Parasite Hype or Not?
Written by DD Rose - Consultant on Infectious Pathogens
Restorative Health Research Plus™ - www.rhrplus.com
Several years ago I had a conversation with a nurse friend of mine who was complaining about having gastrointestinal disturbances along with Candida and other problems. It was an opportunity that I couldn't pass up. I gently mentioned that parasites could be her problem. I asked if she bothered to check into the possibility of parasites. My friend gave me a sneer claiming, "The parasite thing is nothing but hype. I don't believe the problem are parasites - it's all hype!" Little did she know how wrong she could be. . . she owned a cat (months later I found out that her cat had been sick). I figured that this could possibly be one source for her problems and other possibilities had to be looked into. All animals carry parasites, but house cats and pet birds are notorious for carrying a lot of parasites. My friend didn't want to believe in the possibility that she could be infected by parasites. I proceeded to tell my story of what I discovered. She listened with interests. Since that time I learned more than I ever wanted to know about parasite infections.
My initial experience with a menacing parasite problem is explained in Invasion of the "Travel Bug" - Except, I Didn't Travel!. I talked about my discovery of a parasite infection. I used herbal cleanses. Later, I took pharmaceutical medication which was a huge mistake for me. I figured that the parasites were simple worms that could be instantly killed with medication (or herbs); I remember smiling with glee as I took the medication thinking that I would soon be free from my misery. The fantasy was over -- how wrong I was, very wrong -- I was deluded into believing that I would be healed in no time. The parasites scattered all over my body trying to escape from the medication which was intended for their death. At the time, I didn't know about resistance, mutating, or their survival instincts as a species. Let's face facts, these worms are complex and have been living for millions of years; they are very good at adapting to any environment as parasitic organisms.
I returned to natural preparations because I felt it was safer. My health problem became a quest with a mission -- find a better treatment along with learning everything that I could about these Silent Masters. I had discovered that other possible pathogenic co-factors were also playing a roll in my health which I described in The Missing Secret to Health Maybe Co-factors. A couple of years later while searching diligently for answers, I learned that herbs can work but they need to be carefully prepared, calculated at the precise strength for the right organisms that are to be targeted. In certain instances, broad spectrum approaches as a quick fix can possibly do more harm than good with driving organisms deeper into the body.
During my never-ending research on various parasites, I came across something that might be very plausible. There was an article that I read where a couple visited the United States and returned to their country with a parasitic infection. There is the likelihood that Americans may have a higher infection rate than those in third world countries. Believe it, because it is possible! I'd be the last person in the world to ever conceive that I had been infected by parasites, silently lurking within me. Why or how did this happen? Perhaps one answer might be we’ve naively believed that with the implementation of sanitation worms and protozoan parasite infections were completely eliminated from our society. For this reason, a fallacy has been perpetuated that a problem doesn’t exit – this is erroneous. Sanitation may have helped with keeping the rate down as the population grew, but it didn’t eliminate the problem. Sanitation reports clearly state that parasites are found in the sewage sludge(1) (2) (3) ; there is the likelihood that people are possibly eliminating parasites without realizing it.
There are plenty of people in the States who never traveled that have discovered parasites. In 2007, Dr. Mamet Oz was on the Oprah Show admitting that 90% of the population carries parasites; therefore, they do exist. Finally, a little bit of truth is coming out about this health menace. Although there was admittance about parasites, he told one person that it was okay to eat sushi because chefs can dig out all the larvae. I’m sorry, but there are microscopic organisms that cannot always be seen by the naked eyes (like parasite eggs embedded in tissue). I don’t care how good those chefs are they’re not going to find some organisms when a fillet is held up to a light or candle. There are plenty of aquatic parasites looking for another live host to feed upon. Additionally, there are medical reports as well as news articles citing that people have been infected by eating sushi or from preparation of raw fish(4). This doesn’t mean that you can be infected at all times, but it does raise a risk for a parasite infection if consumed. For this reason alone I would have to disagree with Dr. Oz.
Our tap water system isn't completely free of parasites either. Despite our Grade A or top choice meats, they are not parasite-free as we've been lead to believe. Infections can easily happen with careless handling or consumption.
