Blastocystis hominis: Living with it, how I recovered + how to prevent it

Woah. The last 2 years have been an uphill battle for me to achieve perfect health again after playing host to Blastocystis hominis (Blasto) in mid-2018.

CW: this isn’t going to be a pretty post. I’ve been putting it off for a few years because it’s not a very comfortable topic to write or read about. However, it may help someone. So, for that reason, it’s worth it. I also wrote this before the news of COVID-19 becoming a global pandemic. Sorry to overburden you with more health-related information. Oops. While parasites and coronavirus are very different, some of my experiences could be useful for prevention and healing across the board. So, for that, you’re welcome.

On another note: none of the information in this article acts as medical advice. I am not a qualified health professional. Please do not use the opinions of a blogger on the internet as medical advice and instead, consult your GP or a qualified health professional.

Now, let’s get to the nitty-gritty.


What is Blastocystis hominis?

According to, “Blastocystis hominis is a species of one of the most common human intestinal organisms. Blastocystis species are found in people throughout the world and higher numbers are reported in developing countries.”

There’s a lot of conflicting information out there. Researchers are still debating over whether or not Blastocystis is a health concern and if it even needs to be treated. Even my doctor said that GPs generally don’t know much about it. Which is absurd for me to think about, considering it’s one of the most common parasites a human can get.

The NSW government health website says, “It’s not certain how Blastocystis is spread” and the SA government health website goes on to say that, “There is a great deal of debate about whether Blastocystis causes illness or not.” And, according to Mayo Clinic, “Researchers don’t fully understand the role Blastocystis hominis plays”.

So, what does anybody know about anything?! Not much, apparently.

Anyhow, here are the facts:

  1. Blastocystis hominis is a single-celled parasite. Meaning it’s not visible to the naked eye. Unlike many other parasites, you can’t visibly tell that it’s there.
  2. It lives in the gastrointestinal tract of infected folk.
  3. It’s probably transmitted through infected food and water (I’d believe that, personally).
  4. Not everybody gets symptoms.
  5. Symptoms usually include diarrhoea, abdominal pain and vomiting, amongst other things. I’ll get to my own specific symptoms in a bit.
  6. There are no proven treatments.

While patient recovery/improvement has been shown even without any treatment, this wasn’t an option for me. The symptoms associated with Blasto, that I started experiencing, were beginning to affect my health and my ability to live to my full potential.


How Blastocystis started for me

I first got symptoms of Blasto a couple of weeks after I got back from the Tasi Travels Travel with Purpose Trip to Timor-Leste (it would have been about August 2018). It was an awesome trip. I did almost everything ‘right’ in terms of staying safe and healthy on travels. I drank only from the big, purified water drum at our accommodation, kept my mouth closed when washing (there wasn’t really a ‘shower’, so to speak), ate no meat or animal products (makes it easier when you’re vegan!), and bought my water purifier bottle with me to save on plastic and purify my water as much as possible.

However, I could’ve done better.

On the Island we visited (Atauro), we had no other choice than to eat from the buffet at our accommodation. There was literally no other food on the island than what our hosts were providing us. So naturally, I didn’t know how they washed the veggies I was eating or where any of the food was sourced from. I also recently learned that the purifier I used for parts of my trip wasn’t the best I could’ve bought.

There isn’t much information about the prevalence of Blasto in Timor but this 2019 study found Blasto in 34.4% of a population in Indonesia (146 people out of a 424 data set). It says, “[Blastocystis] is thought to be a common parasite in Indonesia”. So, it would make sense if there was a similarly high rate in the neighbouring country of Timor-Leste.

It’s also just as likely that I had contracted the parasite even before or after my trip because Australia certainly isn’t immune.


My Symptoms

My symptoms seemed to match up with after my return from Timor-Leste. They went as follows: gastrointestinal pain, diarrhoea on and off for 3 months, nausea, fatigue, night sweats, loss of appetite, malnutrition, even looking like something had been eating away at me. Not to mention the inflammation. So much inflammation throughout my whole body. Inflamed skin, rashes, and redness. I think this was around the time that I also experienced my first migraine. Then, with the inflammation and fatigue came restlessness, nervousness, and anxiety. I constantly felt like my skin was crawling and, at times, I wanted to burst out of my body.

I gave my symptoms a solid 3 to 4 months before I even saw a doctor – putting it down to hormonal fluctuations or a food allergy, then testing the elimination of such foods from my diet. At one stage, I even thought that I ‘just’ suffered from an anxiety disorder that was making me cry in stabbing gut-pain every week. If I saw past me, I would slap her (and then give her a hug because the system that is supposed to help us is so screwed up).

Looking back, it’s ridiculous how frequently patient symptoms (and female experiences, to be a bit more specific) are pushed aside, making us question even ourselves (hysteria, anyone?).

Honestly, it was a shock to my doctor that I was still functioning after that length of time living with the symptoms I had. It says something about my resilience that I launched my business in October 2018 and kept my blog thriving during this period as well ?

But, in November 2018, I finally had enough. My methods of diagnosis weren’t getting me anywhere. You see, I can be pretty stubborn, and I don’t often ask for help. I’ve also had an unfortunate history of doctors not believing me, which didn’t make the process emotionally easier. At all. However, after witnessing what I was experiencing every few days, my boyfriend convinced me to go to the doctor. Thanks, Glenn. That’s true love.

It says something about my resilience that I launched my business in October 2018 and kept my blog thriving during this period as well.


My Diagnosis

Look, if I hadn’t told the doctor I had recently been to Timor-Leste, she probably wouldn’t have tested for Blasto. I had a funny feeling that it wasn’t ‘just’ a food allergy or emotional distress and that it could be a parasite, which I made very clear to my doctor. So, if you think you might have a parasite, request a test.

First, I got a blood test, and everything was in tip-top shape. Apart from my iron stores, which were on the lower end of the spectrum, but that’s pretty damn good for having a parasite.

