Better Health Bytes Banner

Home Search for Your Topic Here Site Map Ask About Health About Us About Pamela Levin Your Better Health Starts Here


What You Don't Know Can Harm You


When you have a bunch of symptoms and you can't seem to identify any cause, you might consider something that so tiny it's almost impossible to see, and that something is mold. An incredible variety of health problems - some of them seemingly unrelated - can have mucky mold at their root. 
So you can better understand what you're dealing with and what to do about it, here's a short review for you - common questions and important things to know.

 What is mold?  

Molds, (sometimes spelled"moulds") are fungi that grow many-celled threads, or strands or filaments called hyphae. There are well over 100,00 types that have been identified. Luckily only a few cause problems for people, but those few can cause big problems, while another few, penicillin, for example, have been of considerable benefit. 
What does mold get from our bodies that allows it to grow? 

Mold loves environments rich in water, oxygen and nutrients along with a favorable temperatures, going dormant in temperatures below 40F or above 100F, and waiting until the temperature returns to their liking. They like  dead organic material like paper, wood and fabrics, but they can also extract what they need to grow from some synthetics like adhesives or paints. Some molds can get enough moisture to grow from humid air (relative humidity above 70%). Of course, our human bodies have all of these qualities. 
How does mold get into your body? 
Mold can enter your body through a wound or be inhaled into your lungs.    

How does mold cause us bodily harm? 
Once inside it starts growing by branching out  from its tips (called ' 
''hyphal growth'). See the image at the right and you can imagine how             
a mold entering your lungs can cause major problems with breathing 
once it starts branching out.  ( This image is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.)  
Then as it grows it invades blood vessels causing hemorrhages and death of tissue cells.  If it continues growing, it can spread to other sites.  
Some molds also cause illness by producing toxins that damage cell 
tissues (called a mycotoxin).  And some stimulate the immune 
system, causing an allergic reaction. 
How would I know if I have a mold problem?   
One way is to suspect a mold problem by the symptoms harmful molds can produce.  For example, 
Short term mold symptoms can include: 
Shortness of breath, labored breathing 
Unexplained bodily irritation, including rashes, itchy skin. 
Sensitivity to light. 
Runny nose, congestion, sinusitis. 
Coughing, throat congestion. 
Vision problems (eyes red, sore, dry, blurry or watery. 
Long term symptoms can include: 

    Tiredness, fatigue.
    Headaches, migraine.
    Achiness, pains or fever (including  in ears, sinuses, joints and muscles, swollen glands) or other  symptoms of infection.   

    Breathing problems, including wheezing, shortness of  breath, asthma attacks, chronic bronchitis.
    Neurological symptoms such as loss of short or long term memory,  speech problems, unexplained changes in personality and mood.
    Nose bleeds.
    Coughing up blood or blackish debris.
    Loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, weight loss, diarrhea.
    Hair loss.
    Skin rashes, open skin sores.  

How bodily mold problems might be addressed:

Many practitioners have used mold's hyphal growth process against the little buggers.  When hypal growth occurs, the mold also secretes an enzyme inside its cell that works outside its cell (called exoenzymes).
Here's how it works: the person experiencing the mold problem takes digestive enzymes, only instead of taking them with meals, which would aid the digestion of food, the enzymes are taken on an empty stomach, where they can circulate through the body, apparently coming in contact with the growing ends of the strands or filaments and digesting them. 
A strategy for dealing with allergic symptoms caused by mold involves various homeopathic remedies such as Allium Cepa, butterbur  and biminne. 
After the mold seems to be cleaned up, the next task at hand is to repair the tissue involved.  For this a combination of herbs and nutrients can be used.  For example, to support lung tissue repair, one combination (designed by MediHerb of Australia for that specific purpose), includes herbs such as fennel, Chinese skullcap, Malabar nut tree leaf, Grindelia herb and Turmeric rhizome. 
Health practitioners have employed some or all of these strategies with good results, so even though you might have a mold problem in your body, you don't have to keep having it!   
"A bit of mould is a pleiad of flowers; 
a nebula is an ant-hill of stars." 
Victor Hugo, Les Miserables