Author Topic: Parasite Horrors  (Read 8609 times)

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Offline TylerDurden

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Parasite Horrors
« on: January 04, 2009, 10:11:10 pm »
Here's an article about the fascinating toxoplasmosis parasite which infects a very large number of people worldwide, despite their being on cooked diets:-

http://notexactlyrocketscience.wordpress.com/2007/01/14/brain-parasite-drives-human-culture/


Brain parasite drives human culture

The brain parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, is spread by cats and affects a huge proportion of the world’s population. It’s effects on our behaviour make it a potent driving force of human culture.

We like to think that we are masters of our own fates. The thought that others might be instead controlling our actions makes us uneasy. We rail against nanny states, we react badly to media hype and we are appalled at the idea of brainwashing.

But words and images are not the only things that can affect our brains and thoughts. Other animals – parasites – can do this too.

Now, Kevin Lafferty from the University of California, Santa Barbara, has found startling evidence that a common brain parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, could be influencing human culture across the globe.

Toxoplasma gondii is a single-celled brain parasite spread by cats. Our feline companions are its preferred home and only there can it mature and reproduce. So like most parasites, T.gondii has a complex life cycle designed to get it into its final host.

If it finds itself in another animal, it travels to the brain and changes the host’s behaviour to maximise its chances of ending up in a cat. For rodents, this means being eaten and infected individuals are less fearful of cats and more active, making them easier prey.

Humans can also contract the parasite, through contact with soil contaminated by the faeces of carriers or through eating infected meat. But since cats are very unlikely to eat humans, in our bodies, T.gondii reaches a cul-de-sac. Still, there is nothing to stop the parasite, evolutionarily speaking, from trying out the strategies that work so well in other hosts.

In rare cases, T.gondii infection causes a disease called toxoplasmosis that produces mild flu-like symptoms and only really threatens foetuses and those with weak immune systems. In most instances, the parasite acts more subtly.

Carriers tend to show long-term personality changes. Women tend to be more intelligent, affectionate, social and more likely to stick to rules. Men on the other hand tend to be less intelligent, but are more loyal, frugal and mild-tempered. The one trait that carriers of both genders share is a higher level of neuroticism – they are more prone to guilt, self-doubt and insecurity.

In individuals cases, these effects may seem quirky or even charming but across populations, they can have a global power. T.gondii infection is extremely common and rates vary greatly from country to country.

While only 7% of Brits carry the parasite, a much larger 67% of Brazilians are infected. Given that the parasite alters behaviour, infection on this scale could lead to sizeable differences in the general personalities of people of different nationalities. This is exactly what Lafferty found.

Neuroticism is one of the most widely-studied of all psychological traits and Lafferty found that levels in different countries correlated well with the levels of T.gondii infection. The parasites’ presence was also related to aspects of culture associated with neuroticism.

Countries where infection was common were more likely to have ‘masculine sex roles’, characterized by greater differences between the sexes and their part in society and a stronger focus on work, ambition and money rather than people and relationships. Strongly infected societies were also more likely to avoid risk and embrace strict rules and regulations.

Obviously, different countries are also not just uniform populations, and increasing rates of migration mean that many countries are very ethnically and culturally mixed. However, this works in favour of Lafferty’s theory as any mixing would serve to mask the link between infection and culture. If anything, the link is stronger than seen in this study.

It would be imprudent to suggest that T.gondii is the major driver of human culture. It is just one of a number of influences that include genes, our physical environment and our histories. And Lafferty himself is quick to point out caveats to his own results.

For a start, they do not imply that the parasite is causing these personality types; it could be that people with these traits are more likely to become infected. To establish the true direction of causality, Lafferty will need to find out how the parasite manipulates the mind. The general idea is that infection alters levels of the immune system’s communication chemicals – the cytokines – which in turn alter levels of neurotransmitters like dopamine. But the details remain a mystery.

Nonetheless, the results are striking and they suggest that climate could have a larger effect on culture than previously thought. Toxoplasma gondii’s eggs live longer in humid, low regions so variations in climate could influence the global distribution of cultural traits. Perhaps, this could explain why men and women perform more distinct roles in society in countries in warmer climates. Other factors can also affect the risk of infection, including cat ownership and national cuisines that include undercooked meat.

We like to think of culture as something governed by the collective actions of free-thinking and free-acting humans. But Lafferty’s analysis shows us that if environmental factors like parasites can affect our thoughts and actions, no matter how subtly, they can have a strong effect on national cultures.

