Episode 25: Plantar warts

Plantar warts are chronic viral infection that are about as annoying as Donald Trump’s voice, which, many people suffer from. They are caused by certain non-cancer causing strains of the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and can cause discomfort or pain due to pressure that they exert on surface nerves on the sole of the foot. Typically, they are transmitted via unclean common public surfaces such as swimming pool and shower floors, by shared shoes and sandals or any public space where one goes barefoot, including martial arts dojos. Removing them in the least possibly invasive manner brings us to our interventions, and although they won’t work for the anxiety generated from Trump’s political campaign, they do just fine for warts.


Zinc and Copper are essential minerals that have many interesting functions associated with healing, but also have anti-viral effects as well. A good rule of thumb for its use would be to take a combined Zinc/ Copper supplement (15mg Zn/2mg Cu) after each meal for up to 2 months while warts are present. The ratio of zinc to copper, in a combined supplement should be about 8:1.


Combined with zinc and copper, Vitamin A in a dosage of 50-100,000 IU/day for up to 3 months also helps to fight off the plantar wart HPV strain. Although warnings about the toxicity of high doses of vitamin A are everywhere, the estimated acute toxic dose of the vitamin would be 1.75 million IU for a 70kg person, and for chronic toxicity it would be 50,000IU/day for up to 2.5 years.   As you can see, I’m allowing for a high margin of safety. Some of the symptoms associated with toxicity would include fatigue, headaches, joint pain and dry skin. Inform your physician or health practitioner when you are taking Vitamin A just to be on the safest side.


Finally, topical Salicylic acid tape is also used to remove the warts. A small, wart sized piece of tape is directly applied to the wart. After 24 hours, cut off the dead skin with some sanitized curved small scissors, then reapply the tape. Do this repeatedly for 1 week, then, let the area heal and see if the wart is still present. If so, repeat until the wart is gone. To sanitize the scissors after each use, wash them in soap and water, then soak in hydrogen peroxide for 20 minutes.


Tune in next week when we’ll talk about Vitamin A.


Be Well and Be Zen



  1. Gaby., Vitamin A., Nutritional Medicine (2011)., ps.53-59., ISBN13: 978-0-9828850-0-0. Fritz Perlberg Publishing, Concord, NH.
  2. Ibid Gaby., Zinc., p.145-151.
  3. C. Atkins., Dr. Atkins Vita-Nutrient Solution (1998)., ps.43-48, 132-137., ISBN: 0-684-81849-3


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