In this episode, I am speaking with Bridgit Danner, a licensed acupuncturist since 2004 and certified functional diagnostic nutrition practitioner since 2015. After losing everything to toxic mold, Bridgit now teaches about toxins and coaches women on how to detoxify using a functional approach, as well as how to test for and treat mold.
(Before going any further, make sure to sign up for FREE access to the new DIY Detox Summit, where there are many amazing speakers on the subject of detoxification. I am also honored to be one of the speakers. Sign up for free access HERE.)
In this episode, Brigit will cover
- How mold occurs in our home environment (and why it doesn’t affect you in nature)
- How to test for mold in your home
- Am I affected by mold? (The most common symptoms of mold colonization in your body)
- How to treat mold in your home
- Can I get rid of mold in my body? How to detox from mold
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Do It Yourself Detox Summit – How To Test For And Treat Mold with Bridgit Danner – Transcript
Ari Whitten: Hey everyone. Welcome back to the Energy Blueprint Podcast. I’m your host, Ari Whitten, and today I have with me Bridgit Danner, who is a licensed acupuncturist since 2004 and certified functional diagnostic nutrition practitioner since 2015. After losing everything to toxic mold, Bridget now educates about toxins and coaches women on how to detoxify through a functional approach. She’s the host of the upcoming “Do It Yourself Detox Summit”, a free online summit happening June 3rd through 10th 2019. Also, we’ll have a link to that to sign up and get access free to that summit, which you can [email protected] forward slash detox summit, all one word, detox summit.
So welcome to the show. Bridget, thank you so much for joining me.
Bridgit Danner: Thanks for having me on and thanks for being on the summit as well. You are one of our speakers that I hunted down for very long to get you to come on.
Ari Whitten: Yeah. Thank you for being persistent with hunting me down during a very busy time of year. And I’m glad that you did, and I’m honored to be a speaker and also very much a pleasure to have you on my podcast now.
Bridgit Danner: Thanks. Yeah, we’re going to be covering an interesting topic.
Ari Whitten: Yes. Mold. So, first of all, let’s just start off with your bio here, which says; after losing everything to toxic mold. So, I think that’s probably a wonderful entry point into this whole discussion. Tell us about your personal experience with mold than why you lost everything as a result of it.
Bridgit Danner: Yes. I was living in a home with mold for nine or 10 years and kinda didn’t realize till the end. So, I was in that time getting more and more into health, like, you know, changing my diet, learning about functional medicine and all that kind of stuff. So, it just makes me just go back in time and wonder like how long the mold was affecting me. But when I finally found out I had strep throat, I had to like take antibiotics for the first time in 20 years. And like, after that, I just wasn’t recovering. I was so tired. So, I started getting some IV therapies and didn’t do anything. And you know, I was still eating while and trying to do the right things. And so, I say, you got to help me, like figure out what this is so tired all the time.
And my immune system was just off. And they suggested they asked me on my home, which was really a smart question for any practitioner. I said, what has changed in your environment? And one thing was it had rained a lot and I was like, well, we have this kind of damp basement and it got some like super minor, like flooding. And they said, well, what about mold? So, we did check. I didn’t really want to, to be honest, so I was like, “I know where this could be going.”
Ari Whitten: Yeah.
Bridgit Danner: Well my husband was like, “yeah, I’ve always, I wanted to check”. And so, we had a home inspector come out. That’s one way to kind of check things. He checked the whole structural integrity of the house and places that moisture can be entering. And he took some samples of the drywall and the air and we did have some species of mold that create mycotoxins. It lets off these toxins.
So that was just to start at the beginning. You know, when you get an inspector like that, they don’t, they’re not a health practitioner. So, let’s just, you know, they hand you the report and that’s kind of your job to go to a contractor who I want to also point out, don’t really know about health. So, as you go to start thinking about some of these structural changes and repairs, they don’t always understand enough to have your health in mind.
So, there’s definitely… I run like a Facebook group from older people are like, well, can I just, you know, rip up my bathroom and then I’m done. And it’s not really that simple because you can release a lot more toxins when you fix up your house. And then you become a host of mold yourself from being in a moldy environment. So, there’s a lot to fixing it. We made a lot of mistakes. This is partly how we lost everything, and we’ve taken everything from the basement, put it in our main home. So, then we had like toxic stuff, all over our home. Yeah. We literally lost all our belongings.
Ari Whitten: So, lost everything is not like a metaphorical thing. You mean like you had pretty much all of your belongings covered in mold spores and you couldn’t get rid of them?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. Yeah. Computers, furniture, clothes, everything. We own, every, every area of our house had some mold damage. So, it wasn’t an easy process. We ended up like, I had to move into my parents’ home. Renovate our home. I was just to like a very nomadic, we also lost both of our cars. You know, they both had mold toxins in them, so it was just a, yeah, it was a pretty traumatic time. It’s like going through a flood or is going through, you know, hurricane or something or you really have to start over. And then slowly, you have to recover your health again. Because I got, I frankly I got sicker for remediating our house wrong, and I started having like muscle twitches and really horrible short-term memory. So yeah, there’s… And it’s becoming more and more common I guess you could say. Like I feel like there’s a lot of mold awareness coming up in more and more people are realizing they’ve been affected.