Next up: stool sample. I visited my doctor again about a week later. The results came back with a clear BLASTOCYSTIS found. I remember my doctor being a bit confused, pulling up information on the infection from her desktop computer as I talked to her about what to do next.

I was relieved that we found the cause of my pain and symptoms but I soon realised that this was only the beginning.


My Recovery

Blasto is often hard to get rid of. After my diagnosis, I read blog posts about peoples’ 2-year (or more) journeys in returning to perfect health. My main concern, after diagnosis, was towards reducing the time it took to get rid of the parasite and get back to good health.


My doctor prescribed me an antibiotic called Flagyl (metronidazole). She noted that I should take it for the suggested time and see if my symptoms disappear. If so, the antibiotics will have worked and I shouldn’t worry about coming back for a second test. On the other hand, if my symptoms persisted, she suggested that I should definitely come back.

As far as I remember, I took Flagyl 3 times a day for about a week and it made me feel yucky. I think this was mainly die-off symptoms that I was experiencing, except on another level. Although I was taking quite a strong probiotic while I was on antibiotics, Flagyl really affected the bacteria balance in my mouth as well, as I ended up with a white tongue for a couple of weeks afterwards.

So, why, as somebody who promotes natural medicine and holistic alternatives, did I choose to take such a strong medication?

The simple answer: I was desperate.

That, and antibiotics seemed to be the most trusted method at killing this parasite at the time. While I rely on natural alternatives for prevention and for healing other illnesses, there was no evidence that natural medicine would work in this scenario and I didn’t have the time to trial and test my methods while risking my health declining even more.

However, after my prescription of Flagyl was finished, I did things my way. Double whammy. I thought, “Why not do all I can to ensure this parasite is gone for good?”

So, why, as somebody who promotes natural medicine and holistic alternatives, did I choose to take such a strong medication? The simple answer: I was desperate.

Natural Parasite Cleanse

To help get rid of the parasite, I took a course of Para Purge, which I ordered from iHerb (use my code for 5% off iHerb: ANM7131).

Para Purge is a “gentle blend of 15 whole herbs” which come in a bottle of 60 veggie capsules. The herbs used in this formula are all historically known to help treat parasites and heal the digestive system, such as black walnut hulls, neem leaf, and wormwood leaf. There are many similar cleanse systems out there, including Pure Planet’s USDA Certified Organic Parasite Cleanse, which I would probably choose now instead – if given the opportunity.

I followed the directions and took:

  • 2 capsules, twice daily, for 1 week
  • 3 capsules daily for 1 week
  • 1-2 capsules daily for 2 weeks

I think doing this cleanse straight after my antibiotics not only gave my body the extra push it needed but really boosted the healing process as well.

I’ve heard of many families doing a parasite cleanse on a yearly basis, just to stay safe and ensure that they’re not living with anything unwanted. This is probably something that I’ll be looking at doing. However, it’s best to check with your qualified health professional to see what is best and safe for you.


Fossil Shell Flour & The Beauty Chef Powder

To finish things off after my month of Para Purge, I discovered Supercharged Food Love Your Gut Powder, which is just a fancy name for naturopathic grade, organic fossil shell flour (amorphous silica). I did a similar routine to Para Purge with this one, taking the fossil shell flour in my smoothie or a glass of water. During the period of taking this powder, I added in The Beauty Chef’s BODY Inner Beauty Powder, too, which I used as an additional prebiotic and probiotic to help heal my gut.


The full 9 weeks of purging went as follows:



Purge: Flagyl

Heal: Probiotic (taken in between doses of Flagyl), prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods


Purge: Natural Parasite Cleanse

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods


Purge: Natural Parasite Cleanse

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods


Purge: Natural Parasite Cleanse

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods


Purge: Natural Parasite Cleanse

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods


Purge: Food grade fossil shell flour

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods, The Beauty Chef Body Powder


Purge: Food grade fossil shell flour

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods, The Beauty Chef Body Powder


Purge: Food grade fossil shell flour

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods, The Beauty Chef Body Powder


Purge: Food grade fossil shell flour

Heal: Probiotic, prebiotic- + probiotic-rich foods, The Beauty Chef Body Powder

Please note that this is not medical advice. I am not a qualified health professional. This routine was entirely my decision during the time. I listened to the advice given to me by my doctor and other medical practitioners and decided what was best for me to do from there. Please consult your own qualified health professional for medical advice.


Natural body healing

There is so much information out there about how to ‘get rid’ of parasites, and little about the recovery afterwards. For me, healing was (and is) a whole and complete process. It was about staying in tune with how I was feeling to make sure I was on the right track.

While I was on different forms of parasite purge medication, natural or otherwise, for 9 weeks, it took a while for my body to really return to its normal state afterwards. My body may have purged the parasite but I was so thrown off balance for months.

In the months following my cleanse, I tried to cut down on sugar as much as possible (without driving myself insane). Parasites thrive on sugar. So, by avoiding what they love, I was essentially working to starve them.

I introduced even more fresh veggies (lots of garlic!), legumes, nuts, seeds (sunflower seeds, especially!), herbs and spices into my meals. I also began to learn more about prebiotic foods and how to get all the probiotics I need. Through nutrition, I worked to heal my body from the inside out.

My body may have purged the parasite but I was so thrown off balance for months.


Natural psyche healing

Although I only had Blasto for a few months, the damage it also did to my confidence to leave the house lingered. So, I worked on the psychological after-effects, too. I practised patience in getting out in the world again and, most importantly, trusting and being honest with those I was around.

I remember showing up to Limon Spa in late 2019 after a particularly bad morning and letting the ladies know what was going on. Luckily, they are all about natural health, too, and completely understood. They even made a herbal tea for me, to help. In the aftermath of Blasto, this is the kind of people I surrounded myself with. Understanding, nurturing, open. It’s the care and compassion my body and soul needed (*needs!).

