The Tapeworm I Found in my Salad Dressing with a Microscope

First the tapeworm I found in my cheese and now this… I’m seeing a pattern…

Having developed a way to use a muscle testing analysis to identify whether something has a parasite before finding out the hard way by actually eating it, life has become much more simple. If product produces a weak muscle testing response, I assume there are parasite eggs in it and don’t eat it. But I don’t like to assume…

I was having this conversation with a student one day and a very valid question came up: when something tests as if it has a tapeworm in it, for example, what are we actually finding? The carcass of a tapeworm, tapeworm eggs or some other agent that only looks like a tapeworm? I had always assumed it was the eggs we were finding but that lead to an obvious challenge, which I readily accepted: if it’s testing for tapeworm eggs, there must be evidence to prove this scientifically. Not that muscle testing isn’t scientific but it is more open to interpretation than something you can physically see.

So this is what we did…

My starting materials were my muscle testing kit and a digital microscope capable of 400x magnification.

To clarify the premises of my experiment, you need to understand two points:

    1. From a muscle testing standpoint, a tapeworm is identified when a weak muscle testing response is reactivated by two 600mg pills (e.g. 1200mg) of praziquantel, the world’s most common tapeworm medicine. This is because 1200mg of praziquantel is the tapeworm dosage.
    2. This is what a tapeworm egg looks like when it is stained and professionally prepared for photographic representation in a microbiology study (e.g. this is what we were looking for).

Here is the salad dressing, placed in a nondescript bottle so that the manufacturer’s name isn’t visible. The political and legal tenor of our time is such that the most companies would rather sue someone for libel than thank them for pointing out that their product was contaminated. So on principle I don’t name brands I find parasites in. Also, I don’t want to appear that I have a negative political agenda against any company because that’s not the case. I really think they’re unaware of the problem I’m pointing out here, in the same way an infant would be unaware they shouldn’t offer you candy they’d picked up off the ground. However, infants aren’t in the habit of suing you for pointing out the candy is dirty, so at some point a certain amount of responsibility is implied, but this is the part I’m not interested in getting involved in.

Here is the sample of salad dressing next to the two pills of praziquantel used to identify that the weak muscle testing response was indeed due to a tapeworm.

To give you a sense of egg density within the sample, this is the sub-sample placed onto a microscope slide next to a pen for size comparison.

Based on the sample size (circled in yellow), I estimate that the amount of dressing poured onto a salad would confer over one thousand tapeworm eggs in a single serving. They wouldn’t all hatch in your stomach acid, but they wouldn’t all need to. 10 or 20 eggs hatching at once would put you in the hospital. In fact, tapeworm infection seems to be the number one parasite-related cause of hospitalization. Vicious creatures…

Microscope Images

This is the view of the sample at 40x magnification

This is 100X magnification.

And this is 400X magnification (left) compared with the original biologist-prepared tapeworm egg reference sample (right).

Bear in mind the sample I found hasn’t been separated from its base material, nor has it been stained (professionally contrasted against its background), and my digital microscope’s resolution is not as clear as that of the professional sample.

What is undeniable is that I predicted the presence of something that looked exactly like this before I found it. In astronomy, if you predict an eclipse and then one actually happens, it means your calculations were right. In this case it appears that my prediction of the presence of a tapeworm egg followed by what looks like the egg means my calculation was right: that there were indeed tapeworm eggs in the salad dressing.

The fact is I didn’t need to do this: I already knew I was right. I combed through the salad dressing sample for you, my readers, so you could have empirical evidence to support what I am proposing: that something like 1/4 of all condiments, cheeses and yogurts in your average grocery store are contaminated with parasite eggs. This statement seems extreme, unbelievable and horrific. I can’t help that, this is the data I have collected. And it does explain why 100% of people who come into my clinics are hosting multiple parasites, and why they keep getting more once they’re cleaned out.

Thoughts

On a separate note, I’d like to share an interesting fact that might illuminate a problematic aspect of our medical system. Every time I find a parasite in someone that a stool testing lab can’t find, the same question comes up: why didn’t the lab find this? I call it the problem with parasite testing. The time it took me to find the egg sample might illuminate things: It took a full 90 minutes to location the sample you see above. How many stool testing lab techs do you think spend 90 minutes going through you faecal sample? And even if they did, would they know to look for a tapeworm egg specifically? There are roughly 50 parasites you could easily have, and another 50 or so pathogenic bacteria. Combing through that mess of salad dressing, my only guiding light was that I knew what I was looking for. A lab tech may know what things look like but nobody tells them before the examination begins which thing they’re actually looking for. And I can only imagine faeces being less pleasant to comb through than salad dressing. I can understand why they don’t have the time to give a faecal sample a thorough examination. I feel that this is the best explanation for why so few parasites are actually found.

What it doesn’t explain is how on earth that density of tapeworm eggs got into the salad dressing in the first place. Or how hookworm gets into ketchup. You’ve got me there. I have no idea. If we look at the CDC image of the lifecycle of a tapeworm, we can see that the egg I have found would be considered a stage one “unembryonated egg” which according them they would have been passed directly from faeces. I don’t understand this… Companies don’t add raw sewage to their food, so I can only assume that there is some aspect to this that I’m overlooking. And as I’ve said I don’t like to assume…

One possibility is that the eggs aren’t passing from faeces but from milk. This is how puppies get the dog roundworm from their mothers and how calves pick up roundworm and tapeworm from cows. If some milk-based ingredient were added into these products, and since it does seem that dairy in general is not pasteurized adequately enough to render it clear of parasite eggs, this would not only explain how there are tapeworm eggs in the salad dressing sample but would then also explain why cheese and yogurt in general seem to be bigger sources of parasite eggs even than condiments are. If the unembryonated egg was passed though milk that would make perfect sense, as all that would be needed for this to happen is that the milk not be brought to a high enough temperature to kill the eggs. Since that is how most people get parasites from sushi (e.g. the fish are labelled “sashimi grade” but are not actually brought to a low enough temperature [-35°C x 15 hours] to kill the eggs) it makes sense.

But food manufacturing and processing isn’t my area of expertise, just getting the parasites out afterwards. If any of my readers in the food processing industry have thoughts on how this might be happening, it would be a helpful thing to include in the comments below so other people could benefit from the information.

Either way, this underscores the importance of muscle testing your condiments and milk products, or avoiding them entirely. Personally I eat all the condiments and milk products I want, except that I muscle test them first. If you’re not willing to muscle test any of these products and not willing to avoid them either, at least now you will understand why you keep getting parasites.

But I hope this information helps to prevent that from happening.

Convenience Links:

Leave a Comment