How mold can affect your health
Ari Whitten: So, there’s a lot in what you just said. I want to actually zoom out and go more basic for a moment just for people who are totally unfamiliar with the whole concept that mold in the house could be something that impacts health. So, kind of just go back to the basics here for a minute and just explain the fact that you know, mold grows in our house and how it might affect our health.
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. So, with modern construction, with drywall and was trying to be energy efficient with having indoor plumbing, there’s just a chance for like water to enter the home and come in contact with drywall. It’s kind of made of paper fibers and wood in your walls that’s food for mold. It’s kind of normal, right for mold to grow on a wet wooden surface. In nature, there’s a balance between mold and other organisms.
So, things grow in a balanced are all competing. In your home, this artificial environment, there isn’t much competition. So, there are lots of kinds of mold. Not all of them make you sick. But the ones that can make you sick seem to do really well on your home and grow. So not every time you see mold in your home you can necessarily assume, you’re going to be sick, but it is possible.
And then I think there’s this compounded thing going on now with like WIFI in our homes and all this radiation that kind of like can help really grow things like pathogens and weaken our own bodies. I think that’s part of the reason that this is like becoming more and more common. So yeah, your house can get wet and release these mold toxins, and then whatever else is going on in your health, you know, what are you burning your own liver with? There’re also genetic factors. So, one out of four people can’t tag mycotoxins and make like antigens or antibodies for them. So those people are going to be the ones that get sick. So, in a household of, you know, for people you might get one sick or too sick or for sick, it kind of depends on their genetics. And also, just like their health.
Like my son, I don’t know his genetics, but you know, he didn’t get sick. Thank God. His dad and I did. So, that’s kind of a basic overview. And then why said you we had to get rid of our stuff is the mold itself and then people can again get tricked to think if they remove the mold, they’re good. But it releases these, I don’t know, kind of like gases. I kind of think of that like peanuts, character, pig pen who has like the cloud of dirt around him and they’re releasing like this stuff that lands on things like paper and um, cloth and you really can’t get it out. with like a lot of effort, maybe you can, but, if you’ve really been affected by your own stuff, you often have to get rid of it. That’s kind of bad news of a lot of this, but it also becomes like the essential step you have to take. You know, you can’t say, Oh, but I really want to keep my books and my this and my that. Like, why you can’t keep that if it’s gonna make you sick again.
How mold occurs in our environment
Ari Whitten: Yeah. So, how common of an issue is this? Like, is this something that you think, you know, there’s mold growing in, you know, 90% of people’s homes and people just aren’t aware of it? Or is this something that, you know, maybe is affecting one to 2% of people and in those specific rare cases where somebody does have mold in their home, you know, it’s a huge health issue, but is generally rare issue, what’s just sort of like, how would you break that down to give people a sense of whether this might be an issue for them?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. So, some statistics are like one in four buildings are water damaged and again, like one in four people have genetics that doesn’t let them clear mold. But I really think like the percentage of people who are affected. I don’t think we totally know that number yet. I think it’s kind of like autism. Like this is a growing number that people didn’t really see coming. So, I’m not sure. I remember before I got sick, Dave Asprey’s moldy movie came out and he was one of the early like advocates on this issue. And I remember coming out and I’m like busy, like everybody. And I was like, “oh that will never apply to me or anyone I know. I’m in no rush to watch this movie.” It’s like easy to think it won’t be you. I think it’s starting to come out of that more and more people especially who are chronically ill, are dealing with toxic mold.
Ari Whitten: Yeah. So, is this is an issue that is more prevalent in certain areas of the world or certain climates of like for example, does you know living in Portland where there’s lots of rainy weather lead to a higher likelihood of your house being moldy or is there any kind of relationship like that?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah, generally if you’re in a place where humidity is higher and more rain, there’s more likelihood. So, we moved to Arizona. It’s a lot less likelihood.
Ari Whitten: The hottest, driest, least rainy place you could consider.
Bridgit Danner: Burn it all off. I, we feel really good about our house, so we actually didn’t even really have tested before we came in. It’s a quick process, you know when you buy a home. But I’ve been in a couple of homes in the old part of Phoenix. Old construction with like cinder block and I’ve been affected by mold in those. So, it’s not impossible in a dry environment. I know there are people here who have been affected, but yeah, I think more in certain climates… Florida’s another big one. When I hear about people all over… people in Manhattan and their apartment has a water leak. So, I do hear about it all over.
Ari Whitten: Hmm. Now there’s mold, you know, in natural environments there’s mold in, for example, a forest, right? Like why, why is it that humans have to be concerned with mold when you’re living in a home, but you don’t necessarily have to be concerned with it or you’re not affected by it by sort of, let’s say camping in the forest in Washington where there might be mold growing around you?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah, I’m kind of like, we’re just not living in natural environments. We’re living in such an artificial environment. So, there isn’t like… If you get moisture in your wall and mold starts to colonize and grow, there isn’t anything to combat that naturally. Whereas in a forest, I don’t know, there are all sorts of decays and molds and new things growing up and bacteria. And that’s just not the environment of your home. And in our homes are like, kind of, meant to be pretty sterile and airtight. A lot of times homes don’t breathe either like new homes. So, some of the homes that are affected are inches, old homes like mine in Portland, but they’re new construction where things that are just sealed up too tight, so moisture becomes a problem and that humidity levels too high. So yeah, it’s just basically like modern construction.
Common symptoms of mold exposure
Ari Whitten: Gotcha. Now, what kind of symptoms would people deal with if they’re being exposed to mold and I know obviously this is the Energy Blueprint Podcast and we talked a lot about fatigue and energy and has been here and I know that fatigue is obviously one very common symptom that can arise through a broad range of exposure to toxins from heavy metals to other, you know, to arsenic, to all kinds of different gases in the air and also to mold. But are there any sort of specific symptoms or a constellation of symptoms that indicate mold exposure specifically might be an issue?
Bridgit Danner: Kind of, yes and no. I mean, there is a lot of overlap. So one thing I would say again if you’ve kind of feel like you’ve tried everything, you’re doing all the right things and you’re still so tired, I’ll go over the other symptoms, but if you still have some things like you just are like, why is this happening? I think there’s often a toxicity issue.
Could be mold, it could be Lyme disease, it could be heavy metals like you mentioned. But yeah, I was most excited to come on and talk about the fatigue. So, the mold toxins can actually enter the cell and affect the Mitochondria and ATP production. And when I was at my sickest, I was so bone tired that like I started to not want to wake up in the morning. I was just so tired. It was just like a deep core like fatigue.
And I feel like that’s, I mean I could be lots of things, I guess thyroid in this, but like I feel like when you have that deep deep like kind of fatigue. I just, I feel like that’s energy production. You could probably speak to that a lot more than I could. But that’s one symptom. Muscle weakness or wasting muscle twitches. I mean some people become like paralyzed, you know, they can’t walk even. I hadn’t like a twitching eyelid, definitely mental cognition, like short term memory recall and that kind of a thing. And then can go, just go onto affects so many other symptoms. It’s going to dysregulate your gut like guaranteed it’s going to be colonizing in there and it makes chronic inflammation. So, kind of illness is often called chronic inflammatory response syndrome. So, what is actually doing is just firing all these immune like inflammatory responses all over your body.
So could be headaches. It’s definitely going dysregulate to your hormone. So, if you have like low hormone levels. Thinking back like some of my early symptoms before I even knew I had mold, I found out I had Epstein Barr and my, you know, my period would come two weeks too early. And yeah, like I had chronic back pain that like nobody was able to fix for me. And that was probably just the chronic inflammation.
And there could be a little funny thing too, like your eyes being red or your nose being stuffy all the time. Skin rashes could be coming up. So yeah, unfortunately, there is a pretty broad spectrum that can come with it. But I would say, you know, fatigue and brain fog probably at the top. And then like some immune weakness, muscular pain or weakness. That kind of things being towards the top.
Ari Whitten: Gotcha. And you mentioned chronic inflammatory response syndrome. Can we talk a little bit more about that? And in particular, are there any symptoms of that chronic inflammatory response syndrome that are sort of unique to that? You know, and I, and one example that I think of is a sort of paradoxical response to many phytochemicals that might temporarily induce like a pro-oxidant response in the body and our pro-oxidant action. And then kind of ultimately confer all these benefits. From my experience, some people with chronic inflammatory response syndrome or mold exposure in their house, they just become intolerant of a wide array of supplements that are otherwise beneficial for most people, phytochemicals and things like Alpha lipoic acid and things like that. Have you seen any of that kind of thing?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah, yeah. I’m actually just reading this. I’ll just share it because it’s right here. I’m reading this really great book.
Ari Whitten: Oh, nice. Yeah, I have it.
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. So great. And yeah, he talks a lot about the chemical sensitivities and sensitivities to treatment that can come up. I feel like reading this, I’ve been lucky like I’m not that sensitive to all sorts of treatments. But when your immune system is like, so like on alert and the toxic load is so high in the body so kind of like any input could fire it. And he gives an example in there. I was like, someone like passing out just to smell like laundry detergent like that’s just like a quick airborne response. But yeah, people can be very responsive to supplements in a negative way. And I’ve had some clients like that. And to be frank until like I was reading this, I didn’t like totally to understand the mechanism. It’s not easy as a practitioner who can barely give people anything.
It’s a hard spot to be in. And sometimes it’s just the dose super, super low. So yeah, whether it’s like, cause you’re really seeing more toxins are just the immune system is reacting. What I liked from the book is like, he’s not like saying just don’t do anything. He’s just saying like go a lot slower. And then there are things when you talk about in the summit, you’re going to talk about like doing the sauna or doing dry brushing and to some people they, that’s mild enough that they won’t have any effect. But some people can barely use a sauna, or you know, just depending on how sensitive they are because of all this.
