Cleansing Parasites from our Bodies
What can you tell me
about the validity of having "parasites" and "worms" in
our bodies and the need to "cleanse" beforesupplementing.
First off this is not an
easy question to answer and requires some understanding about parasites.
Generally speaking, your conventional physician, MD or DO, will not buy into
this discussion at all. With this in mindlets enter
First, off we must consider the definition of parasite. A parasite is an
organism which feeds off, a host, an example is the small feeder fish on larger
fish or a more relevant example is a tapeworm or fluke that uses our own body
or other living organisms as its host. They often live symbiotically (together,
supporting one another). However, parasites can leach their specific host of
nutrients and cause disease.
The idea of human parasites is often disturbing to think about. In the
medical field it is common knowledge that parasites lead to diseases. However,
we usually think you had to get the parasite by drinking infected water, eating
raw fish, exposure to stool from a cat, dog, bird, human or some other
has been increased concern about parasites since the 1990's. Much of this
concern is generated by the alternative health practitioners (
class=SpellE>ie herbalists and naturopaths). It is generally felt that
if the immune system of the host is intact then it is more difficult for
class=GramE>the parasite to "set up shop". However, if the immune system
is compromised it allows parasites greater ease to invade the body.
people are now wondering if they are infested with parasites. Some
practitioners have suggested that we all have some parasites. I suppose it can
be considered semantics, but abacteria, in a sense,
is a parasite.We have bacteria in our
intestines that have a symbiotic relationship with our bodies.
Â Essentially, our body provides nutrients the
class=GramE>bacteria needs to survive and this bacteria generates Â½ of
the Vitamin K we need (just one of many possible examples).A
parasite, in a sense, but more of a symbiotic relationship. Our mouths
are filled with bacteria and many of these bacteria help the host, but when the
host defenses are compromised then the bacteria can be overwhelming, and lead
to a serious infection. "We could not exist on this planet and not be in
contact with parasites. And while our immune system does a good job of keeping
them out of the body a few still get through, just as viruses and bacteria also
get through. There is some thought that parasites serve a purpose of keeping
our immune system active".
are ubiquitous. They can be found in water, food and from contact with
pets. Our bodies can be a host to many different types of parasites
ranging from microscopic amoebas to very large tapeworms that can exceed
several feet in length.
utilize tests from stool and or blood and can find many but not all parasites.
The alternative practitioner believes that our body is able to deal with small
numbers of parasites, but as their numbers increase, we start having diseases
or disorders such as, nasal congestion and other allergic symptoms, poor
digestion, sleep disturbances, constipation, diarrhea, headaches
etc"essentially symptoms that we take as normal variations in our health.
These symptoms do not develop overnight and generally progress slowly so we
rarely notice them as anything wrong. Thus, the alternative mindset
suggests that since parasites are omnipresent, it seems everyone can benefit
from a yearly parasite cleanse. The traditional allopathic and osteopathic
paradigms would not agree.
can only say that if your body is healthy, then your immune system can deal effectively
with the parasites. However, if you have medical issues, such as diabetes,
hypertension, circulatory problems, pH balance issues etc, it is thought that
your bodily tissues begin to malfunction, if you will. While parasites may not
necessarily be the cause of a disease, they are opportunistic and can
exacerbate a disease situation. Thereare ALTERNATIVE
(your conventional physician will not believe that you have a parasitic
infection without being very ill) reasons to consider a parasite cleanse. It is
estimated that parasites infect up to 80% of the world population.
Surprisingly, these parasitic infestations are not limited to developing
nations where sanitary conditions are poor, and frankly, not all parasitic
infections are likely to be bad (as the name would imply).
Possible Signs of
Parasitic Infestation (I know, we have all had thesesymptoms,
that is why I am not convinced that we need to be so worried).
Symptoms can manifest in a variety of ways.
- Food and environmental allergies have been linked to parasites.
This is not likely to go over well with your conventional physician, but
is a widely held belief of the alternative practitioner.
- Stomach pain, indigestion, ulcers, constipation or colitis may
indicate parasites in the digestive tract
- Some have suggested that patients with Parkinson"s disease or
other movement disorders may haveparasites,
again, you will not likely convince your MD or DO of this possibility.
