12 Herbs That Beat Parasites Naturally

12 Herbs That Beat Parasites Naturally

12 Herbs That Beat Parasites Naturally

Parasites can be found in nearly 50% of the American population.  These are foreign pathogens that make their way into our bodies through unclean water, shellfish, pork products and other forms of contaminated food.  The most common internal parasites that humans are commonly dealing with include tapeworms, Candida – yeast, and pathogenic bacteria. Although there are some modern medical treatments available, many people are looking for ways to kill parasites naturally.

Fortunately, we now have enough information available to know what types of things parasites do not like. By following specifically designed protocols using natural compounds, parasites can be effectively removed from the body without doing extensive damage to the gut. As a result, you will likely feel greater energy, restored digestive function, and overall returning of vitality.


Parasite infection can cause many unpleasant symptoms. Depending on the type of parasite, an infection can cause massive inflammation, brain fog, digestive troubles, chronic fatigue, and much more.

Parasitic infections are an often overlooked, and yet critical, step in overcoming chronic health challenges. Especially in very stubborn cases where someone just can’t seem to get well, this may be a missing link.

Anti-Parasitic Herbs

Plants are under pressure from various insects and other parasitic lifeforms everyday.  They have adapted by producing unique compounds that ward off these parasites.These compounds are typically bitter and astringent in nature and occur in tree barks, roots and the leaves of many natural herbs and plants.

There are literally hundreds of different anti-microbial herbs so a consumer can get easily confused trying to find which will work best.  Through my research, I have found these 12 to be particularly effective and we have formulated a unique product that contains clinical doses of each of these herbs.


Black Walnut

Black Walnut is a type of walnut that contains large amounts of a cytotoxic compound called juglone. Research on juglone has revealed the potential to fight bacteria such as S. aureus, Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis, Penicillium sp., Aspergillus sp., and Hansenula sp. as well as certain types of fungi (1, 2).

Additionally, black walnut acts as a mild laxative to help facilitate the elimination of dead microbes and waste products that would otherwise accumulate in the digestive tract.

Sweet Wormwood

Also known as Artemisia annua, sweet wormwood is an extremely bitter herb with anti-parasitic properties. This powerful extract has also been shown to inhibit one of the most deadly malaria parasites, Plasmodium falciparum (3). 

Some preliminary research also suggests that wormwood contains anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, and immunoregulatory benefits as well (4).


Garlic may be one of the most traditional remedies for killing off unwanted microbes in the gut. It seems our research has caught up to our intuition with this one because garlic contains powerful broad-spectrum antimicrobial properties against bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites (5).

Additionally, garlic is a powerful source of nutrition that is great for the body in many ways. Although there are many beneficial compounds in garlic, one called allicin is thought to provide much of its antimicrobial effects (6). In order to maximize allicin, it is best to eat fresh garlic that has been smashed or chopped.

Alternatively, you could also supplement with a concentrated garlic extract.


Oregano is not just great tasting on pizza, but may also be one of the most powerful antimicrobial substances we currently know of. It has been shown to have diverse activity against bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites. Specifically oregano essential oil has been shown to effectively act on  bacteria like MRSA that have become resistant to traditional treatments (7).

Finding solutions to antimicrobial resistance is key for human survival and oregano provides a promising one.

Pumpkin Seed

Pumpkin seeds surprisingly have been shown to help control roundworm infections in the GI tract (8). Additionally, pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc and B vitamins that help the immune system function at its prime.

While consuming the whole seed may provide some benefits, those already experiencing a large amount of GI distress will likely derive much greater benefit from a high quality pumpkin seed extract.


Goldenseal is not commonly known by most people. This herb contains a compound called berberine which we now know has beneficial effects against bacteria, parasites, and yeast.

Berberine provides additional benefits in the gut by up regulating the production of butyrate, an important fatty acid that helps to burn fat, improve blood sugar responses, and boost energy (9). This important fatty acid is also found in grass-fed butter.


Bearberry, also known as Uva-Ursi, is another herb that may have antimicrobial properties in the body. This herb has gained interest particularly in helping tame urinary tract infections.

It is thought that a compound called arbutin is responsible for its antimicrobial benefits. This compound is converted into hydroquinone glucuronide in the body and excreted from the urine. It is thought that this excretion of hydroquinone glucuronide prevents bacteria from adhering to the walls of the urinary tract.