Episodes In Emergency Rooms
While under the care of the first physician that I saw, one evening I went to the emergency room because the parasites were becoming bothersome as a persistent problem. Unfortunately, this is after I took pharmaceutical anthelmintics. On this particular evening the situation could've been life-threatening - I was scared. I called a relative and we rushed to the hospital. One physician that I spoke to thought that I was a possible psychiatric case or having delusions as soon as I mentioned parasites, and politely indicated this to me. I would have to “present” with symptoms to be taken seriously. When I was told this, it was like more of a challenge. . . ."let's see what she's going to do next" type of scenario. In other words, since I wasn’t thrashing on the floor in front of Dr. LC with seizures, moaning in pain or near death, they didn’t exist, “. . .not in America” I was told. This is absolutely wrong.
Dr. LC also told me that parasites don’t live for years in the body AND they don’t multiply. Another fallacy – parasites are aggressive and resilient -- they want to survive just like other living species. There is plenty of scientific evidence that they exists in humans for many years, some living in colonies.
I really had to wonder what medical training did this person have to make ridiculous statements about parasites with such confidence? If Dr. LC did the math on one worm laying eggs per day, it is very evident that their species can survive for a number of years within the body. If you haven’t read Parasite Eggs, "Shedding" and Samples it will help give you a better understanding. Tapeworms, for instances, can live 25-30+ years in someone; there are other parasites that can live for a number of years. If you don’t know you have parasites, you can easily reinfect yourself by coughing up eggs from the lungs and swallowing a small portion of infected sputum. The notorious roundworm, Ascaris, has this lifecycle as well as other species.
Dr. LC refused to check me where the problem was located. She did give me a quick check over with a liver palpitation examination to see if it was enlarged; this would be normal to check but I believe she thought that I was a possible closet alcoholic because she couldn't smell anything on me. Surprised she said, "Oh, your liver isn't enlarged. It's normal." Well, I don't drink except on rare occasions, so it was no big surprise to me!
When Dr. LC finished the exam she claimed that I didn’t have a problem. My bill for the "pep talk" and exam was over $800. I was sent home to go rest. Little did she know that I was unable to rest and had been up for 48 hours using all my faculties to fight these things; I was completely exhausted. Rest was exactly what I needed but couldn’t get it. I really wanted some relief and decided to try another place.
At the other establishment my experience wasn’t much better, but this time they did a “test” which came back negative weeks later. [I learned why tests come back negative when obvious symptoms persisted. That’s another
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(1) Lime & Wastewater Sludge
". . . quantitative observation under a microscope has shown substantial survival of higher organisms, such as hook worms, amoebic cysts and Ascaris ova after contact time of 24 hours at high pH."
In July 1984, the Sandia National Laboratories published a report titled "Pathogens in Sludge Occurrence, Inactivation and Potential for Regrowth" which states:
"To summarize the effects of lime on sludge pathogens viruses are destroyed by high pH values, although it has not been shown that viruses within sludge itself are inactivated; parasite ova are resistant to high pH, and most will probably survive lime treatment; bacteria are rapidly inactivated at pH 12 but, because of pH decreases at levels suitable for bacteria growth, their numbers increase with time."
(2) The EPA on Sewage - Project 3a: Optimization of the Method for Detecting, Enumerating,
and Determining the Viability of Ascaris Ova in Sewage Sludge
"The goal of this project is to optimize the helminth ova method for the detection in the various
sewage sludge matrices in order to assess the effectiveness of treatment practices meant to inactivate ova.
The helminth (Ascaris) ova assay described in Environmental Regulations and Technology: Control of Pathogens and Vector Attraction in Sewage Sludge (USEPA, 2003e) has been used a number of times, it is time consuming, and it has never been fully optimized and validated for the various sewage sludge matrices."
(3) This study was done in Mexico
"The study focused on the eggs of Ascaris because they are usually present in the highest concentrations in wastewater and sludges and are also the most resistant to inactivation."
(4) Surgical Case of Bowel Obstruction from Anisakis
"Clinicians should consider anisakiasis in the differential diagnosis of any patient presenting with acute gastroallergic symptoms in conjunction with abdominal pain or obstruction and query such patients about any recent ingestion of sushi, sashimi, or other raw or undercooked fish. Home preparation of sushi using one's own catch is particularly risky, and suspicions should be elevated for patients who acknowledge having eaten sushi prepared from wild-caught fish."