How to Get Rid Of Mold from the Body
What is Mold?
Mold is a type of fungus that grows on moist surfaces in warm, damp environments. Mold is fairly common and is present everywhere, both indoors and outdoors.
Mold infestation is common in damp buildings. Studies show that about 10 to 50% of homes and places of business in many parts of the world have water damage and signs of dampness causing mold growth and infestation. Certain types of mold that grow indoors develop mold related illness in people.
Types of Mold
More than 100,000 species of mold have been identified by scientists and about 80 species are considered to be harmful to humans.
Scientists usually categorize mold species in three ways:
Allergenic – They aggravate mild allergies but are unlikely to cause illness.
Pathogenic – They cause infection in people with compromised immune systems.
Toxigenic – These molds are toxic to people who come in contact with it.
Common Toxic Molds
Toxic molds that are commonly found indoors, include:
Toxins Produced by Molds
Some molds growing indoors produce toxic agents called mycotoxins. Mycotoxins can cause severe health problems and many different symptoms. They most commonly affect people with mold allergies and respiratory conditions like asthma. One can get exposed to mycotoxins through inhalation, ingestion or by direct skin contact.
How does Mold reproduce?
Mold reproduce by releasing mold spores into the air. Mold spores can enter indoors through doors, windows, vents, heating and air conditioning systems, etc. Mold spores can also latch on to pets, clothing, shoes, bags and other articles and come indoors. Once the spores settle on damp, warm and humid environments they grow. Mold needs water to grow and thrives in humid bathroom, leaky roof, and over-watered plant or near other water sources.
Common places where mold can be found indoors
Indoor places that are a perfect breeding ground for mold spores include:
- Flooded basements
- Near heating and cooling appliances
- Shower area
- Leaky roof
How does Mold colonize in the body?
Mold spores can enter the body either when it is inhaled or swallowed and begin to form colonies inside the body. Mold grows well in warm, wet areas and tends to linger in the respiratory tract, where there’s plenty of wet mucus for them to thrive and colonize. Mold produces poisonous bio-toxins in the body that causing long-term problems leading to chronic respiratory illness like infections and bronchitis.
Mold causes imbalance of the immune system predisposing to a plethora of health problems and conditions. Mold toxicity can trigger other illnesses, pathogens as well as autoimmunity.
How does Mold affect the Health?
If a person has a weakened or compromised immune system or have pre-existing respiratory condition, mold can worsen underlying conditions and they have a higher chance of experiencing mold-related health condition including:
- Allergies – 3 to 10% of people have high sensitivity to mold showing signs of an allergic reaction such as itching skin, watery nose and eyes when exposed to mold.
- Asthma - Exposure to mold could cause asthma attack.
- Brain health - Although no scientific studies have found a direct link, emerging research points to a potential link between toxic mold and behavioral symptoms.
- Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) – CIRS is caused by long exposure to mold toxins. People suffering from allergies, asthma, respiratory issues or weakened immune system have a higher risk of developing CIRS.
- Eczema – Mold may cause eczema or atopic dermatitis by interfering with the skin barrier.
- Pneumonia – In rare cases exposure to certain mold often Aspergillus, can cause mold-induced pneumonia.
It is essential to get rid or detox mold from the body to start feeling well.
Symptoms of Mold Toxicity
Mold toxicity is caused due to prolonged exposure to mold and dampness on the body, causing chronic health conditions. Mold toxicity can cause the body to experience an inflammatory reaction that lead to a number of symptoms
Mold illness is often misdiagnosed because the symptoms mimic or overlap other conditions such as asthma, common cold, allergies, influenza and hay fever. People with mold allergies and mold-related illnesses often have no idea that mold is the reason for causing harm.
Some common symptoms of mold illness or toxicity include:
- Brain fog
- Breathing trouble
- Difficulty in concentration
- Dry skin or rash
- Hay fever like symptoms - sneezing, runny nose and nasal congestion
- Inability to hold urine
- Inflammation and/or pain of joints
- Itchy skin, skin irritation and redness
- Itchy, sore or scratchy throat
- Itchy, watery and red eyes
- Memory loss
- Mood swings
- Respiratory disorders such as coughing, wheezing, asthma attacks, chest pain and tightness
- Sinus issues
- Stuffy, runny or itchy nose
- Throat hoarseness
- Unexplained weakness
- Visual changes
- Weight gain
How to get rid of Mold from the body?
Once a person is experiencing the symptoms of mold toxicity or has been diagnosed with mold toxicity or toxin illness, mold has to be eliminated from the body at the earliest before they damage the respiratory system and immune system of the person.
Treatment for mold toxicity involves two principal steps. The primary step involves removing mold from the living spaces and then removing the mold from the body.
The doctor may use an integrated approach to eliminate the mold from the body. Treatment may involve a combination of medical treatment, detox treatment, salt therapy and natural remedies to remove mold toxins from the body.
Removal of mold in living spaces
It’s challenging to heal people from mold if they live in a water damaged mold infested living spaces. Continuous exposure would cause the mold spores to be breathed into the body through the nasal cavity and lungs it harder for the body to get rid of it. The primary way to heal the body from mold toxicity is to eliminate the source of mold indoors. Any traces of mold in living spaces needs to be scrubbed with a mixture of bleach and water and then dried out with fans for about 24 to 48 hours to ventilate and dry the area. It is essential to remove the mold or move out of the moldy house!
When a person has a severe reaction to mycotoxins the doctor might recommend one or more of the following treatments according to their needs:
- Antifungal medications
- Allergy shots – The doctor might recommend allergy shots to reduce symptoms of mold allergies.
- Antihistamine – This could help reduce mild allergic symptoms and discomfort from mold exposure.
- Antioxidants - Antioxidants helps to oxidize mold toxins and free radicals.
- Nasal Spray - Since mold colonizes the nasal cavity, nasal spray is used to remove a number of pathogens and decrease inflammation in the sinuses.
Salt therapy also known as halotherapy is an alternative treatment method which involves breathing salty air to address many respiratory symptoms caused by exposure to some molds.
Detox or detoxification is a popular biological process of removing toxins or unhealthy substances from the body. The body is equipped with highly-effective detox system and natural drainage pathways that involves the skin, digestive system, liver, kidneys and lungs to eliminate toxic substances when infected. While detoxing it is necessary to stay hydrated and avoid constipation.
Mold detox from the body can be done through the following ways:
- Detoxing with binders
- Detoxing with diet
- Detoxing with Glutathione and supplements
- Detoxing through sweat
- Detoxing from stress
Detoxing with binders
The detox treatment involving binders help to fully remove the colonized mold in the body. Mold binders attract and bind toxins and move them through the gastrointestinal tract and eliminate them from the body.
Before beginning any binder detox treatment it is essential to open up the body’s natural drainage pathways to ensure that the toxins can leave the body easily. Once the body’s drainage pathways are open, the binder treatment can be used to fully remove the colonized mold from the body.
Some of the common binders that are used to help remove mold from the body include:
- Activated Charcoal: Activated charcoal are often used by the medical community to get rid of poisons and toxic substances from patient’s body smoothly and easily. Activated charcoal is a binder that can bind to many things including mold toxins, vitamins, minerals and other medications. Hence if activated charcoal is used as a binder it is carefully administered and the person’s nutrition is monitored and supplements may be given. Due to its mechanism activated charcoal is used only for an acute situation.
- Bentonite Clay: Bentonite clay comes from volcano ash and binds with mold toxins, heavy metals and other harmful materials and eliminates them from the body. The clay safely and effectively removes the mycotoxins from the body without inhibiting micronutrient absorption. Bentonite clay also has antibacterial and antiviral properties and provides the body with several minerals, such as magnesium, potassium, iron, calcium, and sodium to the body.
- Chlorella: Chlorella is an alga that binds to mold toxins and heavy metals in the digestive tract and helps to eliminate it out of the body. Chlorella is a popular binder as, it does not remove minerals and nutrients from the body and hence does not lead to nutritional deficiencies with long term use. Chlorella also helps to naturally boost the immunity.