Grapefruit Seed

Grapefruit seed contains high amounts of citrus bioflavonoids that act as powerful antioxidants and anti-microbials. Specifically hesperidin, contained in grapefruit seed, may be largely responsible for its antimicrobial effects.

Studies have highlighted antibacterial and anti-fungal effects from this potent extract and, when combined with geranium, has even shown to effectively combat MRSA (an antibiotic-resistant strain of staph infection) (10, 11).


Wormseed, also known as Chenapodium ambrosides, is an uncommon herb with significant activity against fungi and certain bacteria. It has recently been investigated for its ability to fight H. Pylori which is a common and tricky to fight bacterial infection that many people get (12).

Wormseed has also been investigated as a natural alternative to chemical bug sprays, food preservatives, and as a supplement to help prevent intestinal infections in livestock.


Guarana is a poplar herb used in energy drinks for its high caffeine content. This herb has also been traditionally added to teas by natives of the amazon for its uplifting properties.

Guarana seeds have a similar nutrient make-up to tea leaves and cacao, containing high amounts of tannins that provide many of its benefits. These tannins have demonstrated some benefits towards fighting MRSA and other unwanted pathogens (13, 14).

Passion Flower

Passion flower is an herb commonly used for anxiety relief and relaxation. It contains a wide array of nutrients including alkaloids, phenols, glycoside flavonoids, and cyanogenic compounds that may contribute to its ability to help fight pathogens (15).

Additionally, passionflower is great for improving insomnia symptoms and promoting a sense of overall calmness.  This is important because one of the most common symptoms I have seen people experience when they have parasitic overgrowth is insomnia.  In particular, waking up between 1-3am and having trouble falling back asleep is a common issue people with parasites experience.


Everyone knows lavender for its pleasant and relaxing aroma. While this herb is great for relaxing after a hard day, it is also a powerful inhibitor of unwanted yeasts and bacteria, including MRSA.

Lavender essential oil is even being investigated as a possible synergistic ingredient alongside conventional antibiotics with promising results (16).  Lavendar also synergizes with passionflower to help improve the stress response during the day and allow for great sleep at night.

Introducing Para Elim:

As a practitioner, I was encountering many clients with challenging parasites in their system.  I knew I needed a product that would help them eliminate these effectively. Para Elim is clinically formulated, advanced dietary supplement that is specially designed to provide a unique blend of the 10 anti-microbial herbal compounds discussed in this article and other cofactors in a proprietary enzyme base.

This is my go to product for individuals with challenging parasites such as amoeba and worms. The enzyme base also enhances digestion and takes stress of the stomach and intestines as they heal.

Anti-Parasite Nutrition Plan

It is usually not enough to just use anti-microbial herbs when trying to cleanse your body of unwanted pathogens. You will likely acheive a much higher success rate if you also ensure you are eating in a way that further combats foreign pathogens in the gut.

Parasites love sugar and so it is absolutely crucial to avoid sugar and limit your intake of foods that are converted into sugar after consumption. Additionally, performing regular fasts along with specific cleansing strategies can help accelerate the process.

Fasting & Cleansing

Fasting for longer amounts of time helps to starve unwanted microbes in the gut while also reducing the burden of digestion, allowing it to heal much more quickly. You can read about my fasting strategies here.

It is a good idea to consume anti-microbial and cleansing compounds while fasting. Drink plenty of water with added organic acids from lemons/limes and apple cider vinegar as well as things like oregano essential oil.  It is also important to do a lot of salts such as Himalyan sea salt or organic broth to maintain mineral balance.

For example, it would be a great idea to start the day with a large glass of water and adding a squeeze of lemon or lime and 2-3 drops of a high quality oregano essential oil.

Anti-Microbial Foods

In addition to fasting and cleansing, you will want to eat foods that will not feed the infection while also actively combatting it. A high-fat/low-carb diet will likely be a great place to start.

Additionally, you will want to utilize plenty of anti microbial herbs such as oregano, thyme, rosemary, clove, cayenne pepper, and ginger.

Some of the best foods for combatting parasites include sprouted pumpkin seeds, fresh pomegranate, coconut oil and coconut products, raw garlic, and raw onion. To help promote a more beneficial microbial balance it is a good idea to consume fermented foods like coconut kefir, apple cider vinegar, sauerkraut, kimchi, and pickles.

