Mould exposure and fungal overgrowth are health concerns that can lead to a variety of symptoms and challenges. today we’re going todelve into the intricacies of mould detoxification and explore the three phases that are helpful for effective treatment. From stabilising the body and addressing histamine intolerance to actively treating the root cause and supporting toxin elimination, each phase plays a role in the journey towards balance and health.
Mould Treatment Phase 1: Stabilisation and Symptom Management
During phase one of mould detoxification, the focus is on stabilising the body and managing the often debilitating symptoms that accompany mould exposure. This phase is crucial because people exposed to mould often experience a heightened state of hyper-reactivity. This shows up as sensitivities to various environmental triggers, such as foods, chemicals, and even supplements that everyone else tolerates.
One big piece here is histamine intolerance.
Histamine is a compound made and released by the body and plays a number of different roles. When the body is exposed to mould, histamine liberation from mast cells can become dysregulated, leading to excessive histamine release and the intolerance symptoms building up. This intolerance intensifies reactions, aggravating symptoms and making you feel worse and worse. Before we can even consider active treatment we need to stabilise and build you up first!
Stabilising mast cells is another important part of this phase. Mast cells are immune cells involved in allergic reactions. In mould-affected individuals, mast cells can become overly reactive, contributing to symptom flares. There are a number of different approaches that can help here which can help stabilise mast cells and reduce the inflammatory response including
On the histamine detox side of things supplementing with the enzyme diamine oxidase (DAO) can help to buy some time which is really what phase 1 is all about!
Another key point in phase one is digestion. Proper bowel movements and gut motility are essential for toxin elimination but with mould exposure gut motility tends to slow, leading to constipation and incomplete bowel movements. Motility-enhancing herbs can be used to promote healthy bowel movements, aiding in the removal of waste and toxins from the body including:
Mould Treatment Phase 2: Active Treatment and Root Cause Elimination
As individuals transition into the second phase, active treatment and root cause elimination take centre stage. This phase is particularly relevant for patients dealing with fungal overgrowths, such as Candida or the presence of green mould in the digestive tract but I would still recommend to most of my patients dealing with environmental exposure to mould to work with anti-fungals.
If we’re talking about testing you really can’t pass up on the Great Plains Labs (now called Mosaic) Organic Acid Test. If it doesn’t break the bank then adding on their Mycotoxin test can be helpful to get all the data up front.
With phase 2 antifungal treatments are the cornerstone, and a blend of either herbal medicines and pharmaceutical interventions or both can be used depending on the need.
Herbal anti-fungal agents such as clove, oregano, galangal, and pomegranate have been helpful when treating fungal overgrowth. When combined in a herbal tincture, these herbs can create synergistic effects, enhancing and building on each other.
In some more severe cases, pharmaceutical antifungals like Itraconazole may be considered under the supervision of a prescribing doctor.
A big warning as we move into phase two is the high chance of die-off reactions. These reactions occur when fungal organisms are eliminated from the body. Die-off reactions can lead to flu-like symptoms, fatigue, and a temporary worsening of symptoms. While uncomfortable, these reactions often indicate that the treatment is effectively addressing the root cause. Here I would ALWAYS recommend dropping the dose and working more on the phase 1 approach until there is more stability.
Mould Treatment Phase 3: Mobilisation and Elimination of Toxins
The third phase of mould detoxification revolves around mobilisation and elimination. You can focus on sweating with activities like exercise, lymphatic massages, and sauna sessions to help detox, but the cornerstone of this phase is binding agents to adsorb and eliminate through a good healthy bowel movement. Here you can see how phase 1 starts to pay off!
Binders play a critical role in preventing reabsorption of toxins in the digestive tract, promoting their safe elimination.
Common binders include
An often-overlooked aspect of mould detoxification is oxalate overload. Elevated levels of oxalates, a compound found in certain foods like sweet potatoes and spinach, can indicate mould exposure and fungal overgrowth. They can contribute to various health issues, including kidney stones and inflammation. They can lodge in your tissues and joints too.
Gradually reducing oxalate intake, bumping up your calcium intake in supplemental form and supporting the production of glutathione, a powerful antioxidant, can aid in managing oxalate overload but the most important bit here is to address the fungal overgrowth or mould exposure!
In phase three, it’s crucial to support the body’s natural detoxification pathways. The liver, kidneys, and lymphatic system play vital roles in filtering and eliminating toxins. Adequate hydration, regular exercise, and a nutrient-rich diet help these organs function optimally. Additionally, glutathione supplementation, particularly in a liposomal form, can help as well.
Taking a Holistic Approach
Throughout all three phases of mould detoxification, it’s important to emphasise the broader view. You as an individual might only be able to handle one phase at a time while others might be robust enough to layer everything in at once. Nutrient deficiencies resulting from mycotoxin exposure are common and must be addressed too which is where the OAT test comes in handy. Supporting enzyme function and replenishing depleted nutrients are crucial elements of this holistic approach.