It Can Cause Weight Loss And Even Malnutrition
Mycotoxins can damage your intestinal villi. Intestinal villi are small, finger-like projections that extend into the small intestine. They increase the surface area of the intestine and provide more pathways for nutrient absorption. Trichothecenes and ochratoxins degrade intestinal villi. Shortened intestinal villi increase the risk of malnutrition by decreasing surface area available for nutrient absorption.
The mycotoxin deoxynivalenol , a member of the trichothecene family, also blocks several nutrient transporters in the GI tract, including the D-glucose/D-galactose sodium-dependent transporter and the D-fructose transporter . Inhibition of these transporters impairs the absorption of carbohydrates and can promote small intestinal bacterial overgrowth , malnutrition, and weight loss.
What Can I Do To Heal My Gut After Mold Exposure
Healing your gut is an important step in eliminating mycotoxins from your body to reverse the root cause of your chronic condition. You can work to heal your gut by:
Before you begin a detox and healing protocol, however, its critical you address the source of your exposure to toxic mold. You may even have to move out of your home or work from a different location for a time if mold caused by water damage needs to be remediated. This is called avoidance. Some people can overcome mold-induced illness by practicing extreme avoidance alone.
Avoiding Mold In Your Diet to Heal Your Gut
Avoiding mold in your diet as well as your environment will help eliminate continued exposure to mycotoxins. The best approach is an anti-inflammatory, low-mold diet, reducing the number of inflammatory agents and mycotoxins entering your gut. While there is a science to adopting a low-mold diet, general guidelines include avoidance of all foods that worsen your symptoms.
If you havent made a correlation between what you eat and an increase in your stomach problems, start by eliminating these inflammatory and mold-prone foods from your diet:
Researchers At Case Western Reserve University Found The Fungus Works With Two Types Of Bacteria To Cause Symptoms Of The Disease
CLEVELAND, Sept. 21 — Researchers at Case Western Reserve University identified a fungus that works with two types of bacteria to cause symptoms of Crohn’s disease, according to a new study.
The study is the first to find a fungus plays a role in development of the disease, and the discovery may lead to new ways of treating Crohn’s, according to researchers involved with the study.
Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disorder that causes inflammation of the digestive tract leading to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea and fatigue, and is one of the most common forms of inflammatory bowel disorder.
“We already know that bacteria, in addition to genetic and dietary factors, play a major role in causing Crohn’s disease,” Dr. Mahmoud Ghannoum, a professor and director of the Center for Medical Mycology at Case Western Reserve University and lead author of the study, said in a press release. “Essentially, patients with Crohn’s have abnormal immune responses to these bacteria, which inhabit the intestines of all people. While most researchers focus their investigations on these bacteria, few have examined the role of fungi, which are also present in everyone’s intestines.”
For the study, , the researchers analyzed fecal samples from 20 people with Crohn’s disease and 28 of their Crohn’s-free family members, as well as from 21 people who did not have the disease and neither did their family members.
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Retrace Your Past Experiences
A case in point is a young male patient who came to Amen Clinics with complaints of sleep disturbance, anxiety, and brain fog. He was initially seen by one of our psychiatrists and referred to me for further workup. A careful history-taking found that these symptoms all started when he moved back home from college into his parents basement apartment. The whole family seems to have forgotten that the basement flooded on several occasions. Mold diagnostic testing revealed the patient had high levels of mold toxins in his body.
The first step is always to remove oneself from the moldy environment, and then treatment can begin. Treatment for a Toxic Brain typically consists of binding agents and other medications, such as antifungals, and metabolic support supplements. This patient improved with proper treatment and remediation of the mold problem. Here was a patient who didnt need any psychiatric medications he simply needed the correct diagnosis and appropriate treatment. What would have been the outcome for this patient without the proper diagnosis? He almost certainly would have been misdiagnosed as having a mental illness and treated with psychiatric medications.
The good news is that there are ways to determine if a patient has been exposed to toxic mold and that there are successful treatments available.
