All posts by Serenity

Links for current fire and smoke status

California wildfires are starting to again. This is an update to last year’s resources that I provided. 

There are thunderstorms forecasted this week, so fire and smoke status will likely get worse within the next week or two.

If you have any kind of chronic inflammation it is imperative to avoid exposure as much as possible.
Smoke is ultra-fine particulate that by-passes HEPA filters and goes straight through your lungs into your bloodstream.
This is not always just trees in that particulate, but also ash from cars and homes.  — If that happens, GET OUT OF THE AREA for as long as possible, please.

This is a photo from the #NorthComplexFire 2020 near Oroville Damn. 

Highlights from Conference on Chronic Inflammation & Mold ~ Lesson #5

Below are highlights from an epic event “Mycotoxin  and Chronic Illness Summit” hosting July 12 to 18, 2021  (EVENT LINK), The host is bringing together leaders in treatment of inflammation caused by biotoxins from water damaged buildings.  They also discuss co-infections which can be Lyme or even long COVID.

At first I was in disbelief at the names I saw, because based on my research to date, these people are truly leaders in helping people who are ill from toxic buildings.

I’m very excited to see a high level of engagement because I know this knowledge can help improve your quality of life!

The event is over now and if you want to see the presentations they offer full access for $97. (Great deal!!)  Based on my experience, it is worth every penny for anyone wanting to take control of their own health rather than hope a professional, if you hire one, will have all the answers you need. (I don’t have any affiliation with the people presenting.)

Alternatively, you can subscribe and get a summary of my key learning after I review my notes. (SUBSCRIBE HERE

Below are highlights of this special event based on what I feel is most helpful for beginners to the topic and what I especially liked.

DAY 1 – July 12, 2021 

Dr. Christine Schaffner, N.D.​ – Dr. Schaffner’s Unique Approach to Treating Mold-Related Illness

This video is not for those with limited time, but I think is really great is seeing the souls that made this event possible and their vision for the future.  I know more about these people than I have time to share at the moment.  They have my full interest and attention. (INTRODUCTION BY HOST)

Dave Asprey – My Moldy Journey

Known as “the Father of Biohacking” and the founder of Bulletproof. Dave was severely impacted by mycotoxin illness and discussed how he overcame it to lose more than 100 pounds!  He is interested in making his lessons learned more affordable and accessible to those who can’t afford a high level of engagement with doctors.

If you are limited on time and can only view one video today, I recommend this one.  I found his presentation inspiring and I learned a lot from him and will definitely be following his journey.  (BASIC TOPIC)

Dr. Jill Carnahan, M.D. – Diagnosis and Treatment of Mycotoxin and Mold Related Illness

I have seen many of her podcasts and she’s an excellent teacher.  In this one you will see 2 doctors sharing their passion and treatment protocols.  It may seem technical, but with more exposure to the concepts it gets easier.  Solid info here! (BASIC TOPIC)

Paul Barattiero – EMF, Hydrogen Water and Microbiome

Podcast got cut off at 25 minutes unfortunately.  I thought it was interesting because I don’t see much discussion on the electrical nature of our bodies.  (However the last speaker of the day went into this specifically in more depth than Paul.)

He talked bout the incredible benefits of molecular hydrogen. He should know; he’s been speaking on H2 for more than 22 years! He explained how H2 modulates Telomerase, reduces oxidative stress, and improves memory and cognitive function.  Would like to learn more… looked up the machines he sells and they are wicked expensive. I wonder why?  (ADVANCED TOPIC)

Dr. Matthew Pratt-Hyatt, PhD​ – The Influence of Food on Mycotoxin Testing -Cleaning Mycotoxins in the Environment ​

This guy was a chemist at the two leading labs in the US that test specifically for mold and mycotoxin in the body.    He offers unique wisdom and perspective in this field of studying mycotoxins.

I’m intrigued about his method to kill mycotoxins.  I am of the impression his products are still in development or new to market.  I found this link had interesting info in it, but I am not sure they are ready for prime time yet.   (Its very hard to kill mycotoxins and it is what makes us so darned sick.) (ADVANCED TOPIC)

Dr. Michelle Perro, M.D.​ – Mycotoxin Evaluation and Treatment in Children

Good info for adults and children.  There are significant differences in the immune system based on age.  She broke down the reasons for the explosion of mycotoxins in kids, the signs and symptoms of mold exposure, and safe ways to help your kids detox.  Presentation picks up at 25 minutes for me because I was really interested in treatment and labs that my insurance may pay for. (BASIC TOPIC)

Dr. William Pawluk, M.D – Understanding Pulsed Electromagnetic Fields and Chronic Illness

To be honest I was done for the day by the time I got here.  This is a challenging topic for non-scientists, however I liked the explanation about how magnetic fields work.  Since there is no beginning or end to the energy in affects us in pulses and energizes weak or sick cells.  He’s been studying this for 30 years and I am quite intrigued by the principles presented.  (ADVANCED TOPIC)


DAY 2 – July 13, 2021

Dr. Tom O’Bryan DC, CCN, DACBN, CIFM – A Deeper Dive into the Respiratory and GI Mucosal Immune Responses Especially the Contribution of Dietary Triggers.

