Parasites in the Liver
Answered by: Susan Eagles
Question from: Nancy
Posted on: September 13, 2003

A friend of mine has had parasites, acquired on a trip to Southeast Asia, for something like 12 years. They have infected his liver, rather than digestive tract. He is having success at last with a very strict diet consisting mostly of raw vegetables, with a little chicken or fish, and no carbohydrates to speak of.

I was wondering: would herbs have anything to offer such a situation? Thanks for your help.

Parasites can invade all body parts. Paul Pitchford, in "Healing with Whole Foods" (published by North Atlantic Books) documents a comprehensive parasite purge program, in which he describes the different types of parasites, how they behave, and a healing strategy. The most important point according to Pitchford and most experienced natural healers, is that healing will not happen until the parasites are eliminated from the body. Pitchford describes the key factors in eliminating parasites. 1) correct constipation ( see www.richters.com; choose Q&A from the main menu and enter "constipation" for the search). Once the parasites have been killed, they must be effectively eliminated from the system. 2) balance intestinal flora: eliminate excess mucus to allow for good bowel elimination (turmeric root is useful for this, along with fibres, like one tablespoon freshly ground flax seeds three times daily or beet root and apples daily), take pro-biotic supplements like acidophilus and consume flora-enhancing foods like miso, raw sauerkraut, natural yogurt with active bacterial cultures and chlorophyll-rich foods like wheat grass, spirulina and alfalfa greens (not alfalfa sprouts). 3) Pitchford describes in detail the healing diet and remedies, including herbs, that will kill parasites and restore balance. I highly recommend this book as a source of healing diets.

Herbal anti-parasitics kill parasities throughout the body. Black walnut green hull (Juglans nigra) kills and expels parasites and helps to destroy toxins. Wormwood (Artemesia absinthum), a strong anti-parasitic, must be used with caution. Thomas Bartram, in "Bartram’s Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine" (available at Richters) lists its contraindications as: large doses, high blood pressure, pregnancy, heart failure and warns that the alcoholic preparation should not be taken over a long period of time. Bartram’s suggested dosage is 1 to 2 grams, 5 ml of the tincture or 1 to 2 ml of the fluid extract of wormwood. Garlic is antiparasitic, and a useful addition to an anti-parasite protocol. A clove of fresh garlic can be taken daily with salads or chopped up and swallowed. There are effective herbal parasite cleanse kits in health food stores.

A herbal parasite cleanse is usually followed for 4 to 10 days, followed by a break of 2 to 5 days, to allow the parasite eggs to hatch before attacking them again. This cycle is repeated for 3 weeks to 3 months, depending on signs and symptoms of improvement. Once the parasites have been eliminated, it is usually recommended to take two or three cycles of the herbal parasite cleanse once or twice annually.

I recommend working with a clinical herbalist or a naturopath for optimum healing benefit.

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