for HIV?
Everyone in the U.S. between the ages of 13 and 64 years should undergo routine screening for HIV infection, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced in 2006 as part of an update on their guidelines for HIV testing. But is this recommendation justified?
   About 25% of HIV-positive adults in the US are unaware of their infection. Dr. Bernard M. Branson and his colleagues note that patients who are unaware of their infection are significantly more likely to transmit HIV than those who know their HIV status, and that 30% of new infections could be reduced annually if infected persons who know their HIV status adopt changes in high risk behaviors. In a press statement, members of the American Academy of HIV Medicine endorse the updated guidelines. However, they are concerned about the likelihood of achieving successful linkage to medical care when patients test positive and the associated decrease in risk assessment and risk reduction counseling. Dr. Jeff Schouten, Board Chair of the Academy, writes, "We can't assume that once we discover someone's HIV infection that we'll be able to help and direct them into reliable care." They also raise the issue of funding for the increased care. "Testing more people obviously takes money, and CDC doesn't have it," Dr. Schouten adds. "Who's going to pay for it?"Mor Mortal Wkly Rep CDC Surveill Summ 2006.
   My thoughts: I'm cautious when it comes to recommending HIV testing for such a wide population. At some point the potential for finding a positive HIV test becomes so remote that it really is not worthwhile testing for it in many people, particularly those who are older and have a stable marriage and rarely engage in sexual activity. Even if a positive HIV test is detected in someone who is 60 years old, treatment may not necessarily increase lifespan. Furthermore, how is our society going to pay for all this testing and follow up treatment?

HIV Treatment, benefit, side effects, caution, danger
There is no cure for the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS, but combinations of drugs can keep the virus from replicating and damaging the immune system.
   Three classes of drugs are used to treat HIV: protease inhibitors, nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors, and non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors. Both protease and reverse transcriptase are enzymes that the virus uses to replicate and propagate itself. By interfering with these two enzymes used in viral replication, the reproduction of the virus is crippled and ongoing viral replication is controlled. Whether the compound is a nucleoside or non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor refers to its chemical makeup and whether or not it contains RNA or DNA nucleosides. Both the nucleoside and non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors interfere with the enzyme reverse transcriptase used in viral replication.

HIV drugs Invirase and Norvir lead to an abnormal heart rhythm when used in combination. Medicines to treat HIV - the virus that causes AIDS - are typically given in multidrug combinations. Norvir is sold by Abbott Laboratories, while Invirase is made by Roche Holding Ltd's Genentech unit. According the the FDA, when used together, the drugs cause prolongation of the QT and PR intervals on an electrocardiogram.

HIV-positive patients taking efavirenz are at risk for clinically significant vitamin D deficiency, and for excessive bone turnover if they are taking tenofovir. AIDS 2010.

Med Monatsschr Pharm. 2013. Integrase inhibitors - new challenges for the treatment of HIV-1 infections Integrase inhibitors are a promising new group of antiretroviral drugs that suppress the integrase yielded by human immunodeficiency viruses via inhibiting the integration of the viral deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) into the hosts' DNA genome. In 2007, raltegravir was the first integrase inhibitor that has been approved for the treatment of HIV-1 infections in antiretroviral-pretreated (-experienced) and antiretroviral-naive patients. Recently, elvitegravir, as a fixed coformulation with cobicistat, tenofovir und emtricitabine, has been approved

Herpes and HIV virus
Treating genital herpes infections does not protect people from the HIV virus.

Human Research
HIV Epidemic Started in New York in 1970.

Thailand and China are set to release an herbal drug which they claim can strengthen the immune systems of people with HIV and help control the virus. The drug, called SH Instant, combines three medicinal herbs from China and two from Thailand. The Chinese herbs are yingchen, huangqi and ganchao with pluak rak mon (part of the mulberry root) and dok kham foi (extracted from safflowers). Researchers based their findings on a study of 60 patients, which found that the 40 taking the drug fared better in fighting the virus than the 20 who did not.

Micronutrient deficiencies are common and compound the effects of human immunodeficiency virus infection in Africa. Nutritional interventions, particularly vitamin A supplementation, may improve immune functioning and delay disease progression.