Dr. Tom O’Bryan, aka the “Sherlock Holmes of Chronic Disease,” will tell us about his personal experience with mycotoxins and how to “fix” autoimmunity.  Fixing all contributors at once is overwhelming, however he suggests an hour a week to making changes as outlined in his book “You Can Fix your Brain.” – If you are too busy to watch this, just buy his book and spend some of your health improvement time on that.  (BASIC  TOPIC)

Dr. Amanda Wilms, N.D. – Mycotox in Treatment in Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

She discusses the impact of mold exposure on pregnant and nursing women.   I liked as with other doctors, comparing their approach for testing and treatment.  (BASIC TOPIC)

Dr. Mark Filidei, DO – The Brain and Mycotoxin Testing

Ding! Ding!! DING!!!! ~ My favorite presentation so far because they go beyond the basics and aren’t too technical to follow.  They discuss the strengths and limitations of testing, how the animal testing and treatment is far better than for humans because of the billions of dollars at stake, that 100% of Alzheimer’s brains had fungus at autopsy and the control brains didn’t….  This was truly a great conversation not to be missed.  Knowledge is power. =) (BASIC TOPIC)

Kiran Krishnan -The Microbiome’s Role in Protecting the Host from Mycotoxins

This guy is all about the gut and keeping the good bugs during treatment.  Most practitioners in traditional western and non-traditional offer treatments that reduce the good bugs.  He discusses how farm animals are treated for mycotoxin illness and the impacts on them.  He advocates for using bacteria from cows for populating our microbiome.  Hmmm…..   Worthy of consideration. (BASIC TOPIC)

Dr. Mary Ackerley, MD, MD(H), ABIHM –  Where is the Mold Hiding?

I really enjoyed this presentation.   Harvard trained doctor which is somewhat rare in this realm.  She was blunt in her honesty about the medical system, labs etc…  and most uniquely important among the presenters is her strong focus on the brain for assessment and treatment.  (BASIC TOPIC)

Dr. Kent Holtorf, M.D. – Peptides, Mycotoxins, Mast Cells, and Chronic Illness

Honestly, at this point in day 2 at the end of the day, I couldn’t stay awake to watch it.  Peptides… guess I need to Google it.  (ADVANCED TOPIC)


DAY 3 – July 14, 2021

I didn’t have time to see all presentations.  Went straight to Paul Anderson….

Dr. Tara Boyd, N.D. – Mycotoxins and the Developing Brain

I didn’t see this presentation.

Dr. Keesha Ewers, PhD, ARNP-FNP-C, AAP, IFM-C – Moldy Childhood Trauma Can Lead to a Moldy Brain and Immune System

I didn’t see this presentation.

Nicolas Pineault – EMFs & Mold: A Dangerous Toxic Synergy

Nicolas Pineault gives us a masterclass in EMF exposure from cell towers, 5G, and other sources of radiation in and around our homes. He gave practical solutions to minimize exposure and explained why EMFs are dangerous for your health (Hint: it’s not just about radiation). Everyone should hear his wisdom.  (BASIC TOPIC)

Dr. Paul Anderson, NMD – Intersection of Mycotoxin Illness and Covid Long Haul Sydrome

An internationally respected researcher and doctor who helps directly or indirectly alot of patients with cancer.  Treated alot of patients in China, as directed by the government to treat entire populations with vitamin C to keep them out to the hospital.  There was a huge demand for his guidance from hospitals globally.  He also discussed reasons for COVID severity and long-haul COVID. — From  now on I’m going to eat Vitamin C like candy.  LOL! (ADVANCED)

Dr Lauren Tessier, N.D. – Mycotoxin Illness and Autoimmunity

I didn’t see this presentation.

Dr. Sharon Hausman-Cohen, M.D. – The Role of Gene Analysis in Treating Chronic Illness

Dr. Sharon Hausman-Cohen, M.D. presented on the role of gene analysis in treating chronic illness. She taught us how the field of genomics could be used to target specific genes affected by mycotoxins and how we can manipulate our genes to be healthier and pain-free.  This presentation cut-off at 6pm when I was mid-way through it.  SO BUMMED!!  I really was interested in what she was saying.   (BASIC TOPIC)

Dr. Jocelyn Strand, N.D. – The Use of Biocidin for Chronic Illness

I didn’t see this presentation.


DAY 4 – July 15, 2021

Dr. Tanya Dempsey, M.D. Is Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) the root cause of chronic illness?

Dr. Tania Dempsey, M.D., will discuss the role of Mast Cells in the immune system and how Mast Cell dysfunction can lead to severe allergies, abnormal growth, and inflammation.

