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What’s Eating You??

Well that was quite a hiatus :-/ But rest assured, Wag Wolf is back, and we’re gonna jump right into this serious topic…

Have you ever shaken hands with anyone?

Have you ever played with a pet?

Have you ever eaten at a fast food restaurant?

Have you ever eaten raw fruits or vegetables?

Have you ever traveled outside of the country?

Have you ever taken a dip in the ocean?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, you may have… a parasite…

A parasite??? Yes. The problem is much more common than you have been led to believe, and may be behind some of your most stubborn health issues…Check this out…

(From MindBodyGreen)

Having a parasite can be a scary thought, but you’re not alone; parasites are far more common than you think. It’s a myth that parasites only exist in underdeveloped countries. In fact, the majority of the patients I see in my clinic have a parasite. As you will see, parasites can causing a myriad of symptoms, only a few of which are actually digestive in nature.

What is a parasite?

A parasite is any organism that lives and feeds off of another organism. When I refer to intestinal parasites, I’m referring to tiny organisms, usually worms, that feed off of your nutrition.

Some examples of parasites include roundworms, tapeworms, pinworms, whipworms, hookworms, and more. Because parasites come in so many different shapes and sizes, they can cause a very wide range of problems. Some consume your food, leaving you hungry after every meal and unable to gain weight. Others feed off of your red blood cells, causing anemia. Some lay eggs that can cause itching, irritability, and even insomnia. If you have tried countless approaches to heal your gut and relieve your symptoms without any success, a parasite could be the underlying cause for many of your unexplained and unresolved symptoms.

How do you get parasites?


There are a number of ways to contract a parasite. First, parasites can enter your body through contaminated food and water. Undercooked meat is a common place for parasites to hide, as well as contaminated water from underdeveloped countries, lakes, ponds, or creeks. However, meat is the not the only culprit. Unclean or contaminated fruits and vegetables can also harbor parasites. Some parasites can even enter the body by traveling through the bottom of your foot.

Once a person is infected with a parasite, it’s very easy to pass it along. If you have a parasite and don’t wash your hands after using the restroom, you can easily pass microscopic parasite eggs onto anything you touch — the door handle, the salt shaker, your phone, or anyone you touch. It’s also very easy to contract a parasite when handling animals. Hand washing is a major opportunity to prevent parasite contamination and transmission. Traveling overseas is another way that foreign parasites can be introduced to your system. If you consumed any contaminated water during your travels, you may have acquired a parasite of some kind.

10 Signs You May Have a Parasite

  1. You have an explained constipation, diarrhea, gas, or other symptoms of IBS
  2. You traveled internationally and remember getting traveler’s diarrhea while abroad
  3. You have a history of food poisoning and your digestion has not been the same since.
  4. You have trouble falling asleep, or you wake up multiple times during the night.
  5. You get skin irritations or unexplained rashes, hives, rosacea or eczema.
  6. You grind your teeth in your sleep.
  7. You have pain or aching in your muscles or joints.
  8. You experience fatigue, exhaustion, depression, or frequent feelings of apathy.
  9. You never feel satisfied or full after your meals.
  10. You’ve been diagnosed with iron-deficiency anemia.

The signs of a parasite can often appear unrelated and unexplained. As I mentioned previously, there are MANY different types of parasites that we are exposed to in our environments. I typically see parasites causing more constipation in patients than diarrhea, but some parasites are capable of changing the fluid balance in your gut and causing diarrhea. Trouble sleeping, skin irritations, mood changes, and muscle pain can all be caused by the toxins that parasites release into the bloodstream. These toxins often cause anxiety, which can manifest itself in different ways. For instance, waking up in the middle of the night or grinding your teeth in your sleep are signs that your body is experiencing anxiety while you rest. When these toxins interact with your neurotransmitters or blood cells, they can cause mood swings or skin irritation.

How to Test for Parasites

The best way to test for a parasite is to get a stool test. Most doctors will run a conventional stool test if they suspect a parasite, however these are not as accurate as the comprehensive stool tests that we use in functional medicine.

