Human Parasites – Our Body’s Creepy Crawlies

GROSS!

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That’s exactly what I thought when I watched a TV show the other day and the topic was parasites. Talk about feeling creeped out and uncomfortable. Thing is, many of us carry these little buggers around inside of us. I didn’t really know much about them until I started doing a little research. I had NO clue how dangerous these horrible creatures can be on our health. Please read on, you will probably be as shocked as I was…..

Ready? Got your barf bag handy? Here we go…

Internal parasites and their waste products can reduce food absorption by causing inflammation of the intestinal wall. Parasites may affect your mood, your well being, and can interfere (and sometimes block) your natural intestinal vitamin absorption. Parasites feed from inside your body. These creatures include tape worms, round worms, hook works, pin worms that can grow to various sizes and lengths. Tape worms can attach themselves to the intestinal walls and stay nourished off food that you eat. Food might also get stuck resulting in excessive toxins, smelly farts, bad breath and bloating. If organs such as liver and kidneys cannot get rid of the toxins, then poisons might get out through skin causing skin problems and hair loss. Damaged nervous system and stress hormones give origin to insomnia. Some bloodsucking worms leave open wounds resulting in darker feces. The loss of blood can cause iron deficiency, anemia and dizziness.

Other symptoms caused by parasitic infections include (but are not limited to):

Constipation: Some worms, because of their shape and large size can physically obstruct certain organs. Heavy worm infections can block the common bile duct and the intestinal tract, making elimination infrequent and difficult.

Diarrhea: Certain parasites, primarily protozoa, produce a prostaglandin (hormone-like substances found in various human tissues) which creates a sodium and chloride loss that leads to frequent watery stools. The diarrhea process in parasite infection is, therefore, a function of the parasite, not the body’s attempt to rid itself of an infectious organism.

Gas and Bloating: Some parasites live in the upper small intestine where the inflammation they produce causes both gas and bloating. The situation can be magnified when hard-to-digest foods such as beans and raw fruits and vegetables are eaten. Persistent abdominal distention is a frequent sign of hidden invaders. These gastrointestinal symptoms can persist intermittently for many months or years if the parasites are not eliminated from the body.

Irritable bowel syndrome: Parasites can irritate inflame, coal, the intestinal cell wall, leading to a variety of gastrointestinal symptoms and mal-absorption of vital nutrients, particularly fatty substances. This mal-absorption leads to bulky stools and steatorrhea (excess fat in feces).

Joint and muscle aches and pains: Parasites are known to migrate to encyst (become enclosed in a sac) in joint fluids, and worms can encyst in muscles. Once Ads happens, pain becomes evident and is often assumed to be caused by arthritis Joint and muscle pains and inflammation are also the result of tissue damage caused by some parasites of the body’s ongoing immune response to the parasites.

Anemia: Some varieties of intestinal worms attach themselves to the mucosal lining of the intestines and then leach nutrients from the human host. If they are present in large enough numbers, they can create enough blood loss to cause a type of iron deficiency or pernicious

Allergy: Parasites can irritate and sometimes perforate the intestinal lining, increasing bowel permeability to large undigested molecules. This can activate the body’s immune response to produce increased levels of eosinophils, one type of the body’s fighter cells. The eosinophils can inflame body tissue, resulting in an allergic reaction.

Skin conditions: Intestinal worms can cause hives, rashes, weeping eczema, and other allergic-type skin reactions. Cutaneous ulcers, swellings and sores, popular lesions, and itchy dermatitis can result from protozoan invasion.

Granuiomas: Granulomas are tumor-like masses that encase destroyed large or parasitic eggs. They develop most often in the colon or rectal walls but can also be found in the lungs liver, peritoneum, and uterus.

Nervousness: Parasitic metabolic wastes and toxic substances can serve as irritants to the central nervous system. Restlessness and anxiety are often the result of the systemic parasite infestation. (After completing a herbal cleanse, many people swear that their persistently grouchy mates or relatives have become a lot more pleasant and patient.

Sleep disturbances: Multiple awakening during the night particularly between 2 and 3 AM, are possibly caused by the body’s attempts to eliminate toxic wastes via the liver. According to Chinese medicine, these hours are governed by the liver. Sleep disturbances are also caused by nocturnal exits of certain parasites through the anus, creating the intense discomfort and itching.