Beth O’Hara, ND – Precision Mycotoxin Detoxification in MCAS and Sensitivities

Beth O’Hara told us about her journey with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome. She taught us how to identify the signs of MCAS and gave actionable steps to manage it, including the best supplements, medications, and foods to combat the symptoms.  I was profoundly moved by her story, because I related to her so much and I sometimes feel alone in this experience.  Mast Cell Activation Syndrome is a foreign concept.  I didn’t think I had it… now with the education of this summit, I know do…  Beth is the most definitely the extreme case.  I recommend this presentation for all.  (BASIC)

Dr. Sanjay Manchandra PhD – Using Energy, Resonance and Psychology in Healing the Terrain of Chronic Illness

Dr. Sanjay Manchandra, PhD., discussed the use of low levels of electric, magnetic, and light energy to change the composition of the brain and return it to homeostasis. He also presented on “learned helplessness” and why it’s vital to work on mindset to reverse chronic illness.  Using near infrared light is fascinating.  I’ll always remember what he said the chemistry IS electrical.  Duh.  Never thought of it like that before, but it is so true! (ADVANCED)

Dr. Margaret Christensen, M.D. – The Impact of Mycotoxins and Chronic Illness on Hormones

Dr. Margaret Christensen, M.D., broke down the impact of mycotoxins on PMS, fertility, and menopause. Hers was an exceptionally valuable presentation and is not to be missed by any women who wish to better understand their biology and how mycotoxins affect hormone levels.  Her comments about the leaky gut dysfunction and how it affects the reproductive area was fascinating.   Hormones was like alphabet soup so that is why I say it is more advanced, but understanding at a fundamental level would help alot.  (BASIC-ADVANCED)

Dr. Andrew Campbell, M.D. – Proven Methods of Diagosis and Treatment with Medical and Scientific Evidence for Patients

Affected by Molds/Mycotoxins – Dr. Andrew Campbell, M.D., will speak on the effects of mold and other mycotoxins on breast implants and how to effectively diagnose patients with molds/mycotoxins when their symptoms are ambiguous.  I did not watch all of this presentation due to time constraints. (BASIC)

Dr. Lawrence Afrin, M.D.  – Understanding Mast Cell Activation

Dr. Lawrence Afrin is a leading expert in mast cell activation syndrome.   As an expert in hematology he brings a unique perspective to this summit. One thing that stood out for me is the mast cells are the equivalent of mycotoxins millions of years ago in multi-cell organisms.  Other cells began to evolve to replace the functions of mast cells.  While present in most of the body, in remained concentrated in our blood rich areas and primary environmental interface.  While a challenging topic, he speaks from a common language with very little alphabet soup.   Learning about mast cells is essential to understanding chronic inflammation. (BASIC)


DAY 5 – July 16, 2021

I ran out of energy by day 5 to keep with a VERY brief summary of the presentation.  I will do a very thorough review later.

Dr. Stephanie Seneff, PhD – Euthyroid Sick Syndrome, CIRS and Glyphosate Toxicity

Dr. Stephanie Seneff, Ph.D., will discuss Euthyroid Sick Syndrome – a condition in which the thyroid is perfectly healthy, but the patient has symptoms of thyroid deficiency. She’ll break down the syndrome and show us why water-based mycotoxins may be to blame.

Dr. Heather Sandison, N.D. – Mycotoxins and Cognitive Decline

Dr. Heather Sandison, N.D., will give a presentation on the unavoidable link between mycotoxins and dementia. She’ll teach us how to fortify our brains against memory loss and how to reverse the signs of dementia with a mycotoxin detox.

Alison Marras, NTP, RYT – Dietary Options in Chronic Illness

Alison Marras, NTP, RYT will show us how to maintain a consistent, autoimmune-friendly diet with simple food prep and meal planning.

Scott Forsgren, FDN-P – Mold Illness in Chronic Lyme Disease

Scott Forsgren, FDN-P will discuss mold-based illness and Lyme disease and explore some ways to seek a diagnosis and treatment for chronic symptoms.

Dr. Ty Vincent, M.D – Allergy vs Mycotoxin response and the place of Low dose Immunotherapy

 

Dr. Alireza Panahpour, DDS – Dental Infections and Chronic Illness


DAY 6 – July 17, 2021

  • Dr. Christopher Shade, PhD – Neurohepatic Coupling: Balancing ANS Activity to Support Detox Pathways
  • Erika Schlick Sinclair – The Role Of Diet When Healing From Lyme & Mold
  • Dr. Isaac Eliaz, M.D. – The Survival Paradox
  • Dr. Maya Shetreat, M.D. – The Emotional and Spiritual Sensitivity in the Complex Chronic Illness Patient”
  • Dr. Jill Crista, N.D. – The Miracle of Herbs for Mold Recovery
  • Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker, M.D. – Its more than Mycotoxins Part 1 – 2 the Genie Test New Window on Chronic Inflammation
  • Dr. David Jockers DNM, DC, MS, – The Intermittent Fasting Transformation

DAY 7 – July 18, 2021

  • Dr. Daniel Pompa, D.C. – The Varied Dietary Roads to Health
  • Dr. Thomas Moorcroft, DO – The Crossroads of Tick-borne Infections and Mycotoxins
  • Rave Mehta – Experiencing Joy and the Road to Healing
  • Dr. Joe Smith – Beyond Vagal Stimulation– How a Comprehensive Brain Based Approach Will Aid Your Mold Strateg
  • Michael D Schrantz – How to Understand the Available Environmental Testing Options
  • Dr. Kelly McCann, M.D. – The Multiple Angles of Mycotoxin and Chronic Illness

Stay Tuned for Future Lessons

Future newsletters will explain why the longer the water damage festers the worse the outcome. I will also share how to look for signs of a water damaged building, health tips, improving indoor air quality, digitizing documents, and more.