Psychologically, having Blasto started to chip away at the trust I had for my body to persevere and keep me safe at all times, too. With Blasto, I became physically vulnerable and that was scary. So, I spent most of 2019 rebuilding my bond with my body. Yoga was a real catalyst for change here. Any sort of movement or soul-work to help me reattach and reconnect, really.

In a way, I am grateful for getting Blastocystis. It allowed for a real transformation in my relationship with my body and taught me how to care for myself, even if I do so now only a little bit better. Those small changes – nourishment, positive people, self-care + self-love – have now become habits, and I’m sure I will continue to reap the rewards of them well into the future.

Turns out, The Beauty Chef is right. Beauty really does begin in the belly – being able to enjoy the beauty of a full life, parasite-free, that is.


How to prevent Blastocystis

Travelling soon? Or just don’t trust your home city or town to keep you safe from Blastocystis hominis? There are a few changes you can make to prevent getting the parasite in the first place.

1. Purify your water.

Bring a good water purifier and use one at home, too. My friends at are working to release their patented purifier (the WAYFARER) that’s perfect for travel and that I’d trust above all else. For your home, you can install a water filter tap (if you own your home!) or invest in a Southern Cross Pottery water purifier. It’s worth it.

2. Avoid untreated water.

Don’t drink untreated water and don’t open your mouth in the shower. In the worst-case scenario, if you don’t have access to a water purifier bottle, drink bottled water. I’d always recommend planning ahead, though, and bringing a purifier bottle to leave a cleaner, plastic-free trail.

3. Eat clean food.

Wash all your fruit and veggies when you bring them home. Don’t just rinse. A lot of people have touched your produce before it comes through your front door. I use Koala Eco’s certified toxin-free fruit and vegetable wash (and then pop them in my Swag bag to keep them fresher for longer­ – if you wanted an extra tip).

When travelling, don’t eat from the buffet if you have another option. Don’t assume it’s safe because everyone else is eating from it. It’s not worth it.

4. Don’t eat animal products.

I’m biased here, so it’s easier for me to recommend this. Most sources will say to choose well-cooked meat and avoid raw meats and eggs. If you want to eliminate your chances of getting Blasto or other parasites from animal products, the only way to do so is to avoid animal products altogether.

5. Stay balanced.

Stay healthy by managing your stress, eating well, reducing your intake of refined sugar, starch, caffeine, and alcohol, sleeping well, and staying hydrated. Maintaining a balanced lifestyle will prevent you from creating an ideal living space for parasites and will help your body combat parasites should you come into contact with them.

6. Wash your hands well.

Practise good hygiene. With the recent COVID-19, I think we’ve got this all drilled into our brains by now. Who knew that washing your hands could keep you safe from other infections, too? Shocker.

Have you had Blastocystis hominis or a similar parasite? What do you do to stay healthy and prevent parasites? Drop a comment, I’d love to help spread the conversation and education far and wide.


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  • I needed to read this today. I am dealing with Blasto right now. I keep thinking I have other infections alongside it because how could a supposedly “commensal” organism cause so much damage?! I dealt with constipation, floating stools, gas, weird acidic/gas vapors that would come into my mouth (probably from lack of detox pathways being open), ammonia smelling body odor (again probably lack of detox), ear pressure/fuzziness, brain fog, and pain on my left side (trouble digesting). I’ve been working with a functional doctor and did a similar protocol of Flagyl for 10 days plus antimicrobial follow up. They also added in Xifaxin just in case Sibo was amongst the pathogens. I have two more weeks on the antimicrobials and am not feeling any better. In fact, a lot of what I have been experiencing is just as bad as when I started. I know it takes time to correct dysbiosis. In the months following your treatment, you mentioned you still had to deal with issues. Were they similar to the issues you started with and how did you become sure it was gone and you were healed? What was that turning point or you? I am trying to get my mindset to a positive place. Unfortunately I must have acquired it locally as I haven’t traveled anywhere lately 🙁

    • Hey Brittany, glad this post could help today, even just a little! Sounds like you’ve had a great doctor so far. In the months following my treatment, I was mostly dealing with the effects the antibiotics had on my body (white tongue, healing my gut biome again – those are all I can remember). I didn’t get a second test to confirm my blasto had gone because I didn’t feel like I needed to – my symptoms (notably the gastrointestinal pain and diarrhoea) went away. That was the turning point, but it wasn’t an obvious one – it was very slow healing and sometimes the turning point is a subtle one. Can appear a bit frustrating to not have a final answer but I’m happy with how my body and health feel now and that’s what matters 🙂 Hope this helps!

    • I am suffering as much two months after testing clear of B.spp. as before. I have liquid feces and fatigue like I have never had in my life. I would like to stay in bed all the time! I made the mistake of trying to figure out whar symptoms meant instead of simply going for a feces lab test! I am primarily vegetarian and saw little change in color or texture of feces. My first strong symptom was that my head itched so much I thought I had scabies. Four months of changing bed clothes and bedding every night and rubbing my body and head with Scabisan changed nothing. I read a lot on the internet and thought I had giardia (the symptoms of giardia and B. spp. are similar). So I took antibiotics for giardia (basically the same as for B. spp.) My stomach aches and loose (but not liquid) feces continued. Bt the beginning of the 2nd year, my lower legs were covered with red,itchy welts (I have lymphedema from radiation treatment for cancer and wear knee-high elastic stockingsd.) Then the itching spread over my whole body. Brain fog came and went. Finally, I had a test. B.spp. I had no ideahow much longer I would suffer from this awful bacteria! I started with the recommended antibiotics (4 in my first treatment), plus probiotics, but when it was clear nothing had changed, another round of antibotics. Most of the time for a year I had eaten 2 garlic cloves a day, plus daily dosing with oregano oil and olive leaf (awful!). When a B. spp test was negative, I relaxed. That was a mistake! I eat largely vegetarian (as before), with a lot of nuts and seeds and garden greens. I added 50 bn units daily of probiotics. I am not 2.5 months after 3 negative B. spp. tests and I am miserable. I cannot leave the house because of unanticipatged, urgent liquid feces. I am too tired to do almost anything. I am reserching how B. spp. changes the microboeme for clues about what to eat. My doctor is excellent, and once I spell out what is going on, he will do research and offer solutions. BTW, I live in Veracruz state, Mexico.