Teeth Grinding: Bruxism – abnormal grinding, clenching, and gnashing of the teeth – has been observed in cases of parasitic infection. These symptoms are most noticeable among sleeping for children. Bruxism may be a nervous response to the internal foreign irritant.

Chronic Fatigue: Chronic fatigue symptoms include tiredness, flu-like complaints, apathy, depression, impaired concentration, and faulty memory. Parasites cause these physical, mental, and emotional symptoms through malnutrition resulting from mal absorption of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, and especially vitamins A and B-12.

Immune Dysfunction: Parasites depress immune system functioning by decreasing the secretion of immunoglobulin A (I&A). Their presence continuously stimulates the system response and over time can exhaust this vital defense system, leaving the body open to bacterial and viral infections.

The following conditions might also be tell-tale signs of a parasitic invasion: weight gain, excessive hunger, weight loss, bad taste in the mouth and bad breath, asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, acne, migraines, and even the biggest killers: heart disease and cancer. A parasite survives by hijacking another organism, robbing it of nutrients and thanking it by leaving behind toxic waste. Obviously, we would be much happier without having these pint sized freeloaders around.

para4Yet, there are over 100 different types of parasites that can live in human hosts. Since the world’s population is becoming more mobile, with US tourists traveling to foreign countries where parasites are prevalent and immigrants moving to the US from these countries, parasitic infections are increasing. The fact is, parasitic infections may have reached epidemic levels in the US and most other countries.

Types of Parasites:

Parasites include an amazing cast of characters that can end up taking residence in our bodies. There are four different groups to choose from: roundworms, single celled protozoa, tapeworms and flukes.

Roundworms exist worldwide, especially in warmer climates. 25% of the world’s population may be infected with roundworms (which can reach the size of pencils) and include hookworms, whipworms, pinworms and trichinae. Hookworms migrate down the digestive tract where they attach to intestinal walls and ingest blood. The victim may experience nausea, indigestion, diarrhea, anemia and listlessness.  Whipworms are small, about 3 to 5 centimeters long, and infect the large intestine. Pinworms are the most common roundworm in the US and inhabit mostly crowded areas such as schools, day care centers and mental hospitals. They can be as contagious as the flu and usually infect several members of one family. Trichinae are tiny roundworms found in the muscle of infected animals, usually pigs that cause trichinosis, a disease characterized by intestinal disorders, fever, muscular swelling, pain and insomnia.  If you eat pork, be careful since even a small uncooked portion can lead to infection. Always cook pork until it’s well done.

Minuscule, single celled protozoa permeate our environment and harm more people worldwide than any other parasite. Protozoa form cysts, or a resting stage, where they become resistant to temperature extremes, chemicals and drying. Humans can easily ingest these small cysts and many of us have been exposed.  Yet, our immune systems come to the rescue and eliminate the cysts, keeping them under control.  Individuals with a weakened immune system due to stress or illness, however, may experience outbreaks curable with certain herbs.

Common throughout the world, tapeworms are long and ribbon-like. Humans can ingest tapeworm larvae by eating raw or under cooked beef, pork and fish or from coming in contact with infected animals or contaminated grains.  Tapeworms live in our intestines and absorb nutrients through their skin. People with tapeworm infections feel dizzy, toxic, have unclear thinking, high and low blood sugar levels, hunger pains, poor digestion and allergies.

The various species of flukes – tiny flat worms that look like odd-shaped pancakes – include blood flukes, fish flukes, intestinal flukes, liver flukes, lung flukes, lymph flukes and pancreatic flukes. Humans can become infected by eating raw or under cooked seafood, eating infected vegetation like water chestnuts or watercress or drinking or wading in infected water. Once inside the body, flukes migrate to various organs and may cause liver swelling, jaundice, weakened lungs and blood clots.

Causes and Development:

Worms are prolific little creatures. They can release tens of thousands of eggs at a time and it’s the eggs or the freshly hatched larvae that we inadvertently pick up as we walk barefoot or garden in infected soil.  Parasitic infection may spread through contaminated water, fruits, vegetables, grains, poultry, fish or meat. Parasites, in addition, can be transferred from pet to owner. Since children spend more time outdoors, they’re more likely than adults to be exposed to parasites.

