You’re Not Crazy, Toxic Mold Exposure Is Poisoning Your Brain
Brian Karr, the co-founder of We Inspect, helps us understand mold, mycotoxins, and even bacterial toxins that exist in your homes, explaining what’s there, why it’s important—even down to the genetic level—and what it’s doing to you.
In this Episode of The Human Upgrade™...
If you have all sorts of unexplained health problems in your home, where you work, or where you go to school, symptoms can be very different. One person’s gaining fat, another person’s always tired, other people have dark circles, emotional irregularity, sudden weight gain, onset of allergies that no one can explain, on and on.
In the episode today, you learn the smarter, not harder, ways to deal with toxic mold exposure in your environment from one of the world’s leading experts on the matter.
Our guest is Brian Karr. He’s a second-generation indoor environmental consultant and he works with hypersensitive individuals with complex medical conditions. He’s the co-founder of We Inspect, an environmental testing company which works to help people understand mold, mycotoxins, and even bacterial toxins that exist in your homes. He takes time to explain what’s (usually) there, why it’s important—even down to the genetic level—and what it’s doing to you.
Go back to the definition of biohacking… The art and science of changing the environment around you and inside of you so that you have full control of your own biology. If your environment is moldy and has biotoxins, maybe you don’t have control of your biology—the mold does.
Brian’s become a go-to guy for medical doctors across the country, helping more than 5,000 people as sensitive as I used to be to create healthier living environments. You’re going to learn a lot in this episode, even if you’re saying… Well, I don’t have a mold problem. You’d be very surprised.
“The secret to finding hidden mold is to not look for mold at all.”
00:17:00 — Meeting the Mold (and Brian) Head On
- Dave’s younger years battling his own health
- The xenoestrogen that took over his life
- Brian Karr’s background and introduction
- We Inspect environmental testing company
- Moldy Movie: moldymovie.com
- How Brian married into the business and fell in love
- Building an infrastructure to serve the country
- Betsy Maldonado’s story
00:15:02 — We Inspect: Spotlighting Innovation & Access
- We Inspect’s process—what’s unique and special?
- Most mold is hidden out of plain sight
- Perils of dry mold: more mobile than wet, living mold
- The importance of knowing what to look for
- Prioritizing innovation and accessibility
- Training program: Mold Finders Method
- Mobile app: We Inspect Together
- Pitfalls of other, commercially driven services
00:29:18 — Dealing With Mold in Our Day to Day Lives
- Brian’s game plan for getting out of a moldy lease
- Does spraying bleach work?
- Why Dave avoids AirBnbs
- Homebiotic: homebiotic.com
- Balancing removal options
- Three easy steps to take in your home
- Understanding the Human Cloud Effect
- Gaps in capability of air testing
- Effectiveness of dust sampling
- Find Out If Your Home Is Making You Sick
- 100M structures in the US have meaningful mold problems
00:50:04 — Looking Ahead At Life With Less Mold
- 90% of structures are exposed to toxic mold
- Danger Coffee: dangercoffee.com
- What is truly pure?
- Balance of bacteria vs. mold in caves
- Added susceptibility of women and children
- 40% of population impacted by mold exposure
- Story time: Dave’s mold-triggered PANDAS
- We Inspect environmental testing company
- The Dust Test: thedusttest.com
Enjoy the show!
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- Key Notes
[00:00:00] Dave: You are listening to the Human Upgrade with Dave Asprey. I’m going through some of these episodes, and I’m teaching you some of the things that are in my new book, Smarter Not Harder. And the idea there is that you can upgrade yourself, and there are things that we know work, like, I don’t know, exercise.
So you could say, I’m going to go do 90 minutes a day of exercise, and I know I’m going to get results. And the reality is you probably will get some results, but it might take a huge amount of time. In my case, it was 702 hours of exercise over 18 months. That’s about a third of a full-time job for a year in the gym, sweating.
Now, you think I would’ve been chiseled and all, but I wasn’t. I actually still had a 46-inch waist and still weighed 300 pounds, and it’s one of the things that made me a biohacker today because I’m on a low-fat, low-calorie, at the time, semi-vegetarian diet, and just hungry and tired all the time and still going to the gym with all of my effort.