      • Thats so scary! I also contracted blasto from Mexico, and I am doing everything I can to get rid of it, but it’s slow going.

        I hope you are able to find a doctor who can try new things that might help it.

  • I found it ironic that it ended with a photo of your cat very close to your products. While it’s most likely you did get blasto overseas (I believe I picked it up in Bali), be mindful that pets can also carry parasites and we can get infected from them!

    • Thanks Carly, that’s great advice, especially for those reading who might not be sure where they picked it up 🙂

  • Thanks for writing this blog. I’m also dealing with Blasto now. I think I picked it up from a fastfood place in London 13 years ago. Physical symptoms include IBS and a rash on my forehead and cheeks. Mental symptoms… some confusion, forgetfulness, fatigue, and – the main one – irrational social anxiety and agoraphobia. It’s worst during and after excercise.

    I’ve been on a bit of a journey with my health over the past 4 years. Lived most of my life with chronic mercury poisoning due to amalgams and certain medical interventions prior to trips to subtropical regions. I reason this supressed my immune system enough for blasto to take hold in my gut. I suspect it also damaged my gut lining allowing it into the CNS and brain. I was lucky to find out and fixed the toxicity issues with thorough detox; glutathione, ALA etc. But the rash and IBS never cleared and, after several negative (NHS) parasite tests I got a private parasitology test and came up +ve for blasto. That was 3 months ago. I’ve since taken 2 x courses of metronidazole and one of co-trimethoprim, alongside some natural herbs and oils (oregano oil and others). Symptoms clear and I feel good for some days but it keeps coming back.

    I’m not really sure what to try next. Symptoms are… unpleasant but manageable. I’ve lived with worse! I seem to have tried all the main treatments. I wonder if it’s possible to eradicate it entirely now. Wish I had gotten a private test sooner and dealt with this earlier.

    • Thanks for your comment, Tim. Sorry to hear that you’ve been through such a journey. All the best with your recovery.

    • Hello Tim,
      I deal also with Blasto since three years….in a similar way like you, with a lot of heavy symptoms which I
      will not describe here. I was running from one Doctor to the next….without succsess.
      Blasto rides down my Thyroid …. and I have some good days and then again bad days. I have studied this parasite now
      for two years and there are helpful reports in the internet. One sientist report shows that every 4-5 days the symptoms will increase…. and this is the reason why some days will work….
      The only way to threat this parasite is the method from Prof. TJ Borody (Australia) which I will try this summer.
      I have to wait, because my last try with antibiotics was 7 month ago (Cotrim Forte) without access.
      My Borody recommends a “single trancolonscopic infusion of three Anti Protozoal Agents” for one time and then you take 10 days Nitazoxanide or if you have problems with allergies (sulphur) then you take Iodoquionol.
      Nitazoxanide are expensive but you can get in from Indien!! The anti-protozol medicament has less side effects then antibiotics.
      If you have interest I will send you the report. There was a 100 % eradication rate in the patients which try this way!!

      best regards
      (sorry for my english, I am from germany

      • Thanks for sharing about Thomas Borody’s research, Michael. I don’t think that research article mentions that this is the only way to treat Blasto though but I agree that Borody’s research could be helpful. As mentioned in my blog post, I would urge people to see their doctor or medical practitioner and do their research before taking advice from bloggers/strangers on the internet.

        Thanks for your comment and if people are interested in the research article, here are the details to the one I think you’re referring to:

        Borody TJ; Wettstein AR; Benstock S, et al. Single transcolonoscopic infusion of three anti-protozoal agents for difficult Blastocystis hominis infections. Gut, 2012; 61 (Suppl 3): A292.

        And here is some more about Borody’s work:

      • Hi Michael & Molly. Thanks for the advice and words of support.

        I’m not clear but I’m on the right road. Also found Prof Brody’s research and happenws to be in Peru where you can buy those antibiotics over the counter so I’ve tried that protocol several times now. I’ve found it’s effective at clearing the colon of Blasto which seems to be from where my symptoms emanate. But it didn’t clear the upper intestine so the infection returned after ~2 weeks. Volumes of the recommended antibiotics are large so medical supervision is highly advisable; I had severe difficulty retaining the enema for more than a few minutes… the one time I managed 40mins was by far the most effective. Could be sulphur allergy and probably wont apply to most. I did not take regular oral nitazoxanide for the following week as recommended so that’s next to try.

        Some thoughts; the longer you’ve had it the harder it is to eliminate. Oral treatments (antibiotics or herbal remedies) often don’t clear the colon, and enemas often don’t clear the upper gut. So some probably need both. Choice of antibiotics depends on subtype(s) and the right herbs (e.g. A. judaica) are maybe just as effective if used in the correct volumes with the correct delivery methods.

        • For anyone following this thread, I did eventually get this under control.

          Paromomycin & nitazoxinade. Orally. Saccharomyces boulardii (probiotics). Also Tongkat Ali, maybe most effective of all.

          NEVER Metronidazole or any from that class of drug. A whole bunch of studies (like the one above) show Blasto recognises MTZ, goes into hibernation (cyst form) then comes back with a vengeance. So it’s effective at reducing stool count for a few days. After that it comes back worse.

          It may be that Blasto can develop this response against virtually any treatment. Or it may be that different subtypes have different resistances. Once you find something that works go hard and fast.

      • Hi Michael, I am also from Germany and struggle with Blasto. In Berlin I have been to every possible doc, today I have found the study you are telling about and now you say you will also take part in it. Maybe we can get in touch to exchange details. Thanks and good luck!

