Mold & Mycotoxins, An Interview With Dr. Kevin Granger and Brandon Faust

In this interview, Dr. Kevin Granger, D.C., of Nutritional Wellness and Chiropractic, and Mr. Brandon Faust of the health-centric mold remediation company, Mold Solutions USA, discuss molds and mycotoxins, the effects they can have on one’s home or health, and how to go about testing for or resolving the problems they can cause.

As with all of the content on this website, this interview and commentary is provided for information purposes only and should never be construed as personal or health advice. Always consult a qualified practitioner or professional for personal advice.

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Meet the Experts

Dr. Kevin Granger, D.C.

Nutritional Wellness and Chiropractic

Dr. Kevin Granger, D.C., is a natural health practitioner and nutrition expert at Nutritional Wellness in Clearwater, Florida. He has been in practice for 35 years and believes in achieving optimum health through drug-free, holistic methods.

Brandon J Faust, Founder of Mold Solutions, Clearwater, FL

Brandon Faust, NORMI, IICRC

Mold Solutions

Brandon Faust is an indoor air quality expert, certified mold remediator, and the founder of Mold Solutions. He is certified by the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI), and the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC).

Mold & Mycotoxins, An Interview

Brandon Faust:

I’m here today with Dr. Kevin Granger, who is a Doctor of Chiropractic, and he’s also a clinician for nutritional response testing.

And Dr. Granger has actually been in practice for 37 years so that’s an impressive feat in itself.

So, thank you very much for taking the time to sit down with us.

I have a strong interest in the health aspect of mold because, for me, as a business owner for Mold Solutions, we have a little bit of a different angle than a lot of the restoration companies or remediation companies, because of, really, our entrance point.

I got into the industry from the health perspective because my son had an issue when he was a month old, and then that was also strengthened when I had an issue in 2019 that had to do with mold toxicity.

So my awareness in regards to mold being a problem is probably a little bit higher than I think people that haven’t had that experience, so I do appreciate you sitting down and talking to us about mold. (“You’re welcome.”)

It’s one of those subjects that some people don’t want to talk about and some people really do want to talk about. So you kind of have two extremes.

Right out the gates, you have a practice here in Clearwater, Florida right? (“Yes.”). And you see patients of all walks of life? (“Yes.”)

How much of an impact do you think that mold and environmental triggers play a role in regards to their overall health or potentially some of the physical issues that they may be running into living here in Florida?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

It’s huge. We live in Florida. We have a lot of moisture. We have a lot of humidity and it permeates and gets into everything, and that is what helps mold to thrive and proliferate and stick around and stay such a chronic problem.

And then if that mold is hidden in someone’s home or business, and they start breathing in the toxins, that just adds and complicates their current health or their current health care conditions. 

And it can be a very puzzling condition for a lot of patients because it mimics so many different conditions.

Because a lot of patients are already suffering with fatigue and chronic fatigue and there’s numerous causes of that and mold is one of the things that causes that because it’s a toxic burden.

And in our environment right now, we’ve got hundreds of thousands of other chemical toxins that the chemical companies just are producing and spewing out into the environment constantly and so the human bodies are continuously accumulating toxins.

Now we do have organs in our bodies, we have systems that are designed to detoxify and when they’re becoming overwhelmed because of the toxic load and also because the food that we’re eating in many cases doesn’t have the nutrition that it once did, a hundred years ago.

You know 100 years ago, comparatively, the nutritional level of food was high, the toxic load was relatively low.

Now that ratio is kind of shifting. The toxic level is high and the nutritional level is relatively low.

So people are struggling to get the toxins out of their body and so when toxins accumulate, like toxins from mold, you know these molds we’re talking about, they create toxins.

And another word for toxin is poison, right?

So when these poisons have accumulated in an organ, like the liver, or the kidney, or the nervous system, or the digestive system, that system starts to slow down, it starts to disfunction, it starts to malfunction, and things like cancer occur, things like chronic health problems like allergies, because you’re going to have an allergic reaction to mold and the toxins it carries and it just adds to the problems somebody is already suffering with.

Brandon Faust:

So you talked about cancer as one of the potential issues that it can play a role in. (“From toxicity, yeah.”)

What about neurodegenerative decline is that something that it potentially could contribute to?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Of course! Because these toxins get into the nervous system, and if they’re fat soluble, which means they dissolve in the fats of the body, then they stick around longer.

If they are water soluble, they might be washed out with the fluids of the body being washed out and excreted.

But if they’re fat-soluble they tend to be sticky and stick to the fatty tissues and the myelin sheath of nerves is made out of fat.

