Why you may want to swap those candies for cloves
We’re at that time of the year when the leaves signal the fall into winter and the days retreat from the encroaching night. A time of cold, damp, and dormancy, but not before celebrating what has come before and preparing for what comes next. Every country and culture boast a unique take on this transitional period, from The Day of the Dead to All Hallows’ Eve.
Here in England, this usually takes the form of pumpkin carving, overdosing on sugar, and drinking three too many cocktails. This year, I finally decided to make use of all those pumpkin guts and it made me pause and think of my own. As I mixed in the traditional ingredients like cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, I realised these are all well-known natural remedies for parasites.
Perhaps there’s a case for Halloween traditions being rooted in health as much as spirituality. Could your Halloween celebrations set the foundation of your health for the coming winter?
Why exactly would I need a parasite cleanse and why now?
Throughout the warmer months, you’ve likely conducted many activities with potential to introduce parasites to your body, including
Walking barefoot in nature
Wild swimming (and accidentally ingesting contaminated water)
Close contact with animals
Being bitten by parasite-transmitting insects
It should also be noted that parasites are, and always have been, a major problem on a global scale
Toxoplasma Gondii may infect 30-50% of the world’s population
14% of US population are exposed to Toxocara
30% of children worldwide may be infected with E. Vermicularis
What does this have to do with Halloween?
Here are two extremes of how you could spend the Halloween period. Of course, the reality is we’ll all be somewhere in the middle of the two.
The healthier way
Eat seasonal vegetables and transition your gut microbiome to winter
Consume a variety of foods well documented to combat intestinal parasites
The not so healthy way
Eat a lot of sugary sweets, chocolates, cakes and biscuits
Consume a great deal of alcohol
The first approach clearly benefits your health and may acclimatize you to the coming winter months, the latter may feed any parasites and create a cosy environment for them.
The winter months are often associated with increased illness and attributed to varying factors, such as
Increased depression and anxiety - Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
Lower levels of Vitamin D
Less frequent social interactions
Thanks in part to shorter days, bad weather forcing us inside, and lower UV radiation.
We’re becoming more aware of just how important our gut health is to our general health, mental health, and even our decision-making ability; therefore, preparing our gut, and our health in general, for winter should be a top priority.
With all that being said, I appear to be on my own in looking at Halloween this way and perhaps I’ve just got parasites on the brain. Hopefully not in a literal sense, but just in case, I’ll be staying clear of the sugar and continue to enjoy daily doses of anti-parasite pumpkin soup.
Halloween ‘Anti-parasitic’ Foods
Winter squashes, including pumpkins, contain high amounts of soluble fibre, feed gut bacteria, promote digestion, and provide vital nutrients.