These are lessons that will help ANY immuno-compromised person or any one wishing to live their best life possible without brain fog or other symptoms from toxins in your environment and body.

Here is an index of topics on this subject that will be updated with each new series of lessons offered.


Please donate, if you can. I have a lot of expenses from medical, moving, and storage to replacement of damaged items.  (LINK HERE).

 

List of Topics on my Mold Recovery Journey

Recovering from a water damaged building is very challenging journey because avoidance is the primary means of recovery.

That is not easy when spores are planted in your books, bed and other daily objects you use from living in a contaminated environment.  The body must also be treated for a full recovery, even though a dramatic recovery is seen after leaving the space permanently.

This educational series does NOT cover remediation of the home itself, but will cover how to evaluate the likely health of the home and ideas to help keep a normal fungal ecology in your living space.

Index of Lessons From My Mold Recovery Journey

  1. How our body processes toxins
  2. Learn what bio-toxins are
  3. How to make your air healthier to breathe
  4. Learn how to quickly acquire and store the precious Vitamin D to fight toxins.
  5. Highlights from Conference on Chronic Inflammation & Mold

Stay Tuned for Future Lessons

Future newsletters will explain why the longer the water damage festers the worse the outcome. I will also share how to look for signs of a water damaged building, health tips, improving indoor air quality, digitizing documents, and more.

These are lessons that will help ANY immuno-compromised person or any one wishing to live their best life possible without brain fog or other symptoms from toxins in your environment and body.

Here is an index of topics on this subject that will be updated with each new series of lessons offered.


Please donate, if you can. I have a lot of expenses from medical, moving, and storage to replacement of damaged items. For any donation, I am offering you a mask lanyard as a thank you gift (LINK HERE).

 

Learn how to quickly acquire and store the precious Vitamin D to fight toxins. ~ Lesson #4

Vitamin D is FAR MORE critical than most people imagine for detox and pain management. It is a steroid pro-hormone that regulates the body’s calcium and phosphate levels in bone mineralization. It is commonly known as a fat-soluble vitamin which plays an important role in immuno-modulation, regulation of cytokines, and cell proliferation. (Reference)

The article below was written by a valued subscriber in our community, Joseph Andrews. (Thank you!) After retiring as an engineer, he ran a large public organic farm in Oregon.  He now runs a private farm in southern California for the benefit of his family.  The rest of this article is written in his voice.


Most people don’t get enough sunshine vitamin D, yet it is the most important constituent to overall health and the immune system, especially for the elderly. I have observed among 40 people in my family and associates who got COVID, nobody was hospitalized.   However, the individual who had it worst was vitamin D deficient.

Like most Americans, you could be suffering from vitamin D deficiency which can cause daily aches, pain, fatigue, bone loss, depression, worsens serious illness and weakens the immune system. Unfortunately, in today’s world the simplest and least expensive solutions are often overlooked!

Here’s a video which presents the importance of vitamin D.
The sun is the best source for vitamin D which lasts over twice as long in the body compared to supplements. Plus there are many other photo nutrients from sun exposure yet to be understood by scientists.

Side note by website manager:  Our body converts cholesterol in our body to create vitamin D. Link for more info.

To get your daily does simply expose as much of your bare skin as possible (without sunscreen). There is a lot more risks from inadequate sun than possible excessive sun!

The sun also can heal spiritually. My most powerful meditations have been while sun bathing. I usually spend about 30 to 40 minutes sunbathing and meditating every day and it has rejuvenated me.

What really surprised me was the euphoria I felt after doing this practice regularly.  That is when I discovered that this practice is actually helpful in treating opioid addiction.

According to this article in SciTech Daily (LINK), exposure to UV rays (specifically the form called UVB) causes the skin to produce the hormone endorphin, which is chemically related to morphine, heroin and other opioids.  In fact these all activate the same receptors in the brain.  It is also important to note that Vitamin D deficiency plays a huge role in opioid addiction. (Reference)

Factors that will affect your natural vitamin D absorption are:

  • Age.  Older people require up to 3 times more time required than younger people
  • Skin tone.  The higher amount of melatonin (darker skin) takes more time
  • Location / Latitude.  The further aware from equator more time needed
  • Time of year.  Depth of winter more time needed
  • Amount of skin exposed.
  • Level of cloudiness.

Goal: 10-30 minutes, 3 times a week.

Here is a video that demonstrates the different factors mentioned above.

To make this guesswork easier, I use an application to calculate the optimal time of day in my location to acquire vitamin D naturally.   It also tracks over time how much vitamin D I have acquired.  The application is called Dminder and can be found through the creator’s website. (Available only on Apple and Android enabled devices.)

I definitely feel so much better and wish more people, like you, could benefit from this regular health practice in your life.

~ Wishing you well, Joseph Andrews
Subscriber @TheJourneyHomeAgain.com

If any participating subscriber would like to write an article to share with others please contact the website owner here.