Conventional Ova and Parasite Stool Test

Conventional stool tests can identify parasites or parasite eggs in your stool, yet this test comes with many limitations. The problem with this test is that it is only conditionally successful. This test requires three separate stool samples that must be sent to the lab for a pathologist to view under a microscope. Parasites have a very unique life cycle that allows them to rotate between dormant and alive. In order to identify them in this conventional test, the stool sample must contain a live parasite, the parasite must remain alive as the sample ships to the lab, and the pathologist must be able to see the live parasite swimming across the slide. While these can certainly be useful tests for some people, they are unable to identify dormant parasites, and therefore I often see a high number of false negatives with this type of stool test.

Functional Medicine Comprehensive Stool Test

In my practice, I use a comprehensive stool test on all of my patients. The comprehensive test is much more sensitive than the conventional stool test because it uses Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) technology to amplify the DNA of the parasite if there is one. This means that the parasite can actually be dead or in its dormant phase and it will be detected on this test. Because this test utilizes PCR technology, it isn’t reliant on a pathologist seeing a live parasite swimming on the slide. I frequently diagnose parasites in my patients that were missed on conventional stool tests.

How to Treat Parasites

The comprehensive stool test is able to identify 17 different parasites, so when I know which parasite my patient has, I use prescription medications that target specific species of parasites. If, however, the parasite cannot be identified, I usually use a blend of herbs, including magnesium caprylate, berberine, and extracts from tribulus, sweet wormwood, grapefruit , barberry, bearberry, and black walnut. You can typically find an herbal combination at a compounding pharmacy or though my website. In general, these herbal formulas provide a broad spectrum of activity against the most common pathogens present in the human GI tract, while sparing the beneficial gut bacteria. Before starting an anti-parasite herbal supplement, I recommend you consult your physician and have your liver enzymes checked if you have a history of liver disease, heavy alcohol use or previous history of elevated liver enzymes.

If you think you might have a parasite, I encourage you find a functional medicine physician in your area so that they can order a comprehensive stool test for you. My motto is, It all starts in your gut and your gut is the gateway to health. A healthy gut makes a healthy person.

And DrOz even has something to say about this…What do you think?


As always, Wagner Wolf warns you to take care of your health, and stop by to purchase books and join our lively conversations…

Advertisements The Tax Man Cometh…

Just met with Wagner Wolf’s tax guy, so now i’m thinking about taxation in the United States…

From Wikipedia:

A tax (from the Latin taxo; “rate”) is a financial charge or other levy imposed upon a taxpayer (an individual or legal entity) by a state or the functional equivalent of a state to fund various public expenditures. A failure to pay, or evasion of or resistance to taxation, is usually punishable by law. Taxes are also imposed by many administrative divisions. Taxes consist of direct or indirect taxes and may be paid in money or as its labor equivalent. Few countries impose no taxation at all, such as the United Arab Emirates.

Money provided by taxation has been used by states and their functional equivalents throughout history to carry out many functions. Some of these include expenditures on war, the enforcement of law and public order, protection of property, economic infrastructure (roads, legal tender, enforcement of contracts, etc.), public works, social engineering, subsidies, and the operation of government itself. A portion of taxes also go to pay off the state’s debt and the interest this debt accumulates. Governments also use taxes to fund welfare and public services. These services can include education systems, health care systems, pensions for the elderly, unemployment benefits, and public transportation.Energy, water and waste management systems are also common public utilities. Colonial and modernizing states have also used cash taxes to draw or force reluctant subsistence producers into cash economies.

What do you think of taxation? I know it’s a pain, but don’t you like having schools to attend? Roads to drive on? People to fight wars for you? True, our govt officials can do better with our tax money, but I havent heard of any better alternatives out there. What’s your take? Are you ready for April 15, when the Tax Man is coming for you??

Visit and be a part of the conversation!! More of this convo on twitter (@PreMedAdvice)… Medical Mondays – THE MATCH!!

Every year, medical students gather on the same day & at the same time to learn their fate. On ‘Match Day’, students who are pursuing residency training positions (which is most students) receive an envelope that tells them which residency program they matched into. It’s not like other applications, where you apply to a bunch, get accepted by a bunch, then choose where to go. Here, you apply and interview, but then wait until Match Day to find out which program is your match, and where you’ll go for the next stage of your training. Every school does it a little differently, but It’s exciting, and it brings you one step closer to graduation!!!

