Can mold exposure cause thyroid problems?
Inside: Can mold cause thyroid problems? How mold triggers Thyroid Antibodies and Hashimoto’s. How to test your house for mold, and what kind of mycotoxin test your need. How to get rid of mold. Is Mold in your House the Cause for your Thyroid Problems?
Mold triggers thyroid problems, by increasing inflammation in the body. In fact, when talked about if environmental causes of hypothyroidism, mold, and toxins are the two most common causes which trigger thyroid problems, by increasing inflammation in the body.
Mold and Thyroid Antibodies
The exact mechanism underlying Thyroid illness especially Hashimoto’s disease is still a mystery. What we know is that Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune condition and the underlying culprit is antibodies that are destroying the thyroid gland, but the question is are thyroid antibodies and mold connected?
Ultimately this destruction causes hypothyroidism, which is your thyroid inability to produce thyroid hormone anymore.
This is the time where people are started on Levothyroxine the most common thyroid medication.
But the real problem which started this inflammation is never understood and the inflammation continues in these patients.
That’s precisely the reason that once you are diagnosed with thyroid problem like Hashimoto’s, several years later on you end up with more medical issues like Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, or Thyroid nodules and even thyroid cancer.
So it is very important for us to pay attention to the real root cause of inflammation problems so that we can work on it and safeguard your future.
What we at least know at this point in time is that Hashimoto’s disease is an interplay between environmental factors and genetic factors.
The genetics factors are basically the blueprint which determines a lot of your body functioning. But if we identify which environmental causes of hypothyroidism that are causing your body to react, then we can help your body genetic structure to get rid of that triggering factor.
How do you Get Exposed to Mold and What is Dangerous Mold
One of the most common Thyroiditis triggering factor is mold exposure.
In the modem day living mold is almost existent everywhere.
In the majority of the houses, these days mold is present ubiquitously. For mold to grow it needs moisture, oxygen, and food to grow. And in our houses, it gets all these three things.
Various environmental causes of hypothyroidism can happen in our house which can promote mold growth like a water leak, flooding, other water damages, plumbing issues, roof leakage.
Even though most people might have their home remediated after these damages but there might still be some moisture left somewhere which can promote mold growth.
It has been seen that there is a higher percentage of mold spores in the building who had water damage. So very important to know your house history and get it checked if there is any history of any water damage.
Now as we see it is almost impossible to not be exposed to mold in our environment.
But Mold is a very generalized term that we have used to define all different kinds of mold in our environment, but not all of them are pathologic.
There are only certain kinds of mold that are pathological and can cause dysfunction in our body.
Some of the common species of mold which are pathologic are —
- Myrothecium, and
What these mold species do is to attack our body and produce mycotoxins.
These mycotoxins are the ones which cause toxic effect on our body and lead to thyroid illness.
Can mold exposure cause thyroid problems?
Let’s see if there is a connection between mold exposure and thyroid diseases.
There was a research study done on aspergillus exposure and the development of thyroiditis .
It was seen that 20% of people who had disseminated aspergillus and were immunocompromised had thyroiditis.
This was an important finding that was related to a common mold aspergillus and its connection to the thyroid diseases.
Now Mold exposure has been associated with the development of autoimmunity.
An important new finding which has been coming up in autoimmune disease is mitochondrial antibodies.
The current thought is that mitochondrial destruction by antibodies is the real reason behind autoimmune diseases. Several studies have demonstrated that even in Hashimoto’s disease, mitochondrial destruction plays an important role.
And mold exposure in this particular study was shown to trigger mitochondrial antibodies.
Another small study was done where females developed thyroid dysfunction after exposure to mold infected buildings . These females after being replaced with T3 hormone improved significantly with their symptoms.
So it is very clear that exposure to mold can certainly be the trigger for thyroid problems. And something that needs to be looked into.
How to Test for Mold in your Home Environment
Testing for mold has been a difficult and controversial topic. Conventional medicine has not recognized mold as a potential pathogen for diseases. So there are no easy regular tests that can check for mold.
The only way to get checked for mold is by using specialized labs like Great Plains or Real-time labs. These specialist lab checks for Mycotoxins that are present in your body.
These tests give you exactly what kind of mold toxin is present in your body and how much.
This information is important because once you know which mycotoxin is present then you can easily do things to get rid of it.
There are also home kits to check for mold in your house. Now again this is not standardized and there are various options.
This includes getting a mold specialist in your house to do a visual inspection and the other one is to get a test done in your home to see if mold spores are present in your environment.
Both are not perfect tests but just because of the ease I like the home kits where you can check your environment and know whether the mold is present or not. The best test to look into more detail is called ERMI testing.
Note: If you feel you want to get mold testing done, you can always contact us and we can assist you in that.
Treatment of Mold
Now let’s say you did the above test and it shows that you had high levels of mycotoxins in your system. The next question will be can you do something to get rid of them.
So the answer to that is yes.
There are things that you can do to get rid of mold toxins from your body and feel better again.
But the first thing you need to do is to clean your environment.
Because if you are going to keep living in that moldy environment it is going to attack your body again and it doesn’t matter what you do it’s going to return.
- Binders: The first thing you need to do is to bind these toxins in your body so that they don’t affect your body functions. These binders also make it easier for these toxins to be detoxed from your body. There are various binders that are available like activated charcoal, zeolite clay, pectin. I generally like to use GI detox supplement which combines all these together. Now the important part to remember whenever you are using binders is that they are going to bind to everything. They are going to bind your medicines, your other supplements, and even food. So it is important to take these binders separately from everything else. At least 1-2 hours apart from other things.
- Glutathione and NAC: There are several things that can be done to detox, and several supplements that can be helpful for detox. But for mold toxins, the detox supplements that work the best are NAC and Glutathione. They are a very important part of the plan because they will help your body to get rid of those toxins. Now some people in the initial phase, when they start using these detox supplements, might feel worse. The reason being, all these toxins which were stored in your body are coming out, so the best way to deal with this situation is to go slow and use binders.
- Saccharomyces Boularidi: This is a probiotic fungus that helps to get rid of the mold toxins again. It helps with biofilm disruption and also to help get rid of the mold. It also helps to improve your gut health and reduce inflammation which also improves your body’s ability to fight with toxins.
- Detox: You should work on other detox ways like saunas, dry brushing to help open up your detox channels also. Also, a detox diet is also recommended during this time.
- Fungal Sinusitis: The most common place where the fungus hides is in your sinuses. Most often patients will complain of allergies or sinus infections or sinus clogging most of the time. So if that’s the case with you then you need to clean the fungus from there. This step generally I recommend doing with a Functional Medicine specialist. There are various ways of doing it but the simplest way is to use Lugol’s iodine solution. But the dosage is tricky and you don’t want to use this solution without dilution. But maybe you can start with 1 drop in a big bottle os sterile water and use it for sinus rinses. But again I feel this is the step which should be done with a specialist to know the exact way of doing it. There are some nasal sprays which can also be done for this.
Summary of Can mold exposure cause thyroid problems?
So mold can be one of the environmental causes of hypothyroidism. And yes, mold is a thyroiditis trigger. It plays an important role in triggering inflammation in your body which ultimately leads to thyroid destruction. mold from your immediate environment. And then taking steps to detox your body from mold toxins.
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