      • Hello Michael,

        Thank you for sharing your story. I am dealing with blasto for a couple of years and I tried to take some natural herb supplement, but it did not relief my symptoms. I stared having a thyroid issue , rashes and other strange symptoms. I was wondering if you can please share the report that you mentioned in your post. I am at the point that I will try anything to get rid of this parasite! Thank you so much!
        Kind regards

  • Thank you for writing this. I’m suffering with this parasite infection right now and am on the same antibiotics and a bio-film disruptor as well an a natural antiparasitic herb. All given to me by my functional medicine doctor. My stool test also showed gut dysbiosis so I’m on some strong probiotics as well. I’ve been feeling off for 3 months and it started with random acid reflux. Less so gastrointestinal symptoms which is quite odd? I’ve had a LOT of anxiety and stress and weirdly enough – neurological symptoms such as visual disturbances, brain fog and lightheadedness (and occasional dizziness). I’ve also been breaking out in random bouts of hives which I never have before. At this point I’m scared this will never go away. I’ve been in the antibiotics for a week and still have another week to go. I just want my life back. I’m scared to leave the house now with all the anxiety.

    • Thanks for your comment Alyssa & I’m sorry to hear all that you’re going through. I had a lot of neurological & emotional symptoms with my parasite too. Sending thoughts for a swift recovery – let us know how you go. I’m sure the many other people reading this post would love to know as well! All the best – Molly

    • Hi Allysa,

      This sounds exactly what im experiencing, can you please let me know how you are now and did you manage to combat blasto.

      my brain fog and anxiety is a massive problem


  • hi
    im dealing with blactocyte rigt now. i tried metronidazole for seven days but after three week there is no symptom improvment. i have rush and i dont know what should i do now

    • Hi, please see your doctor! I’m a blogger and not qualified to give medical advice – I can only share my story. I hope you get better soon.

  • Hi, I’ve had blastocystis and dientaemeoba fragilis for at least 8 years. I had a test for bilharzia at the hospital of tropical diseases and it came back with blasto and dientaemeoba too! They wouldn’t treat me for it then and said it would likely cause more problems trying to and probably wouldn’t be successful. I have 2 children and the last decade has been a living nightmare with my health. I have become allergic to most foods and many other things and have now found out my children both have it too. Recently, I found an amazing practitioner who has experience with it. I have been taking AP traveller 3 x day, low sulphur diet, B. infantis probiotic, KIB500 washes, diatomaceous Earth. I’m praying it’s gone and am going to do a stool test with Invivo in a couple of weeks on completing the protocol with my children. It has absolutely rinsed my adrenals and liver so I’ve also been detoxing and building those up the last 3 months. It’s been very very hard dealing with this as a single mama too and wishing that my children didn’t have this in their system. However, we’re all getting stronger and healthier and doing positive healthy practices daily.

    • Hi Emma, thanks so much for sharing your story, I’m sure it will be very helpful for everyone who comes down to this comments section. I haven’t heard of dientaemeoba before, I will give it a Google! So glad you’re all doing better. Would love an update on how your feeling now if you have one. All the best 🙂

    • Dear Emma,
      I have just read your story and would appreciate very much if you could give me contact details of the practitioner who help you with Blastocystis as i have had them for over 3 years and have tried so many remedies and antibiotics without success. I have severe food allergies and weight loss etc…
      wishing you the very best for you and your 2 children
      Many blessings

    • Hello Emma,

      Did you ever do a retest after your blastocystis and dientaemeoba fragilis treatment?

      I’m really interested to know how you and your kids got on as my Daughter has a horrible autoimmune condition which I’m sure has something to do with these.

  • Hi Molly, great to hear your story and thanks for sharing. Keep spreading the word! I believe I picked up blasto in 2014 in Zanzibar so have been suffering for over six years now! I’m hoping to get the triple lot of antibiotics to get rid of it this year in May/June. Fingers crossed it goes as it’s very debilitating condition and I wish it was taken more seriously. Good to hear you are doing well anyway 🙂

    • Thanks for your wonderfully kind comment, Emily! I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve been suffering for 6 years and I agree that blasto needs to be taken more seriously. Let us know how you go in May & June. I’m still doing well but hope to go back to the doctor for a stool sample some time this year. I’ve had a lot of interest in this article and would love a scientific confirmation that my blasto really is gone. Sending well wishes for the coming months 🙂

  • Hi, did you actually get re tested to be sure you got rid of Blasto? I’ve done antibiotics twice now and still have blasto but I only know this because I get re tested? So many blogs show parasite cleanses but I still haven’t come across anyone who has proof they got rid of blasto? Thanks I would love to know.

    • Hi Janelle, thank you for reaching out. I just want to share that I don’t believe it was the parasite cleanse alone that helped me – I was on flagyl and took diatomaceous Earth as well, and also heavily focused on prebiotics and probiotics too. When I first went to my doctor, she told me not to bother with a second stool sample/blasto test if my symptoms went away, and they did. So, I did not get retested. It has been 2 years now that I’ve been free of all the horrible symptoms that I had due to blasto. I’m happy with my health currently & have felt well & healthy for the past 2 years, and for that reason, I feel comfortable sharing that I have recovered from Blasto. However, I understand that this article has found lots of people recently, so I do have plans to go back to the doctor this year and get retested for my own peace of mind. I will keep you updated 🙂 – Molly

  • I’m glad I found your post. I just took my last dose of metronidazole antibiotics (worst medication experience ever!, and I’ve dealt with pregnancy sickness 4 times). I wanted to learn how to rid this parasite for good.

    • Hi Heidi, I agree that metronidazole is just the worst! It’s comforting to know that other people have found the same. Hope you’re feeling better & best wishes for your recovery.

  • Your blog has been a great comfort in my own healing. Reading progress in your recovery pushed my optimism above all the negative reviews of flagyl and resistance to treatment.