Ari Whitten: Yeah. Yeah. From what I understand, I think the NRF2 pathway is really critical in all of this. Like this, this pathway that responds to various kinds of hormetic stressors and toxin exposures. Everything from exercise too, exposures to benzene and you know, air pollutants and sauna exposure, red light exposure, phytochemical exposure. Everything is acting upon this NRF2 pathway, which is triggered by it, a temporary increase in reactive oxygen species inside the cell.
And then it triggers this response from, you know, this, this NRF2 pathway gets triggered, which activates the antioxidant response element inside of the cells, which upregulates all these, internal antioxidants, glutathione [catalase], superoxide dismutase, all these things involved in defending against oxidants and also upregulating detoxification. But within people with a chronic inflammatory response syndrome, I think the thinking is sort of like that whole system is based, it’s almost like nonactive because it’s being chronically overwhelmed by the mold.
Bridgit Danner: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. And there are some blood tests you can run for a certain inflammatory marker, but yeah. When, especially with mold, like I’m, I guess other infections you can get like you are constantly exposed if you’re in the house an hour and then it’s often like colonized in your body. So, then you’re getting like exposure like right from within you. So yeah, I like to learn more about that pathway as well and why exactly it happens. I feel like in a sense, I’m just sort of coming out of the fog of all of it and being more willing to like study it in an intellectual way. Now before I was like, just leave me alone saying, yeah, better. But now like, you know,
Ari Whitten: Like. I don’t care about the mechanisms, but all I know is this is ruining my life.
Bridgit Danner: Exactly. Exactly. Yeah. So, it’s good. You know, the good news is like you can be on the other side of my health is imperfect, but I’m certainly like a lot better than I was and able to understand this in a different way. And I’m like really thankful for people who are publishing about this because they’re frankly still isn’t a lot. But the resources are coming to meet this wave of new illness. It’s coming up.
How mold colonizes in your body
Ari Whitten: Yeah. So, you’ve mentioned a couple of times in passing that mold can colonize in our bodies. So, if we have mold in our house what is it actually releasing? So, is it releasing toxins into the air or is it releasing spores that colonized things and grow? What’s actually going on there?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah, definitely both. And the more, usually the more dangerous to you is the Mycotoxins, but the spore is producing mycotoxins. So you know, mostly what your body is dealing with is a mycotoxins coming off of the spores and your furniture wants this gotten, But the spores you can actually inhale and it swallow and they can call an eyes your nose and your gut and maybe even other areas are thinking like your lung and your jaw. Like it’s kind of crazy to think about it. So yeah, there is that element as well. So, you can do, I always encourage people to do nasal testing and treatment for the colonization in the nose. And then the gut, you know, there are lots of different potential approaches for the gut. You can see kind of from like some gut testing and organic acids testing about colonization.
And you can see Candida to which is usually going to be co-infecting when you have mold. So, I think that that’s a good area to check for if you can afford to do that kind of round testing for the gut. I guess my approach with the gut is more like treating, treating all of it and treating infections, doing binders. It just moves things out of the gut. Um, you could probably do some like biofilm disruptors too on essential oils topically. I guess they don’t have like a clear protocol on getting it out of the gut. I just sort of am doing lots of different things.
How to test for mold in your home
Ari Whitten: Gotcha. So, I guess there’s a couple of layers to this. One is how do we check for mold in our home? And I know there are lots of nuances to that. And then the next layer is how do we check for mold in our bodies, which you just talked about a little bit there, but let’s talk about like if somebody suspects that they have some of these sorts of symptoms and maybe they have a sort of a hunch that maybe there’s mold in their house or maybe they seen some mold but never thought anything of it and had no idea that it could impact their health. How would people take, you know, next steps to discern if they’re actually or determine if there actually is mold in their house? That’s of concern?
Bridgit Danner: Yes. I’ll mention a few ways in the home. You know, we started with a mold inspector that I mentioned. We own that home and I think it was a really good place for us to start because we understood like these structural problems with our home and like areas to look. And then we kind of got an inkling about, the toxic mold in our home. So, I think that was a great place to start. And we later did a dust test where you collect dust around your home and, and it’s a mycotoxin dust test. So, then it’s actually giving you a sense of like the levels of what is actually making you sick. Whereas the first mold inspector test was more like spore populations and stuff. There are some plate tests which I back when I was doing this, I heard one that good, but I think it’s those coming along.
Like there’s a company called [immune lytics] or something like that, making plates that you can send back into them and they’ll have a consultation with you. And I think it’s more affordable. So especially if you’re in an apartment or at your workplace, you might want to start with like that lower cost option and maybe not quite as fancy of a test or whatever. But I think that that’s an option to do that’s affordable. Trying to think if there’s anything else in the home. I think those are mostly the ways to test in the home. And then in the body, I mentioned there’s like a nasal test or just some gut testing on exactly tell you,
Ari Whitten: Bridget, just one second before we get there. On the home. Is there any indication other than those tests that might alert somebody to the presence of more than their house? Like I know obviously like a, a musky sort of smell in the house [inaudible] into a really moldy place. Like you can sort of smell it and detect it instantly. But is it, is that always the case that that’s true or is it possible to have mold in your home without any like, smell or sight of the mold at all?
