What’s not appetizing about the idea of adding a few parasitic worms to your diet? No… really!? Because that very question could soon become a reality in Germany once the Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety decides on whether or not the pig whipworm (Trichuris suis) parasite is approved for sale in health stores across the country.
Often considered the cause of many harmful diseases, some believe a range of parasites can actually come with health benefits and cures for diseases most modern medicines cannot achieve. In fact, an estimated 6,000-7,000 people around the world are currently tapping into the parasitic black market to experiment with nasty critters, and researchers are beginning to see some results that, if placed into the market, could see thousands of people improve their lives with a little parasite added to their diet.
Gluten intolerance, multiple sclerosis and irritable bowels are among the top on the list of potentially treatable diseases, and while the research is still in its early days, Thailand’s Tanawisa is ready to unleash their pig whipworm on Europe, which they’ve been selling in their own country since 2012, and so far Germany is among the first to show an interest.
Unlike products sold directly as a medicine, the parasites would not need to undergo extensive testing to determine its true effects, as they are being marketed as a health supplement. All it needs to be proven to be is non-deadly and it should be able to make its way to German shelves.
Now of course there would still be the issue of who would want to head to the store to pick up a bottle of parasitic worm eggs to mix into their morning smoothies.