Many people would like a single, simple test to tell them if they are sick as a result of being exposed to a building with mold. Unfortunately, that is not the reality of how our bodies work. And to make matters more confusing, there are laboratories out there telling doctors that they do, in fact, have such a simple, single test. But it’s not a valid test.
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When discussing the health impacts of mold, it’s common to hear people say, “Oh, I’m so allergic to mold!” However, an allergy to mold in the environment or in food is different from the immune dysregulation caused by exposure to mold in a water-damaged building. It’s very much an apples and oranges situation. Typical symptoms of a mold allergy are similar to those experienced with grass or pollen — sinus congestion, headache, asthma.
Do you suspect you have fibromyalgia? Do you start your days stiff and in pain? Are you struggling with fatigue? Is brain fog making it hard to concentrate? Perhaps you’ve even visited with a long list of doctors and eventually ended up with a diagnosis. The challenge in determining whether someone has fibromyalgia lies in the fact that it relies solely on symptoms.
The idea that a ‘special’ diet or avoiding some ‘secret foods’ will solve a problem as complex as mold-related illness is not just unrealistic, it’s basically impossible. Improving your nutrition and avoiding obviously moldy foods are both very good ideas. The reason a ‘low mold’ diet won’t correct the underlying problem is because the vast majority of what makes a person sick with ‘mold illness’ or Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS), isn’t actually mold.
You are gathering building materials for your child well before conception occurs. For those last few months prior to becoming pregnant, the egg and sperm that create your baby are being developed and matured. Ideally, you want to allow your body to gather the healthiest and strongest materials possible and lay a solid foundation for that baby’s future growth and long term health.
Cognitive decline is perhaps the most challenging issue in the medical world of chronic disease. With so many things to learn about each year and so many distractions, it can seem hard to keep up. At first it may seem like an inability to concentrate and remember words, but as time goes on it becomes clear that there is more happening. It is not unreasonable to be worried about this.
You could be any age. You notice that it seems hard to think and it takes a lot more effort to concentrate. You don’t feel as sharp as you remember you were, and maybe even your job performance suffers. If you’re older, you laugh it off (at least on the outside) and say this is just what happens in middle age. But on the inside, you worry about cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.
There was an article I recently read, titled “I’ve Seen Over 50 Doctors And No One Knows What’s Wrong With Me” and what really struck me was the subtitle, where she said that it didn’t really matter what they called her disease, “what mattered was learning to live with it.” I made a mental bet in my head that this woman had CIRS.
You know something has been wrong for a long time. You’re tired and yes, you’ve got a lot going on, but still… it seems excessive. No matter how much you sleep, you don’t feel rested. Your cabinets are filled with supplements that promise better energy, but they don’t help, or if they do, it never sticks and it’s never enough. Your doctor runs some tests and your thyroid seems fine, you’re not anemic, everything seems normal and they don’t have any ideas.