Bridgit Danner: Well, there can be mold in your walls so then you won’t get a visual and you probably won’t get much of a smell. I like for us, we had that, which he didn’t know, but we did have like the wet basement that we did know about, but it was still wasn’t very visible until we got the inspector and he was like, Hey, look down here at your like little where the board meets the floor we were like, oh, like it wasn’t super obvious. It did have a smell, but there are various things going on in that basement. I’m not sure. Like, you know, our sewage was like a little off. Like who knows? Yeah. So I don’t think you can always smell it, but you can often like see it like growth in the bathroom and you know, many people have had like an incident, you know, where their bathtub flooded or like it was super rainy and their roof leaked.
I used to be the kind of homeowner who is just like all about decorating and like didn’t care about any of those other things. You need to care about those things. You don’t need to, like, we had some gutters that weren’t, draining right? So, it was putting water by our foundation instead of further out. So, so that’s something that like our mold inspector checked for like moisture in the walls. You can get like a moisture reader. You can get a humidity reader. Your moisture should be as, I can’t remember now what it should be, but like 40% or something. Like our moisture in our basement was way too high. Like we should have run a dehumidifier there the entire time. So, I think, yeah, some clues or like the smell, you know, seeing visible mold, knowing there was wetness or still is.
What else was I just thinking about? Getting in moisture and humidity levels over packed closets and stuff where you like, you know, sometimes you get stuff out of the closet and it’s like damp or it could smell, that’s not, that’s not a good thing. So, you do want circulation in your house if you feel like things just like don’t circulate, that could, those could be some clues as well. Or like moisture on the windows. If somebody from Japan mentioning like, Oh, under my futon is all wet. Yeah. That’s, you know, a good environment for mold to grow. So just think about am I creating an environment for multiple grow, have high had leaks, that kind of a thing.
Ari Whitten: Yeah. Okay. One more question. …you’re on the subject. So, let’s say that you have a hunch that, I mean you have symptoms that align with mold in your house. You have, you suspect that maybe by the smell or the look or you’ve seen some mold in your house or the humidity levels are high and you know that you have an environment conducive to it or there was an incident of water damage in your house. You’re starting to put some of these pieces together, you know, that you’re talking about.
And maybe people are listening and considering, well, maybe mold exposure in my house, mold in my house is a cause of these symptoms. And then let’s say they do the testing, whether it’s from the plates or home inspector or some of these other methods that you’re talking about. And they determined that mold is, in fact, growing in their house. What is, what is the path to recovering one’s health look like from, from that point? Now, does it always have to result in moving to a different place or like massive remediation of in your house or kind of what are, what are some of the different scenarios as far as how that would play out?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah, that’s a really good question. I get this one a lot too. So, I think there’s, there could be some scenarios where you’re not really sick. Like, say Your ‘bathroom has had some water damage but you’re not really sick and think it can be handled then that can maybe be handled. But if you’re really sick and you know, there’s like a situation that’s been this going on a long time in your home, I don’t know. I get this question a lot and it’s a difficult one because I know for us, we’re like, well, we want to just do this and then moved back to and just do this and move back. Just fixes and that it just doesn’t work. It doesn’t work. And I’ve had some clients like that too. I have a client in this like, you know, lovely London home made of stone and she had all her business there and… You also become paralyzed by your own sickness and inertia and like you don’t want to do all these things.
I kept trying to tell her like, you just, them, you just need to do this. You just need to move. There are some tests called like the army tests that I’ve never really run that we’ll tell it what kind of rate it and be like, you should definitely get out type of a thing. I don’t know. I don’t know if it’s that cut and dry. I mean if you’re very sick and there’s a big problem in your house, it’s going to require a lot of stirring the pot at the minimum. You need to move your stuff out into storage. I think while that happens, move your family out, have it all super cleaned up by the time you come back, like someone’s scrubbing down the walls with vinegar and essential oils. There are now like essential oil bombs you can do for mold.
So, really actually want someone who works for me went through this recently there, you know, they really cleaned the house out, they got rid of everything made of cloth, and you know, tried to come back in and she’s mostly doing well except like the laundry area of the house. So, it’s still like a little iffy, but they really gutted it, you know, beds are gone, all those things gone. I hope that there are people who only have to just remodel their bathroom for $3,000 and let it be done. I can just say in my instance that wasn’t true. So maybe it depends on the extent of the damage and the extent of your poor health. You know, sometimes it’s not even a thing you’re in anymore. Sometimes there’s the exposure you had 10 years ago, and it’s just colonized and your body. Sometimes it’s your workplace, and then there’s the question of getting, getting out or what, what will they do for you?
Is it apartments? There are not many rights that you have as a person with mold illness in an apartment or workplace. Like there’s just a lack of understanding. There’s a lack of appreciation. And it’s frustrating, but ultimately, I think you just need to move like Alicia just have an apartment and you can move. Again, it can be a hard decision to make, but if you go online, like there are thousands and thousands of people like us in the situation and have made, I have one for lady I met, she was remodeling her house, living with her mom and then the house burned down while she was remodeling. I mean it’s like the stuff that happens, it’s just horrible. I hope that there are people who are able to fix it a lot quicker. I think it just depends on the setting. So that’s a little bit about the home. You definitely have to fix the environment. You can’t keep being re re-exposed. ‘
Ari Whitten: Yeah.
