Fact Check: 'Parasites, Metals And Viruses' Do NOT Cause All Diseases, Illnesses, As Post Claims

Fact Check

  • by: Madison Dapcevich
Fact Check: 'Parasites, Metals And Viruses' Do NOT Cause All Diseases, Illnesses, As Post Claims Varied Causes

Do "parasites, metals and viruses" cause all "diseases and illnesses," as a post on TikTok claimed? No, that's not true: An infectious disease expert told Lead Stories that the "causes of human diseases are extraordinarily varied." Besides parasites and viruses, diseases can be caused by bacterial infection, genetic influences, environmental exposures and other things. As is often the case, the person who posted this video sells many products at the link in their profile bio, including herbal supplements, tinctures and salves. Furthermore, they did not offer any evidence to corroborate their claim.

The claim originated in a video shared to TikTok on April 30, 2024, (archived here) with a text overlay that read, "Cause of all disease and illness." A caption with the video read:

#LIVEhighlights #TikTokLIVE #LIVE cause of all disease and illness. #heartdisease #disease #parasites #virus #viruses #heavymetals #metals #detox #herbalist #herbalistsoftiktok #herbs #herbal #herbalism #fyp #fypage #fypシ゚viralシ

In the video, as onscreen text read, "Cause of all disease and illness," a narrator claimed the following:

All disease and illness care is parasites, metals, and viruses, period. Those three things are the cause of every single disease and illness in the entire world. And there's enough lab tests and data out there to prove it. And I have all of that on my computer ...

Here is how the post appeared at the time of writing:

Screenshot 2024-05-01 at 9.25.07 AM.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Wed May 1 19:31:35 2024 UTC)

Lead Stories reached out to Dr. William Schaffner (archived here), a professor of medicine in the division of infectious diseases at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and an expert with the Infectious Disease Society of America (archived here). In an email received on May 1, 2024, Schaffner wrote that the "causes of human disease are extraordinarily varied." He continued:

They include many infectious agents beyond parasites and viruses, including classical bacterial infections such as those which cause pneumonia and typhoid fever, for example. It also is the case that there are environmental exposures, disorders of our immune systems as well as genetic disorders that run in families. The reason that the textbooks of medicine are so thick is because the many diseases of humans are so diverse, along with their diverse causes.

Lead Stories previously reported that there are many ways in which diseases occur in the body, most commonly through genetic causes, environmental sources and infectious agents. As we wrote in March 2024:

Genetic predispositions, like those that determine a person's eye or hair color, may also determine what diseases a person will inherit throughout life. These 'diseases that run in the family' include conditions like heart disease (archive) or sickle cell disease (archive).

Environmental conditions or external factors may also cause certain diseases. People who smoke cigarettes for long periods are more likely to develop lung diseases or cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (archive).

Contagion or germ theory (archive) explains the contraction of infectious diseases... Infectious agents can also cause disease when entering the body in various ways, such as when a viral or bacterial pathogen enters the body through a wound or is inhaled or ingested.

The account profile for Gods_Herbs_Heal_You, (archived here), is self-described as a "master herbalist-horticulturalists" with no reference to being a medically trained professional. A link in the bio led users to a website (archived here) that sells products (archived here) like herbal tinctures, herbal salves and oxygen therapy, among other things.

The narrator in the video did not share evidence to corroborate the claim. Instead, they told followers to join a private group to access information posted so they could "see the scientific data."

Other Lead Stories health fact checks can be read here.

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  Madison Dapcevich

Raised on an island in southeast Alaska, Madison grew up a perpetually curious tidepooler and has used that love of science and innovation in her now full-time role as a science reporter for the fact-checking publication Lead Stories.

Read more about or contact Madison Dapcevich

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