    For others I just want to add my own two cents in eradicating this beast. I was a symptomatic for about 8 months, hospitalised twice in the last month, ended up 44kg, but received a negative-not detectable test today! I wanted to emphasise this because all the blogs I’ve seen don’t seem to have a certain test conducted at the end of treatment. I did and it’s negative – it’s worked. I took a hard approach and cut carbs and sugar and first, for about a week (after diagnosis) and ate dried papaya seeds (between 10-20 a day) for seven days (ground them and use as pepper is the easiest way). I had seven days off, and then seven days on again. I researched anti microbial properties and papaya seeds were found to contain an enzyme that targets parasites. A study in Nigeria also found success in using papaya seeds in eradicating blasto. I don’t know if my last bout of illness was another cycle of blasto or whether it was symptoms of die-off. I had diarrhoea, night sweats, fatigue, nausea, no appetite, and body aches; I ended up in hospital again for dehydration. By this time I started a 7 day course of Flagyl. The side effects and reviews of this were terrifying to me and I’ve been chronically ill for the last decade with very little success with antibiotics, plus my gut was already abused from the amount I’ve had – at least 4 courses every year for the last ten years. I was desperate too though. The doctor in the ED told me the trick with Flagyl was to just keep eating, which can be so hard when you feel so sick but it really did help to control the nausea; take it at the same time every day and take a probiotic at least two hours after a dose – every dose. I only experienced limited appetite, nausea, headaches, dizziness, drowsiness and severe bloating from this drug; The latter is likely a result of the absolute nuclear fall out that Flagyl is on your gut microbe – I found yoga to be very helpful in reducing the bloating. I have a big gut restoration ahead, and some motivation and guidance thanks to this blog! Find yourself a nutritionist to guide you through this restoration and kick this little bug’s butt! My gut feels notably different already, I have a bit of an appetite back and the brain fog is gone! I’ve had a history of b12 and iron deficiency and selective IgA deficiency, so it will be interesting to see if this now changes. Good luck to everyone fighting this and thank you Molly for your blog! I can’t express how comforting it was amongst the negative reviews of flagyl and struggle to eradicate it.

    • Hi, wondering if you’ve had any changes to your b12 and iron deficiency and selective IgA deficiency since your cleared the blasto?

  • Hello from Seattle, Wa. Thank you for this post! I never expected to have the mental health aspect come into play when dealing with this parasite. Your experience is relatable and comforting to hear. All the best to you.

  • Hey thanks for sharing your experience. I am suffering from IBS-C for 20 years and it got much worse after living in SE Asia for 2 years. After many years of managing the symptoms and having every test come back negative, I took a PCR stool test and they found BH in my stool so I am trying to understand how to treat it

  • Thank you for sharing your story!
    I stumbled across your story today.
    I was confirmed to have blasto and dientamoeba 5 weeks ago.
    I did the metro antibiotics and got some relief but then the symptoms returned and my tongue was to embarrassing to show anyone! So gross. I got sick of doctors saying it was a virus and saying my tongue was dehydration.
    I started working with a naturopath 2 weeks ago and I’m on a range of herbs and pills and powders and stuff. I had some nasty headaches when I started which was hopefully die off and some dreadful fatigue (great with a 2 & 4 yo and a part time job).
    But fingers crossed I can get back on top.

    I have no doubt the antibiotics stuffed my gut even further.

  • I came across this post while dealing with Blasto myself, I am so appreciative that everyone here takes their time to share or ask questions, it made a big difference for me – it gave me hope.
    Note to the reader: this is just my experience, use your own mind to decide what direction you want to take.
    I live in Toronto, Canada. I assume that Blasto was the root cause because I did not have any other problem before, also my blood sample lab result came: all parameters within ranges, however, the lab test showed Blasto positive. And then I was living for many days with symptoms thinking it might be my last day, so bad it was.
    What worked for me: the antibiotic is called apo-sulfatrim 160mg TAB, 7 days x 2 times per day – this was repeated 3 times, at a one-month interval between each (after each treatment, the symptoms I had decreased in intensity, but it took 3 times to get rid of it entirely). After the first time treatment (maybe 2 weeks later), the lab showed Blasto disappeared, but I repeated the test 2 weeks later and found it came back (I assumed the lab result was based only on the density of parasite the lab equipment was able to detect at that time – the antibiotic must have been depleting the volume to a point where it looked gone, but symptoms were my guideline). PS. After each week of antibiotic (BTW being under antibiotic felt awful, especially around day 2 /3 of each cycle), I was having around 2 weeks with almost no symptoms, but they came back slowly – this was why I had the 1 month between each antibiotic round.
    Now the symptoms I had : many associated with an extreme anxiety attack (stomach pain / loud growling, sensation of vomit, extended time cold hands / feet, nausea, brain fog, diziness, loss of appetite / weight, loss of breath at times, muscle cramps, feeling of not being well overall, whole-body sweating, feeling my heartbeats in the stomach, increased heart rate, etc.). Based on my experience, Blasto symptoms (or whatever it might have been) did not go away by themselves, for me only this antibiotic worked fantastic (PS. tried 2 more antibiotics before this one, with no result).
    Hope this might be of help !

    • Hi I also suffer from this parasite. I developed fears that it was something other than a chronic disease of the digestive system that it drained my mind. I am currently being treated with antibiotics tomorrow I am finishing the treatment and nothing has changed there except for the diarrhea that stopped I wanted to know if you too have not had the symptoms go away right after the antibiotics I would be very happy for an answer Thank you!