Bridgit Danner: That’s key.
How to treat mold infection
Ari Whitten: There’s one more layer to this that I think is also potentially troublesome for many people. And that is that I would imagine that once you start to realize you do have mold in your home and you know, that mold kind of spreads and covers all of the things in the environment and you then have to have discussions of whether you’re going to get rid of, you know, you’re going to throw away all your stuff or you’re going to try and clean it or something to that effect.
I know that if I was in that situation and I was trying to salvage anything, you know, I would be sort of second-guessing myself of like kind of living in fear, I guess, or anxiety all the time of like, does this stuff still have mold on it? You know, and I’d be, am I still being exposed to this? You know what I mean?
Bridgit Danner: Oh yeah. I mean, it’s better at the minimum if you want to salvage stuff to put it away in storage and then, then re-expose yourself. And I think you’re sadly going to find out that that staff is not salvageable. But at least as we did with some of our staff, we put some of our stuff in a couple of units and um, went back to and immediately was like, nope, this is not happening. But we weren’t ready to make that decision at the time. Like that’s a huge decision to make.
I just interviewed with Evan Brand and he’s probably a friend of yours who just went through this and Tisa for him it was pretty easy. It’s pretty chaotic to just go, go, go get rid of it all. And it is, you don’t have to, you know, burn it. Other people can enjoy it, just not you. You’re done with it. So, it’s not like,
Ari Whitten: Well, let me ask you that. So, on that point, I mean, is it ethical to even sell the stuff that you know is infested with mold? I mean, now you’re just spreading it and somebody else is going to have it in their house. I mean, wouldn’t it be more responsible to burn it if you are certain that it is covered in mold or mold spores or mold toxins?
Bridgit Danner: I just don’t think everyone will be affected by it the same way. Like, consider I was in a house so that stuff for 10 years. So, it’s, they become very sensitized to it. But if you move like one armchair into one home that doesn’t have mold, I don’t think it’s going to get everyone sick. ‘ I’ve got that question too about clothes from goodwill and stuff like that. Personally, I’ve thought a lot of clothes, I didn’t have any clothes. I bought a lot of clothes from goodwill. I know cause a good washing.
They were fine. could some of them have had mold? Yeah, maybe. But it wasn’t my mold. It was like, you know, I think it’s just when it’s concentrated in your own staff. So yeah, it’s a good question. I mean we certainly didn’t try to sell everything, but when you’ve like lost everything you want to like, let me see if I can sell the couch or whatever.
You know, at least we made a little bit… Frankly, it wasn’t that much money. But I don’t think everyone’s going to be affected by like one item. You know, even my parents have a few tiny items of ours that are in their home now and I don’t notice that when I go over, but if they had taken all our furniture, we definitely would have like gotten sick when we went over there. But I don’t know if they would have ever gotten sick. So, yeah, it’s a good question. And again, like it’s such a confusing thing. Like I remember when we like traded in a car, I think they just probably scrapped my old car anyway.
But I started saying something about molding. My husband’s like, shut up. But people just don’t understand it like that. If you say, well this like we had mold in the home, but this couch doesn’t have more. Like, they’re like, what are you even talking about? You know? So, it’s just sort of like, there are some things we definitely got rid of. We had a giant dumpster in front of our house, and we threw out tons of stuff. But there are some things that we felt like had some value and that were nice pieces that we wanted to try to sell. And I don’t feel too bad about it.
How to treat mold in your body
Ari Whitten: So, let’s talk about mold in the body. Now, I know you covered this in passing, but it can colonize the sinuses, it can colonize the gut, maybe the lungs, and potentially some other areas. What are some of the more common areas of colonization and the symptoms that might be associated with that? That’s something that could kind of clue somebody into maybe they have been colonized by mold.
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. And even if you aren’t colonized per se, like maybe you had a short exposure, you can still have the toxins bumping around as we talked about. They can go into the cell. So, then that’s, you know, becomes a kind of everywhere that the toxins could be, and they create like poor circulation and that inflammation we talked about. So, you’re asking how they know first or how do we go about removing it?
Common symptoms of mold colonizing in your body
Ari Whitten: What are some of the symptoms that someone might encounter? Like, okay, so like let’s say sinus colonization or gut colonization.
Bridgit Danner: Okay. Sign like I have sinus colonization, yet I have pretty much clear sinuses, but I do have some postnasal drip and I had some… Now I’m really having a lot of asthma. I think I’m pretty allergen sensitive, but this is sort of a newer phase I’m in. Um, so you could have some clear respiratory symptoms, or they could be pretty subtle. Like a little bit of, you know, thickening of the throat or glands, a little swollen. Or you could be having a full on, you know, chronic sinusitis, which many people have. And I don’t think many people are talking about molds for that. So that’s a pretty easy swab test that you can run. So that’s good news.
Ari Whitten: A specific kind of mold that you test for, is it, you know, Aspergillus or is it some other type of mold?