People become infected with intestinal worms through contact with soil that has been contaminated with human feces from an infected person. In the case of roundworm and whipworm, people can become infected when they ingest the worm eggs, either by eating contaminated food (e.g. fruits or vegetables that have been watered with water containing contaminated soil), or by ingesting contaminated soil directly (kids can do this). People become infected with hookworm when the larvae burrow through the skin of bare feet.

Signs and Symptoms:

Parasites are responsible for many ill health conditions including diarrhea, gastrointestinal upset, vaginal irritation, joint pain, nervous diseases, immune dysfunction and chronic fatigue. Long term, undetected infestation can cause many systemic problems. For the very old, very young or immune-compromised, a parasitic infection can be extremely problematic.

Especially with heavier infections, intestinal parasites can also cause symptoms such as:

  •     Loose, foul-smelling stools
  •     Diarrhea
  •     Mucous in stools
  •     Abdominal cramps and gas
  •     Loss of appetite
  •     Distended abdomen
  •     Coughing
  •     Fever
  •     Vomiting
  •     Listlessness and generally feeling unwell

These symptoms may last for weeks and return several times a year. Other parasites are nearly harmless (at least in small quantities) and often don’t cause symptoms. In North America and Europe, parasites rarely cause serious complications. The incidence of parasite infection is both overestimated and underestimated, depending on who you are listening to. If you have symptoms suggesting their presence, you should be carefully and even repeatedly tested, if necessary.

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Treatment and Prevention:

It doesn’t take Stone Age sanitation habits or a lengthy trip exploring dense jungles to increase parasitic infection risks. Parasites are almost everywhere. Yet, many medical doctors hesitate to diagnose parasitic infection and won’t treat the infection unless symptoms are serious. Even though we’ve always had to deal with parasites, medical doctors have found that patients don’t want to hear about them.

And it’s just as well. The drugs most physicians use against parasitic infection work on the premise of differential toxicity which means that the drug is hopefully more toxic to the parasite than to us. Side-effects include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, rashes and headaches. I would much prefer to kill them with herbal remedies.

Fortunately, there are gentler herbal remedies that rid systems of persistent parasites. You can find these cleanses at most health food stores or you can purchase them online. I found several types of Parasite Cleanses at Amazon

Preventing Re-infection:

  •     Periodically consume curry meals (highly anti-parasitic) followed by probiotics treatment (to re-establish healthy intestinal flora).
  •     It is a realistic approach to EXPECT to become infected by destructive parasites and to undergo a periodic (annual) parasitic cleanse, as most fresh waters globally located near human habitation ARE polluted.
  •     Be sure that all meat, chicken and fish is cooked thoroughly.
  •     Don’t use a microwave to cook meat, chicken or fish.  Microwaves often don’t heat foods completely.
  •     Wash all fruits and vegetables in clean water before eating (to prevent roundworm and whipworm infection)
  •     Always wash your hands, kitchen counters and utensils with hot soapy water after cutting or handling raw meat, chicken or fish.
  •     Be sure that all meat, chicken and fish is cooked thoroughly.
  •     Don’t use a microwave to cook meat, chicken or fish. Microwaves often don’t heat foods completely.
  •     Always wear shoes or slippers (to prevent hookworm infection)
  •     Do not use water from septic tanks or other potentially contaminated sources for watering vegetables
  •     Contain all fecal matter
  •     Teach children proper hygiene by washing hands after going to the bathroom, playing outside and before preparing or eating food.
  •     If you have parasites, you can reduce the likelihood of passing them on to others by carefully washing your hands after having bowel movements and cleaning the genital area before having sex.
  •     Wear gloves when changing the cat box.  De-worm pets periodically.
  •     Avoid swallowing river, stream or lake water when swimming in them.
  • Eat high-fiber foods and avoid sugar and other refined carbohydrates.

Purchase Parasite Cleanses at Amazon (several types and brands to choose from)

To Purchase High Quality Health Products Please Visit My Healing and Health Products Page: Click Here

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