The Parasite Cleanse Diet: What, How and Why

(Last Updated On: October 15, 2018)

Various parasites can infect the digestive tracts of many individuals, with the number of cases rising with the rising rates of international travel. Unsurprisingly, these parasites can cause various unpleasant symptoms for the sufferer, some of which may include: diarrhea, vomiting, cramps and lethargy. If you suspect you may be subjected to a parasite infection there are natural ways to treat it, although a visit to your local healthcare provider is recommended.

Parasites are most likely to be contracted by consuming infected foodstuffs or water, however those with a weakened immune system are likely more susceptible overall. Parasites are organisms that live off of their host, stealing nutrients and whatever else it needs to survive at the expense of the carrier. These parasites can also cause disease in humans, which is definitely wise to watch out for if you believe you have a parasite infection.

Parasites can be picked up by eating food such as pork and other undercooked meats, and raw seafood. Other than eating foods with a high chance of containing the unfortunate things, as mentioned previously can also be gained by visiting other countries such as China, Africa, Turkey, Mexico and India. If you experience a ‘dodgy tummy’ while traveling abroad it is highly likely you will have picked up a parasite and are suffering the after effects.

The most common sources of parasites for the parasite cleanse diet:

  • Contaminated soil
  • Contaminated fruits and vegetables /unwashed fruit and veg
  • Raw meat, likewise consuming foods rare is also a risk
  • Pets infected with parasites
  • Mosquito bites
  • Contact with others’ fecal matter (I don’t know! Perhaps you work in a nursery or daycare?)
  • Drinking polluted waters
  • Contact with an individual who has a parasite initially, i.e: kissing

If you think you are suffering from a parasite infection, common symptoms include:

  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Gas, bloating and cramps
  • Anemia
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Joint and muscle aches and pains
  • Cravings for sugary foods
  • Skin conditions such as rashes, hives and/ or eczema
  • Nervousness and anxiety
  • Headaches
  • Chronic fatigue and lethargy
  • Confusion
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Hyperactivity
  • Teeth grinding
  • Blisters on the lips and inside the mouth
  • Unpleasant taste in the mouth
  • Insomnia or disturbed sleep

Parasites can infect any body tissues, with many disorders being linked with their presence these include appendicitis, arthritis, epilepsy and even cancerous mutations. With the ability to enter the body’s bloodstream, parasites can easily travel to any organ causing issues that may often go unrecognized as a parasite infection. They cause damage when both feeding on our cell walls but also when excreting their waste within our bodies, poisoning the host and even weakening the immune system -thus making the body more prone to disease.

Entering through the nose, eyes, mouth and even absorbed through the skin there is little way to protect ourselves from the parasites. Even being transmitted through insect carriers, as mentioned earlier in the article mosquitoes are a huge causal agent in the contraction of parasites. Surviving best in unhealthy conditions, it is wise to follow a specially designed diet of foods which you can and cannot eat, cleansing the body of the infections. So, here’s our list of foods you can eat when performing a parasite cleanse:

Foods to include within your parasite cleanse diet.

Pungent Spices.

Spices such as turmeric, chilies, horseradish, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom and cayenne can all be used in various combinations to kill off dangerous parasites. Not only do these spices aid in improving the strength and usefulness of your parasite cleanse diet, but they also add that extra flavor and kick that you may be missing from your everyday meals.


This herb works brilliantly to make a parasite-unfriendly environment. In doing so, wormwood can result in the death of larger adult parasites for the body. Found in herbal teas, capsules and in concentrated liquid form, it is wise to add this medicinal herb to your parasite cleanse diet.

Side effects may include:

  • This herb can cause seizures in some individuals due to the content of thujone.
  • Muscle breakdown also due to thujone.
  • Kidney failure as a result of the thujone in wormwood.
  • Restlessness
  • Dizziness
  • Nightmares and disturbed sleep
  • Stomach cramps
  • Paralysis (thujone)
  • Urine retention
  • Thirst /dehydration
  • Wormwood is likely unsafe when consumed by pregnant and breastfeeding women due to its thujone content, endangering the uterus and pregnancy.
  • Little is known about the topical effects of wormwood to be able to successfully rate its safeness.
  • If you are allergic to ragweed it is also likely you will be allergic to wormwood.



The garlic is a natural anti-parasitic and antibiotic, supporting healthy bowel movements and in turn, the detoxification of the bowel. If you don’t already, adding as an extra flavoring to your usual meals will result in the best effects.

Most effective parasite cleanses rely on garlic, to some extent.