Brandon Faust:

You know the point that you’re making is something that I’ve studied a little bit about and maybe you could help in terms of verification on this, but from what I understand, the mycotoxin, right… (“Which is a mold toxin.”), which is a mold toxin.

So myco is the Greek word for mold, right, so the mycotoxin is fat-soluble or a fatty substance, so it does have a natural affinity to the most fatty part of the body which happens to be the brain, so that it does impact the myelin sheathing and the rest of the nervous system. Is that a pretty accurate statement?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

That’s right and a lot of patients come in with brain fog okay, which means that they know that they’re not thinking as clearly and as quickly as they used to.

Their memory’s just not quite as good as it used to be, and so they know there’s something wrong right, and they can’t find out what it is.

And so they come into us and ask us these questions and of course we look for toxins and we very often find them, and mycotoxin is one of the more prevalent ones that people need to be helped with.

They need treatment.

Brandon Faust:

Absolutely. So in terms of a bridge, I mean we have this right here which is from Great Plains Laboratory right? (“Right”). And is this the mycotoxin panel?

Doctor: That’s the urine test for mycotoxins and mold toxins, yeah. So if a patient took the urine test and sent it into the Great Plains Lab, they would get a report describing whether or not they had the toxins, and how much, and which kind.

Brandon Faust:

So that that report is valuable for me, as somebody that is doing, you know, an overall environmental consultation for the home.

Because I can look at the type of mold and the type of mycotoxins that they have exposure to, and it helps me to pinpoint where the actual mold is coming from.

Because some molds are going to grow just due to humidity, some molds won’t grow unless there’s a high moisture content, so with that information it allows me to help pinpoint what’s actually contributing to the mold exposure.

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

It’s a good…, it’s a powerful tool.

Brandon Faust:

Okay, so is this something that you run into fairly often from guys here coming in to see you?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Yes, I’d say we run into it every week. Sure.

Brandon Faust:

What would be your advice, or what would be your direction for somebody that is reading high or whose mycotoxin profile is saying that they’re high in a particular mold.

What would be the steps that you would start with?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Well I would make sure that they get somebody in, an expert, into their dwelling or wherever they think that the mold is whether it be at work or at home, and find out if there’s mold there and do the testing that’s needed and find out.

And also, if they want to take this test, then they’re also going to be able to find out if it’s in their body.

Brandon Faust:

So, in theory, sort of the one-two punch would basically be: The person is suspect that they have mold growth in their home so you would have them potentially take the urine sample from Great Plains Laboratory mycotoxin sampling, we get testing done in their home, potentially testing for mycotoxins right?

Because the mold is going to release two things. It will release spores and it’ll release the mycotoxins so unfortunately, the spore traps [mold tests] or the air samples that most inspectors are taking, are only testing for spores.

They don’t actually test for mycotoxins, right.

So you can get a clean spore trap, but there’s actually mycotoxins in the environment because maybe it’s not sporulating at that moment, maybe that snapshot in time isn’t capturing the spores.

But you could also have, potentially, mold behind the walls that’s releasing that toxic gas that’s even smaller than the spore and it’s making its way into the building envelope.

So doing the mycotoxin test especially for patients or in my case clients that are mold sensitive would probably be a good place to start along with their physical testing, right?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Right, yeah, speaking of physical testing, we also do muscle testing which is a way to evaluate a patient and find out if they have certain types of toxins. So it’s another tool that we can use to evaluate whether or not a patient’s suffering from various toxins.

Brandon Faust:

So you have a number of tools similar to like I have a number of tools, right. Because I’m using not only air samples, potentially mycotoxin samples, there’s a new one that’s actually just coming out on the market where you can do mycotoxin testing in the air, from a company called Air Answers, which is a really…. That would be a huge breakthrough yeah right if inspectors start using that.

We’re also doing thermal imaging inspections, we’re doing moisture mapping and using different meters to determine if there’s water getting into the environment, what’s the humidity level of the home.

Brandon Faust:

So we do that as part of our Environmental Consultation.

But it seems to me like you’re also doing a number of different tests to pinpoint what might be contributing to the non-optimum physical conditions that they’re running into.

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Sure, we take an extensive history, we have the patient fill out a questionnaire right, we do a physical exam, we do a muscle testing exam, and as a result of all this data, we put it together and it creates a picture and gives us a good idea what the patient’s up against.

Brandon Faust:

It makes sense. There’s a similar approach to diagnosing the patient as there is for me diagnosing the home.