Many people in this state will not tolerate dairy very well so I generally recommend avoiding dairy based fermented products until gut health has been restored.

Controlling Negative Reactions

When you attack pathogens in the gut, there is often a large amount of waste released into the GI tract that can become harmful if not properly eliminated. This is why in my personal protocol I typically recommend utilizing activated charcoal to bind up these toxins and pass them through bowel movements.

Healing The Gut

The presence of an infection can cause a lot of damage to the mucosal barrier, intestinal lining, and overall digestive function. This is why when fighting a parasite, you want to make sure you are following up with a gut healing protocol.

The goal is to eliminate pathogens and build your gut health to prevent them from returning, otherwise you can end up with more problems down the road. Check out my video below for the best foods to implement for this.

I also have a specifically designed protein blend containing a ton of anti-inflammatory nutrients that can be very helpful for restoring gut health. I usually recommend my Gut Healing protein for anyone that has gone through serous digestive issues and it works very well.

Final Thoughts

Parasitic infection can cause the body to suffer severe side effects. Conventional medicine has solutions for this kind of issue, but they often very harsh on the digestive tract and can lead to other problems.

Fortunately, utilizing specific herbs in a standardized extract form, along with the other lifestyle strategies listed in this article can help remove these unwanted visitors while protecting and strengthening the integrity of your gut.  This way you can also help protect yourself from ever having to go through these troubles again.

Sources For This Article Include:

1. Clark, A. M., Jurgens, T. M., & Hufford, C. D. (1990). Antimicrobial activity of juglone. Phytotherapy Research, 4(1), 11–14. PMID: 3913422
2. Wang J, Cheng Y, Wu R, et al. Antibacterial Activity of Juglone against Staphylococcus aureus: From Apparent to Proteomic. Pereira JA, ed. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2016;17(6):965. PMID: 27322260
3. Krishna, S., Bustamante, L., Haynes, R. K., & Staines, H. M. (2008). Artemisinins: their growing importance in medicine. Trends in Pharmacological Sciences. PMID: 18752857
4. Alesaeidi, S., & Miraj, S. (2016). A Systematic Review of Anti-malarial Properties, Immunosuppressive Properties, Anti-inflammatory Properties, and Anti-cancer Properties of Artemisia Annua. Electronic Physician, 8(10), 3150–3155. PMID: 27957318
5. Zeng, Y., Li, Y., Yang, J., Pu, X., Du, J., Yang, X., … Yang, S. (2017). Therapeutic Role of Functional Components in Alliums for Preventive Chronic Disease in Human Being. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : eCAM, 2017, 9402849. PMID: 28261311
6. Borlinghaus, J., Albrecht, F., Gruhlke, M. C. H., Nwachukwu, I. D., & Slusarenko, A. J. (2014). Allicin: Chemistry and biological properties. Molecules. PMID: 25153873
7. Sakkas, H., & Papadopoulou, C. (2017). Antimicrobial activity of basil, oregano, and thyme essential oils. Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology. PMID: 27994215
8. Grzybek, M., Kukula-Koch, W., Strachecka, A., Jaworska, A., Phiri, A. M., Paleolog, J., & Tomczuk, K. (2016). Evaluation of anthelmintic activity and composition of pumpkin (Cucurbita pepo L.) seed extracts-in vitro and in vivo studies. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 17(9). PMID: 27598135
9. Wang, Y., Shou, J.-W., Li, X.-Y., Zhao, Z.-X., Fu, J., He, C.-Y., … Jiang, J.-D. (2017). Berberine-induced bioactive metabolites of the gut microbiota improve energy metabolism. Metabolism, 70, 72–84. PMID: 28403947
10. Cao, S., Xu, W., Zhang, N., Wang, Y., Luo, Y., He, X., & Huang, K. (2012). A mitochondria-dependent pathway mediates the apoptosis of gse-induced yeast. PLoS ONE, 7(3). PMID: 22403727
11. Edwards-Jones, V., Buck, R., Shawcross, S. G., Dawson, M. M., & Dunn, K. (2004). The effect of essential oils on methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus using a dressing model. Burns, 30(8), 772–777. PMID: 15555788
12. Ye, H., Liu, Y., Li, N., Yu, J., Cheng, H., Li, J., & Zhang, X. Z. (2015). Anti-Helicobacter pylori activities of Chenopodium ambrosioides L. in vitro and in vivo. World Journal of Gastroenterology, 21(14), 4178–4183. PMID: 25892867
13. Carvalho, L. V. D. N., Cordeiro, M. F., E Lins, T. U. L., Sampaio, M. C. P. D., De Mello, G. S. V., Da Costa, V. D. C. M., … Rêgo, M. J. B. D. M. (2016). Evaluation of Antibacterial, Antineoplastic, and Immunomodulatory Activity of Paullinia cupana Seeds Crude Extract and Ethyl-Acetate Fraction. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2016. PMID: 28053639
14. Basile, A., Rigano, D., Conte, B., Bruno, M., Rosselli, S., & Sorbo, S. (2013). Antibacterial and antifungal activities of acetonic extract from Paullinia cupana Mart. seeds. Natural Product Research, 27(22), 2084–90. PMID: 23672664
15. Mohanasundari, C., Natarajan, D., Srinivasan, K., Umamaheswari, S., & Ramachandran, A. (2007). Antibacterial properties of Passiflora foetida L . – a common exotic medicinal plant. Journal of Biotechnology, 6(23), 2650–2653.
16. De Rapper, S., Viljoen, A., & Van Vuuren, S. (2016). The in vitro antimicrobial effects of lavandula angustifolia essential oil in combination with conventional antimicrobial agents. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2016. PMID: 27891157

