Allergenic Fish Worms

Allergenic Fish Worms
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The role of a parasitic worm in allergic reactions to chicken and fish.

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Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

There’s a parasitic worm in fish called Anisakis. This year, we learned that about two-thirds of retail fish samples came up positive for them. This is what they look like—they’re really quite small, actually. You can see two here kind of peeking out of some sushi.

Because people eat fish raw, parasites are always a concern. But the unique thing about these worms is that our bodies can be so sensitive to them that the worms can trigger an allergic reaction, dead or alive—even if they’re cooked. So we’re finding some people who are “allergic” to fish really aren’t; they’re allergic to the dead worms in the fish.

In fact, because we feed so much fishmeal to chickens, you can have an allergic reaction to a parasitic fish worm, and not even eat fish at all!

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

There’s a parasitic worm in fish called Anisakis. This year, we learned that about two-thirds of retail fish samples came up positive for them. This is what they look like—they’re really quite small, actually. You can see two here kind of peeking out of some sushi.

Because people eat fish raw, parasites are always a concern. But the unique thing about these worms is that our bodies can be so sensitive to them that the worms can trigger an allergic reaction, dead or alive—even if they’re cooked. So we’re finding some people who are “allergic” to fish really aren’t; they’re allergic to the dead worms in the fish.

In fact, because we feed so much fishmeal to chickens, you can have an allergic reaction to a parasitic fish worm, and not even eat fish at all!

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Doctor's Note

What other parasites are found in our food supply? Check out these videos:
Chronic Headaches and Pork Tapeworms
Not So Delusional Parasitosis
Tick Bites, Meat Allergies, and Chronic Urticaria
Tongue Worm in Human Eye

And check out my other videos on parasites

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

2 responses to “Allergenic Fish Worms

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