In many cases, these effects could be much stronger than the agents that we normally believe to drive cultural trends. After all, more people around the world are infected with Toxoplasma than are connected to the internet.

« Last Edit: January 04, 2009, 10:24:32 pm by TylerDurden »
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Offline DameonWolf

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2009, 02:35:03 am »
Quickly now, we must wipe out every last single cat. lol.

Offline TylerDurden

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2009, 03:32:11 am »
I find it fascinating as it seems that parasites are a big drive behind the evolution of all species, and it's amusing to think that we may not really be the dominant lifeform on this planet after all.
"What is the point of growing up If you can't be childish sometimes..." - Tom Baker as Dr Who.

Offline Waungata

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2009, 01:57:01 pm »
Even parasites have parasites http://www.ebiomedia.com/Note-Book/Fleas-have-Fleas-Observing-A-Paramecium-Parasite.html  We are the parasites of the Earth and if we're responsible for the Earth, and parasites are responsible for our behavior, it might stem all the way down to the very bottom and come up.

I once adopted a stray cat. She stayed outside, except when I got her spayed. She would bring home all kinds of critters. I'm wondering if I'm safer than someone who's had an indoor housecat.

"Most" blood donors are healthier than non due to lower iron. Now-a-days, blood-sucking organisms, such as lice are a rarity in the western world. I wonder if it was the same with toxoplasmosis? There does seem to be more of a trend towards convergence of the sexes now, than as evidenced in the past, in what are industrialized, modern societies today.

Offline goodsamaritan

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2009, 03:38:47 pm »
We got a lot of mosquitoes and always sleep with a mosquito net and electrical mosquito killers.
I used to expel a lot of parasites myself when I did humaworm.com parasite cleansing.
My wife was saved from misery after eating a bad goat liver by drinking barefoot's herbal dewormer.
My 3 year old daughter was spared a painful neck with a hulda clark zapper.
We've had dogs infested with fleas and we have the bites on our legs to prove it.
We had a dog who died due to parasite infestation and my mother in law described the parasites evacuating from the dog just minutes before the dog dropped dead. 

I have all these anti-parasite armaments and even contacts who have beam ray machines.  You never know when it hits you.  I feel it pays to be well armed and ready with knowledge.

I'm not parasite paranoid.  I just observe and accept that parasites exist and sometimes they can be troublesome.  Of course I eat my animal food raw and I like it when they are never frozen, freshly killed.
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Offline Raw Kyle

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2009, 02:35:07 am »
goodsamaritan, do you have a procedure for removing Toxoplasma gondii? After reading this article I'd like to try some anti-parasite regimens and see if my health, even parts of my personality, are changed as a result.

Offline goodsamaritan

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2009, 08:22:19 pm »
Hi Kyle,

In wikipedia it says Toxoplasma gondii's main host are cats.  If you have cats, get rid of them.  You don't want to be reinfected cyclically after you've gotten rid of the parasites yourself.

I don't know the specific tool for a specific parasite, I only know tools that work on a wide swath of parasites.  Usually that is the way herbs and electrical devices work.

For herbals I have used:

http://www.humaworm.com
http://www.barefootherbalistmh.com (dewormer)
Super concentrated oregano oil works.  Barefoot sells them too.

For zappers I have used:

A locally manufactured zapper.
A zapper from http://www.worldwithoutparasites.com
Here is a powerful zapper I've always wanted to order: http://zap.intergate.ca/

Here is a Russian zapper you swallow and it gets rid of the baddest parasites in your intestines, I have never used it:
http://www.parasiteremedies.com/

For frequency generators, there are health practitioners in my country who charge per session for the Beam Ray brand machines.  These frequency generators will reach those hard to reach places the zappers and the herbals won't reach.  I'm pretty sure someone in your country operates this device for a fee.
http://www.curemanual.com/blog/2008/10/beam-ray-machines-available-in-the-philippines-a-germ-fighting-and-parasitic-treatment-option/

Make sure your colon is working perfectly when you do parasite cleanses... there are tendencies to become constipated in the process... so I have herbal colon cleansers ready to use in tandem.  Drink plenty of fluids too as parasite dead bodies are excreted both via the colon if intestinal and via the kidneys if the parasites are in the blood.