MATCH DAY FACTS (from Univ of Maryland)

    • In the annual ceremony known as “Match Day,” graduating medical students around the country  discover where they will begin their careers as doctors.
    • During the emotionally charged, suspense-filled ceremony, students are handed an envelope revealing which residency program has accepted them.
    • The ritual takes place at the same time on the same day for all graduating U.S. medical students.
    • At the same moment, the students learn the location for the next phase of their training.
    • The annual “Match” is conducted by the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) – a computerized system that matches the preferences of applicants with the preferences of residency programs at U.S. teaching hospitals.
    • The NRMP is a private, not-for-profit corporation established in 1952 to provide uniform date of appointment to positions in graduate medical education throughout the United States.
  • Each year approximately 16,000 U.S. medical school seniors compete for residency positions in the United States.
  • Students are called in random order, heightening the suspense. After receiving a match letter, each student drops a donation into a bag, and the money is given to the last person to receive his/her letter, who often uses it to fund a post-Match bash.

Here’s a video from MY alma mater, NJMS, and their 2012 Match Day festivities… I Will NEVER Vaccinate My Child!!

Lot of talk going around about vaccines because of an outbreak of the Measles recently. I have some thoughts about this (and I am not a crazy right wing conspiracy theorist)…

As a doctor, I was taught that vaccines are 100% beneficial and they can only do good for the person who receives them. We can eradicate diseases and do away with the illnesses that plagued us in the past. There is no risk (other than possible injection site redness), and everyone should get them.

And then I started practicing medicine in the real world. I met people (adults and children) who went from being perfectly healthy to horribly disabled, dealing with all kinds of physical, neurological, psychiatric, cognitive, and cardiovascular problems (and no – I dont want to go into details). The only clear thing that happened in between them being healthy to being disabled was a vaccine (and not just the MMR one that’s in the news now). No other illness. No change in diet. No family history. No travel. Nothing.

True, I haven’t met the millions of people who have these vaccine complaints, but one search of the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System tells you that something might be going on. There are thousands, if not millions of people who are disabled for the rest of their lives, and i’m tired of the people who marginalize these complaints and try to call people crazy or misinformed. How is it misinformed to watch your child regress and live every day in pain??

Did you know that you CANNOT sue vaccine manufacturers if something does go wrong? If a loved one is clearly injured by a vaccine, those big companies are protected by our United States government and YOU can’t touch them. Think about that. What other industry has that kind of protection? If you were injured because of a faulty part in a car, they would recall the entire line of cars so fast it would make your head spin. But get injured by a vaccine? Not so fast…Maybe that’s why you don’t know how big the problem is.

And what’s in those vaccines anyway? What adjuvants, heavy metals, additives, and preservatives are floating around in those concoctions that may react with the people receiving them? Combine that with the genetically modified organisms that we are ALL unknowingly ingesting and you get a weakened immune system that can’t fight off these devastating illnesses.

I still believe that vaccines do a world of good. I believe they are a big part in keeping our populations healthy. But i’m tired of seeing people ridiculed just because good information is being suppressed.

I would like to see some of the crap taken out of their formulations. I would like more transparency so the public knows how many injuries occur at the hands of vaccines (it’s not just suspected autism either). I want those on the ‘other side’ to stop making those against blanket vaccination look crazy or misinformed.

Think about what you are injecting into our bodies and why someone might have a problem with it. Let’s have a real conversation where the facts aren’t obscured by Big Pharma’s BIG $$$$$$$$$.

Your thoughts? On The Road To An M.D. (4)

Primary School. High School. College. We’re on the road to an M.D., so next up is MEDICAL SCHOOL…

Can I tell you something strange? I had the BEST time of my life in medical school. Better than high school. Much better than college. My friends and I say all the time that this was not supposed to happen. We were supposed to be miserable, tired, overwhelmed, and overworked, but that is far from what our experience was. I learned a lot (and had fun while doing it), served my community, and set myself up for success upon graduation. I knew all the material and impressed those at other institutions. I even studied abroad (all expenses paid) during my fourth year – an incredible experience…I attribute all of this to being at the best school for me where I was surrounded by great professors, staff, and students. There were opportunities everywhere, and because I was finally devoting time to my passion (medicine), everything fell into place.