Stay Tuned for Future Lessons

Future newsletters will explain why the longer the water damage festers the worse the outcome. I will also share how to look for signs of a water damaged building, health tips, improving indoor air quality, digitizing documents, and more.

These are lessons that will help ANY immuno-compromised person or any one wishing to live their best life possible without brain fog or other symptoms from toxins in your environment and body.

Here is an index of topics on this subject that will be updated with each new series of lessons offered.


Please donate, if you can. I have a lot of expenses from medical, moving, and storage to replacement of damaged items. For any donation, I am offering you a mask lanyard as a thank you gift (LINK HERE).

 

How to make your air healthier to breathe.~ Lesson #3

Healthy air depends not only on your air being clean, but also keeping relative humidity below 55% so mold and bacteria cannot grow in the cooler spots of your home.  This article covers air filtration, air purification and most importantly, decreasing humidity in your home.

TO BE CLEAR ABSOLUTELY NO FILTER IS ADEQUATE TO HELP YOU WHEN THERE REMAINS A WATER SOURCE FOR GROWTH OF MOLD.  The machines can’t keep up!

Water damage causes bio amplification in the form of bacteria and mold within 48 hours. A common mistake is believing when the water appears to have evaporated that the risk has disappeared, but these little bio-farms can become airborne.  The source contamination must be removed, negated and or diluted in order to restore a normal fungal ecology that you can then maintain a healthy home and body.

HVAC equipment gathers elements of biological growth and spreads them through your ENTIRE home. This chart below is from an HVAC (heating, venting and air conditioning) company.

Basically, the smaller the contaminates are, the harder they are to remove and in many cases often impossible to remove.

Cleaning Your Air

The contaminant you are trying to remove and it’s size will determine whether you need air filtration or air purification, or both.

This chart below illustrates the particle size of typical contaminants you wish to filter out of your home.  Once you get below about 0.3 in size an air filtration unit will not be very effective.

The big take away here is that most particulates below 0.3 microns are the ones that can make you sick or kill you.  Those particulates are smaller than our red and white blood cells.  Whereas the larger particulates are often considered irritants because our body is better able to filter them.

Airborne particles can enter the nose and mouth during normal breathing.

  • 10 microns diameter and less will pass through the nose and throat, reaching the lungs.
  • 5 microns or less can penetrate into the gas exchange region of the lungs and take a long time to settle from the atmosphere.
  • Anything less than 2.5 microns is highly likely to end up on the blood stream and fatty tissues.  According to the American Lung Association these particulates can remain in the body for a long time.

Here is a chart to give you a better idea of the relative size range of the particulates that may be of concern to you. (Click to view larger image.)

Most people get air cleaners, if anything, for their indoor spaces to filter their air.  Yet they don’t realize that they also need air purifiers to sanitize the air for the ultra-fine particulates.

Air Filtration

Typically you won’t find both filtration and purification in one machine without compromising performance.  A filter is designed to pass large quantities over the filter quickly, where as air purification requires air to linger in order for it to be treated.

I have looked at about a dozen filtration units.  Here’s a list of  some reputable manufacturers, so you can do the research yourself.  I chose the AirDoctor because it had the highest level of performance and the best prices on replacement filters.

I have no marketing relationship with them, but I did call with a customer service question and found them very helpful.  You will also be very pleased to know I found a link for a $280 discount on the unit from a Buyer’s Review Guide website.

Besides efficacy and price point, I really like their particulate sensor that automatically increases fan speed when there are more pollutants in the air.  For example, I cooked bacon and the fan kicked into high for 20 minutes or so.  During normal operation it is reasonably quiet, which is an important factor to consider.

Air Purification

Air purifiers will not treat the air from the things that make you sneeze, but rather treat the things that make you sick.

This is a difficult topic and I haven’t landed yet on my choice for a unit because their is no easy answer.  Each technology seems to pose some risk.  Purification is usually achieved by emitting ions or ozone, or by utilizing heat or UVC lamps.

I listen to podcasts by Michael Schwartz called IEP Radio (CLICK HERE FOR LINK).  Each podcast features luminaries in the field of health and indoor air quality.  The sessions are well structured and worth the time to listen to.

Podcasts #17 and #18 discuss air purification technology and provide a couple good options to consider.  (I will update this page when I have more to share on the topic.)

Controlling Relative Humidity

Often this factor is overlooked in  the war against indoor air pollution, yet it is often the MOST EFFECTIVE area to improve air quality.  — That is because you want to PRIORITIZE THE REDUCTION OF TOXINS produced by thriving mold and bacteria colonies!!!

All indoor air professionals and doctors will tell you that to get better you MUST avoid water damage because water and cellulose colonization is exactly how mold and bacteria replicate… and produce the toxins which are EXTREMELY hard to remove from our bodies and buildings.

To access and prevent colonization the measurement benchmark that is of most interest is dew point.  That’s the point at which the water is 100% saturated.  Warmer air can hold more water than cold.  (See this video for an explanation.)

Since our monitoring devices don’t easily provide that information, a generally accepted standard for assessment is the monitoring of relative humidity in a home which should be below 55%.

