Anti-Parasites and Covid-19 by Caroline Shaw

Not long ago I was asked by one of my clients whether I had or could get hold of some invermectin. I replied in the negative. As you may remember invermectin along with hydroxychloroquine were touted as wonder drugs in the covid-19 fight by various anti-vaccine groups.

Hydroxychloroquine is approved to treat or prevent malaria. It was developed in the 1940s as a highly cost-effective anti-malarial, it’s been on the World Health Organization’s list of essential medicines since the list was established in 1977.

Ivermectin is a broad spectrum anti-parasitic, with approved uses in animals and humans. The drug was developed in the late 1970s. In veterinary medicine, it is used to prevent and treat heartworm. In humans, ivermectin is indicated for, among other conditions, the tropical diseases, river blindness and lymphatic filariasis.

But both were given the thumbs down as treatments for Covid 19 as more research emerged. The Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for hydroxychloroquine was withdrawn because of concerning safety issues, such as serious heart rhythm problems and the drug proved ineffective in preventing death from Covid-19. And clinical trials in various countries worldwide, showed invermectin did little to help prevent people from contracting Covid-19 or benefitting them when they did.

But the idea that anti-parasites may help to treat Covid-19 is not as far-fetched as it may seem. Viruses like Covid 19, are microscopic particles and can be compared to parasites since they need to invade a living cell and alter the metabolic machinery of the host cells to keep themselves alive and replicate.As far as the virus is concerned, all it wants to do is complete its reproductive cycle.


The Covid-19 virus is medically novel – that means it is a new, previously unidentified human strain. The coronavirus family of viruses tend to affect animals however, they can also cross-infect into humans causing symptoms ranging from fever and cough to breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death can occur.


Anti-parasites work by targeting specific parasitic agents of the infections by destroying them or inhibiting their growth. But at this stage we just don’t know which anti-parasites may target Covid-19 effectively, if any.


Interestingly, Ed Chuong, an assistant professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology at CU Boulder, is researching how exposure to ancient parasites by our ancestors may be helping the response of our immune system today.

“If you look closely at our genome, viruses have been shaping not only our lives but also our biology and evolution for hundreds of millions of years. It’s possible that ancient viral sequences from past pandemics are now lending a hand in helping us fight modern ones.” says Chuong.

Research has revealed that populations, presenting with a higher degree of acquired gut parasitic variety may give a more robust immune response, possibly decreasing the risk of severe COVID-19 symptoms. The presence of any parasitic co-infestation reduced the risk of severe COVID-19, while the presence of hypertension, chronic renal disease, and older age drove up the odds of severe disease. Even after these comorbidities were adjusted for, patients with parasitic infestation had significantly lower odds of severe COVID-19.

There is so much for us to learn and understand regarding how our gut bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi can help or hinder our immune system. Oddly, and I must stress this has no basis in any scientific proof or research, some of my clients suffering ‘Long Covid symptoms’, have responded favourably to anti-parasitic implants administered during their colon hydrotherapy sessions.

Normally, I might advise including an anti-parasitic with a colon hydrotherapy treatment, if the client is experiencing on-going and recurring gut issues such as bloating, diarrhea, fatigue, fuzzy head and stool dysbiosis or/and where they are not responding with normal dietary recommendations. Very often they can trace the origin of their symptoms back to an episode of food poisoning. But for many people, these issues evolved after they came down with Covid-19.

Is the anti-parasitic, which contains, wormwood, walnut leaf and clove bud, helping? Is it the colonic or something else all-together? I do not know. But maybe there is room for more research on this, as the legacy of Long Covid is having a detrimental impact on so many people’s lives.

Caroline Shaw.

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