Let that be an important reminder to you. Choose the best school for yourself. The one that is a perfect fit. The one where things just feel right.  Find study buddies who are serious about learning and will help you master the material. Select an environment that will expose you to all kinds of patient populations and give you hands on projects – it will definitely help when choosing a specialty or residency program. And through it all, keep pushing. Just because I said I had a great time in med school doesnt mean that it was 100% problem free. Luckily, I learned how to deal with setbacks & disappointments so that they didnt detract from the wonderful things happening around me.

May your story be filled with great times also. May you get everything out of school that you want. May you enjoy every second of the journey. For detailed information on my journey through elementary school, high school, college, and event residency, you gotta order my book, ‘So You Wanna Be A Doctor??’. It has my complete story as well as the stories of my friends and colleagues during school. It will help if you’re on the path, but it is also a great read full of triumphs and trials. Hop on over to to see what great things I’m talking about 😀 On The Road To An M.D. (3)

This series is meant to help you reflect on your academic journey and set goals for future success. We looked at elementary school and high school. Now we’re moving into the big leagues…COLLEGE…

College is a magical place for young adults and where some of your best learning will take place (in the classroom and out). We could talk about academics, but let me lay some words of caution on you about other things taking place in college…

Most college students are aged 18-22, and this is a time of major development. Our bodies are still growing and changing. Our personalities are developing. Our decision making abilities are progressing. So while you may think ‘i’m over 18, therefore I know it all’, realize that you are still coming into your own, and the environment of college can help. Being on your own, setting your own schedule, deciding how much to study, honing time management skills, and dealing with difficult personalities all give you new and important life skills. Make the most of this and allow for positive growth at this time.

You may be tempted to let your classwork take a backseat to all the new & interesting things happening in college. DONT. I made this mistake and desperately wish I had been more mature in my approach to parties, organizations, travels, and new friends. As a college freshman and sophomore, I put in minimum work in the classroom, but never let a social event pass me by. What I know now is that these things will ALWAYS be there when you want them, but you only get one shot to secure a high GPA, rack up lots of impressive grades, grasp important classroom ideas/concepts, and make good first impressions. Remember your future. Remember why you are in college. Dont waste your time or money!

And speaking of wasting money, don’t wander aimlessly in college unsure of your desired major or field of study. Academic advisers, counselors, family, friends, and professors would be happy to sit with you to help you discover your passions, strengths, goals, and interests. You must also do some soul searching to know what it best for you, and college is the perfect time to do it. You may walk in a young, inexperienced child, but we pray that you walk out a self sufficient, educated, mature, worldly, well rounded contributor to society, ready to make your mark on the world.

How exciting is college?!

Make sure that you have fun and make the most of the opportunity. Best wishes to you from Wagner Wolf!! On The Road To An M.D. (2)

Hello everyone!

In our last post, we talked about early education experiences and how they can shape a person’s entire life. Did you think about your time in elementary school and what it has meant for your life?

Today, we fast forward to HIGH SCHOOL. I know that many of our followers are in high school, and I think it’s a terrific time to either sink or swim academically. What are the factors that may cause one to sink? Being a teenager and dealing with all the changes, hormones, and rebellion that may come with that. Peer pressure is a powerful influence for some, and if you’re not careful, it can steer you down the wrong path. Not giving enough thought to your future, who you are, and what you want out of life. The four years of high school can fly by very quickly – you don’t want to be at graduation with no idea of the next steps for yourself…

Now there are also many, many ways a student can swim in high school (metaphorically, of course). There are millions of teachers out there who are more than willing to give of themselves in order to help a student along. There are summer and after-school programs meant to enrich a student’s life and give them positive direction. There are guidance counselors (and online resources) to expose a student to all the schools and career paths available.

I don’t know where i’d be without the support of my high school teachers, church family, and actual family. I am so grateful that I had them around, and that I also had a great sense of my abilities and dreams. What is YOUR high school experience like? Do you feel that you are sinking or swimming? How can you ensure success for yourself now and in the future? What resources can help you along the way??

