In Part 1 we discussed how one is more likely to have mold and mycotoxin exposure. We also identified the types of common mycotoxins and a few key ways they contribute to aggravating our symptoms. Part 2 and 3 discuss specific health conditions and how molds and mycotoxins aggravate those symptoms. Part 4 will discuss what you can do to peel off this layer of irritation to your immune system to assist you in regaining your health.


The immune recognition of mycotoxins in patients suffering from chronic fatigue increases the overall inflammation of the patient. Unfortunately, this will take away energy the body needs to fight other common chronic invisible infections, such as viral infections (Epstein Barr, cytomeg, echo and coxsackie, Rocky Mt. Spotted fever among others). The more elements aggravating one’s immune system, the more diluted it becomes and ineffective, exhausting one’s adrenal glands in the process. In chronic fatigue patients it is common to see immune system interference in the metabolism of sugars, fats, protein, mineral salts, sulfur, acids, ineffective anti-viral immune recognition, ineffective anti-bacterial immune recognition, and ineffective anti-fungal immune recognition.

When you add the presence of mycotoxins to one’s immune burden, your body can:

1)      create neurological inflammation (headache, migraine, brain fog, aggressive behavior, irritability, insomnia, anxiety, short attention span, brain fatigue)

2)      create digestive inflammation (irritable bowel, bloating, gas, diarrhea, constipation, nausea, lack of appetite, sugar cravings)

3)      allow for opportunistic bacteria, and viral co-infections from the immune suppressive action of mycotoxins

4)      allow for explosions of populations of intestinal yeast, and candida, increasing leaky gut and irritable bowel symptoms, decreasing nutrient absorption and increasing food sensitivities

5)      weaken adrenal function resulting in lowered cortisol hormone levels, causing fatigue after meals and during levels of low cortisol, causing a further weakening of the immune system and sugar digestion inefficiency, contributing to insulin resistance and syndrome X!

6)      increase cellular toxicity, aggravating an already inefficient liver detoxification pathway system. This can increase food sensitivities and sensitivity to key metabolities in key metabolic pathways involving hormones (adrenal and thyroid, and neurotranmitters), detoxification pathways, mineral processing and nutrient absorption.


Some strains of mold, like black mold (stachybotrys) have specific targets to create neurological symptoms such as brain fog, brain fatigue, numbness, tingling in the limbs and body. Other strains of mold create neurological inflammation based on their excretions (mycotoxins). Depending upon the degree of immune system recognition to the mycotoxin there can exist a linked recognition to a neurotransmitter. Immune Matrix has consistently seen in its testing of patients a linked association with Gaba, serotonin, or dopamine or their metabolites and certain mycotoxins. The result is that the presence of the mycotoxins can interfere via the immune system to inhibit synthesis of a core neurotransmitter. Over time patients develop deficiency symptoms in serotonin, gaba or dopamine independently of the toxic neurological effects of the mycotoxin on brain neurons.

A second mechanism of headache involving mold and mycotoxin exposure is the aggravation of liver detoxification pathways. When the toxic load of the liver reaches a certain threshold, toxins become accumulated in the liver and then are deposited in other organs and tissues of the body. The increased toxic load to the liver does not necessarily increase liver enzymes and therefore is NOT detected by liver enzyme blood tests, as this is late stage stress for a liver. Symptoms of toxicity to the liver can develop way before the liver enzymes become elevated.

A toxic liver contributes to the back up and re-distribution of toxins into other areas of the body. Increased liver toxicity symptoms will include feelings of frustration, anger, agitation, short temper, feeling bottled up, sighing, red eyes, pain over the liver, nausea, lack of appetite to name a few. Increased liver toxicity affects detoxification of estrogens and aggravates estrogen type headaches seen cycling in certain women.

The location the toxins are accumulating in the body determines the type of symptoms one can have from toxic overload. Immune Matrix has seen toxic accumulations in the stomach that result in mild stomach pains, and lack of appetite. Toxic accumulation in the colon can and does interfere with nutrient absorption and greatly impacts chronic fatigue patients in their sugar metabolism and adrenal function. Toxins can impact any organ and system of the body. Toxic accumulation in the nervous system increases any pre-existing neurological symptoms, from anxiety, brain fog, numbness and tingling, fatigue, weakness, and depression, headache and migraine, making the symptoms more frequent and more severe.


Studies all over the world have confirmed increased risk for asthma linked to dampness in homes and the workplace. The mechanism of action is variable in how the molds induce asthma. Some mold and mycotoxins cause an allergic reaction that affects the bronchioles, causing inflammation and restriction. Other types of asthma are induced by immune reactivity to the mycotoxins from the molds, whether they are indoor molds, outdoor molds or food borne molds.

Sometimes the effect of the mold is indirect. The mold suppresses the immune system sufficiently to allow for secondary infection to affect the lungs. Flu, bronchitis and pneumonia become opportunisitic infections and secondary to the initial immune weakening effect of the mold exposure. Overlay this secondary infection with increased immune inflammation from reactivity to the mycotoxins and you have the ingredients for asthma to take effect.

Part 4 will discuss what you can do to identify the effects of molds contributing to leaky gut, how you can abate mold exposure, and peel of one more layer irritating your immune system and assist you in regaining your health.

Please note:
Information on this site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment.

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Anna Manayan

Anna Manayan