Amebiasis is a disease that is caused by a single celled parasite known as Entamoeba histolytica (abbreviated E. histolytica), hence the name of the condition. While this disease can affect just about anyone, those who live in places with poor sanitation are at greater risk of developing the amebiasis. The following groups of people are also at risk of catching the disease:
– People who have traveled to countries where poor sanitation is a big problem, especially in the tropical regions.
– People institutionalized in places with poor sanitation
– Men who have sexual intercourse with other men
– People whose immune system is compromised as well as those who suffer from other diseases.
How exactly does one get amebiasis? This happens when one ingests the cysts containing the parasite, usually through contact with fecal content. It is important to note that these cysts can live in the environment in an inert state for up to several months. Transmission of these cysts can then occur through oral-anal sex, anal sex, poor food handling and even certain forms of colon cleansing. When the cysts enter the body, they attach themselves to the digestive tract and release the active form of the parasite. These parasites then move to the colon, leading to the array of symptoms that characterize amebiasis.
Some of the symptoms of amebiasis include abdominal cramping, loose stool which may sometimes be bloody, colitis and tissue destruction. In extreme cases where the parasites invade an organ internally, they may cause pus discharge, infections and even death. For this reason, amebiasis requires proper diagnosis. Stool samples are required for this diagnosis, and depending on the severity of the condition, additional tests may be required. In mild cases of amebiasis, there are a number of home remedies that are available to be used as an adjunct form of treatment alongside the medication provided. The most important thing to remember when using these home remedies is that they must not replace prescribed medication. In case of any doubts, feel free to consult your doctor.
1. Increased Fluid Intake:
Time Required: Varied but consistent throughout the day.
What You Need: Adequate drinking water.
One of the key symptoms of amebiasis is the increased production of extremely loose stool and vomiting that leads to extreme dehydration. Left unchecked, this dehydration worsens the accompanying symptoms of the disease with potentially adverse effects. This is why it is important to ensure that you increase your fluid intake throughout the day. The other advantage of increasing your fluid intake is that it allows your body to get rid of toxins, and this is beneficial in eliminating the parasitic organisms.
- The recommended number of glasses is 8 glasses of water daily, but this is subject to pre-existing conditions, so you need to get your doctor’s advice prior to increasing your fluid intake especially if you suffer from kidney diseases.
- In addition to water, there are a number of remedies that you can add to your daily diet. These include herbal tea, black tea and buttermilk.
2. Homemade ORS:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1/2 Teaspoon of salt, 6 teaspoons of sugar and 4 cups of warm drinking water.
In line with increasing your fluid intake, one of the remedies that come in handy for the management of amebiasis is the use of a homemade ORS – oral rehydration solution. Just as the name suggests, the purpose of the ORS is to prevent dehydration while supplying the body with glucose and salts for easy absorption to replenish the lost nutrients. This remedy constitutes salt, sugar and warm water. Ensure that the water you use is purified for drinking purposes. Secondly, do not exceed the ratios provided as this could exacerbate the condition.
- Mix the salt and sugar until you have a homogenous powder.
- Transfer the powder to a jug and add 4 cups of warm water.
- Stir the mixture well for complete dissolution.
- Drink this solution at regular intervals during the day.
3. Coconut Water:
Time Required: 5 Min
What You Need: A couple of glasses of coconut water daily.
One of the easiest home remedies to use for the natural treatment of amebiasis is coconut water. This water is not only packed with nutrients that help replenish lost ones, it is also rich in antiparasitic properties that help destroy the parasites responsible for the infection. The advantage of this remedy is that there is the option of both the oil and the fruit to treat the condition. Depending on your preference/ what is available, you may use freshly sourced coconut water or opt for extra-virgin coconut oil. Follow the simple directions below to make the best of this remedy.
- Take a few glasses of tender coconut oil severally every day. This will replace the volume of lost fluids while speeding up the process of recovery.
- The other option is to take 3 tablespoons of extra virgin coconut oil. The presence of medium-chain triglycerides will go a long way in helping get rid of the parasites from the body.