      • Hi there,
        I am so appreciative of all these posts as it is reassuring to understand a little of more of how this all works.
        I have had blasto for over 10 years and twice been told that millions of people live with it just happily so not to treat it. The third time it showed up in tests, I decided I had to learn and take sever action.
        I did the 10 day protocol of antibiotics with no sugar or grains. I felt dreadful throughout the first 7 days with zero energy and had to force myself to walk the dog and take my youngest to school.
        I then began to feel better.
        I am still zapped but this is only 3 days after finishing the protocol. I have been told to take a range of gut supportive supplements for the next 2 weeks, wait 2 more weeks and test again.
        I am hugely optimistic and feel that this is just a process that has to be gone through.
        I hope this is helpful to someone else out there. I am more than happy to keep in touch with regards to progress and, hopefully, final symptoms clearing. I am excited to get back to my better self.

    • Hi George,

      I am also in Toronto Canada and working on eradicating this bug. Its interesting as I have some of your symptoms- notably the loss of appetite/weight loss and I have felt the heart beat in my stomach- SO STRANGE! When did your loss of appetite come back? I miss being hungry. I find i have it in the mornings and then it tapers off through out the day. I am currently on antibiotics which seemed to have been helping a lot although i went through some horrific die off symptoms. I will follow up with antimicrobials after this treatment to hit this from both angles as I know these little buggers are smart and get use to one treatment.

  • I had liquid diarrhea, nausea, night sweats, and panic attacks for a few months and wasn’t sure what was happening to me.

    It wasn’t until a few months later that I experienced a few days worth of recurring panic attacks that I finally went to the doctor.

    My backstory:
    – I’ve always had “IBS” issues, so diarrhea wasn’t new to me
    – I drink alcohol often and have a very stressful job, which are prime conditions for this parasite to wreak havoc
    – I had never experienced a panic attack in my life, so when these occurred it literally scared the shit out of me. These were definitely the primary reason for my visit to the doctor.
    – The diarrhea was really bad, I had to go to the bathroom at 3am, 4am, 5am, pretty much had liquid bowel movements 10+ times a day for weeks
    – I had night sweats, rashes with bumps all over my torso, especially my lower back and stomach
    – I lost 20 pounds in 3 weeks, mostly due to not having an appetite and not being able to stomach food
    – I did all the blood and stool work possible. I had to BEG for these lab tests
    – The lab came back with high amount of Blastocystis. The GP basically recited what I later found online, not a lot of research, mostly does not cause symptoms, prescribed me antibiotics (flatly/metronidazole)
    – I decided after reading about the antibiotics and their low success rate and potential harm to look for an natural solution

    So, I found somewhere that crushed up papaya seeds could work. I went to the store, bought papaya seeds (Hawaiian papaya usually has more seeds than the ones from Mexico), I ground them up with an herb Grinder, swallowed a spoonful each morning on an empty stomach (did not eat until 30 min later) for 10 days. I had my stool tested again and it was gone.

    It’s been 2 years and I am still recovering from the infection. I do not have parasites any longer, but my body was traumatized. Some important factors to note are that the gut and brain go hand in hand. The panic attacks I think were my body telling me something was wrong.

    Also – in order to fully recover I have found that I have to do the following:

    – reduce stress in my life
    – exercise regularly
    – meditate, yoga is great
    – reduce or eliminate sugar and starches
    – eliminate alcohol
    – eliminate caffeine
    – eliminate tobacco, and any other drug, including marijuana

    The diet portion is hardest for me. I love pizza, cookies, drinking, etc. What I have learned is at first you have to totally eliminate them. You can have on rare occasions but you can’t really slowly introduce back or the symptoms come back.

    I know this is true because I felt “normal” again when I eliminated toxins from my diet. Once I introduced them I would again have IBS issue, anxiety, depression, low energy, sleep problems, rashes, low libido, and random aches and pains.

    So that’s what I’ve found out. I don’t think Blasto caused this, I think I have a special gut that wants clean things and the Blasto thrived in my weakened gut, put my symptoms into overdrive, and made me make changes. There’s not really any drugs that will fix the problem, just temporarily solve symptoms. I found that Nortriptyline helps with the IBS but not really any of the other symptoms besides sleep. I still have stressful dreams when taking it, and am a little bit constipated, but it didn’t solve the whole problem. So if you need immediate help I would recommend it and not any SSRI or Benzo that treat anxiety and depression as they cause a lot of other issues. Though if they help in the short term and you can wean off them while solving the root issues then go for it.

  • Has anyone had issues with air travel after having blasto? Our kids have tested negative after having it. 8 months later we’re traveling and have had stomach pain and nausea after the flights.

  • I have blastocystis right now. I just stopped taking flagel because it made me so sick. I had one day left. I have guilt about not finishing right now. But I had every side effect and I couldn’t live. I am desperate. But also scared to try anything. I feel a bit hopeless. I’ve only been struggling for a few months. I don’t know. Maybe I’ll look in to what you tried. I stumbled upon this blog because I’ve been trying to find other people’s stories. Thanks so much for sharing yours. I’m so glad you were able to heal.

  • Thank you for sharing your journey, it helped! I am also dealing with Blastocystis. It started with pain under my left rib cage, inflammation and digestive issues. It got so bad that my stomach was so inflamed that it was uncomfortable just to sit up because the inflammation would press against my ribs. I had many symptoms, constipation, pain in my abdominal, loss of appetite/weight, anxiety and couldn’t sleep. I just felt unwell, uncomfortable and tired. Blood work, xrays and ultrasound all came back good, and the doctor just prescribed me antacid pills. I have always had good digestion and eat well so found it hard to believe that was it. We have a farm and raise our own meat; a friend suggested it may be a parasite. I got a stool test and it came back positive for Blastocystis. I cut out caffeine, sugar and had only a small amount of gluten products for about 2-3 weeks. After that I tried to keep sugar and gluten products to a minimum. I ate pumpkin seeds, raw garlic, turmeric (for inflammation), ginger, microgreens and lots of soups (mostly squash), took iodine drops, probiotics, oil of oregano and Harmonic Arts parasite purge tincture. I felt so much better after the die off stage and all the inflammation was gone. Now about a month and a half later I am feeling unwell again and noticing some of the symptoms coming back. I have felt a slight pain under my left rib cage again, fatigue, digestive issues and I keep getting other things like pain in left shoulder blade (which can be caused by digestive issues). It is good to read all the comments to learn what has worked for others. My doctor didn’t know much about this or offer much guidance. It seems pretty downplayed for the amount of havoc that it can cause on our bodies!

