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Intestinal Worms

Diagram of an anaerobic parasitic protozoan

There are two types of intestinal worms that can infect human beings: protozoa and helminthes. Protozoa are single-celled organisms that can take up residence and multiply inside the body. Helminthes are worms like tapeworms and roundworms that cannot multiply inside the body.

Symptoms

Symptoms may include diarrhea, weight loss, fatigue, weakness, gas, bloating, nausea or vomiting and passing a worm in your stool. Some people may also experience constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, aches in the joints and muscles, anemia, allergies, sleep disturbances, teeth grinding and nervousness.

Causes

Microscopic parasites can be picked up through poor hygiene, contact with the soil, eating raw fruits and vegetables that have not been washed properly, from our pets and from contaminated foods. The foods we eat can make an ideal environment for these parasites to thrive. Eating sugary or stale foods or foods that are difficult to digest may make it easier for parasites to take hold and thrive.

Cautions

If you suspect intestinal parasites, see your care provider to get tested. Severe infestations can cause major health problems.

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