The prevalence of diabetes in HIV -infected men taking antiretroviral drugs is more than four times higher than in HIV-negative men. Today's powerful anti- HIV drugs -- for those who have access to them -- have turned HIV into a manageable, chronic disease, however, these anti- HIV drugs have serious side effects.

A randomized trial of multivitamin supplements and HIV disease progression and mortality.
N Engl J Med. 2004.
Results from observational studies suggest that micronutrient status is a determinant of the progression of human immunodeficiency virus ( HIV ) disease. We enrolled 1078 pregnant women infected with HIV in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, to examine the effects of daily supplements of vitamin A (preformed vitamin A and beta carotene), multivitamins (vitamins B, C, and E), or both on progression of HIV disease, using survival models. The median follow-up with respect to survival was 71 months. Of 271 women who received multivitamins, 67 had progression to World Health Organization (WHO) stage 4 disease or died--the primary outcome--as compared with 83 of 267 women who received placebo. This regimen was also associated with reductions in the relative risk of death related to the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, progression to WHO stage 4, or progression to stage 3 or higher. Multivitamins also resulted in significantly higher CD4+ and CD8+ cell counts and significantly lower viral loads. The effects of receiving vitamin A alone were smaller and for the most part not significantly different from those produced by placebo. Adding vitamin A to the multivitamin regimen reduced the benefit with regard to some of the end points examined. CONCLUSIONS: Multivitamin supplements delay the progression of HIV disease and provide an effective, low-cost means of delaying the initiation of antiretroviral therapy in HIV-infected women.

Acetyl-L-carnitine for the treatment of HIV lipoatrophy.
Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2004.
Lipodystrophy is an increasingly recognized complication of antiretroviral therapy for human immunodeficiency virus ( HIV ) infection. This syndrome encompasses both fat accumulation and wasting, which may be accompanied by metabolic derangements in glucose and lipid metabolism. While the precise mechanism of its development is not fully understood, lipodystrophy may represent chronic mitochondrial toxicity due to antiretroviral therapy and/or chronic HIV infection. L-carnitine is a nonessential micronutrient that regulates fatty acid transport into the mitochondrial matrix for metabolism via beta-oxidation. HIV -infected individuals on antiretroviral therapy may become deficient in this cofactor, limiting mitochondrial fat metabolism. While studies have shown some benefit for carnitine supplementation in cardiovascular disease, mitochondrial myopathies, and possibly male infertility, the data for its use in HIV -infected individuals are limited. Given its known physiologic function and the hypothesized mitochondrial basis for lipodystrophy, carnitine supplementation for this HIV antiretroviral toxicity is reviewed. The available data from several small studies are inconclusive, although further research into this promising agent is warranted.

Anti- HIV virus activity of olive leaf extract and modulation of host cell gene expression by HIV -1 infection and OLE treatment.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2003.
We investigated the antiviral activity of olive leaf extract preparations standardized by liquid chromatography-coupled mass spectrometry (LC-MS) against HIV -1 infection and replication. We find that olive leaf extract inhibits acute infection and cell-to-cell transmission of HIV-1 as assayed by syncytia formation using uninfected MT2 cells co-cultured with HIV-1-infected H9 T lymphocytes. olive leaf extract also inhibits HIV-1 replication as assayed by p24 expression in infected H9 cells. These anti- HIV effects of olive leaf extract are dose dependent, with EC(50)s of around 0.2 microg/ml. In the effective dose range, no cytotoxicity on uninfected target cells was detected. The therapeutic index of olive leaf extract is above 5000. To identify viral and host targets for olive leaf extract, we characterized gene expression profiles associated with HIV-1 infection and olive leaf extract treatment using cDNA microarrays. HIV -1 infection modulates the expression patterns of cellular genes involved in apoptosis, stress, cytokine, protein kinase C, and hedgehog signaling. Treatment with olive leaf extract reverses many of these HIV -1 infection-associated changes. Treatment of HIV-1-infected cells with olive leaf extract also up-regulates the expression of the apoptosis inhibitor proteins IAP1 and 2, as well as the calcium and protein kinase C pathway signaling molecules IL-2, IL-2Ralpha, and ornithine decarboxylase ODC1.