- Joint or muscle pain, such as arthritis, can theoretically be a
sign that the presence of a parasite irritating the joint or tissue
- Increased susceptibility to infections in lungs, sinuses, vagina,
bladder or any mucous membrane may indicate the presence of a parasite
- Dermatitis, itching,
psoriasis, eczema, hives, swelling and rashes can indicate parasites in
the skin (again, NOT the most common causes of these symptoms)
- Anemia, fatigue or drowsiness
can theoretically indicate parasitic infections
If you think you want to do a "parasite" cleanse,
there are many tested pharmacologic compounds, many of which have significant
side effects. Nonetheless, you would be encouraged to discuss this with your
physician. In the meantime, here are some alternative options.
Initially, it is important to avoid getting
parasites in the first place.
Drinking water from mountain streams,
international travel (drinking water where it is not purified
satisfactorily"don"t forget, eating fruits and veggies that have been washed in
this non-purified water) can and routinely does cause parasitic infections. Do
you like Sushi" The increased consumption of raw or undercooked
class=GramE>foods, is a known source for acquiring parasites.
In the summer time you will often hear of
beach closings after heavy rains. This is because the bacterial and parasite
levels are much higher than normal and pose a serious risk for infection.
You might be surprised but your dog Fido or cat Fluffy are more likely than not
the most common method of transmission. Even despite hand washing you can still
get parasites by picking up their bedding or their food dish or when they come
over and lick you. This is one reason why women are advised to stop emptying
the cat litter box while they are pregnant.
Parasitic infections are thought to be more
opportunistic in an alkaline environment. Thus, the alternative practitioner
may advise keeping your digestive tract in a slightly acidic condition. This is
why cranberry juice or apple cider vinegar (diluted two tablespoons to eight
ounces of water) is often times recommended.
There are many herbs that may help eradicate
parasitic issues. Most alternative practitioners feel that you need to do this
cleanse for a minimum of four-six weeks, which is the reproductive cycle of
most parasites. This will eliminate the adult worms and the eggs. It is
generally recommended to take parasite-cleansing herbs before a meal.
Some herbal concoctions/examples:
Hanna Kroeger was the
pioneer behind the original Wormwood Combination formula. This formula has its
roots in folk medicine.
Bitter digestive herbs are used to kill parasites
in the digestive tract as well as controlling their eggs and improving
digestive secretions, a natural protection against parasite overgrowth. At the
same time, the bitter principles help to increase elimination, so that the
parasites" toxins may be excreted more rapidly. Wormwood has been used by
naturopaths to kill parasites, reduce mucus, promote bowel movement and
urination, help with stomach and digestion issues, and reportedly clear toxins
from the blood, liver and gall bladder. Traditional herbalists use Male Fern to
facilitate elimination of the parasites. Black Walnut acts as a laxative to
enhance elimination and also has anti-parasite activity.
Â The Wormwood formula also utilizes
class=SpellE>Quassia to soothes andprotect the
stomach and spicy Cloves, which can kill parasites and their eggs and also
reduce the gas formation and the cramping that many other de-worming formulas
can cause. All the herbs in this blend also control secondary fungal infections
and excess mucus that can be both a contributing factor to and by-product of
Cloves have been traditionally used to balance
digestive function, calm the stomach, promote bowel movement and reduce gas and
mucus. Cloves contain sesquiterpenes which has strong
Black Walnut Hull Tincture (from green
Both the leaves and the walnut hulls are believed to have anti-parasitic activity.
Black Walnut acts in several ways to address parasites. It works as a laxative
and it reportedly oxygenates the blood to help kill parasites, and can also
assist in ridding parasites from the blood, lymph system and other major
must say in conclusion that the above discussion is considered very
alternative. It will be unlikely that your physician will suspect any of this
to be true or supported in science.
do understand that parasites exist, but typically the patient infected with
parasites presents in a very ill way.
There are many alternative minded practitioners who believe that most
disease is rooted in parasitic infections.Diseases such as
cancer, allergies, liver diseases etc etc.