What I didn’t know was that I was also being exposed to a xenoestrogen. This is an environmental estrogen, a 1,000 times stronger than human estrogen. Human estrogen makes you fat. You need some of it. Men and women both need it, but you need the right levels. You also need testosterone. My testosterone levels were at 100. They were less than my mom’s testosterone, and we actually have her lab data and my lab data from the same time.
So is it any wonder that I looked androgynous and 300 pounds and still have stretch marks from that time, even though today I’m 7.9% body fat as measured at Upgrade Labs? So what was going on with these xenoestrogens? Was I licking cash register receipts? Was I blending them into my smoothies? Was it my polyester sports bras, which, by the way, do have a lot of BPA in them? Although, fortunately, that’s not something I’ve ever had to wear. But no, it was toxic mold. And toxic mold makes that and a whole bunch of other stuff.
And in the episode today, I want to talk about a smarter, not harder, way to deal with what’s going on if you have all sorts of unexplained problems in your home, or where you work, or where you’re going to school. They can be very different. One person’s fat, another person’s always tired, other people have dark circles, other people have emotional irregularity and bursts of anger that are out of character, sudden weight gain, onset of allergies that no one can explain. I had all these things before I was 16 even. So it turns out toxic mold is a uniting element in that.
So our guest today is Brian Karr. He’s a second generation indoor environmental consultant, and he works with hypersensitive individuals with complex medical conditions. That was me. And I’m actually not hypersensitive to mold the way I used to be. And I know this because I spent several months staying, uh, in a place that had high toxic mold levels, and I didn’t have any reactivity.
It wasn’t good for me, but I didn’t have the immediate kryptonite like, I need to take a nap. My brain turned off. A full system shutdown feeling that I’ve had for almost my entire life when I walk into a moldy building. I smell it, but it didn’t wreck my nervous system. So this is because of some of the resilience practices that I’ve been teaching.
But the guy who helped me understand what was going on is Brian, and he’s the co-founder of We Inspect, which is an environmental testing company who works to help people understand mold mycotoxins and even bacterial toxins that exist in your homes, what’s there, even down to the genetic level, and what it’s doing to you.
Go back to the definition of biohacking when I wrote it, that very first little steampunk-looking PowerPoint slide that I turned into an infographic, is the art and science of changing the environment around you and inside of you so that you have full control of your own biology. If your environment is moldy and has biotoxins, then maybe you don’t have control of your biology. The mold does because it’s hijacking your system.
Brian’s become just the go-to guy for a lot of medical doctors across the country. He’s helped more than 5,000 people as sensitive as I used to be to create healthier living environments. And you’re going to learn a lot in this episode even if you’re saying, well, I don’t have a mold problem. You’d be surprised. Because you know that marital problem you might have, that can be mold because one of you can have very different symptoms than the other.
If you’ve ever had a chance to go to moldymovie.com, this is a documentary I shot a couple of years ago, actually, probably five years ago, and it’s free. It’s a gift. And I interview a dozen people affected by toxic mold and a dozen top experts, medical doctors across the country in order to really show this is real. And my favorite interview is with a couple. They’re both medical doctors, and he’s sitting there going, I never felt anything, but it’s real.
And his wife, who’s also a medical doctor, she’s like, hey, I thought I had hypochondria because I had too many symptoms. It must be in my head, except my temperature was too high. So I biopsied every organ in my body. They punctured her liver to see what was wrong. And what was wrong is their house had mold. And so that conversation, no medical doctor, even the most skeptical one, can see that conversation and go, this is all in your head. It’s not in your head. And Brian’s probably the top guy to say, not only is it not in your head, it’s in your home. Here’s exactly where. So Brian, welcome to the show.
[00:05:55] Brian: Thank you for having me. What an intro. I love it. I’m just honored to have been able to work with you, and obviously, be able to chat with you here and try to make this hidden thing that nobody can really put their finger on a little more easy to understand because I think that’s a big problem with it.