A study of HIV -infected African women found that daily doses of multivitamins appear to slow down the disease and cut the risk of developing AIDS infection in half. The researchers who conducted the study in Tanzania suggested that vitamin supplements could be used in developing countries to delay the need for HIV drugs, saving them for use at more advanced stages and avoiding their side effects.

Lymphocyte proliferation and apoptosis in HIV- seropositive and healthy subjects during long-term ingestion of fruit juices or a fruit-vegetable-concentrate rich in polyphenols and antioxidant vitamins.
Eur J Clin Nutr. 2004.
We investigated whether ingestion of polyphenols from fruit juices or a fruit-vegetable-concentrate affects lymphocyte proliferation and apoptosis in human immunodeficiency virus HIV-seropositive HIV (+) and HIV -seronegative HIV (-) subjects. University of Bonn, Department of General Internal Medicine. A total of 23 HIV+ subjects from the HIV outpatient clinic, 18 HIV- controls. Subjects ingested either 1 l of fruit juice or 30 ml of fruit-vegetable-concentrate daily for 16 weeks in addition to their regular diet. Lymphocyte proliferation and apoptosis were investigated in peripheral blood mononuclear cells at baseline, during 16-weeks of intervention, and after a 6-week washout. Supplementation of fruit juices increased phytohemagglutinin-induced lymphocyte proliferation (mitotic index) in HIV (+) patients from 18 to 40 and in healthy controls from 27 to 51. Apoptosis was not affected in HIV (+) patients, but rose in healthy controls. Intervention with concentrate did not significantly alter proliferation and apoptosis in HIV (+) and HIV (-) subjects. Even though apoptosis did not change in HIV+ subjects, ingestion of polyphenol-rich fruit juices might be favorable to HIV+ patients due to enhanced proliferation, which could restore disturbances in T-cell homeostasis. In healthy controls, increased lymphocyte proliferation during juice consumption was counterbalanced by increased apoptosis.

A clinical review of micronutrients in HIV infection.
J Int Assoc Physicians AIDS Care (Chic Ill). 2002.
This article reviews current literature on the role of micronutrients in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Deficiencies of micronutrients are common in HIV -infected persons. They occur due to malabsorption, altered metabolism, gut infection, and altered gut barrier function. There is a compelling association of deficiencies of micronutrients in HIV-infection with immune deficiency, rapid disease progression, and mortality. Also, there is increased risk of vertical HIV transmission from mother to child with deficiency of vitamin A, and of neurological impairment with vitamin B12. The last five years have been exciting in micronutrient research, and there is promise that some micronutrients may be key factors in maintaining health in HIV immunodeficiency, and in reducing mortality. Selenium appears important in reducing virulence of HIV and slowing disease progression. Vitamin A supplementation in pregnant women with HIV may reduce maternal mortality and improve birth outcomes. Supplementation in children with HIV may accelerate growth. Carotenoid supplementation is being evaluated. Vitamin B12 may slow HIV immune deficiency disease progression, and reverse neurological compromise. Clinical benefit of supplementation with some micronutrients may be measurable in the presence of pre-existing deficiency. Apart from improved general nutrition, the impact of micronutrient supplements on health and their optimal use in HIV infection is controversial because there are so few controlled clinical trials. Further research is needed to elucidate the role of micronutrient deficiencies on the course of HIV infection, and the preventive and therapeutic role of supplementation in its clinical management. Nevertheless, current knowledge supports the use of routine multivitamin and trace element supplementation as adjuvant to conventional antiretroviral drug treatment as a relatively low-cost intervention.

Active constituents against HIV-1 protease from Mangosteen.
Planta Med. 1996.
The ethanol extract of mangosteen showed potent inhibitory activity against HIV-1 protease. The activity-guided purification of the extract resulted in the isolation of two active, known compounds. The chemical structures of the isolated compounds were established by spectroscopic analyses as mangostin and gamma-mangostin.