What Are The Risk Factors For Appendicitis
There’s no way to predict who will get appendicitis, but scientists have uncovered several risk factors for the condition. These include:
- Being a teenager or in your twenties most cases of appendicitis occur in this age group
- Having a long-lasting inflammatory bowel disease, such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
- Studies have suggested that family history plays a role a study published in 2014 in the Western Journal of Emergency Medicine found that among adults at an emergency room who presented with appendicitis, those with a known family history were more likely to have the condition
And a study published in 2001 in the Journal of Pediatric Surgery found that heredity is a significant factor in children who have appendicitis.
There’s also a link between air pollution in particular, high levels of ozone and appendicitis. Scientists aren’t sure why air pollution is associated with an increased risk of appendicitis, but it may be that high levels of ozone increase intestinal inflammation or increase susceptibility to bacterial and viral infections.
Studies suggest that people get appendicitis more during the summer than at other times of the year. Its not clear why, but a review of over 40 years of research, published in February 2014 in Annals of Medical and Health Sciences Research, concludes that its likely due to a combination of increased exposure to air pollution and more GI infections during summer months.
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The Effect Of Mycotoxins On The Microbiome
A healthy microbiome can protect the body by binding and metabolizing mycotoxins. But too many mycotoxins alter the proliferation and balance of the gut microbiota.
Intestinal dysbiosis contributes to the leaky gut cycle and allows gut pathogens to take over as beneficial bacteria are eliminated. As a result, the digestive system is less equipped to handle the continued exposure to incoming mycotoxins, producing a buildup in the gut.
This accumulation produces symptoms such as yeast overgrowth/candida infection, food sensitivities, and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth .
Supplements For Lung Health
Supplementation with specific vitamins, minerals, and medicinal herbs can be highly beneficial for reducing symptoms associated with mold exposure.
Here are some things to keep in mind when looking for an effective dietary supplement:
- Ensure that scientific research supports the reliability and effectiveness of the ingredients.
- Choose a supplement that has been tested to ensure there are no heavy metals, contaminants, or other toxins present.
- Select multi-ingredient formulas, which provide a synergistic combination of nutrients, or if choosing single-ingredient products, ensure the dose is consistent with scientific research.
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Mycotoxins Compromise Barrier Functions
Epithelia and the mucosal barrier build the initial defense shield against molds, irrespective of exposure route. Intestinal epithelial cell death or alterations of the tight junction can be causative for transcellular and paracellular transport. Intestinal barrier integrity is impaired by e.g., A. flavus toxins AFB1 and AFM1 , which has been shown for differentiated gastrointestinal epithelial cells .
When mycotoxins are inhaled, they locally affect the respiratory epithelium and increase the invasive capacity of molds. For GTX in vivo experiments in mice demonstrated that the invasive capacity of A. fumigatus was increased and even correlated with increased mortality .
This is in accordance with in vitro experiments of human alveolar epithelial cells. In human bronchial epithelial cells GTX promoted cytoskeletal remodeling, which facilitates the internalization of A. fumigatus . Other in vitro experiments were designed to test effects of acute exposure to AF on airway cell physiology, showing that AF reduced the respiratory mucosal ciliary function . Moreover, sterigmatocystin induced apoptosis in human pulmonary cells in vitro . Even alterations in blood brain barrier permeability upon exposure to GTX have been described by using microvascular endothelial cells originated from human induced pluripotent stem cells .
Supplement With Beneficial Herbs For Respiratory Health
Medicinal herbs may offer therapeutic benefits for respiratory diseases since several compounds have shown anti-inflammatory effects and inhibition of different inflammatory mediators involved in respiratory diseases such as asthma, acute respiratory distress syndrome, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease . Many studies highlight the antioxidant effects of these products.
Did you know? Chronic respiratory diseases are chronic diseases of the airways and other structures of the lungs. Some of the most common conditions include chronic obstructive pulmonary disease , asthma and respiratory allergies, occupational lung diseases, sleep apnea syndrome, and pulmonary hypertension.