  • This post is great, I have had Blasto for nearly 5 months..I’ve done one round antibotics it only stopped it for 10 days lucky my Dr is also a nautropath so now doing this naturally killing it with supplements and building up gut immune system..the antibiotics caused throat infection which wouldn’t go so antibotics again! It is scary because I got a parasite from dogs years ago and it took me a year to rebuild my gut from that. Having break from working lots Meditation …

  • I came across your blog after researching Blasto. It’s talked about briefly in this recent interview (skip to 15 minutes in):

    Supposedly Blasto is beneficial to humans, as makes us thinner, have less internal fat and lower blood pressure??

    I can’t imagine, after your experience, you’d agree with that?

  • I’m so happy I came across ypur blog. Well written and absolutely a life saver. I literally am experiencing the same thing. I traveled last summer and contracted it witout knowing until 4 months into the chaos of all the crazy hormonal imbalance symptoms and illness until finally the stool test showed the results.

    I tried the holistic route but the die off symptoms were sooo strong I couldn’t conplete it.

    I am finally now deciding which antibiotic to take or antiparasitic medication like albendazole or ivermectin.

    Anyway, I’m so happy you shred your story hope to find you on IG

  • thanks Molly for that, it has helped me.
    i have had Blastocystis Hominissome 5 years getting progressively sicker. My naturepath did a blood test and it showed that i had it. we had travelled a lot in Asia.
    it caused constipation . aparently that or diahrea.
    i was in hospital in ED several times for treatment of Constipation.
    not one Dr. would accept that I had Blastosystic Hominius, told me it was my imagination need to see a phsyce ets.
    last year has been a nightmare.
    finally going private an costing a lot, found some one who did the necessary tests etc. found the right treatment as i am a sensitive and highlyallergic to sulpher and other drugs.
    i was on antibiotics for 10 days , taking them 3x a day. no fun.
    a couple of days later i got Herxheimer reaction, my whole body was in pain. much worse than before. pain killers etc will get me through this hopefully.
    i would not wish this on my worst enemy, its been i nightmare.
    Rina Campbell.

  • I needed to read this and know I am not alone. I have been dealing with Blasto and gut issues for about 2.5 years. Started out as a bout of gastro that continued on for months, ended up going to the hospital twice because I couldn’t stomach food and felt so unwell. The doctors said I had the seasonal gut bug and would get better over time. My initial doctor did a battery of tests (blood, hormones & stool) he put me on a course of deworming drugs which made me feel more sick, I was then prescribed anti nausea drugs which didn’t do much. All my tests came back with great levels and results but had higher inflammation markers and a positive reading for blasto. The doctor said to leave it be because blasto is harmless and said I simply have IBS. I went to multiple doctors, all said I had IBS, potential food allergy or just normal fatigue from being a 24 year old man. I even went to a gastroenterologist who suggested I go on anti depression drugs to help with my gut and said a colonoscopy or endoscopy was not going to reveal much, I felt like I was going crazy and completely pushed to the side. I had done more stool tests with a different doctors and tested positive for blasto again which they continued to say didn’t need treatment and if they did the success rate was minimal.

    The best relief I received was from a naturopath I started seeing out of frustration. We did a micro biome stool mapping test and blood tests. Turns out I was borderline for sibo and libo plus a crazy high count of blasto my liver and kidney function was not wow. We did a herbal protocol with gut healing + low fodmap diet. It helped a lot with the physical symptoms but things still weren’t right. After the round of anti microbials and gut healing I still tested positive for blasto and my bacteria levels were not back to normal, I had a decent improvement since the previous test though. For some time I felt pretty good, my energy was coming back and my guts weren’t as unpredictable. I started developing folliculitis around my moustache area and red blotchy skin on my upper chest, I also started getting bouts of dizziness, brain fog, fatigue, dark circles under eyes and weight loss again. I went into panic mode and went to a dermatologist. He prescribed me a continuous course of doxycycline, I stopped taking this after two weeks because it made me feel awful (probably die off symptoms). I went back to my naturopath and we revised a new strategy, we did a sibo test again + micro biome, the gut was not great again. We focused on gut healing and repair but I continued to feel like my health was in decline but felt okay that it wasn’t as bad as it used to be.

    I am currently seeing an integrated medical practitioner who has experience in gut issues and blasto. This time the approach has been to deal with the sibo and libo, then we tackle the blasto with paramomycin and a herbal blend. It’s been a journey, but I am hoping this does the trick. I’m exhausted and get so frustrated by my health at times. It has taken a toll on every aspect of my life.

    I will keep you updated with how I go.

    • Hey Tyler,
      I was prescribed paromomycin. Curious as to how it worked for you. I hope you’re on the other side of it. Thank you for sharing.

    • Hey Tyler,
      How did paramomycin and the herbal blend work for you? I hope you’re over the other side of it.

    • Sounds very similar to my journey. i have Blasto and had SIBO mulitple times. And can relate to alot of the symptoms you mention.

      I’ve tried many SIBO treatments and more but no doctor (naturopath or MD) has ever helped me tackle the Blasto despite my requests.

      How are you doing now?

    • Seeing that this entry is from July 2023 I am wondering how you are doing at this point in your health journey. My son has recently tested positive for Blasto and is only 12. I am debating how to treat him. Wow sounds like you have had a journey as has my mom who also has this. Reading about all these methods is helpful yet still leaves one wondering who had success!! Thank you!

  • Thank you for this! My doctor had completely dismissed it in 2019! It’s 2023 and only now I’m starting Flagyl. I just started probiotics and will follow your regime. I also started acupuncture with herbs with a traditional Chinese doctor.