Even the word parasites is unpleasant, but worse is what they can do in your gut—so listen up! Although I’ve talked about parasites before, I wanted to give you a quick refresher course. A balanced digestive environment is essential to your overall health, but there will always be organisms trying to move in and upset that balance. And when parasites move in, they can compromise immune health and your good digestion.
Just What Is a Parasite?
A parasite is an organism that lives by feeding upon another organism. Parasites living in the human body feed on our cells, our energy, our blood, the food we eat and even the supplements we take. There are several types of parasites: protozoa are single-celled organisms that are only visible under a microscope, while worms come in all different sizes, from threadworms measuring less than a centimeter to tapeworms that can grow up to 12 meters in length!
Parasites Can Cause That?
Take a look at the list of symptoms below. Do any of them sound familiar?
- Occasional diarrhea or constipation
- Gas, bloating and/or cramps
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Persistent skin problems
- Insomnia/disturbed sleep
- Muscle cramps
- Teeth grinding
- Post-nasal drip
- Sugar cravings
- Rectal itching
- Brain fog
- Pain in the umbilicus
5 Simple Steps to a Balanced Digestive Environment
A buildup of toxins and waste material in the colon increases your risk of parasites, which is why the right diet and nutrition are essential. Here are five simple steps to promote a healthy internal balance:
1. Eat plenty of fresh, non-starchy vegetables, lean meats and legumes, and avoid carbohydrates, sugar and starchy vegetables.
2. Get at least 35 grams of fiber each day to help stimulate the muscular contractions of the colon (peristalsis) that remove the contamination on which parasites thrive.
3. Consider an internal cleansing program to promote a healthy balance of intestinal microbes.
4. Maintain a healthy balance of intestinal bacteria with daily probiotics.
5. Supplement with enzymes and hydrochloric acid to enhance digestion and help deter parasites in the stomach.