[00:06:13] Dave: Tell me about the history of We Inspect.
[00:06:18] Brian: So it actually starts before We Inspect. So we’re a family company. I married into the family. My father-in-law has a twin brother. When they were younger, about 20 years ago, they started mold inspection businesses. They didn’t do it because they understood what we’re going to talk about today yet. They did it because there was an opportunity, and they thought that it was interesting, and they were into that stuff.
And so they started these companies, and after a while, they kept getting the same questions from their clients, and they kept seeing the same types of things, which is a lot of what you just described. We’re sick. My doctors don’t believe me. I feel like there’s something here, but I’m not totally sure. My husband’s fine, but I’m not. There’s symptoms all across the board. And then they started asking health questions, and they didn’t know the answers to those yet.
And so they started going to– There are large medical conferences now that focus on environmental health. There wasn’t a lot 15 years ago. There wasn’t as much as there is now, but they started going to these things, and they would go in and be like 200, 300 doctors, all functional health doctors, this sort of thing. And everybody networks at these things.
So the doctors go up to them like, oh, hey, where do you guys practice? Where’s your office? All this stuff, like, oh, we’re not doctors. Everybody’s just shocked. They’re like, well, what are you doing here? And so they explained what they did, and the doctors immediately were like, oh my gosh, we need somebody like you to help us put this piece together.
The more progressive functional medicine community was aware of this stuff. They didn’t have somebody in the field that can go into the homes and put two and two together. And the practitioners knew that if the exposure kept happening, that their patients weren’t really going to get better. And it really just opened the door for what is out there and really how we can make our impact in the world.
Well, fast forward, years off of that, we are now speaking at these conferences, and we’re educating the doctors, and we’re educating our industry, and we’re doing a lot of that. And with that came a lot of demand and referrals from all over the country, and sometimes even beyond the country, in many cases. And then that’s where We Inspect took hold.
So myself and my co-founder Corey, who is my cousin, who’s the son of one of the twin brothers, all of it together, we were the younger generation. We knew how technology worked. We knew all this stuff, but we’ve got to figure out a way to not just say, we’re only in LA and New York, and if you live in the middle of the country, it sucks to be you. That’s not fair. It shouldn’t be like that. That’s not the time that we live in.
And it took a few years. It took a lot of money, and investment, and building infrastructure, and building systems and process and get to where we are now. We work all over the country. All of our inspectors are trained directly by me and our team, and we are able to go anywhere, really at any time.
And then beyond this, the future, where we’re going next is we are turning all of that into a mobile application that will make things even more accessible for people to where we don’t even have to travel to your house. We’re in beta on that right now. I’m sure by the time this airs, it’s going to be out. So I’m really excited for where it’s going to go and just the amount of people that we’re going to be able to help and guide.
[00:09:29] Dave: That’s fantastic. What was uh, Betsy’s role in the foundation of the company? There’s a really cool story there that I didn’t even know about until you told me at my house.
[00:09:40] Brian: Betsy works with us. She runs our health partnership division. So we actually have an entire group that the whole focus of this group is to provide resources, and education, and guidance to the medical community to help them connect the dots. Betsy had her own health issues that were exacerbated by mold exposure. And there’s a lot of people that are like this. There’s a lot of doctors that are like this too.
The people that are the most forefront people in this industry, I’m one that’s included, had their own health issues with mold, and were like, holy crap, what am I doing in the world? Because whatever I’m doing isn’t as important as figuring this out. And then people find their calling off of this, and you started biohacking, we moved into mold inspection, all these different things. Doctors start practicing, and that’s really how change has started to happen in this world.
And she had her own health issues. She was impacted by mold. She was emailing with you way back, early in the days, before you were who we know you are now asking for tips, and advice, and help because she read your book and did different things, and you were gracious enough to respond, which is pretty amazing.
[00:10:48] Dave: This was before I wrote a book. It’s funny. Back in, this must be like the late ’90s, I was running this anti-aging nonprofit group right outside Stanford University, and I was learning what is now biohacking from people in their 80s, and I’m in my mid-20s. And it was such an opportunity. And I started just talking locally. I gave the first big talk about toxic mold and all the different things it did, and how it got into the body, and how it was in food, and how it was in our environments, and then Betsy started emailing me.
