Share & Earn


Mold Toxicity: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Solutions

0 2 years ago

Those musty smells in your basement could point to a hidden culprit behind your chronic health problems: mold.

Mold is a fungus found both outdoors and indoors. When certain types grow inside your home or workplace, you may develop mold-related illness.

The symptoms of mold-induced toxicity are often vague — like fatigue, memory problems, gut issues, and muscle aches. So, it’s easy to attribute them to other causes. On top of that, you don’t always know when you’re exposed to toxic mold. (1)

Due to these factors, mold illness often goes unrecognized, when it is actually a health risk. Mold can be a barrier to overcoming complex, chronic health issues. If mold is a culprit for you, it’s crucial to identify and address it. (2)

Keep reading for essential information on mold toxicity and its health effects. Find out how mold causes illness, common symptoms, and effective solutions.

What Is Mold Toxicity?

You’re likely familiar with mold allergies. But you may wonder how they differ from mold toxicity, also called chronic mold illness. In short, poisons produced by mold can cause illness that extends beyond common mold allergies.

Mold allergy symptoms tend to be limited to your respiratory tract, eyes, and skin — such as a runny nose and itchy eyes. Allergic reactions happen when your immune system overreacts to mold spores. Those are dormant forms of the fungi. They’re lightweight and easily float through the air. (1)

In contrast, mold illness results from mold growing indoors and producing toxins. These can trigger varied and widespread symptoms in your body.

The buildings that harbor mold toxins are water-damaged buildings. This damage can result from any water intrusion — such as from flooding, melting snow, or leaky pipes. Everyday activities like showering without good ventilation are risks, too. Warm, humid environments also increase mold growth risk. (2)

Toxic mold growth could happen in any type of building. The most problematic ones are those where you spend a lot of time. That includes homes, workplaces, and schools.

Studies suggest that up to 50% of buildings in North America and Europe may have water damage. So, it’s better to suspect a building has a mold growth problem rather than assume it doesn’t. (3, 4)

What Types of Mold Cause Problems?

You’ve likely heard of “black mold” or Stachybotrys chartarum, which sometimes makes news headlines for “black mold poisoning.” It is greenish-black in color and well-known to contribute to mold-induced toxicity. (1, 5)

But black mold is far from the only mold that can harm your health. And Stachybotrys chartarum is not the only mold that can appear black.

Examples of other types of mold often found in toxic indoor environments include: (6)

  • Aspergillus
  • Chaetomium
  • Cladosporium
  • Fusarium
  • Mucor
  • Penicillium
  • Rhizopus
  • Wallemia

Several of these molds have many different species or subtypes. Some of these are more problematic than others.

For example, Aspergillus niger, Chaetomium globosum, and Wallemia sebi are species that produce toxins. Elevated levels of these molds in your home could harm your health. (7)

Toxins Molds Produce

The two main types of toxins that molds produce are mycotoxins and microbial volatile organic compounds (mVOCs).

Mycotoxins hitch a ride on mold spores or fragments of mold so they can travel through the air. In contrast, mVOCs easily travel through the air on their own, as they are gases. (6, 8)

You take in these mold toxins by breathing, touching, or swallowing them. Plus, mold may form colonies inside you and produce mycotoxins. (8, 9)

Here’s a closer look at these mold toxins.


Mycotoxins are poisonous chemicals produced by mold. They help mold defend its territory from other microbes. But mycotoxins can be very harmful to you — even in low concentrations. (10, 11)

In fact, scientists say that mycotoxins are more harmful than pesticides. It’s also thought that some countries have attempted to use concentrated doses of mycotoxins in biological warfare. (11, 12)


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *