Listen to Andrea Donsky's interview with Suzanne Somers on NPR affiliate KMBH, Public Radio 88 FM on January 6 at 12 p.m. CST
Your insomnia, panic or bipolar disorder, fibromyalgia, depression, or MS might be mold poisoning.
Watching the horrible aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, I know from my own personal experience that flooding leaves behind an enemy so dark and treacherous, few people understand the far-reaching, devastating effects.
My husband and I were affected by black mold, a condition I was unaware of when I moved into a leased house after my home burned to the ground several years ago. The rental was a beautiful home: glass, spectacular views, space. Luxurious is how you would describe it, so beautiful it helped ease the pain of losing all our belongings to the fire.
A year after moving in, we began to have health problems. At one point an attack hospitalized me for six days, horribly misdiagnosed as cancer, until it was discovered to be mold fungus. Around the same time, my very healthy husband started experiencing hair loss, red irritated eyes, and a sinus and fungal nose infection that wouldn't go away. We both started having GI tract problems – bloating, yeast, candida, and cramping.
It wasn't until I was interviewing Dr. Rick Sponaugle of The Sponaugle Wellness Institute, who has successfully treated over 2,000 patients suffering from mold toxicity, that I started piecing together the puzzle that had been eluding my husband and me.
We had mold. A professional remediator found standing water all over a lower floor that had never been finished. Black mold was crawling everywhere, including into the air-conditioning and heating vents, blowing into all the rooms.
We had to move. And detox…
I recently talked again with Dr. Sponaugle, preparing for a segment of "The SUZANNE Show."
I started by asking him, "Can you explain mold and the affects that you can predict the victims of Hurricane Sandy might experience?"
He said, "Mold toxins are toxic gases produced by indoor molds, always present in water-damaged buildings. Most of these people will be unaware that they are suffering from gases produced by mold infestations hidden behind water-damaged walls, shower tile, and above wet ceilings because we cannot see or smell them."
I see… like the silent enemy.
Dr. Sponaugle reminded me that three out of four Americans who naturally produce antibodies to mold toxins can live and work in water-damaged buildings without suffering significant demise in their health. But patients who carry the HLA-DRBQ gene — as he and I do — have no antibodies to deactivate and remove harmful mold toxins. They develop an excessive accumulation. Mold toxins are lipophilic. They consist of fatty acid molecules. For this reason, mold toxins migrate to and deposit in the brain because the brain is the 'fattiest' organ, consisting of 60% fat.
Mold toxicity causes many psychological and neurological disorders, including but not limited to: addiction, anxiety, bipolar II, chronic fatigue, depression, fibromyalgia, insomnia, MS, Neuropathy, OCD, panic disorder, paranoia and schizoid syndrome.
It also brings on conditions like the ones my husband and I experienced – sinus trouble, red watery eyes, fatigue, inflamed GI tract, unexplained weight gain. But people experience other negative effects including slurred speech, disorientation, feeling irritable or paranoid, insomnia, craving sweets, itching nose at night, static shocks, muscle aches, food allergies, antibiotic allergies, blurred vision, confusion, very high blood pressure, mono-like symptoms, skin rash, cystic acne, joint pain, swollen gums, tongue swelling, a change in your menstrual cycle, stuttering, and throat closing.
Your body on mold? Severely depressed.
Dr. Sponaugle says there are three mold toxins associated with depression, panic disorder, and bipolar symptoms. They are aflatoxins, ochratoxin and trichothecene. The government-set toxic level for trichothecenes, the family of mold toxins produced by Stachybotrys (known as black mold), is 0.2 parts per billion. He routinely sees patients with levels as high as 3.2, which is 16 times the government-set toxic threshold.