We hope ‘So You Wanna Be A Doctor’ is one of those resources, and that you’ll let help you as much as we can. Visit our website, check out all our books, rely on your family and teachers and family for help, and never let go of the dreams in your heart…Life is a wonderful thing, and as a high school student, the best is yet to come for you. Best wishes! Dream big! Go for it!!

See you in the next post 🙂 On The Road To An M.D. (1)


In this series, we are getting back to academics, but we’d like to do some introspection and exploration. We’ve all gone through some schooling (at least I hope we have), so let’s look at what it means to be a student, and how we can influence the rest of our lives from the halls of academia. You ready?? Here we go…

We’re taking it back to elementary school days, so play along. Take a minute to think about each question (write it out if you need to) and get in touch with your thoughts and feelings on each topic…What were your feelings about school when you were in primary school? What was great about it? What wasnt so great? What did you want to be as an adult? Did the people around you make it seem like your dreams were possible, or did they try to force ‘reality’ on you at every turn? How did your elementary experiences shape the rest of your academic career? What do you wish your younger self knew back then?

Now let’s look at the students in our lives who are in elementary school now. How have you helped/hindered them? What is the best advice you can give a student to boost their confidence and interest in future success? What is the most important thing they should be taking from their early school experiences?

It all starts very early, and the experiences we have as young students stay with us forever. Maybe a person will become a lifelong reader because of the encouragement a parent gave. Maybe they’ll give up altogether because of the bad attitude a teacher had. Think about what you are saying to yourself and the students around you – are you promoting success or doubt/fear/mediocrity?

Turn it all around today and go for the life of your dreams! Let help with our inspirational, educational, and fun books. Read books or watch videos about people who have found the type of success you have always dreamed of. Use your words to get yourself into the right frame of mind – where you know that success and happiness are possible, fear isn’t real, and life can be as amazing as you say it is.  Think deeply about all these questions, leave a comment about what your self-speak is leading you to believe, and we’ll see you in our next post 🙂 FINALLY Education Reform!!

Last weekend, NBC News’ Education Nation took place in NYC, bringing together policymakers, thought-leaders, educators, parents and the public.  Their goal is to provide every American with an opportunity to achieve the best education in the world…

How are we doing there??

What are the biggest issues plaguing our education system today? Skyrocketing costs of higher education? Ridiculous loan terms making it impossible for students to pay them back?  A lack of preparation in math and the sciences, leaving kids unprepared for the jobs of today and tomorrow? Kids going hungry every night or receiving detrimental ‘food’ while in school making it difficult to concentrate, learn, and lead a healthy lifestyle? Unions? Poor teachers? Missing funding?

The list could go on, but what are your thoughts? IS there a problem in education? How do we fix it? How far down the list will the USA be in 5 years as compared to other students around the globe?

WAGNERWOLF.COM is all about helping our students.  Our book, So You Wanna Be A Doctor, gives them information and inspiration to reach for lofty educational goals. We publish the works of writers of all backgrounds to bring vibrant narratives to life.  We work with to give students a creative outlet and soaring self-esteem…We are doing our part – tell us what you’re doing for the brilliant young minds of our country… What’s this business about a government shutdown??

You’ve heard about it by now. Fact: House Republicans have decided to take the American economy hostage, and have shut the government down until they get their way…Here is some more information for you. (from

1. Why did the government shut down?

Congress has one key duty in the Constitution — pass spending bills that fund the government. If it doesn’t, most functions of government — from funding agencies to paying out small business loans and processing passport requests — grinds to a halt. But some services, like Social Security, air traffic control and active military pay, will continue to be funded. Oh, and Congress still gets paid, too.

2. Why does it have to pass a spending bill in the middle of the year?

It may be the middle of the calendar year, but the government’s fiscal year runs from October 1 to September 30.

3. What was the holdup?

House Republicans insist any new spending bill include provisions to either defund, derail or otherwise chip away at Obamacare. Senate Democrats are just as insistent that it doesn’t.