- Pectin: Pectin sweeps mold toxins present in the gastrointestinal tract and binds with heavy metals. Pectin is inexpensive and can be used with other binders. Pectin is found in a variety of fruits such as citrus, apples, and plums. It is dehydrated and available as a fiber supplement. Occasionally pectin may cause gastrointestinal issues like abdominal cramps, gas and diarrhea.
- Zeolite: Zeolite is a powder which contains several natural minerals and can bind with mold toxins and heavy metals drawing them out from the body. There are 49 forms of Zeolite and it is often combined with other binders to eliminate toxins.
Detoxing with diet
What one eats and drinks affects one’s health. When the immune system is compromised due to mold-related issues, it is essential to avoid certain foods. Low-mold diet focuses on building a healthy food foundation to eliminate mold from the body.
Dos and don’ts of low-mold diet include:
- Avoid sugar - Sugar promotes mold growth, which could make mold symptoms worse.
- Avoid packaged and ultra-processed foods - These foods contain sugars, simple carbs, and additives that can rise up mold growth in the body.
- Avoid foods containing mold and yeast - Some foods such as cheese and alcoholic beverages are processed with mold and yeast and should be avoided. All foods are susceptible to unwanted mold growth especially cereal, bread, nuts, dried fruit, grains, packaged and smoked meats, edible fungi, and fermented foods. It is best to avoid mold-contaminated foodstuff.
- Enjoy food in moderation - Balance the diet with gluten-free grains, starchy vegetables, legumes and low sugar fruits.
- Include probiotics - Probiotics directly target and bind to mycotoxins removing them safely from the body. Probiotics are present in many fermented foods and are a natural way to detox the body from toxic mold. Probiotics are also available as capsules and liquids.
Detoxing with Glutathione and other supplements
Glutathione is made up of three types of amino acids and is considered the best of all antioxidants. Glutathione helps to oxidize mold toxins and free radicals and help other antioxidants work better. The body is synthesizes glutathione in the liver and it is found in every cell in the body. Low levels of glutathione has been linked with many medical conditions. Other than glutathione, antioxidants quercetin and N-acetylcysteine also support mold detox.
Detoxing through sweat
Skin is the largest organ in the body and sweating can help detox by:
- Improving the body’s anti-inflammatory reaction
- Helping cleanse bacteria, detoxing heavy metals and eliminating harmful chemicals from the body
- Maintaining body temperature
Activities that help induce excess sweating include:
- Playing games such as tennis, football, baseball, soccer etc.
Detoxing from stress
Mold-related illness can be devastating and can cause stress. The following de-stressing activities would help a person to heal fast.
- Engaging in favorite activities and hobbies.
- Exercise releases mood-boosting chemicals called endorphins.
- Meditation can calm the mind.
- Slow, deep breathing avoids stressful thoughts.
- Taking a break.
How to heal the body after mold detox?
After eliminating the mold toxins from the body, it is necessary to restore the damage that might have been caused by the mycotoxins. Consuming certain foods can help boost the immune system back to normal and restore the gut microbiome after being exposed to mold and mycotoxins.
Collagen - Mycotoxins reduce overall collagen production especially type II collagen. Collagen is required by the body as it’s the foundation of for skin, connective tissues, bones, joints, muscles etc. Collagen supplement can help heal the parts of the body that have been damaged by mycotoxins.
Probiotics - Other than removal of mycotoxins from the body, probiotics can help restore the gut microbiota and heal the damage that was caused to the gut lining.
Prevention of Mold Toxicity
Mold may cause health problems in some people but may not affect others. Children and adults with compromised immune systems and those suffering from chronic respiratory issues, including asthma and recurrent bronchitis may be particularly vulnerable to mold and experience symptoms of mold toxicity.
Eliminating leaks, dampness, and humidity and thus prevent mold growth may help prevent mold-related illness in children and adults.