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17 Responses to 12 Herbs That Beat Parasites Naturally

  1. Stacy February 26, 2014 at 1:15 pm #

    Is nutritional yeast ok for those with leaky gut, dysbiosis, and who have had exposure to toxic mold?

  2. Dr. Jockers February 26, 2014 at 1:17 pm #


    It can be but everyone is different. Nutritional yeast is a great source of B vitamins but some people react negatively to it. I would try it without anything else and monitor how you feel over the next 4-6 hours. Do this 3 days in a row and see if you notice any positive or negative side effects. This will help you understand how your body is tolerating it.

  3. ghada March 11, 2015 at 8:04 am #

    hi dr jockers ,iam suffering from h.pylori that bad bacteria in the stomach causes ulcers and stomach cancer any alternative treatment to avoid the huge amount of antibiotic the dr gave me as i heard the bacteria will make resistance to it and not prevent it from coming back ,i have the pain and the bloating in my stomach

  4. Dr David Jockers March 15, 2015 at 12:18 pm #

    Sorry to hear about your struggles with H Pylori and stomach ulcers. Here is a helpful article to help you understand more about this condition and what you can do to help you overcome this. Let me know if you would like to set up a long-distance consult to better explain everything and customize a program to help you beat this. Blessings!


  5. Anonymouse February 20, 2016 at 3:29 pm #

    I’ve been experiencing a rash on my hands for quite a while. Its been itchy at times but does appear to subside when I use a medicinal antifungal soap. About a year ago, I used to notice a couple of rashes on my chest and when I looked into it, it was thought that I might have a tinea corporis infection.

    Subsequently I followed the recommendation at the time which was to use tinactin and a shampoo with pyrithione zinc. After a couple of months I noticed the rashes on my chest were gone. It was only after several more months that I began to develop the rash on my hands. As I mentioned, I’ve been able to control the rash with antifungal soap, however it does seem to reoccur.

    After researching some info on parasites and its common symptomologies, I realized that I was exhibiting some of these symptoms, such as headaches, fatigue, and itchy anus at night.

    I’m not sure if this means that the ringworm infection I had came back or if ringworm could even cause these types of parasitic symptoms either, but now I’m a bit concerned.

    I’ve been thinking about a cleanse but don’t want to rush into something that doesn’t work.

    Whether its ringworm or not, could a parasite cleanse be helpful in this case?

    FYI: I’ve considered talking with my doc about it but really only want to go that route as a last resort because I’d rather treat this as naturally as I possibly can, never mind the fact that its already embarrassing to talk about.

    I would really appreciate any insight you might have based on my description. Thank you.

    • Dr. Jockers February 20, 2016 at 3:31 pm #

      Sorry to hear about this! Yes, it very much sounds like pinworms. I would recommend doing a parasite cleanse.