Sometimes, as is the case with my current home, my relative humidity is consistently 15-20% above the outdoor levels.  It usually hovers in the 60-65% range.  THAT IS VERY, VERY BAD!

I have no leaking pipes and we are suspecting it is coming from poor ventilation and a slab foundation with excess moisture.  I tell you that so you can know water damage isn’t just from leaking water pipes.

REGARDLESS OF WATER SOURCE, you have to get the water OUT of your home.    Here are a couple tools I recommend to do so:

  1. Humidity monitors Get a temperature and humidity monitor with an alarm.  Evaluate risky or unknown areas of your home so you can handle accordingly. I have one inside and one outside, so I have a basis for comparison.  Here’s the data logger I use.  I also find it interesting to monitor what the weather service provides on their 10 day forecast for comparison, which varies based on time of day.
  2. Automatic ventilation fans.  The best type turn on and off automatically based on relative humidity.  (Very important for your bath and kitchen. Panasonic has one of the quietest motors according to several professionals.  Here’s the Home Depot links: With light 50-110 CFM $289 or without light $199 50-110 CFM
  3. Dehumidifier.  (UPDATE:  Air conditioners and dehumidifiers can be a breeding ground for mold, especially in a water damaged building.  So if you do not have a normal fungal ecology in your home and a commitment to cleaning and maintaining these devices, then DO NOT USE THEM!!!)  —-A basic and important tool that is required for basements or in humid climates.   A dehumidifier is like running an air conditioner, so expect it to cause a jump in your utility bill.  You could run at night which is when the environment is most humid.The type you get depends on your square footage and proximity to a drain.

If you ever have a sudden water damage event, get on it within 24-48 hours or you will have mold and bacteria colonize which will make remediation exponentially difficult.  You must remove drywall 2 feet beyond the water mark or as determined by a moisture meter. You must also lift all floor covering, hard or soft. — People think putting fans on a damaged spot is enough.  DO NOT MAKE THAT MISTAKE PLEASE!!!!!  You can’t effectively dry quickly enough to avoid biological colonization with just a fan.

If you don’t do this immediately, when you do take dry wall down, WITHOUT containment, you will spread a ridiculous amount of mold spores and other contaminates throughout your home.

Also on a related note, no insurance, either owner’s or renter’s, will cover your losses on a slow leak.  You will only be covered on sudden water damage events, so don’t waste your time with insurance or your expectations in that case.

Please take excess water seriously, act quickly and prevent moisture inside your building from ANY source.

~ Wishing you well, Kim Carr
Author @TheJourneyHomeAgain.com
If any participating subscriber would like to write an article to share with others please contact the website owner here.

Stay Tuned for Future Lessons

Future newsletters will explain why the longer the water damage festers the worse the outcome. I will also share how to look for signs of a water damaged building, health tips, improving indoor air quality, digitizing documents, and more.

These are lessons that will help ANY immuno-compromised person or any one wishing to live their best life possible without brain fog or other symptoms from toxins in your environment and body.

Here is an index of topics on this subject that will be updated with each new series of lessons offered.


Please donate, if you can. I have a lot of expenses from medical, moving, and storage to replacement of damaged items. For any donation, I am offering you a mask lanyard as a thank you gift (LINK HERE).

 

Learn what bio-toxins are. ~ Lesson #2

This article will teach you what bio-toxins are, so you understand mold is just the beginning of the story of the hazards that result from a water damaged building.  By understanding this you will understand how to make your air healthier to breathe.

It is VERY IMPORTANT to know that with active growth, toxins will NEVER be eliminated. See our related article here about how difficult toxins are to eliminate once established.

To give you an idea how serious these toxins are, I have so much accumulated toxins in my body from my current home that I am triggered immediately when biotoxins are present anywhere.  (While I was finishing this current newsletter my friend was making breakfast.  He left an empty Teflon coated pan on a hot stove.  It burned and emitted toxins.  Immediately I smelled it… which means it passed into my bloodstream and my right arm became EXTREMELY painful to the point that it hurt to lift anything.  It took me about an hour to recover from that.)


What Biotoxins Are

When people think of water damaged buildings, they think of mold., but what they don’t realize is that with excessive water ALSO comes many of biologically active substances and THAT is the most dangerous part of mold exposure.

Over your life you have taken antibiotics for infections. Did you ever wonder about what antibiotic is? Here is the definition: A substance, such as penicillin or erythromycin, produced by or derived from certain microorganisms, including fungi and bacteria, that can destroy or inhibit the growth of other microorganisms, especially bacteria. Antibiotics are widely used in the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases.

Biotoxins are substances that:

  • produced by nearly every living organism.
  • both toxic and have a biological origin.
  • come in many forms/purposes such as a waste product, predation and defense, procreation
  • can be large complex molecules or fairly simple proteins.

These toxins produced during consumption of the substrate they are attached to result in a slimy biofilm or toxic gas to defend it’s territory from invaders.