A beneficial combination may include various herbs, including:
- Baikal skullcap root
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How Ulcerative Colitis Is Treated
If you’ve been diagnosed with ulcerative colitis, your treatment plan will take into consideration your specific symptoms and how long you have had the disease. A variety of over-the-counter and prescription medications, from antidiarrheals to antibiotics to anti-inflammatories, may be considered along with lifestyle modifications. Probiotics may also be recommended to help restore healthy gut bacteria. In more severe cases, surgical procedures to remove diseased parts of the colon can provide relief and reduce the risk of developing colon cancer.
What Is Microscopic Colitis
Microscopic colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease in which the colon becomes inflamed . There are two types of microscopic colitis, lymphocytic colitis and collagenous colitis:
- Patients who have lymphocytic colitis have an increase in lymphocytes in the epithelium .
- In patients who have collagenous colitis, the layer of collagen under the epithelium becomes thicker.
Women, people over the age of 50 and people who have an autoimmune disease are more likely to have microscopic colitis.
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Fungus In Gut May Explain Why Some Ulcerative Colitis Patients Benefit From Fecal Transplant
3D rendering of Candida Albicans
Graphic depicting association of Candida levels with response to fecal microbiota transplant in ulcerative colitis patients.
Higher levels of a type of fungus in the gut are associated with better outcomes for patients with a type of inflammatory bowel disease called ulcerative colitis who are treated with gut microbes from healthy donors, according to a new study by Weill Cornell Medicine investigators.
The study, published April 15 in Cell Host & Microbe, suggests a way to determine which patients may be good candidates for the therapy, called fecal microbiota transplant , in which stooland the healthy bacteria, fungi and other microbes it containsare transferred from a donor to the patient.
Ulcerative colitis is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that causes chronic sores and inflammation in the colon and rectum. Prior research has shown that FMT can promote healing in the mucosal lining of the lower digestive tract, relieving ulcerative colitis symptoms in some people. Based on the new study, those patients who benefit from this therapy have higher levels of the fungus Candida in their gut prior to the procedure.
Dr. Iliyan D. Iliev
Dr. Irina Leonardi
Front cover of Cell Host & Microbe’s latest issue highlighting the study
Poor Growth And Development
Ulcerative colitis, and some of the treatments for it, can affect growth and delay puberty.
Children and young people with ulcerative colitis should have their height and body weight measured regularly by healthcare professionals.
This should be checked against average measurements for their age.
These checks should be carried out every 3 to 12 months, depending on the person’s age, the treatment they’re having and the severity of their symptoms.
If there are problems with your child’s growth or development, they may be referred to a paediatrician .
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How To Test And Address Mold Toxicity And Mold Illness
If you have multiple chronic symptoms, you may have wondered if mold toxicity an illness caused by mold and mold toxins is the cause. Chronic fatigue symptoms, autoimmunity, and allergic symptoms are often attributed to mold or water damaged buildings. But is mold toxicity really to blame?
Toxic mold can definitely cause a wide range of symptoms, but medical researchers dont agree about its role in complex illness.
In this article, well explore what mold toxicity is and what kinds of health issues it can cause. Well discuss whether mold toxicity is real, and well talk about what to do if you suspect you have mold illness, including testing and mold illness treatment.
Additional Therapies To Augment Mold Detoxification & Healing
- Movements & Exercise:Depending on your health and fitness level, try to introduce gentle physical activity you can do each day, such as a walking, stretching, using a rebounder .
- Skin & Lymphatic Support:Use infrared saunas or a restorative mineral bath such as Clear + Restore.
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy:This method improves oxygenation which can accelerate the bodys ability to detox and eliminate toxins. It can be very useful if your symptoms affect your memory and brain. Oxygen is also beneficial for the healing of tissues.
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Diagnosing Digestive Problems From Mold Exposure
If youre having gastrointestinal problems, see your primary care physician. Let your doctor know if youve been exposed to mold or think your symptoms might be caused by mold exposure. Make sure to let your doctor know if youre experiencing any other symptoms of mold exposure, like coughing, sneezing, headaches, sore throats, shortness of breath, rashes or hives.
