Using Worms to Fix Illness

October 05, 2015

Using Worms to Fix Illness 

 Reference:   Healing the Biome, Anna Cheng, Journal of Evolutionary Medicine 

 Oct 5th, 2015 

 Are you ready for some really far-out ideas? I mean, stretch the envelope a little? Ok. Here goes. For most of human history, we have lived with a whole host of critters on and in us. We are now becoming accepted that our bowels contain 100 times the amount of DNA and 10 times the number of cells that our own bodies contain in the form of the “bacterial biome”.   

Ok, so far so good. How about other creatures? How about worms, for example? We have sterilized our environment in the last 200 years in ways that we don’t even think about. We have clean public water so that we don’t get ravaging epidemics of typhoid and cholera. On face value, that’s good. We also wear shoes, so that we don’t get pinworm and other worms that live in the soil and in the feces of our animals.   That sounds good too. We have fridges that keeps food cold and safe. We can our farm products, ship them frozen, sterilize them.   

All sounds good, right.   Hmmm. Then we got inventive and got antibiotics that reamed out the bacteria in our guts, our spit, our saliva.   Then we moved indoors and lost Vitamin D. We started eating grain-fed animals, and lost Vitamin K2. We genetically altered our grains and made them lectin rich and gluten-rich….. it keeps getting worse! Reconsider for just a bit. 

We have dramatically reduced the interplay of immune system and environment. There are now more and more studies showing that farm kids have less asthma. And taking antibiotics early results in more asthma. Asthma is an autoimmune disease. But that’s not the only autoimmune disease that has exploded in frequency. There are now beginning to be more and more anecdotal studies of folks who have treated themselves with worms as a means of turning on their immune system to inspire their “natural immune response”.  But it’s not just anecdotal.   

A few brave early researchers have looked at multiple sclerosis and trypanosomiasis.   This is no mild parasite! It causes severe and maybe fatal disease. But Dr. Correale has looked at MS patients infected with flatworms and tapeworms and showed that they had much lower rates of exacerbation than those without those infections. And, on investigation, they had markedly enhanced protective immune responses that would provide the explanation as to why this would occur. In fact, Dr. Correale noted that there were no helminthes that didn't work. This review article looks over the 6-7,000 cases of world wide self treatment that people have reported on in one fashion or another, and suggests we have a fertile ground for research. The question is raised that perhaps our well-intentioned environment of clean living has a dark side to it. Perhaps our obsession with cleanliness has gone a bit too far.   There is a rich science to be explored here that is in its infancy.   And I’m totally fascinated by it. 

 WWW. What will work for me. I’m not sure I’m ready to walk around barefoot to cure my asthma with hookworm, but it sure looks interesting.   I grew up in India and swam in cryptosporidium rich water for years. When cryptosporidium made 300,000 people sick in Milwaukee, I was in the thick of it, drank the water, and never got sick.   Hmmm. For now, I’m reading everything I can get my hands on about this. There has to be a worm we can use for a brief period, and then cure ourselves when our autoimmune illness is better. Volunteers?   Pop Quiz

  1. A worm-free environment is not natural? T or F                        Answer;  True. We have spent most of human history itching one part of ourselves or another, some more indelicate than others.
  1. 70 % of our immune system is in our gut. T or F                       Answer:   True, even though I didn’t mention it in the text.
  1. Lectins in wheat explain most autoimmune illness. T or F                      Answer:    False. It’s just one theory. The whole cause is likely much more complex with loss of many players.
  1. You can make MS better with worms. T or F                     Answer:   Maybe false. Not better, but you can stop it from getting worse.
  1. It may be a good idea to get out there and walk around barefoot in rural India if you have asthma. T or F                    Answer:   You would not be the first. But it would not be recommended by traditional medicine. But you might end up fixed.