I DID NOT KNOW THIS AND HANDLED THAT BIOFILM WITH MY BARE HANDS ~ WARNING!!!! LEARN FROM ME!  If you see a slimy black biofilm and think mold is present use EXTREME CAUTION!!  Within 20 minutes of touching a couple dots of this stuff now my hands go numb and then I have temperature regulation problems and brain fog.   If I touch enough of this my hands can go numb for a week or more!  I have developed a sensitivity from cumulative exposure over time… You may not get the same reaction I did, but keep exposing yourself to biotoxins and you probably will.

There are nine types of bio-contaminants which are found in damp indoor environments from microbial growth:

    1. Molds;
    2. Gram negative and positive bacteria;
    3. Microbial particulates;
    4. Mycotoxins;
    5. Volatile organic compounds, both microbial (MVOCs) and non-microbial (VOCs);
    6. Proteins;
    7. Galactoman-nans;
    8. 1-3-b-D-glucans (glucans) and
    9. Lipopolysaccharides (LPS – endotoxins)

These 9 organisms mentioned above, like any other, including you, are looking for a “sweet spot” for food and water. When the colonies of organisms get established can multiply.  When these organisms are threatened or under stress they produce toxins to out compete each other by KILLING other living organisms.

Pause for a second….

Seriously.

Pause.

Is that something that sounds healthy for you?

Of course not… Those substances are immune suppressants and some are extremely toxic to your nerves and brain. In fact, some of these toxins are so effective that they are used in biological warfare.  (Stachybotrys (black mold) was used in Vietnam and in the Gulf War.)

Don’t doubt for a second either as to whether such toxins cause cancer. They ABSOLUTELY do!!!   Because of political interests and insurance companies, you can bet there is far too much money at stake to connect the dots for you.  Suppression of this information is to their benefit to avoid paying to fix the problem causing health issues.

So be smart. Hear my words PLEASE, connect the dots yourself. I hope what I will share with you will help you live the best life you can.

Next time you doubt a person when they say they are suffering from a water damaged building or you think they are mentally off-balance, evaluate their living and work environment and please show compassion. Some mentally challenged people I know ABSOLUTELY live in a water damaged building and no one ever connected the dots for them.  ~~ Every facet of a person’s life will be affected until they GET OUT of the building permanently or remediate it.

Mold is tested in a home more than other the potential contaminates because their presence is the easiest to access.  When mold species exceed those present outdoors contamination is deduced, which is why environmental air testers always take outdoor samples when evaluating your home.

You probably wonder how are bodies deal with these microbial assaults in our natural environments. Consider the well known phrase “The solution to pollution is dilution.” That solution is VERY difficult to apply in indoor living spaces, if a concentration of these contaminates exist.  That is why we often rely on mechanical devices to correct the problem.

Any time mold colonies get established in your home and humidity goes above 50%, they become active again… even after the event causing water damage is fixed! The mold colonies will still be in your building materials, bed, couch, books and papers… waiting for water to begin feeding in the material they have settled into.

Want some heavy science on this topic?  Check out page 11 for a list of what some common mycotoxins can do to your body.  (CLICK HERE)

Mold and bacteria are EVERYWHERE and there is no such thing as an environment that exists without it.   There are 3 conditions that gives us a starting point for assessment and remediation as defined by the IICRC (This association provides the gold standard for this topic.  THIS LINK is for the 2008 edition.  2021 was just published, but viewable by paid subscription only.)

  • Condition 1 (The good): Normal fungi ecology: Normal mold presence based on the identity, location and quantity of a reflective ecology for similar indoor environments.
  • Condition 2 (The bad): Settled spores: An indoor environment which is confirmed to have excessive microbial spores and are dispersed directly or indirectly from a condition 3 area, also known as cross contamination.
  • Condition 3 (The ugly): Actual Growth: Worst case scenario, mold growth that is visible and air contamination is confirmed.

My home now is in a situation of condition 2 and 3 which is EXACTLY WHY I have to eliminate all possessions made of cellulose that can’t be washed or are greater than 1/2 an inch thick from my life.

The most acute biotoxin exposures occur from living in water damaged buildings.  However, there are other ways to come into contact with biotoxins such as ingesting contaminated food or water, inhaling airborne biotoxins, or tick and spider bites.

Here are a few references if you wish to do some more reading on the topic:

  1. The biotoxin pathways in your body.  (Dr. Shoemaker wrote the gold standard on medical assessment and treatment.  People worldwide are grateful, including myself, for the seeds he planted to create the education required to live your best possible life.)
  2. A slightly broader discussion of the topic.  (This one covers defining what biotoxin illness is.  Hint: In it’s most simplistic definition it is called CIRS ~ Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndome. It manifests in DIFFERENT SYMPTOMS for each person!)

If you are unsure if you are affected by biotoxins, take a look at this list of chronic symptoms which can include:

  • Chronic fatigue
  • Headaches or migraine
  • Muscle pain
  • Joint pain
  • Brain fog
  • Disorientation
  • Persistent cough
  • Allergies
  • Sensitivity to chemicals
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Mood swings
  • Digestive problems
  • Weakness
  • Weight gain
  • Increased thirst
  • Frequent urination

If a combination of these symptoms exist for you or someone you know, please access the environment.  Also, based on my experience and that of thousands of other people, talking to your primary care doctor is a WASTE OF TIME.  They are not trained to deal with it.  Western doctors always treat symptoms, not the cause..