Hulda Clark has a great discussion of parasites in her book.  The old version is available for download PDF for free. http://www.curemanual.com/mind-cures-paradigm-shifts/book-cure-for-all-diseases

In that book Dr. Clark talks about ozonated olive oil as another method.  Her herbal combination is improved much by Barefoot Herbalist as mentioned above.

Just last month I just got bit by sand flies and I suffered but cured myself of suspected leishmaniasis... a kind of protozoa carried by sand flies.  Here are my blog posts regarding my ordeal and recovery:

http://www.eczemacure.info/blog/2008/12/23/exciting-i-got-bitten-by-sand-flies-in-beach-and-leads-to-all-sorts-of-problems/

http://www.eczemacure.info/blog/2008/12/25/sand-fly-bites-welts-christmas-feasts-egg-yolk-liver-flush-and-itchy-detox/

http://www.eczemacure.info/blog/2009/01/05/my-sandfly-bites-are-now-mere-scabs/



« Last Edit: January 07, 2009, 08:54:58 pm by goodsamaritan »
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Offline Raw Kyle

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2009, 12:43:38 pm »
Thanks for all the info but I'm not getting rid of my cat, he's my little buddy.

Offline goodsamaritan

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2009, 06:01:13 pm »
You can treat your cat same as yourself so both of you will be parasite free.
There are people who have made pet zappers.
I also think barefoot's dewormer can also be given to cats, but you will have to ask him in his forum the dosage.
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Offline RawZi

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2009, 07:24:31 pm »
I don't care if I have parasites or not.  Eating raw meat will take care of that for me as far as I care.  I do think cloves are a somewhat safe way to help control parasites in cats.  I also found this article on ezine:

Quote
The article will provide a rundown of the herbal remedies and herbal supplements a pet owner can administer to subdue parasitic infections in the gut of a pet canine or feline.


Wormwood (Artemisia Absinthum). The name says it all and Wormwood is in fact a tried and tested component of many medicinal formulas intended to deworm animals. The bio-active compounds at work in the herb's extracts convey a collective antimicrobial, antihelminitic and antiseptic action that eradicate parasitic worms in the gut, including pinworm and roundworm, and consequently flush them out of the system.To further support the digestive process, Wormwood helps sustain healthy levels of gastrointestinal juices and stimulates metabolism. It also has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that effectively promote immune system health.
Rue (Ruta Graveolens). In traditional practice, infusions of the herb have been administered to cleanse the body from parasites. As digestive tonic, Rue stimulates healthy appetites and promotes routine digestion. It also exudes antispasmodic properties that relieve symptoms of stomach troubles, bowel cramps and gastrointestinal spasms. These medicinal benefits have been scientifically affirmed and its compounds applied in many health supplements.


Cloves (Eugenia Caryophyllata). This is another great herb purported to support the less complex digestive systems of pets. The herb detoxifies the body and in the process eliminates harmful organisms and substances. In medicine, Cloves is used to treat indigestion, diarrhea and ringworm infections. Meanwhile in the manufacture of herbal formulas, Clove is integrated to reduce bitterness and soothe digestive muscles as well.


Pet Herbal Supplements. Standardized herbal supplements such as PetAlive Parasite Dr serve as the holistic counterpart of veterinary dewormers. These herbal products are formulated from the therapeutic compounds of the mentioned herbs and designed to support digestive healing--particularly promoting the health of the digestive organs and detoxifying the blood from infectious parasites.

Sustain your pet's health with nutritious diets, through regular exercise and holistic treatments whenever diseases arise. For an all-in-one holistic digestive relief from parasitic infestations in pets, trust standardized herbal supplements to do the dirty work for you!

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Offline akaikumo

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2009, 04:13:43 pm »
That's kind of disturbing. I don't really mind the idea of parasites, they're part of life, but personality altering parasites is a little nerve wracking. :P I have pretty intense neurotic symptoms, I'm working on changing that, and that would suck if it was really a parasite hah!

The problem with cleanses is they aren't actually getting to the brain where it breeds. Then again, I've heard of cleanses helping with parasites in muscles... I really don't know much about how that would work though... obviously anything you put into your body will change things, but the question is how to change things in a way that impacts T. gondii?

Obviously boosting your immune system would be huge, since it sounds like your body can destroy the parasites when the cells it's in burst, but I imagine it would just be a constant fight as a few escape into cells and breed more.
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Offline Mincene

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Re: Parasite Horrors
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2009, 05:44:08 pm »
I have read that against toxoplasmosis can help linseed - cold pressed linseed oil or tea. But then it should be used regulary.

 

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