      • Anonymouse February 20, 2016 at 7:56 pm #

        Thanks for the recommendation. Some things I wanted to add: I’m currently trying to get over a sinus infection (ironically enough, I noticed that chronic sinusitis can be a symptom of a parasitic infection), so I’ve just been focused mainly on getting better for now, but I do have one other question…

        I’ve been reading up on the potential benefits of a “Ketogenic Diet” as mentioned on your site and I was wondering (once I recover from my sinus infection of course), would switching my diet to a ketogenic one also help me with my endeavor to rid my body of parasites?——-Or should I be more concerned with starting a cleanse first?

        (I’m a 35 yr old male whose 5’7″ and 127 lbs, but still have a little fat around the mid section and while I don’t exercise on a regular basis, I work in a fast-paced labor intensive job, so I definitely wouldn’t describe myself as a sedentary individual, but I know I still need to work hard on getting myself into an established routine of diet and exercise)

        • Dr. Jockers February 22, 2016 at 4:36 am #

          I would recommend using a modified ketogenic diet while you are doing the parasite cleanse to help get rid of them.

          • Anonymouse February 25, 2016 at 12:14 am #

            Sorry to keep coming back, but I’m afraid I don’t know what you mean by “modified” ketogenic diet?——-Modified in what way may I ask?

  6. Dr. Jockers February 25, 2016 at 5:13 am #

    Yes, you can read about cycling a ketogenic diet here: http://drjockers.com/burn-fat-with-a-cyclic-ketogenic-diet/

  7. Beth August 12, 2017 at 4:13 pm #

    In this article, beneath the text about some of the herbs there is an image about that herb with some quick facts. There is no image under the text about Sweet Wormwood (Artemisia). BUT there is an image right below the text about wormseed (Chenapodium) which is titled “Benefits of Sweet Wormwood.” This is confusing since it says “wormwood” but is right below the text on “wormseed.” So I wonder, was this a mistake? Please clarify for me which one of these plants is the image talking about? It says it is better than antibiotics for SIBO, and since I am searching for answers for my own SIBO situation, I would really like to know which plant this refers to. Thanks.

  8. Paul Johnson September 26, 2017 at 5:15 pm #

    Dr. Jockers, I hardly know where to start. I have been disabled for three years now and I’m unable to get better even though I’ve been eat a plant based organic Non-GMO diet. I do eat fruits like apples pears blueberries and strawberries. When I do eat a limited amount of meat it’s organic Grass-Fed and Grass-Finished Beef and Free Range Hormone free Antibiotics free chicken. We even drive to Atlanta to purchase Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon from Harry’s market or DeKalb County Farmers Market. I have a half quart of raw goat milk Kiefer each day and I drink kombucha when I have it available; about half gallon every two weeks. Last week I had a live blood exam and found out I have an over growth of parasites in my blood. Will the strategies from this article help with the parasites in my blood or will it only get rid of parasites in my digestive system?? I have reflux so bad I have heart attack symptoms and I also have Barrett’s esophagus. Some of the other health issues I have is Type 2 Diabetes using insulin, neuropathy, hormone imbalance, adrenal fatigue, brain fog, joint pain, Hep C, gout and Migraine type head pain 24/7. Yesterday I purchased the Healing Leaky Gut material from Dr Axe and now after reading your articles today I’m wondering if I should work on getting rid of the parasites before continuing to healing process of leaky gut. I have healed my gut some because I no longer have a gluten sensitivity just from drinking a quart of Bone Broth each day for three months.

    Any help would be appreciated!

  9. Trent November 23, 2017 at 10:41 pm #

    Thank you Dr. Jockers for all of your concise, information-packed articles. I’ve been on a roll just churning through them over the past week. I am someone with longstanding chronic illness who was given a great deal of antibiotics (IV) for Lyme disease that never amounted to anything positive and I think it likely made the main problem (intestinal permeability, autoimmunity, SIBO) worse. OAT by Great Plains from my functional doctor revealed no yeast metabolites but consistent yeast-like symptoms have occurred, especially after troublesome foods. Would a stool analysis be able to tell whether native microbes like Candida are in a pathogenic state (i.e. causing internal dysbiosis)? I’m trying to juggle a number of protocols right now and it is a priority of mine to get this test done but only if I can discern problematic microbes from beneficial ones. Thanks again for your time and effort in educating the internet!

  10. Rabiah November 27, 2017 at 9:16 pm #

    Hi Dr. Thank you for the wealth of information. Do you have any research on papaya seeds and anti-parasite cleansing? I am comming across this seed often now and want sound research from multiple sources if possible. Thanks!

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