I will include information in the future about how I sought medical treatment for recovery.  Please know that it DOES NOT MATTER what medical treatments are available if you continue to live or work in a toxic environment.  Step one to recovery is getting out and taking nothing contaminated with you.

Getting out is VERY HARD and there will be days when you feel like you can’t do it.  I’m going through that soul-wrenching process right now, but I am taking steps toward that goal.

It is my hope by sharing my journey, I can give you or someone you know the roadmap you need to give you the courage and strength you need for your own recovery.

~ Wishing you well, Kim Carr
Author @TheJourneyHomeAgain.com
If any participating subscriber would like to write an article to share with others please contact the website owner here.

Stay Tuned for Future Lessons

Future newsletters will explain why the longer the water damage festers the worse the outcome. I will also share how to look for signs of a water damaged building, health tips, improving indoor air quality, digitizing documents, and more.

These are lessons that will help ANY immuno-compromised person or any one wishing to live their best life possible without brain fog or other symptoms from toxins in your environment and body.

Here is an index of topics on this subject that will be updated with each new series of lessons offered.


Please donate, if you can. I have a lot of expenses from medical, moving, and storage to replacement of damaged items. For any donation, I am offering you a mask lanyard as a thank you gift (LINK HERE).

 

How our body processes toxins ~ Lesson #1

Learning how we our body processes toxins is where this educational series begins.  Eliminating this risk from our home and bodies as a result of an infestation is one of the most challenging experiences a person can have.  I hope sharing this journey will help you life your healthiest life possible.

About 1 in 4 people have excessive mold in their home from water damage. If you are one of those people, I guarantee it is affecting your ability to thrive.

In the mildest form you will have allergies and headaches and in the most severe form you will have neuropathy, dementia, joint pain or even worse, cancer. I was further shocked to find that treatment of this condition is similar to Lyme disease and long COVID.

Why is this low hanging fruit to better health not talked about very much? (1) Because no insurance company will cover building and content loss, unless it is a sudden damage event (2) Homeowners know this affects their property values and so it often becomes their dirty little secret. (3) Our Western medical system is embarrassingly incompetent to handle medical problems requiring holistic evaluation and treatment because they handle symptoms, not causes.

I’m trying to be tough and optimistic as I move through this. And I hope to ultimately to find the gift in it for myself and others.


On this landing page you will find

  1. the prevalence of mold around us,
  2. an extreme scenario of infestation for comparison,
  3. an autopsy discussion on how our body processes toxins, 
  4. an overview of how our immune system works.

Why is Mold So Hard to Kill?

Let’s begin here by acknowledging the role of mold in our lives.  Note that the roots of mold (hyphea) once embedded are very hard to remove.  If you see mold, it’s already VERY deeply embedded in the material.

It is EXTREMELY important to know that the mycotoxins produced by mold is dangerous.  Mold produces toxins to outcompete other organisms.  Getting those mycotoxins out of your environment is extremely difficult as you will later learn, so controlling mold growth to begin with is job #1.


Side note: Augur dishes are NOT the tool you want to evaluate your home.  You would do a dust wipe test called ERMI which is available from MycoMetrics or Envirobinomics.

The Hidden Dangers of Mold Exposure

Mold is everywhere. Spores of certain types in high number is dangerous for you health, especially indoors. Mold produces mycotoxin gasses that usually have no odor. You may or may not have visual cues that it even exists in your home.

This video is reflective of what happens during a very serious infestation.

Side note: Running to live in the desert is NOT a solution, but it is a common reaction to this environmental trauma.  ANY indoor living environment in ANY climate can become infested.

How Does Your Body DeTox?

Alcohol is a toxin and the route it takes to permeate the body and be eliminated is similar to other toxins, like those from mold spores. This is why for example some people passed out after getting their second COVID-19 shot, including one of RVMatchMaker’s interns who lives with mold in her home. Our theory is that her body was already taxed with detoxing. The symptoms she experienced were exactly like alcohol poisoning.

If you aren’t squeamish by looking at preserved anatomy, you will find this extremely fascinating to see the miracle of how our body works.

The Structure of the Human Immune System and How it Functions

(2:22 Barrier 16:36 Adaptive 22:21 Innate vs Adaptive)

This video is EXTREMELY technical, so it won’t be that engaging for all.  However, if you want to have an idea of how our bodies handle all the incredible challenges faced on a daily basis, this can be helpful.


Stay Tuned for Future Lessons

Future newsletters will explain why the longer the water damage festers the worse the outcome. I will also share how to look for signs of a water damaged building, health tips, improving indoor air quality, digitizing documents, and more.

These are lessons that will help ANY immuno-compromised person or any one wishing to live their best life possible without brain fog or other symptoms from toxins in your environment and body.

Here is an index of topics on this subject that will be updated with each new series of lessons offered.


Please donate, if you can. I have a lot of expenses from medical, moving, and storage to replacement of damaged items. For any donation, I am offering you a mask lanyard as a thank you gift (LINK HERE).