4. Indian Lilac (Neem):
Time Required: 10 Min
What You Need: A handful of neem leaves, 1 litre of water and a strainer. You may also use neem supplements.
Tap into the goodness of Indian Lilac to help manage the symptoms of amebiasis. Indian Lilac, also known as neem, has long been used for an array of conditions, among them the parasitic infections affecting the gut. This is important because neem has potent antiparasitic and antibiotic properties that go a long way in eliminating the causative properties. The added benefit of using Neem is that it eliminates the toxic load left behind by the parasites. You may use the neem leaves to prepare the neem juice or opt for supplements.
NOTE: Pregnant and lactating women should not take neem extracts as this poses a great risk to both the unborn child and the nursing baby.
Prepare the Juice using the Neem Leaves:
- Take a handful of the neem leaves and sort them before cleaning to get rid of topical dirt.
- Place the leaves in a pan and add about a litre of water.
- Boil the mixture until the leaves become soft and loose their green pigment.
- Let the mixture simmer for a few minutes and then turn off the heat.
- Strain the mixture and let the neem juice cool down.
- Drink 1 tablespoon of the juice daily for a couple of weeks until the symptoms clear.
- If you can, chew on the fresh neem leaves twice daily.
- The other option revolves around using neem supplements. It is advisable to check with your doctor before using any supplements to avoid any drug-drug interactions.
Time Required: 10 Min
What You Need: 3 Cloves of garlic or garlic supplements. Lemon wedges are optional.
Take advantage of the anti parasitic properties that garlic has long been used for. Aside from been used in the culinary circles, garlic also has potent healing properties that make it ideal for the natural treatment of amebiasis. Not only do the active ingredients present in garlic get rid of the harmful parasites, but also helps prevent the parasitic infection from worsening. What’s more, garlic has also been known to boost the immune system therefore helping fight off the infection. You may use the raw garlic or supplements. Lemon wedges are added for anyone who finds the pungent smell of garlic repulsive.
- Chew on 2-3 cloves of raw garlic, preferably on an empty stomach to get the benefits of the herb.
- Follow this up by squeezing some juice from the lemon wedges to keep the smell of garlic at bay.
- Garlic supplements may also be used in this regard, but it is important to consult your doctor for clearance particularly if you are already on some form of medication.
Time Required: Varied depending on the method of preparation.
What You Need: Pumpkin vegetable or pumpkin seeds.
Pumpkin is one of the best home remedies for the management of the symptoms of amebiasis. This vegetable works by eliminating the parasites while providing nutrients that help replenish the body’s stock. This is very helpful because it reduces the damage done by the parasites. The best thing about pumpkin is that it is easy to digest. Try preparing pumpkin soup, roasted pumpkin cubes and even using the seeds for this remedy.
- Peel and clean the pumpkin before using it to prepare your preferred foods including pumpkin in salad, roasted cubes and pumpkin soup.
- The other option is to chew on a handful of pumpkin seeds, preferably on an empty stomach. Compliment this by taking lots of water to stay hydrated.
7. Turmeric Powder:
Time Required: 5 Min
What You Need: Raw turmeric juice and a pinch of salt.
Turmeric powder has long been used to treat inflammation and pain, which is why it is ideal for easing the symptoms experienced by amebiasis patients. Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties, coupled with its immune-boosting properties, makes it an effective remedy altogether. The herb has also been known to protect affected tissues from damage. All you need for this remedy is a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of raw turmeric juice.
- Add a pinch of salt to the raw turmeric juice and drink on an empty stomach at least once every day until the symptoms have eased.
- Remember to add turmeric to your cooking as well. If need be, use turmeric supplements under your doctor’s guidance.
Other home remedies used for the natural treatment of amebiasis include apple cider vinegar, turmeric, cloves and foods rich in fiber. The latter comes in handy because it helps reduce the frequency of watery stool excreted while offering some relief from the condition. This eases the symptoms and hastens the period of recovery. Check with your doctor if the symptoms do not ease with the use of these home remedies as an adjunct form of treatment.