Side effects of garlic could be:

  • Fresh garlic may increase risk of bleeding and thus those with bleeding disorders should consume with caution.
  • Garlic may irritate some gastrointestinal issues. If you have problems with your digestive tract be careful when choosing to add garlic to your diet.
  • Garlic may lower the blood pressure, so in theory low blood pressure may be negatively affected by garlic.
  • Raw garlic may be unsafe when applied topically to the skin, causing rashes and allergic reactions in some people.
  • Stomach aches
  • Heartburn
  • Gas and bloating
  • Nausea and even vomiting
  • Poor body odor, all garlic-y!

Green Onions.

Similar to garlic, green onions release an enzyme called alliinase when crushed or chopped.

For the strongest anti-parasitic result, juice the white sections of the onion and add two or three teaspoons of sesame seed oil. Drink this concoction twice a day, for best results when on a parasite cleanse diet.

Apple Cider Vinegar.

This mix is useful for increasing important stomach acids before mealtimes. Ensuring that the stomach stays parasite free and serving to kill any you may unknowingly or accidentally consume.

The taste may be a little strange at first, however taking before meals have a brilliant effect on the prevention and eradication of the parasites. Another useful tool to use in a parasite cleanse diet.

Side effects of apple cider vinegar may be:

  • When consumed regularly, apple cider vinegar may result in low potassium levels in the body.
  • Little is known regarding the safety of apple cider vinegar during pregnancy and breastfeeding, to be on the safe side it is recommended to avoid or limit use during these periods in a woman’s life.
  • Apple cider vinegar may lower blood sugar levels in those with diabetes. If you suffer from diabetes and wish to consume apple cider vinegar, keep an eye on your blood sugar levels.


Green leafy vegetables usually have high nutrient contents, as well as what is known as probiotics. Probiotics are useful in ridding the body of toxins (and parasites alike).

Vegetables which are rich in antioxidants include, but are not limited to: cucumbers, carrots, sweet potatoes, blueberries and tomatoes. Blueberries especially, aid in feeding the body’s glands and organs that are infected with the parasites.

Coconut Oil.

With coconut oil containing about 50% lauric acid, this makes the substance perfect for effectively killing parasites, viruses and bad bacteria in the digestive tract. Lauric acid when consumed by the body converts into the perfect all-round protection from harmful parasites and bacteria alike.

Coconut oil may result in certain side effects when consumed, these may be:

  • Lowering the body’s blood sugar levels, so diabetics be aware.
  • If you suffer from a papain allergy, you will be similarly allergic to the papaya fruit. Avoid eating papaya or products which contain it.
  • If you are allergic to latex, it is also highly likely you will also be allergic to papaya.
  • Applying papaya latex to the skin can cause severe rashes, as well as irritation.
  • Papaya is unsuitable to be consumed during pregnancy and likewise, during breastfeeding. There is some evidence found that the papain content in papaya may actually poison the unborn child, or cause birth defects.


Pineapple is a fruit which does contain an anti-parasitic enzyme, called bromelain. Some studies have actually shown that a 3-day pineapple mono diet can kill tapeworms in the body.


This fruit contains the powerful ability to kill worms such as tapeworms and intestinal worms. Consume papaya as a healthy snack when on the parasite cleanse diet, this fruit can also help with weight loss.

Fish and Organic Meats.

High quality protein sources can support the immune system which is vital for a healthy body and the ability to fight off the infecting parasites. Fish and organic meats also provide the body with the essential fatty acids of which it needs for fuel and energy, helping to combat the symptoms of parasite infestation (lack of energy, lethargy).

Pumpkin Seeds.

Pumpkin seeds are commonly used to treat roundworms as well as tapeworms. Try chewing them as a tasty in between meals snack!

Fennel Seed Tea.

Fennel seed tea acts as a mild laxative, irritating certain parasites that may infect the body. If you suffer from a sensitive stomach, however, it may be best to consume the tea in small doses as to avoid stomach cramps and pains.

Black Walnut Extract.

Black walnut extract has been used historically for many years in the treatment /eradication of parasites.

Side effects may be:

  • Tongue or lip cancer may be caused if, topically and daily, applied to these areas. This is due to the juglone present in black walnut, serving to cause mutations in the cells of some people.
  • Little is known about the safety of black walnut during pregnancy and breastfeeding -use with caution during these times or avoid use altogether to stay on the safe side.

Marshmallow Root.

Marshmallow root can be consumed to protect against parasites and kill those already attached to the host. Other uses for marshmallow root include:

  • Treating sores, burns and other wounds.
  • Helping to reduce skin inflammation.
  • May aid in stopping diarrhea as well as constipation.
  • Dry cough treatments.