Bridgit Danner: So, the test is mostly there to focus on this likes [Mark Hahn’s] infection you can get in your nose. It’s like antibiotic-resistant staph infection in your notes. That’s kind of like the primary goal, the test. Because when your immune system is disrupted, you can have this staph infection overgrowth, but they will tell you some little bit about colonization and I don’t know how many strains or whatever they test. I mean we could pull up my test results to see. But they will tell you a little bit about colonization and like Biofilm thickness. So those are kind of like the secondary parts of the test.
Ari Whitten: So, you’re saying [inaudible] is a bacterium, not mold, but you’re saying that often co-occurs with mold infection or mold colonization.
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. So, because the mold has caused such immune destruction that lists a staph infection grow. And that’s not the only thing that could let the staph infection grow up. It could be other immune disruptors. So that needs will test primarily tests for that staph infection, which then like disrupts your melatonin production, which is a big deal. On a lot of people with mold illness, like don’t sleep well and then, you know, become like more prone to various diseases like cancers and heart disease and stuff. So yeah, I don’t know how many strains of tests in your nose. I’d have to check that one. Yeah. And then for the gut, again, it isn’t like super, super direct. It’s like letting you know about coinfections or the great plains lab test, organic acids tests. I guess we’ll let you know about colonization in the guy and I don’t entirely know which markers are referring to.
I have to, I, my coach that I work with saying, I think it’s just showing if there’s a lot of candida, but I think there are some other markers too that will let you know about colonization, but it’s not like super, super direct. Right. It’s kind of indirect. But then I don’t know if we talked to you about, so those are colonization. There’s also just mycotoxin testing, which you can do through blood or urine. I think urine is just easier. Or you do ideally a little challenge with glutathione our sauna to try to kind of stir up some of these Mycotoxins and then hopefully pee them out and then see those levels. So that testing just really came out I think in the last three to five years. So that’s a great, really direct way to test. Um, and I liked that way a lot. So, and then, price is coming down to like 300 bucks or so to run those kinds of tests. Gotcha. Yeah.
How to detox mold
Ari Whitten: So, we talked about remediation in the home environment. What if somebody has mycotoxins in their body, they’ve got maybe even some mold spores in their body. What is the path to self remediation look like?
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. Yeah. So, I’ll just start at the top for the nose. You can do like a silver spray in the nose. You can do, potentially like some essential oil kind of herbal blends, like biocide…. Few companies have them. You can also do pharmaceuticals. If you’re working with a doctor, they call it begs spray like an antibiotic spray and sometimes you have to do antibiotics internally too. Then also up at the top, you can think about brain health. I mean that’s a little bit more symptomatic, but it also could be helping like this integrity of the brain. So, I like phosphatidylcholine. I like magnesium. I like some like good fatty acids that definitely helps. Like when I was going through headaches and stuff like that, I have used a nebulizer for my lungs because I did kind of have some lung symptoms.
I would just put like silver and with water and then just like steams into your mouth. I found essential oils to be a little harsh to use that way. So, I mostly stuck to the silver. But there’s probably some other like herbals you could potentially use to nebulize your lungs. As we talk about in the summit, I did my favorite things of all for treating mold where sauna, coffee enema, those are probably the top two. And then I would do like just simple stuff like dry brushing, green drinks, like chlorophyll. Um, I think you need, you need to get like more oxygen to your cells. There’s, that becomes like, you probably know more about that than I do. It becomes a big issue. So, getting those greens, there’s seems really helpful. And then binders are like a big part of the mall detox world.
If you don’t tag mold well as you try to detox, it generally tends to just restrict collate. So, you need the binders to stick to carry it out. And there’s really a growing collection of supplements. Now for that. There’s like the [inaudible] acid. There’s charcoal, there’s pectin. There’s like zeolite there’s probably like 10 different substances now that you can use as binders and it might be good to rotate those. Or see what your body likes. To me, I never really felt much from binders. Some people do, some people that like stirs the pot a little bit for them. Um, but they’re just like the garbage men. Like, they don’t, I don’t feel like you feel them, but they’re, they’re doing their job slowly, like just moving stuff out.
Ari Whitten: Are there any binders, you know, like that, that are particularly effective for mold toxins? So, like his charcoal more effective than clay or fluvic acid or pectin or something like that?
Bridgit Danner: I think it depends on who you ask. Charcoal genuinely stays in the gut.
Ari Whitten: Yeah. It’s not a matter of the substances themselves, it’s just a matter of which person you ask about the substance.
Bridgit Danner: Well, yeah, I think, I think people have different preferences clinically, right? Yeah. But I think charcoal stays in your gut, whereas some substances can potentially go to like the bloodstream and then there’s like Vulvic and humic acid. I think as far as, yeah, I think those are pretty good for molds. What else? I mean, yeah, I think there really is a range of different things that like people is Glucomannan also a pectin? Can’t remember.
Ari Whitten: It’s not, it’s not pectin in itself. It’s a different kind of, it’s a fiber from [Cognac] group.