And people who have mold, or people who know people with mold who are listening are like, oh, I get this. But when you have mold, everything feels 10 to a 100 times harder than it really is. And it’s not that you’re weak. It’s not that there’s something wrong with you. Actually, there is something wrong with you. You’re being poisoned. But it’s not a moral failing. It’s literally everything looks like Everest, and you forget things constantly.
So when you’re working with a mold patient or someone who’s been affected, you can tell them something, and 20 seconds later, they can’t remember it, and then they get mad at you because they can’t remember it. So Betsy might have been like that, and she’d email me, and I would just respond. Anytime I could help someone with mold, to this day, I still do. In fact just, uh, recently a journalist from a big publication broke down in tears on camera. I’m like, oh no, you’re not crazy. You have mold. And we went through it.
So I get joy from helping people not go through what I went through and she was one of those. And I’d forgotten about it. And then when you reached out, and Betsy reached out and sent me this beautiful email going, do you remember I was that crazy mold person? I’m like, which one? All mold people get crazy. And I go, yeah, I actually remember this exchange. And so the fact that she’s working with you 20 years later on helping thousands of people with mold, that actually makes me really happy. So that’s just a neat We Inspect story.
[00:12:37] Brian: It’s really cool, and your story shows people that you can heal from this stuff. But I think a lot of times, when they see somebody like Dave Asprey who has healed from this, and he has all the connections that he has, and he has all the toys and the tools and stuff, people start to think, oh, I don’t have access to all that stuff. It can happen to him because he has access to this stuff.
Betsy didn’t have access to any of that stuff. And a lot of our clients don’t have access to any of that stuff, and they can still get there. And so that little micro story there is to just let people understand that it’s not just you know, the lucky people that happen to know somebody here or there. Anybody can do this. You just need a little guidance.
[00:13:22] Dave: Yeah. A little guidance can go a long way. But the most important thing that I think we can share with people in this episode is you are not crazy if you feel like you’re hungover all the time and if you feel like you can’t control your emotions and that you keep getting fatter for no reason, and you just moved, or, that’s weird. Yeah, there was that water leak, but the plumber fixed it. Sometimes that’s all it takes.
One of the stories that was really formative for me that really brought this out, I already knew about mold, and the place where I was staying in Northern California, the dishwasher wasn’t working, so we had it replaced. And the guy said, oh, there’s been a water leak behind the dishwasher. It looks like it’s for years. And they put in the new one, and my dogs stopped eating. And then it was like my gut lining shed. I’m like, oh my God, I feel like I ate Taco Bell, but I didn’t go to Taco Bell.
And then I had this worst brain fog, and no amount of coffee, all the normal things– it was like something went sideways. And it took me a week or two to figure out it was mold. And then instead of moving, even if it’s– you have to put on your credit card. You just have to get out so your brain can work again. I tried living there for six weeks while they remedied because I couldn’t think and I knew better.
And this is why you need almost like a coach or a support system, and you need data. And when you came and said, hey, Dave, here’s what we’re doing at We Inspect, I was blown away.
So tell me about the We Inspect process. I know because you did it for me just as an experiment on a place where I was temporarily staying for a little while. And what are you looking at, and what’s different versus just going to the hardware store and buying a mold test?
[00:15:01] Brian: Yeah. It’s a lot to unpack in that one question. Um, I mean, Let’s start at the top because I think starting at what people are more used to seeing and then comparing to that helps show it a little bit. So when people think I have a mold issue, the immediate thing they think is all the pictures you’ve seen in commercials and online where there’s black mold covering all of your walls, and it’s totally visible everywhere, and you’re like, oh, I obviously have a mold problem. That is not how it works.
It literally works like that 5% of the time in really small places that you still have to dig stuff out of the way to see stuff like that. In all the years I’ve done this, I can remember the house, there has been one house in the 10, however many years I’ve done this, where I walked in and I saw that. That’s it. And that house, they just had to knock that whole thing down. That’s how bad that house was because it was everywhere. But that is not normal. So if your expectation is, well, I don’t see mold anywhere, so I don’t have a mold problem, I’m definitively telling you that is not an indicator of whether or not you have a mold problem or not.