4. How is Obamacare tied to the spending bill?

The health care law isn’t directly tied to funding the government, but it’s being used as a bargaining chip. A group of Republicans, led by freshman Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, believe the president’s signature domestic policy achievement is so bad for the country that it is worth disrupting government funding to undercut it.

5. What are some of the objections to Obamacare?

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the actual name of the law, requires all Americans to have health insurance. Opponents say it’ll hurt employers and amounts to overreach by the federal government. Some have also criticized the medical device tax that’s part of the law, saying that by imposing such a tax, it’s basically sending jobs overseas.

6. What’s the Democrats’ defense?

They say the law will expand access to health care and help rein in the rising costs of coverage. Obamacare prevents those with pre-existing medical conditions from being denied health insurance, and proponents say those who have health insurance will no longer have to indirectly pay for those who show up in emergency rooms uninsured.

Fact check: The myths and realities of Obamacare

7. What happened with the spending bill over the weekend?

The Republican-dominated House passed two spending bill amendments Sunday morning — one that would delay Obamacare for a year and one that would repeal the Obamacare’s medical device tax. The bill went back to the Senate, where Democrats who control that chamber have consistently said any changes to Obamacare would be a deal-killer.

8. What happened Monday?

The Senate rejected the latest House proposal, prompting the House to approve another spending plan that would remove the Obamacare individual mandate. The Senate rejected that, too, setting the stage for a shutdown.

9. What happened overnight?

House members voted to reaffirm the anti-Obamacare amendments that Senate Democrats have said would be a deal-breaker. They also requested a conference with the Senate to work out their differences.

10. What will happen Tuesday?

The Senate will reconvene and will likely make a decision on the House’s offer to talk. But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said late Monday night that he wouldn’t agree to such a meeting until the House presents a clean spending bill stripped of the amendments.

“We will not go to conference with a gun to our head,” he said.

11. Has this happened before?

Yes, this shutdown is the first since late 1995. That one lasted 21 days, into 1996.

12. How many government workers could be furloughed?

Most of the 3.3 million government workers are deemed “essential” — they’ll keep working. But more than 800,000 government employees will sit at home, according to a CNN analysis.

Many of the furloughed federal workers are supposed to be out of their offices within four hours of the start of business Tuesday.

13. What will this do to the economy?

Depends on how long it lasts. If it’s just a few days, the hit might not be severe. But the total economic impact is likely to be at least 10 times greater than the simple calculation of lost wages of federal workers, said Brian Kessler, economist with Moody’s Analytics. His firm estimates that a three- to four-week shutdown would cost the economy about $55 billion.

14. How will this affect me?

In ways big and small. The mail will continue to come. The military will continue to fight. And Social Security checks will continue to be paid.

But if you need a federal loan to buy a house, you’ll have to wait. If you want a gun permit or a passport, that won’t happen anytime soon.

15. Will a shutdown kill Obamacare?

No. Most of the money for Obamacare comes from new taxes and fees, as well as from cost cuts to other programs like Medicare and other types of funding that will continue despite the government shutdown.

16. Will the president get paid during a shutdown?

Yes. His salary — $400,000 — is considered mandatory spending. It won’t be affected.

17. What about House and Senate members?

They’ll keep drawing checks, too. The 27th Amendment prevents any Congress from changing its own pay.

18. What does John Q. Public think of all this?

A CNN/ORC International poll that came out Monday found that 46% will blame congressional Republicans if the government closes its doors, with 36% saying the president would be more responsible and 13% pointing fingers at both.

19. Isn’t there another matter — the debt ceiling?

Ah yes, that’s the next battle brewing. Remember that time when you maxed out your credit card? That’s what the debt limit is all about. The U.S. is on the verge of maxing out its $16.699 trillion credit card. And the president must ask Congress to raise the country’s credit limit.

But the debt ceiling debacle won’t come to a head until October 17. Perhaps it’s best to deal with one showdown at a time.

20. Can Congress agree on anything?

The House and Senate did agree on one thing. They finalized legislation Monday to keep paying troops in the event of a shutdown.

CNN’s Leigh Ann Caldwell, Z. Byron Wolf, Adam Aigner-Treworgy, Laura Koran, Lisa Desjardins, Bryan Monroe, Chris Isidore and Gregory Wallace contributed to this report.

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