Parasites? When you hear this word in North America, if you’re like most people you probably think of children in the Third World countries, barely existing on food that they scavenged in the street. But think back to that headline a few days or weeks ago. Remember the one that said, “Fecal coliform count high in city water”, or “California strawberries the problem, cryptosporidium the culprit”, or perhaps you have just been out hiking and happened to drink some of the water from a pristine mountain lake, only to come home and get violently ill. The problem? Giardiasis parasite, which is in almost all water inhabited by aquatic mammals now.

“While planning summer camping or rafting trips, many anticipate the pleasure of drinking from a glacial mountain stream. Don’t even think about it. Experienced campers know that summer is high season for Giardia lamblia – a tiny parasite that wreaks havoc on the human intestine. Travelers often bring it home as an unpleasant souvenir of their vacation.

“Giardia is a protozoan that inhabits the digestive tracts of many mammals and finds its way into rural waterways. Once only identified with the camping experience, it used to be called ‘beaver fever’ or ‘backpacker’s disease.’

“Now, however, this country bug has moved to the city. People bring it home from vacation and pass it around at school or home. Filtering and careful disinfection removes it, but lapses in water treatment can allow urban outbreaks.

“Drinking untreated water or hand-to-mouth contact with an infected person can transmit the infection, with symptoms that include cramps, bloating and diarrhea that persists for weeks or months if left untreated. Giardia symptoms mimic many other conditions, including irritable bowel, chronic pancreatitis, colitis or lactose intolerance, because the bug wipes out enzymes in the intestine.

“Diagnosing giardiasis requires examining a stool sample in a lab for ova and parasites. Newer tests for Giardia antigen (the bug’s foreign protein), or an intestinal assay requiring patients to swallow a gel capsule on a string so it can be retrieved, supplement the lab work in difficult cases.

“Treating giardiasis usually involved a seven-to-ten day course of treatment with the drug metronidazole for adults. The drug is harsh and metallic tasting, and patients must avoid alcohol during treatment because the combination can make one violently ill. Children are often given a different drug, furazolidone. A third drug, paromomycin, is used in pregnant women because it’s safer for the fetus.

“Experts say severe, persistent bellyache and diarrhea – whether in backpackers or urbanites – ought to trigger a diagnostic test for giardiasis. ‘There are a million modes of transmission that aren’t the backpacker experience,’ says Dennis Juranek, associate director, division of parasitic diseases at the U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. These include: sexual contact, poor personal hygiene, hand-to-mouth contact and food-borne transmission by food handlers who don’t wash their hands. Swimming pool outbreaks are common, since Giardia is resistant to chlorine.

“Backpackers can prevent Giardia by boiling all drinking water, says Juranek.” Toronto Star, May 10,1997

This being the case with Giardia, how easy for all of those Third World immigrants who have come to North America in the last 20 years to have brought with them all of the parasites common to their countries. Also, with all of the people flying to tropical, Third World countries, it is a very easy thing for parasites to infect them and then they bring back the parasite with them after their vacation Sometimes this parasite infection may not show up until years after the trip.

Everyone in North America has heard of Tapeworms, (common in undercooked pork), ringworm, mange (in animals), Candida yeast infection, (sometimes just called yeast infection in women, or thrush in babies), but now we have to add to the list all of the parasites common to the Third World.

Parasites rob us of nutrition.

One woman that I knew took supplements, exercised regularly and ate organic foods. She was someone you would definitely class as a healthy person. She went in for some blood tests and they showed that she had low iron levels. She asked me, “how could I possibly have low iron – I take supplements which contain iron all the time.” My answer was, “you probably have parasites”. There is a parasite called hookworm that can bite into the intestinal wall, which will cause bleeding, death of the tissue, severe infections and low levels of iron. Iron deficiency becomes a problem because of the iron that is lost to the hookworms inside the body. Dr. Thomas Brooks says that hemoglobin levels can be as low as 15% of normal because of hookworm with severe, long-standing infestation in the body. One species of hookworm in North America is called nicator americanus, which means “American murderer,” just to illustrate how widespread the problem of parasites is. The World Health Organization estimates that almost a billion people have hookworm. That’s close to one in five on planet earth. I hope that this information will serve as a wake-up call to North Americans that the parasite problem is not going away. In fact, it is getting much worse.

Remember when sometime in your childhood, one of your family or friends was discussing how someone had worms? Those who have pets know what I’m talking about. Most animal owners are advised to have their pets de-wormed once or twice a year. Well, take a look at this: in Europe the medical community advises that you de-worm yourself just as often as you de-worm your pet.

