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Michael Majchrowicz
By Michael Majchrowicz September 30, 2022

Misleading video cites CDC report that doesn’t support the claim about parasites

If Your Time is short

  • Evidence does not support the claim that 60% of Americans are infected with a parasite.

A viral Instagram video claims that the majority of adults in the United States are infected by parasites — but it cites data that does not support the claim.

The video was originally published Aug. 30 by a health blogger named Greg Mongeon, whose Instagram profile says he is a functional medicine doctor. In the video, Mongeon is participating in an interview for his podcast "The Daily Dose."

Mongeon says during the interview that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention "say that 60% of Americans have parasites."

The post was flagged as part of efforts by Facebook to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)

The Instagram video shows a screenshot of a CBS News headline that reads: "CDC warns of common parasites plaguing millions in U.S." The story was published in May 2014 and cites a 2014 CDC news release about five of the most common parasitic infections. 

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The CDC news release notes, "More than 60 million people in the United States are chronically infected with Toxoplasma gondii," the parasite that causes a condition called toxoplasmosis. It’s one of the most common parasites in the world, according to the Mayo Clinic, and is often found in cat feces and can infect humans.

The news release does not mention the percentage of people in the U.S. who are infected with parasites. 

We did not find any information in news releases or other information from the CDC that says 60% of Americans have parasites. The CDC did not respond to a request for comment.

We rate the claim False. 


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Misleading video cites CDC report that doesn’t support the claim about parasites

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