Bridgit Danner: Okay. Yeah. I mean we’ve had all these suggested to us or the course of our mold dirty. So that’s why I feel like, well, different people I think have different favorites. I think Vulvic and hemic acid is really good. I just use like I’ve used a clay straight that I liked from Oregon. Now I use a couple of things that are like blends that have clay charcoal fluvic and humic acid. Jay Davidson, who was on the summit, has a biotoxin binder that has kind of special, like chain size of Vulvic and humic acid. So, this is why I think it starts to be hard to answer because some people are like, oh well ours is better cause it’s like micro-sized and ours is whatever liposomal. And then is a very evolving market. Like there, there are new things coming out all the time and I do think some of them are better than even a couple of years ago.
Ari Whitten: Excellent. So, sort of wrapping up big picture, if you could reduce your rate, your knowledge around detoxification more broadly or mold specifically down to your top three tips, what would you say are your top three strategies or sort of three pieces of advice that you want to leave people with?
Bridgit Danner: Hmm. I would say avoid toxins in your home and get familiar whether those are molds, plastics, water quality, air quality, food quality, cleaning products, beauty products. Cause that’s where you spend the most time. So, you really need to, you know, have your environment be as clean as you can. Second, I would say, um, you know, supporting your detox pathways every day. Getting out in the sun, as you talk about, using a sauna, eating greens, eating fermented foods. Just like simple things I think is a great idea. And I’ll say third would be like, attend our summit.
Ari Whitten: I like that piece of advice. So, with that in mind, yeah, tell it, tell us about your upcoming, “Do It Yourself Detox Summit.”
Bridgit Danner: Yeah. So, you’re in it and honestly the speaker and…
Ari Whitten: That’s all you need to say. …..
Bridgit Danner: … go see Ari, I know your talk was great. I mean it’s important. Yeah, we just have such a great variety. I just think like this, I feel like I was being a total Debbie Downer on this, this conversation. But the good news is like the more you know, like the more hope there is and if you feel like there are some symptoms that you don’t know why they’re happening or in your children, you don’t know why they’re happening. You know you do need to become more aware of this whole world of toxin avoidance and using binders and like just different, you know, it’s, it behooves you in this modern world to become more knowledgeable. So, we don’t intend for you to like to memorize everything on the summit.
Just, you know, synergistically, like listen to the talks that appeal to you. Pick up a few tips, like learn what you need for where you’re at. I mean, you’re thinking of buying a water filter and you’ll learn a good tip. You know, maybe you’re thinking of buying a sauna and you’ll learn a good tip. Just, just keep learning and enjoy that. Because even in this super toxic, we can, we can reduce our load. And I’m like, I’m a ton healthier than I have been. And so there, there is definitely hope even for like the hardest cases.
Ari Whitten: Yeah. 100%. And, and one thing I want to say on a note from my perspective is there are some people out there, some skeptics of sort of the whole world of detoxification. Who have attitudes like, oh, we have a liver, we have kidneys? You know, that’s all the detox we need. The truth is there was certainly a time in human evolution where that was all the detox we needed, but we are living in an increasingly toxic world where we are all being exposed to things in the air supply, in the water supply, in the food supply, on a level that is just hundreds or actually more, maybe tens of thousands of times higher than we were at any time and evolution up until the last 50 or 100 years or so. Because of that, and just as one example of this, even this is even occurring from before the moment you’re born.
And they’ve even done studies with like umbilical cord blood and they’ve looked at, they’ve measured the amount of toxins in, there are literally hundreds of detectable manmade toxins in the umbilical cord blood. So, we’re just, we’re being exposed to a huge amount of these things from the time we’re babies until we’re adults. So I think it behooves all of us to have some smart habits built into our lives to support detoxification, to support our body’s natural detoxification pathways, and to include things like binders, to just be aware of these sources of toxicity and minimize them from our food supply or water supply or air supply. And you know, of course, mold as we talked about and do as much as possible to support our body’s ability to keep toxicity low.
Bridgit Danner: Yeah, I think so too. You know, I been, I think that some a whole does well, but I think there’s still a little bit of like, why do you say that? Like it’s a little bit of lack of probably not only your awesome listeners but like people just don’t really get it. Like they still don’t really get that this is a big deal. If someone’s trying to tell you it’s not that bad, they’re probably selling you something that it’s toxic. So, don’t listen to that. You know, anybody, doesn’t matter how educated you are, how expensive a house you live in, whatever. Like you can be affected by this staff as well as your family. So, thank you. I really appreciate that message. Are you,
Ari Whitten: yeah. Thank you for coming on the show, Bridget, and for everybody listening again, you can get access to her new, do it yourself detox summit. Just go to the energy blueprint.com forward/detoxsummit, all one word, and you can sign up to get free access right on that link. So, thank you again, Bridget. Really a pleasure having you on. I really enjoyed this conversation and have a wonderful rest of your day.
Bridgit Danner: Thank you.
Do It Yourself Detox Summit – How To Test For And Treat Mold with Bridgit Danner – Show Notes
How mold can affect your health (5:25)
How mold occurs in our environment (8:29)
Common symptoms of mold exposure (12:21)
How mold colonizes in your body (20:42)
How to test for mold in your home (22:39)
How to treat mold infection (33:03)
How to treat mold in your body (35:38)
Common symptoms of mold colonizing in your body (36:52)
How to detox mold (40:29)