So from everything you’re, saying mold is something that we pretty much should be concerned about or something that we should be looking at?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:


Brandon Faust:

Do you have any sort of anecdotes in regards to recoveries or differences that you’ve seen in patients that have had it handled?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Well, I can’t think of a specific patient off the top of my head, but generally speaking if our patients make the changes that we ask them to and in some cases, yeah, they do actually have to leave their home or their apartment (“Makes sense, yeah.”), yeah, and if mold is the problem in these cases, then when they do leave then, they get better or they start beginning to get better, in addition to what we’re doing for them:

  • We’re fixing their diet,
  • We’re eliminating the foods that are causing problems with them,
  • We’re giving them specific supplements to rebuild and repair the damaged organs,
  • We’re giving specific supplements to help their bodies detox, to get the toxins flushed out and excreted.

So, yeah, when everything works correctly, when we have all these things in place, the patients get better, but in some way shape or form if mold is part of the picture, then it has to be eliminated.

And that has to be done by either the person physically leaving the premises for a while, and if you’re doing some sort of repair, or construction, or, what’s the term you use? (“Remediation”). If you do remediation, you probably sometimes have the people leave their house for a period of time.

Brandon Faust:

Depending on the severity of it, and also how sensitive the client is, because there’s some clients that are more sensitive than others. (“Exactly.”)

I think it’s about 25 to 30 percent of the population that doesn’t detox at the same level as other individuals, so really it depends on each person.

But as soon as you start opening stuff up you’re going to agitate it. (“Yeah, it just starts being released in the air and then that could be a problem.”)

And mold, being a living, breathing organism, when it feels like it’s under attack or it’s being agitated, will actually take actions to defend itself.

So it will release more spores for hyper-replication, and it will also release the gas to defend itself. (“Nasty little critters.”)

It definitely wants to, it wants to survive.

So that’s why when we start the process, it’s actually pretty important that the patients (or in our case the clients, in your case the patients) are protected and not in the middle of a battleground at that point in time.

From what I’m getting, one of the first steps would be to have a company like Mold Solutions USA come in and make sure that the place is free and clear of contamination, free and clear of mold, if they’re on a path of trying to detox and recover from mold exposure, mold toxicity?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Exactly. Absolutely. Yeah, yeah, you’ve got to find out if it’s there, and if it is, you got to get it out of there and fix the dwelling.”

Brandon Faust:

Okay great. Do you have any particular questions for me in terms of our process and what we do?

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC:

Well, I’ve heard that there is a tool [where] you can take a sample like by wiping a surface whether it be on a countertop or the inside of a ductwork or some place, and find out if there is a mold present or a mycotoxin, or spores present?

Brandon Faust:

Correct. There’s a number of different sampling procedures that you can take but ultimately you have the air samples, and you have direct samples (like swab samples or tape lifts), but the more sensitive sample is a mycotoxin sample and you actually do—there’s a swiffer—and Real Time Labs is one of the companies that does it.

There’s a few different ones that are actually now doing mycotoxin testing, and you take that dust sample and you send it in, and they’ll give you an idea of the type of molds that are present.

With that, there is another company which I mentioned, Air Answers, which was actually was born with people being more concerned about Covid floating around, the virus floating around.

But, ultimately, they found out that they actually are detecting ultra fine particles that like mycotoxins.

So to me this is something that could potentially be revolutionary for the remediation industry and being able to help people that are sensitive.

Because before that there was no really no real way of knowing if there was mycotoxins in the air. It was only through the dust. So this would be a great breakthrough. (“Yeah, sounds like it.”)

And you know I have a number of different inspectors I work with because I specialize in the remediation right end of it I do you know environmental consultations where I’ll go and take a look at the scene and then give a client a direction in regards to, “Hey look this is what who I think would be the best for this part of the project and we can handle this part of the project or hey look you don’t need our services at all. Maybe you might need this type of person.”

But it’s important that you’re getting good direction and that you’re also finding guys that do a competent job, that you know you can trust, they’re going to shoot you straight, you know.

So I do have inspectors that are doing that as well, the mycotoxin testing. And believe it or not we actually have some of the best in the country in the area right for not only remediation, but also for the testing end of it. (“Okay.”)

I think it has to do with the fact that we have such a humid climate and it is so common that it does kind of give us a bit more of an opportunity.

The more often you do something, if you have good habits, the better you get at that particular process you know or job.

So I think that pretty much covers it. I really do appreciate you taking the time talking to us about mold, mycotoxins, and the type of impact that it can have on an individual.

Dr. Kevin Granger, DC: I’m happy to do it. Happy to be here. Thank you.

Brandon Faust: Thank you, Doctor Granger.

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