Intestinal worms are parasites in the gastrointestinal tract, primarily on the intestinal wall, that affect people and other organisms. There are different types of intestinal worms that affect people, but the most harmful are roundworm, pinworm, whipworm and tapeworm.
Parasites enter the human body through contaminated food or water, transmitting agents like mosquitoes, sexual contact and even via nose and skin. Other common causes include poor hygiene, exposure to areas known to have parasites, weak immune system and eating raw and undercooked meat.
Mostly, people living in tropical and sub-tropical regions suffer from intestinal worms. But it can affect adults and children all over the world.
Depending on the type of intestinal worm, a person may experience different symptoms like stomach pain, gas, dysentery, diarrhea, bad breath, constant feelings of hunger, restless sleep, itching around the rectum, anemia, weakness, weight loss, frequent headaches, fever, nausea, pain in the legs and nutritional disorders.
There are many over-the-counter and prescription medications for intestinal worms that you may have to take for a few days or for several weeks, depending on the infestation. There are many simple and easy natural treatments that may also be taken along with conventional medications to get rid of intestinal worms.
Here are the top 10 home remedies for intestinal worms.
Coconut is a very effective remedy for expelling all types of intestinal worms. It acts as a very strong anti-parasitic agent. Both the fruit and oil can be used to treat intestinal worms.
- Eat one tablespoon of crushed coconut with your breakfast. After three hours, drink one glass of warm milk with two tablespoons of castor oil mixed in it. Repeat this process daily until the infestation disappears. Castor oil, though, is not recommended for individuals suffering from gastrointestinal disease and children below five years of age.
- Also, eat four to six tablespoons of extra virgin coconut oil daily. This oil is loaded with medium-chain triglycerides that help expel parasites from your body and also boost the immune system to fight against them.
Garlic is a popular anti-parasitic food that can help deal with any type of intestinal worms. Raw garlic has sulfur-containing amino acids that are anti-parasitic in nature. Plus, the antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic properties in garlic help kill microbes in the body.
- Eating three cloves of raw garlic on an empty stomach every day for one week is one of the simplest ways to get rid of all types of intestinal worms.
- Alternatively, you can boil two crushed garlic cloves in one-half cup of milk and drink it on an empty stomach. Do this for about a week.
3. Unripe Papaya
Unripe papaya has been used widely in Ayurvedic medicine for many ailments, including intestinal worms. The latex from unripe papaya fruit is rich in the enzyme papain, which has anthelmintic properties that can effectively destroy intestinal worms. Plus, papaya seeds contain a substance called caricin that can help expel intestinal worms.
- Mix one tablespoon each of fresh raw papaya juice and honey with three or four tablespoons of hot water. Drink it in the morning on an empty stomach. After two hours, follow it with a glass of warm milk with two tablespoons of castor oil mixed in it. Follow the treatment for two to three days. When using this remedy for children, reduce the dosage to half.
- You can also grind papaya seeds into powder form. Mix two teaspoons of this powder with one cup of warm milk or water. Drink it first thing in the morning on an empty stomach for three days.
- Alternatively, you can make a smoothie by grinding papaya seeds taken from an average-sized papaya, adding to it one tablespoon of coconut oil, one cup of coconut milk and chunks of papaya fruit (turning green to yellow), and blending again. Finally, mix one tablespoon of honey and blend again until smooth. Drink it daily in the morning at least for one week.
4. Pumpkin Seeds
The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends the use of pumpkin seeds to get rid of intestinal worms. A compound called cucurbitacin in pumpkin seeds has anti-parasitic properties that can paralyze the parasites. This in turn prevents them from holding on to the intestine wall and they soon are eliminated from the body.
- Add two tablespoons of peeled and crushed pumpkin seeds to three cups of boiling water. Let it steep for 30 minutes. Allow it to cool, and then drink it. Try to fast for a day and drink the juice of boiled dry prunes to help cleanse the intestines before taking the pumpkin seed infusion.
- Mix together one tablespoon of roasted and crushed pumpkin seeds with an equal amount of honey. Eat this mixture each morning on an empty stomach for a week. Then include a laxative food like a banana or kiwi in your breakfast.
5. Carom Seeds
Carom seeds can be used to treat intestinal worms. The thymol content in carom seeds has the ability to inhibit the growth of undesired parasites in the intestine. According to Ayurveda, carom seeds and jaggery should be used together for the treatment of intestinal worms.
- Eat a small piece or about one tablespoon of jaggery in the morning on an empty stomach.
- Wait for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Then eat one-quarter to one-half teaspoon of crushed carom seeds along with a glass of water.
- Do this once daily for two weeks for complete treatment of intestinal worms.
6. Pomegranate Tree Bark
The bark, root, stems as well as the leaves of the pomegranate tree contain anthelmintic properties and this is why pomegranate is considered a good remedy for intestinal worms. The alkaloid punicine present in pomegranate tree bark is highly toxic to intestinal worms and especially tapeworms.
- Add a two-inch piece of pomegranate tree bark to one cup of water.
- Boil it until half the amount of water evaporates.
- Allow the mixture to cool and drink it three times a day, at intervals of a couple of hours.
- Then eat a purgative fruit like banana or avocado to facilitate a bowel movement.
- Follow this remedy for a few days.
When using this remedy for children, reduce the dosage of the decoction to one-third. Eating pomegranate fruit or drinking its juice can help prevent attacks of intestinal worms.