If you’re hosting unwelcome invaders in your body, perhaps it’s time for a parasite cleanse.
You may associate parasitic infections with far-away places, but according to the CDC, millions of Americans are hosting parasites. Often, they don’t know. Roundworms, hookworms, tapeworms, eye mites, giardia – parasites are shudder-worthy creatures that can cause big problems in your body. According to Medical News Today, more than 1,000 types of parasites can live on you or inside of you.
Gross, right? Parasitic infections can be responsible for dozens and dozens of symptoms, from coughing and unexplained weight loss to insomnia and blindness. Even scarier – you may have no symptoms at all.
Could You Have a Parasite?
Common risk factors for parasitic infections include:
- Eating raw or undercooked fish or meat (sorry, sushi lovers).
- International travel, especially to developing countries.
- Frequently swimming in lakes, rivers, or streams.
- Close contact with children, pets, and/or insects.
- Poor hygiene and hand-washing.
- Compromised immune system.
- Poverty and malnutrition.
- Hot and humid climate.
- Handling cat litter.
How Do I Know If I Have a Parasite?
Confirming the presence of parasites usually requires a blood or stool test. Endoscopies, colonoscopies, x-rays, MRIs, and CAT scans can also identify a parasitic infection.
But you don’t have to be diagnosed with parasites to do a full-body cleanse. Please note: always consult your healthcare professional before doing any kind of cleanse. If you suspect you might have parasites, contact a professional right away so you can be tested and get the appropriate medical care. There is no parasite cleanse that is 100% effective.
Natural Parasite Cleanse: Harness Herbal Power
Some people swear by the ancient remedy of a goat milk enema to cure a parasitic infection – but these days it’s much easier to buy a bottle of liquid detox.
Most health stores stock commercial parasite cleanses like Microb-Clear, Worm Out, or IntestiClear. Their ingredients are overwhelmingly herbal and usually include wormwood, black walnut hulls (the most important ingredient), cloves, garlic, and/or chanca piedra.
Another option is to make your own cleanse with a blend of anti-parasitic supplements and foods, including:
- Black Walnut Hull Extract
- Wormwood Extract
- Grapefruit Seed Extract
- Oregano or Oregano Oil
- Cloves or Clove Oil
- Onions or Onion Extract
- Garlic or Garlic Extract
- Ginger or Ginger Extract
- Papaya Juice
- Coconut Oil
- Apple Cider Vinegar
Follow daily use instructions. Be sure to read labels and remember that these products (like all herbal supplements) are not regulated by the FDA. Most experts do not recommend starting a parasite cleanse while constipated. If you’ve never taken the supplement before and are unfamiliar with it, talk to your healthcare provider first.
During and after your cleanse, be sure to drink plenty of water and eat whole foods, especially fiber-rich vegetables. Limit fruits in favor of seeds and nuts – pumpkin seeds are a known anti-parasitic. Avoid grains, processed/junk food, added sugar, simple carbs, and alcohol. Complement your cleanse with a robust round of probiotics and/or high-quality fermented foods.
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