Side effects of the marshmallow root could include:

  • Low blood sugar levels, so if you suffer from diabetes and wish to consume marshmallow root keep a keen eye on your stats.
  • Avoid use during pregnancy and breastfeeding due to little known about the possible effects the root could have, on both mother and baby.
  • Avoid at least 2 weeks prior to any surgeries, as this root may interfere with the control of blood sugar levels making surgery potentially more unsafe.

Orange Peel.

Or more commonly known as chen pi (dried citrus peel) in Chinese, orange peel has many uses as a herbal medicine. With the benefits of orange peel including lowering blood pressure, preventing strokes, suppressing depression and anxiety as well as being used in anti-parasite treatments and cleanse diets.

By incorporating the peel as a supplement to your everyday diet in your herbal tea, you can effectively aid in ridding your body of parasites.

Side effects could be:

  • Colic, convulsions and even death if consumed in high quantities by young children.
  • During pregnancy and breastfeeding, orange peel seems to be safe for consumption. However, you can stay on the safe side and avoid use during these times.

With these foods which you can chow down on regularly during your parasite cleanse diet, it’s also wise to know what foods you should be avoided as to not promote life of a parasite. A list of foods to avoid:

Parasite promoting foods -avoid them!

Sugary Foods.

Sugary foods

Sugary foods should be avoided as they aid in feeding the parasites, while lowering immune function.

Limit Your Fruits.

Fruits should be limited due to their high sugar content. Although the sugar content found in fruit is all-natural, it is still sugar nonetheless and can serve to feed the parasites.

Refined Carbohydrates.

Refined carbohydrates are foods such as cake, cereal, pasta, cookies, bread and biscuits. These carbohydrates all lead to large fluctuations in blood sugar control (not great for you diabetics out there!), and thus put an extra strain on an already ill system due to the parasite infection.

Additionally, these refined carbohydrates can also encourage the growth and development of many parasites.

Processed Foods.

Foods that are processed do not support healthy immune functioning.

By not supporting healthy immune function, these foods are in fact hindering the body’s recovery from parasites.


Alcohol also does not allow for proper immune functions. By dehydrating the body and acting as a depressant, alcohol is useless for the quick recovery from parasites and illness.

Other poor effects of alcohol, and reasons to avoid use, are vomiting, drowsiness, diarrhea, breathing difficulties and an upset stomach.


As mentioned before, pork can be very high in parasites meaning those who consume undercooked pork regularly are likely to be infected. To avoid contracting these parasites, or replenishing those you already have, it is best to avoid pork. Especially when on a parasite cleanse diet!


Many grains when broken down form sugar which feeds the parasites within the body, promoting their health and reign. Especially those of which that contain gluten, they can cause intestinal inflammation for the consumer. Following a gluten-free diet while following the parasite cleanse will benefit the eradication of parasites brilliantly.

Advice on how to maintain a gluten-free diet can be found here.

Final thoughts.

We hope our article has now equipped you, as the reader, with all the knowledge and tools you need to eradicate those pesky parasites! Remember to follow your parasite cleanse diet for a minimum of 2 months, this is to ensure these parasites are completely gone from all areas and organs in the body. We know this diet can be extremely frustrating and perhaps even hard to stick to, however we believe if you research the paleo diet you will have a much easier time learning the foods you can eat and cannot eat, while easing yourself in fully educated.

We here at Balance Me Beautiful love hearing from our readers regularly -helps to keep us on our toes! So, if you have any parasite-related experiences to share with us, feel free to comment below letting us know. Alternatively, if you would like to submit a question or future article suggestion for the website visit our Contact page, and fill out the form.

Thanks for reading!

Updated: October 15, 2018 by Dr. Kimberly Langdon M.D. All medical facts and points stated on this page are correct as of this date. Please be aware that new content and additional references were added in this last update. All the content and media has been uploaded by Lily Greene our webmaster, who is also in charge of page design.

Written by Irina Radosevic MD
Irina graduated from the University of Belgrade, School of Medicine as a Doctor of Medicine (MD) and spent over 3 years working in the Clinical Hospital Center Zvezdara, in the Department of Emergency Medicine. She also undertook a postgraduate in Cardiology from the same University and had previously worked for over a year as a Physician and Nutritionist Dietitian for the Fitness club Green Zone. She eventually left her chaotic but fulfilling job in the ER to pursue her passion of writing, travelling and mountain climbing which has included writing a first aid course for the alpine club of Belgrade. Irina currently works as a VA for PintMedia focusing on medical and travel writing. Feel free to connect with Irina on LinkedIn and FaceBook. Her CV can be seen here.