A preparation from bovine colostrum in the treatment of HIV-positive patients with chronic diarrhea.
Clin Investig. 1993.
In a prospective, open, uncontrolled study 25 patients infected with the human immunodeficiency virus with chronic refractory diarrhea and either confirmed cryptosporidiosis (n = 7) or absence of demonstrable pathogenic organisms (n = 18) were treated with a daily oral dose of 10 g of an immunoglobulin preparation from bovine colostrum over a period of 10 days. Among the 7 patients with cryptosporidiosis, this treatment led to complete remission in 3 and partial remission in 2. Among the 18 patients with diarrhea and negative stool culture, complete remission of diarrhea was obtained in 7 and partial remission in 4. In the remaining 2 patients with cryptosporidiosis and the 7 patients with diarrhea but no demonstrable pathogens treatment produced no significant improvement of the diarrhea. Subsequent doubling of the Lactobin dose (2 x 10 g daily) in 8 of the nonresponders led to complete remission in one case and at least partial remission in a further 4 patients. Treatment of refractory diarrhea with 10 g immunoglobulins from bovine colostrum per day constitutes an important therapeutic approach and led to complete (40%) or partial (24%) remission of diarrhea in 64% of the patients described here.

Laboratory Studies
Inhibitory Effects of Some Traditional Medicines on Proliferation of HIV-1 and Its Protease.
Yakugaku Zasshi. 2004.
In attempts to discover anti-HIV agents from natural sources, various traditional medicine extracts were tested for their inhibitory effects on HIV-1 proliferation and its protease. An extract of the seeds of Croton tiglium showed potent inhibitory effects on the proliferation of HIV-1. The active principle was determined to be phorbol esters.

Indian J Med Res. 2013. Ellagic acid & gallic acid from Lagerstroemia speciosa L. inhibit HIV-1 infection through inhibition of HIV-1 protease & reverse transcriptase activity. Banaba (Lagerstroemia speciosa L.) extracts have been used as traditional medicines and are effective in controlling diabetes and obesity.

Curcumin inhibits ultraviolet light induced human immunodeficiency virus gene expression.
Mol Cell Biochem. 2003.
Recently, we reported that the herbal drug St. John's Wort is a potent inhibitor of UV-induced HIV-LTR activation in stably transfected HIVcat/HeLa cells. Our previous studies have demonstrated that the activation of p38 MAP kinase (stress-activated protein kinase-2) and NF-kappaB are both required for a full UV-induced HIV gene expression response. In this study we have investigated the mechanism by which curcumin inhibits UV-activated HIV-LTR gene expression. We found that treatment of HIVcat/HeLa cells with micromolar concentrations of curcumin completely abolished UV activation of HIV gene expression. Curcumin treatment at similar doses as those used to inhibit HIV gene expression also effectively blocked UV activation of NF-kappaB, as demonstrated by electrophoretic mobility shift assay. In contrast, curcumin did not inhibit UV-induced phosphorylation of p38 MAP kinase. This observation was also supported by findings that curcumin did not inhibit UV-induced phosphorylation of CREB/ATF-1 and ATF-2. Although curcumin was ineffective in preventing UV-induced p44/42 MAP kinase phosphorylation, the JNK (1 and 2) and AP-1 activation were efficiently blocked by curcumin in HeLa cells. We conclude that the mechanism by which curcumin modulates UV activation of HIV-LTR gene expression mainly involves the inhibition of NF-kappaB activation.

Advances in studies on flavonoids of licorice
College of Chemical Engineer, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116012, Liaoning, China.
Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 2003.
The progress in the research of the active ingredients of licorice flavonoid and the pharmacological activities was reviewed. Licorice flavonoid constituents mainly included flavones, flavonals, isoflavones, chalcones, bihydroflavones and bihydrochalcones. Pharmacological investigation concluded that they had antioxidant, antibacterial, antitumer and inhibiting HIV activities. It is important to study further the flavonoid constituents and pharmacological activities.

Plant substances as anti-HIV agents selected according to their putative mechanism of action.
J Nat Prod. 2004.
Despite the continuous advances made in antiretroviral combination therapy, AIDS has become the leading cause of death in Africa and the fourth worldwide. Today, many research groups are exploring the biodiversity of the plant kingdom to find new and better anti-HIV drugs with novel mechanisms of action. In this review, plant substances showing a promising anti-HIV activity are discussed according to the viral targets with which they interact. Most of these compounds, however, interfere with early steps in the HIV replication, such as the virus entry steps and the viral enzymes reverse transcriptase and integrase, whereas until now almost no plant compounds have been found to interact with the many other viral targets. Since some plant substances are known to modulate several cellular factors, such as NF-kappa B and TNF-alpha, which are also involved in the replication of HIV, their role as potential anti-HIV products is also discussed. In conclusion, several plant-derived antiviral agents are good candidates to be further studied for their potential in the systemic therapy and/or prophylaxis of HIV infections, most probably in combination with other anti-HIV drugs.