Because so many things can cause gastrointestinal symptoms, including viruses, parasites, food poisoning, ulcers, food allergies and sensitivities, irritable bowel syndrome and celiac disease, it can take some time for a doctor to figure out whats causing your gastrointestinal problems and whether or not its due to mold exposure. Your doctor may order some tests to help make a diagnosis, such as blood tests, an upper GI x-ray , a CT scan, an abdominal ultrasound, an endoscopy and/or colonoscopy , and laboratory analysis of a stool sample. You may be referred to a gastroenterologist, a doctor specializing in digestive problems, for some of these tests or for treatment of certain gastrointestinal conditions.
Include Beneficial Adjunct Therapies
Various therapies can support the bodys efforts to eliminate biotoxins and reduce symptoms. Theres no one-size-fits-all approach to healing, but options that are often beneficial to patients include:
- Herbal therapy:Herbal remedies like allicin , curcumin, and glutathione help to lessen inflammation and normalize immune function. Antimicrobial herbs like cats claw, andrographis, and Japanese knotweed can help suppress stealth microbes that might be overtaxing your immune system.
- Heat therapy:Infrared sauna use increases circulation, quells inflammation, and oxygenates tissues.
- Time outdoors:Going outside offers breaks from continuous exposure to indoor mold and access to some fresh air. Some patients with mold or biotoxin illness practice extreme mold avoidance where they live or spend a substantial amount of time in drier climates such as the desert. For many people, this may not be a viable option, but spending extra time outside whenever possible can greatly benefit you as you heal.
- Mind-body exercises: Yoga, Pilates, and tai chi can dial down an overactive sympathetic nervous system. These therapeutic movements help set the stage for more healing without pushing yourself to the max which can leave your body more vulnerable to illness, not less.
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It Changes Your Gut Microbiota
Mycotoxins can increase levels of harmful gut bacteria and deplete beneficial microbes. Research has found that exposure to deoxynivalenol , a fumonisin mycotoxin, significantly increases levels of Bacteroides in the gut also, a high proportion of Bacteroides is associated with inflammatory bowel disease . Ochratoxin reduces levels of Lactobacillus reuteri and bifidobacteria the reduction of beneficial lactobacilli and bifidobacteria decreases the intestinal production of short-chain fatty acids, leading to impaired gut immunity.
Mycotoxins also promote the growth of pathogenic bacteria. In animal studies, ochratoxin ingestion increases the growth of a family of bacteria that includes Staphylococcus and Listeria. A combination of aflatoxins and fumonisins enhances the growth of Shiga-toxin-producing Escherichia coli, a type of E. coli that causes diarrhea, UTIs, and bloodstream infections.
Symptoms Of Mold Exposure Mycotoxins And Mold Illness
Respiratory symptoms, like sinus trouble, are well documented in people who have experienced indoor airborne mold exposure and mold allergies . And symptoms of mycotoxin exposure from mold in foods is also well validated in studies . But some evidence suggests long-term exposure to airborne mold and mycotoxins can cause more systemic health problems and health conditions . Mold exposure symptoms may include:
- Respiratory symptoms such as sinusitis, asthma, wheezing, runny nose, sneezing, shortness of breath, swollen nasal passages, and chronic upper respiratory tract problems [8
A minority of people may have a hypersensitivity to molds and mycotoxins, termed Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome by Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker.
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Mold Increases Your Susceptibility To Gut Infections
Those who develop symptoms caused by mold often experience a variety of gastrointestinal issues, including gut infections. Mycotoxin exposure may directly increase your susceptibility to bacterial, viral, and parasitic gut infections by decreasing your intestinal immunity.
In animal studies, ochratoxin triggered viral gut infections and strengthened the virulence of intestinal parasites. In chickens, Fusarium decreases populations of CD4+ and CD8+ cells , increasing the risk of coccidiosis, an intestinal disease that easily spreads from bird to bird. Furthermore, the effectiveness of antiparasitic drugs is reduced by high levels of circulating mycotoxins, suggesting that mycotoxin exposure should be addressed first before attempting to treat parasitic infections.