Hidden Poisons and Your Health
Fungi, mold, yeasts and mildews are all around us, every day, regardless of where you live. They colonize the world around us, decomposing dead (and sometimes living) organic matter. You have likely seen them growing on food in your refrigerator, behind the washing machine or on the wall next to the bathtub. Fungi in all its forms are virtually inescapable.
Unfortunately for us, under the right conditions, certain fungi produce poisons as part of their natural life processes. These poisons are among the most toxic, naturally occurring toxins on earth. They are known to have terrible, deleterious health effects on humans and animals, and unfortunately, there are a variety of ways we can be exposed to them.
There are certain ways, however, that might make you more vulnerable to exposing yourself to mold toxins, all of which you should try to avoid for the sake of maintaining health.
Certain foods are known to be commonly tainted with mold poisons. These include corn, peanuts, grains like wheat, soy, pistachios and other types of agricultural products. These foods are at risk for being infested with fungi, largely due to being kept in a silo for long periods of time.
If you regularly consume these foods, or foods made from these ingredients, such as bread, pasta, corn chips, peanut butter or soy products, you are likely exposing yourself to mold toxins regularly.
Have you ever walked into a building and immediately felt stuffy? Even in buildings appearing clean and new, mold can often colonize behind walls, in ducting or in damp spaces. If you live or work in a space that is contaminated with mold, there is a chance you could be breathing mold toxins and/or spores without immediately realizing it.
Particularly if you are experiencing respiratory symptoms, like asthma or allergies, it might be beneficial to have your indoor air checked for mold; this is often as easy purchasing a mold test kit from a hardware store.
What You Drink
Alcohol is a prime example of how people come into contact with byproducts of fungi and do not even know it! Alcohol is the byproduct of brewer’s yeast and sugar.
Everyone knows that too much alcohol can cause health problems, or even be deadly; many people do not know that in addition to alcohol being a less-than-safe byproduct of yeast and sugar, many ingredients used to make alcohol are often contaminated with mold toxins, as well, such as barley, corn, sugar or other grains.
Antibiotics are another example of a common, consumable byproduct of mold. There are a number of health problems indirectly and directly linked to antibiotic use; given that antibiotics are technically a toxin derived from mold used to kill bacteria, it comes as no surprise there might be consequences for larger life forms (like people!) as well.
Sometimes antibiotics are necessary, despite evidence that they are often prescribed when they are not needed. While we would never suggest not following doctor’s orders when it comes to taking an antibiotic, they are perhaps best saved for the times they are absolutely necessary.