Now what is a parasite? A parasite is a live organism that uses a host for its food and home. This host can be you or me. Parasites live parallel lives inside our bodies. Feeding off our energy, our cells, our organs, and even off the food we eat – including the health supplements we take.

I was told that outbreaks of parasite infestation in North America don’t compare to those in the Third World countries. Well, two decades later, the statistics have changed. The issue of parasites has gone from low priority to one of primary importance worldwide in the last few years. In 1991, Dr. Henry Winah, then chief of pathobiology at Walter Reed Army Hospital said, “we have a tremendous problem with parasites here in America, it is just not being identified.” Studies have shown that 85% of the adult population have one or more type of parasites. In terms of numbers, there are more people infected with parasites in this country now than in Africa. At the close of the Persian Gulf War, for example, more than 500,000 personnel returning from that part of the world were told not to donate blood – specifically because of the threat of infestation by a desert fly, the parasite Lesh Maniasis.

There are two kinds of parasites: large and small. The large parasites are easy to see with the human eye. The small parasites are microscopic in size; however, do not let their size fool you. Microscopic parasites can be very dangerous. They can get into your joints and eat the calcium lining of your bones, which can lead to arthritic tendencies. In fact, one doctor has stated that one particular parasite, Endolymax Nana, can be the specific cause of rheumatoid arthritis and may also leave you with a whole host of muscle and joint-related disease.

About 30% of parasites reside in the digestive system, the other 70% are located throughout the body: in the bloodstream, muscles, bones, various organs – including the liver and pancreas, sinus cavities, eyes, and even the brain. Many health practitioners have come to the conclusion that manic-depression, anxiety, nervousness and other mental conditions can be caused by parasites affecting the brain. A news program on CNN reported that major digestive disorders such as ulcerative colitis, diverticulitis and crohn’s disease could be caused by parasites as well.

Why has this problem gone so unnoticed for so long here in North America, even though it has been written about, publicized and there is much evidence to support its existence as one of the greatest causes of decreased health potential in the world today? Well, perhaps because not many people want to face the terrifying fact – that there could be something living inside their body other than them. That your body could be infested with parasites is a horrible thought.

Here are symptoms that could point to parasite infestation: itchy ears, nose, anus, even a constant itchy sensation in different parts of the body – like your back. Problems with male impotence, or dysfunction, female problems, including with menstruation, (like pms); Gas, bloating, forgetfulness, irritable bowel syndrome, candida yeast infections, unclear thinking, increased appetite; Eating more but still feeling hungry, pain around the naval area; Unclear vision, numbness of the hands or feet, grinding of the teeth during sleep; Low energy, and chronic fatigue syndrome. Allergies – even some liver and heart problems can be caused by parasites. Parasites can live anywhere in your body and this being true, no major organ is immune to parasite infection.

There are actually more organisms that live as parasites in the world, than those that live on their own. This is one of the reasons that parasitic infections are on the rise. Here are some of the ways that you could get parasites right here in North America: walking barefoot on beaches or in parks, being bitten by a cockroach or mosquito that was infected by a parasite, or even those sandboxes in which our children play. Foods such as red meat, pork and even fish can carry the larva of parasites. In fact, pork and fish tapeworms are known to be the largest. One pork tapeworm called Tania Solium can grow up to 15 feet in length and live in your digestive system, eating the food you consume first – depriving you of proper nutrition. Many people think that microwave cooking will kill parasites, but this is not always the case. Studies show that many parasites can still live in foods, even after being microwaved. Fruits and vegetables also have many known parasites that live on them. In one study, a single radish was shown to have 5 different kinds of parasites on it. (Always clean and peel your vegetables, whenever possible, especially if you’re going to eat them raw.) Everyone is susceptible to parasites.

Yul Brynner, the famous actor became seriously ill with trichinosis, a tiny roundworm that is a parasite common in pork which has been undercooked, after eating at a famous New York restaurant. In Phoenix, Arizona in the month of February, 1996 a local news station reported that hot-dog-eaters were continuously diagnosed with various health disorders. Upon looking at the hot dogs under a microscope, they were found to contain live parasites. This showed that the pigs and the other animals that the hot dogs came from were infested by parasites. Imagine how this affected all of the hot-dog-eaters when they found that they were eating live parasites?

How many different kinds of parasites are there? Well, opinions vary. The natural health field estimates that there could be as many as 150 different parasites that could infest human beings. The medical establishment estimates much higher, more than a thousand, many of which are not identified.