Anti- HIV activity of extracts from Calendula officinalis - Marigold - flowers.
Biomed Pharmacother. 1997.
Extracts of dried flowers from marigold were examined for their ability to inhibit the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 ( HIV -1) virus replication. These results suggested that organic extract of flowers from Calendula officinalis possesses anti- HIV properties of therapeutic interest.

Questions
Q. I am a 47 year old male who is hiv positive and I have been taking medications for three months now. They include Reyataz 300 mg 1x/day, Epzicom which is a combination of two medications abacavir sulfate 600mg and lamivudine 300mg, 1x/day and Norvir 100mg 1x/day. Is is safe to use herbs with these medications.
   A. Reyataz is also known as atazanavir sulfate. Epzicom is the brand name for a drug that contains 2 HIV medicines, abacavir sulfate 600 mg and lamivudine 300 mg. Norvir is the brand name for titonavir, one of a class of anti-HIV drugs called protease inhibitors. These are potent drugs and it is not known how they interact individually with a particular herb, let alone the combination of all three drugs.

Q. i was tested HIV positive in 2000 , since then i have been having erection problem with no sex drive. Could my HIV status be the main cause of all this. I dont have health problem i.e hypertension, diabetes, or any complication yet i have this problem I am not asking for any diagnosis , and just a request if could shed some light HIV Symptom.
   A. We are sorry to hear about your diagnosis, it is a very difficult process to go through. We don't have much experience with HIV and impotence. We don't know whether the HIV virus itself cause lack of sex drive, or the assault on the immune system, or the stress of the diagnosis, the mental strain, anti-virals that are used, other medications, etc. You may with to ask your doctor to read the page on sex drive and help you direct the best option. We have no idea how aphrodisiac herbs interact with antiviral drugs and we would be cautious in combining them due to unkown potential side effects with such combinations.

Q. I would like to learn more about Revivo and how effective it is in lowering viral load and increasing CD4 cell. What are the side effects of the herb? Does the product work for some people and not for other? What assurance are there that Revivo product will lower viral load and increase CD4 count?
   A. We were not familiar with Revivo. A search on google reveals Revivo to have several herbs including Arctium Lappa, Coix Seed (Lacryma-Jobi), Momordica Charantia, Hypericum Chinensis, Nelumbo Nucifera and several other herbs. We have not seen any human research with this combination of herbs and their effect on the immune system.

Q. I would like to try the saw palmetto and beta sitosterol combination for hair growth. Do I take them together and what amount should I take?
   A. I can't predict whether saw palmetto, beta sitosterol, or the combination will help hair growth or have any influence on hair growth. Studies are quite limited. The proper dosages are still not clear. As a general rule it is best to try one supplement at a time for a week or two before combining.

I came across this natural herbal formula called Vairolinn for HIV. I have tried to find out if this is an actual natural herb; however all the research I came across does not give me any information about this product. In fact I cannot find this product. I believe this may be a spam web site to solicit money from people. The web site says that after 6 months by injecting this formula natural herb in to your body site; HIV has decreased, and in some cases have been known to go away. Please let me know if this is a real true herb or if I would be wasting my money by sending off for this type of natural therapy. ALSO: I want to order some of your natural products but I am afraid my doctor would not advise me to take your supplements with antiviral medications. What should I do or would you advise? I will be waiting on a response from the above concern about VAIROLINN Herb. Thank you for your time and consideration in responding to my concerns.
    A September 2009 search on Medline for Vairolinn revealed this response on PubMed, the website for medical research, "Your search for Vairolinn retrieved no results." I have not heard of this product. Unfortunately there is very little research regarding the use of herbs and supplements as a treatment for HIV infection and interactions with antiviral medications. Therefore, at this time, it is difficult to give firm recommendations.