Well, this certainly is not a post I ever thought I'd write. EVER. But, it seems that my self-professed "health geek" journey has definitely taken a walk on the unexpected dark (and creepy crawly) side. As a result, I feel that I must share a DISCLAIMER:
The information that you are about to read cannot be unknown and is not for the faint of heart.
It all started quite innocently; a juice detox at a yoga retreat designed to give the digestive system a health-enhancing break that turned into a yearly endeavor. Little did I know that my foray into the experience of repeatedly going days without food would later turn to night-marish results on the other end (pun intended).
After recently tuning in to The Auto Immune Secrets docu-series, it was brought to my, intrigued but completely grossed-out, attention that approximately 85% of Americans are estimated to be infected with a complex Matrix of parasites. It is easy to understand why this is the case when the human body is crawling with bacteria. The digestive tract holds more than three pounds of bacteria alone. Although some bacteria can be good for your body, improving nutrient absorption and digestion, other bacteria can be devastating. When the bacteria in your system gets out of balance, it creates a perfect place for parasites to thrive and proliferate.
Parasites can enter your body in many ways and eating lot of fructose and glucose feeds the parasites helping them multiply. Pharmaceuticals, such as antibiotics, can also deplete the digestion system of bacteria and encourage parasitic growth.
These parasites can range from tiny organisms that cannot be seen by the human eye, to huge worms that reach several feet in length. Some people are more likely to fall victim to parasitic infections than others, but almost all parasites are dangerous. While some only have minor symptoms, new studies are finding that various forms of parasite can have long-term health implications, and some are even deadly. Researchers now believe that parasites could actually play a part in every common illness.
As I listened to leading experts share testimonies of retrieving 20 inch long "rope worms" out of their rectum while following the recommended herbal parasite cleanse, I knew in that instant that I had swallowed the red pill and could never go back to the unknowing ignorance of a believed critter-free internal environment. It is difficult to think that there might be parasites crawling around inside you. The concept is nerve-wracking, and just plain disgusting. But, I had to do this!!!!.....even if it meant taking the life of the protozoa, helminths, liver flukes, and rope worms residing in what I formerly believed to be my body alone. And so, my trip down the worm-hole lead me to the next level of detoxification, The Parasite Cleanse!
DON'T FEED THE PARASITES: A NATURAL CLEANSE SOLUTION
A parasite cleanse involves removing all of the dangerous foods like grains and sugars that can feed parasites from your system, and replacing them with foods that have been proven to kill parasites and remove their waste products - like pumpkin seeds, probiotics, clove, and garlic.
You have probably heard plenty of horror stories about parasites. From world-record breaking tapeworms that cause serious life-threatening problems for some people, to ticks transmitting Lyme disease, we encounter parasites on a regular basis.
Unfortunately, diagnosing the existence of a parasite in your system can be incredibly difficult. Though we can use blood tests, fecal examinations, colonoscopies and x-rays to search for parasites when symptoms begin to appear, many people may currently be living with a parasite without any knowledge whatsoever. In fact, estimates suggest that the overwhelming majority of all Americans have some manner of parasite living inside of their body – commonly within the intestinal tract. As international travel becomes more common, the rate of parasitic infections has grown within the United States, and across the globe.
AN INTRODUCTION TO PARASITES
The average human body is crawling with hundreds of different strains of bacteria and yeast. Before you panic, however, that is entirely normal. Remember, the digestive tract alone holds over three pounds of bacteria. When this bacterium is properly balanced, they can be essential for promoting nutrient absorption and good digestion. However, when an intruder steps into the mix, then problems can begin to occur.
Parasites are complex creatures. Almost always associated with inflammatory diseases, they actively prevent good health. Parasites can range from microscopic organisms that are invisible to the naked eye, to the aforementioned huge tapeworms that measure several feet in length. These parasites can enter your body in a multitude of different ways, sometimes through contact with animals, infected people, or infected portions of food and drink. When they are ignored, and treatment is not provided (as is frequently the case for some parasites), an infection can last for years, and even lead to chronic disease.
Those most likely to suffer from a parasitic infection include:
People who have a compromised immune system or chronic illness
People who travel to, or live within, subtropical regions
People who swim in rivers, ponds, or lakes where parasites are common
People who work in childcare
People who regularly work with soil
People who suffer from leaky gut syndrome
While some infections are easily treated, others are incredibly difficult to remove from the system once a parasite has taken hold.
THE DANGERS OF PARASITES AND WHAT CAUSES A PARASITE INFECTION?
Some parasitic infections cause very minor symptoms, which means that people can live with the parasitic intruder in their system for several years without even recognizing the infection. Alternatively, some very dangerous forms of parasites can lead to fatal, and long-term health implications when they are not quickly and effectively treated.
For instance, recent research suggests that:
Protozoan parasites might increase the risk of colitis in some patients
Parasites may cause stunted growth in the developing world.
Lyme bacteria (the bacteria often transmitted by ticks), can hide inside of parasitic worms and eventually cause chronic brain-based diseases.
New research suggests the parasite may even be linked to ADHD and neurodegenerative disorders via the gut/brain connection.
In general, parasitic infections can be caused by three organisms: protozoa, ectoparasites, and helminths. While protozoa are single-celled organisms that can live inside of your body, such as giardiasis – a serious infection that can be contracted by drinking infected water, Helminths are multi-celled organisms that live outside, or inside of your body. Helminths are more commonly referred to as worms, and can include thorny-headed worms, flatworms, tapeworms, and roundworms. Ectoparasites are multi-celled organisms that can live on, or feed off your skin. Ectoparasites include ticks, fleas, mosquitoes, and some mites.
An infection caused by a parasite can spread in a variety of different ways. For example, helminths and protozoa can spread through contaminated food and water, or even contaminated blood. Some of these parasites may also be passed on through sexual contact. There are some parasites which are spread by insects that act as a carrier for their disease, for instance, malaria is caused by a parasitic protozoon frequently transmitted by mosquitos.
Parasites are dangerous because they destroy the tissues present in their host, and cause significant damage, as well as producing their own toxic products in waste that can lead to various debilitating health problems. Many hosts suffer from infections, discomfort, and disease as a result of a parasitic infection. It’s estimated that up to 100 different types of parasitic worms alone can be found within the human body.
HOW TO TELL IF YOU HAVE A PARASITE
The first step, of course, is recognizing that you have parasites in your body. The disturbing truth is that you probably do. The key thing to remember is that anyone can have a parasites. These creatures are not just common for impoverished countries and unhygienic environments. Parasites are a common all over the world, including the United States. There are factors that can mean you have a greater level of risk.
Factors that can increase your risk of parasite infection include:
You frequently swallow water from ponds, lakes, rivers, or other unhygienic sources.
Your immune system is compromised, perhaps because you’re suffering from chronic Lyme.