Every living organism eats, secretes and reproduces. Some parasites lay as many as 5-6,000 eggs a day. Other microscopic parasites produce even faster. It is the toxic secretions (waste) of parasites that start to be a problem as the immune system has more and more of them to eliminate when a person is infected. Especially as their numbers increase does the immune system become compromised, because the body cannot eliminate the waste products that are produced by our own bodies and the parasite as well. To make this situation even worse, if people start to drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes, eat junk food and breathe polluted air, the extra stress on the body’s immune system causes it to go into something called “toxic overload” – more toxins than the body can healthfully tolerate.

There are more and more parasites and disease that are passed from animals to humans. If you are concerned about your health, consider this: a major pet food manufacturer was recently found to be guilty of using, diseased, parasite-infected dead animals in its food. And a parasite-infected pet often means people being infected as well. Toxoplasmosis is a well-known parasite of this sort. It is a single-cell protozoa which has infected many cats and through them to humans. Especially newly pregnant women can get very sick or even have a deformed child because of this parasite. Up to 90% of the population of Paris, France and up to 50% of the population of the United States are estimated to be infected with Toxoplasmosis, to one degree or another. Even the famous and very healthy tennis pro, Martina Navratilova was infected by the cat-transmitted parasite, Toxoplasmosis. Many pets can act as the “middle-man” in the transmission of hook or pinworms. We touch the pet, which has picked up the parasite and then we get infected ourselves. In 1977, the television show, 60 Minutes discussed children who were infected by dogworms. Many children had died and their autopsies showed the cause of their eye problems, swollen bellies, spleen and liver enlargements was found to be dogworms. Dogs, horses, rabbits, and all other pets have many kinds of parasites which will live on or around them – so please be warned: always keep them as clean as possible, and de-worm them and yourself on a regular basis.

Another symptom of parasite infection can be weight problems. Sometimes, people try many things to help them reduce their weight: they try shakes, aerobics, starvation, they read books and magazines. They try dietary supplements but still get minimal results. Or, they go through the yo-yo syndrome – weight on, weight off. Why? Because weight problems can be a symptom of parasites or constipation. What can you do? The first thing to do is to clean out the nesting ground of parasites – mainly in the large bowel. If your colon is impacted with hard, fecal matter your body may not eliminate properly, plus this provides a convenient place for the parasites to live. Another problem in our society is autointoxication, which results from constipation. This happens when our body cannot eliminate the waste from the food we eat. Dr. Bernard Jensen says that you can only safely hold 3 to 4 meals in your digestion system at any one time. Here is a good definition for regularity: your bowels should eliminate a meal after one goes in. So if you eat three meals a day, you should be having 2-3 bowel movements a day. How many people do you know that are like this? The extra waste, that has not been eliminated, sits in the colon and the body begins to re-poison itself. According to the Royal Society of Medicine in Britain, there are up to 36 different types of poison that the body is susceptible to because of autointoxication putting far too much stress on the immune system. When this happens, the parasitic problem just multiplies because the microscopic, single-celled parasites love to attack stressed human cells. And the larger parasites love to nest in this waste encrusted in your large intestine. When we eat too much junk food or greasy food, this causes a paste-like film over the intestine, reducing the absorption of nutrients from the food we eat. So not only are the parasites being fed first, but the left-over nutrition is not being properly absorbed by the body. Remember this: you must remove the nest first, before you can eliminate the parasite invader.

Treatment: Firstly, it is of utmost importance that the parasite nesting ground in the body is cleansed by taking a good herbal laxative. You should take this formula for approximately one week before beginning on the parasite cleansing formula below. Continue the herbal laxative for one week beyond beginning with the parasite cleanse, for a total of two weeks. (You should eat as many high-fiber fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains as possible during this program. As much as possible, avoid constipating foods such as milk, eggs, cheese, sugar, white bread, white rice, and barley.)

The basic colon cleansing formula should include:

Bulking agents and stool softeners such as psyllium seeds or husks and bentonite clay, golden seal herb, senna, hyssop, mullein, aloes, sage (If these items are not available, for convenience sake, you may take metamucil, sugar-free or one of the other commercial stool-softeners that contain psyllium seed)

Directions: Take with plenty of water upon arising and before going to bed.

After one week of the colon cleanse, the next step is this excellent formula for combating parasite infection:

Over-all formula should include, (approximately),

Each capsule contains:

Garlic 150 mg.

Caprylic Acid 150 mg.

Grapefruit Seed Extract 100 mg.

Green Hull Black Walnut 100 mg.

Wormwood 100 mg.

Freshly ground cloves 100 mg.

Pumpkin Seed 100 mg.

L-Acidophilus 2 billion cell count

Directions: 2 capsules 1/2 hour before meals 3 times daily. ( 6 capsules per day.) Recommended program is one month.