[00:16:08] Dave: So having mold in your house doesn’t mean you have a mold problem or not?
[00:16:11] Brian: Seeing the mold in your house doesn’t mean you don’t have a mold problem.
[00:16:16] Dave: Hold on, that was a double negative.
[00:16:19] Brian: From me?
[00:16:19] Dave: Does that me you don’t have–
[00:16:21] Brian: Yeah, yeah. It doesn’t mean that there’s not a mold problem if you don’t see it.
[00:16:25] Dave: Wait, that’s a triple negative. All right. Here’s what you’re saying. You won’t always see mold in your house. You can have a mold problem that you cannot see. In fact, that’s exceptionally common. But it’s inside the AC. It’s inside the duct work. It’s behind a baseboard where you can’t see it. But if you had the right eyeballs like you do, you walk through, and you’re like, oh look, there’s mold there.
I’m like, I don’t see anything. Like, yeah, but you see how the paint is slightly bubbled on the baseboard? That means this room has sat in water at some point and no one fixed it. I’m like, God, you’re right. And then you take a moisture meter with little pins and you stick it into the wall, and like, oh, that’s 90% wet inside the dry wall. Then it’s like Neo from The Matrix when he looks around and it’s all zeros and ones. I felt like you were that way in the house.
[00:17:04] Brian: I’ve actually described how I feel in a house just like that actually. It’s funny you say that. I guess the point that I’m trying to get to, most mold is hidden. You will not see it. So if your indicator is I walked into my house, I don’t see any mold, that’s not a real indicator of if there’s a mold problem or not. So then the question comes, well, that’s cool, Brian. So then how do you know if you have problems? And this is the big thing, and I say this all the time, the secret to finding hidden mold is to not look for mold at all.
[00:17:33] Dave: Oh, what do you look for?
[00:17:34] Brian: The secret to finding hidden mold is to look for signs of water damage, because that’s something the human eye can see. You and I can’t see mold until it’s way out of control and it’s beyond. We can see, you just described bubbling paint in a baseboard, a little cracking paint on a wall, a floor that’s warped. If you remember, in your main area, there’s a little warp floor that was happening in there.
These are all signs that water or moisture has gotten into something. And then the big kicker on this, just to clarify, it does not even have to be wet right now. It could have been wet 15 years ago. Mold could have grown. It could have naturally dried. Because stuff air-dries, it could have naturally dried. Mold is like a plant. If you walk outside, or a flower, or whatever, you got your garden outside, and you water the garden, and the flowers grow, and they look all great, and you say, no, I’m going to stop watering my grass.
I’m going to stop watering the plants. I’m just going to stop watering everything. You walk outside two weeks later, it’s not that you just have a bare and empty backyard anymore. It’s not like it all just ripped itself out on a search for new water. That’s not what it did. You walk outside, and everything looks dead. It’s yellow grass. It’s flowers that have wilted over. That’s what it is. And that’s what happens when mold grows. It’s no different than a plant or a flower that grows.
And so when you have these historical areas in a house where there was– we had a flood five years ago in the basement, and we just put some fans on it and thought it was going to dry out, but that water got into the floor, and it got into the walls, and then it stayed wet for a few weeks, and then it ultimately dried after that. All the mold that grew in there is still there. And what’s worse is that because it is now dried out, it is becoming credibly brittle and fragmented.
[00:19:21] Dave: It’s like dust, right?
[00:19:23] Brian: A little gust of wind comes by, and it breaks it into tiny little pieces, and it moves into our airspace a lot easier. And it’s easier for us to breathe because they’re in tiny pieces that get through our lungs super easy. So these historical issues that get downplayed a lot are actually some of the biggest problems that occur in houses.
And so when we talk about the matrix of walking through the house is me looking through and being like, this looks like there was a water leak here at some point. This looks like the water hit over here. That’s all that it is. And it’s something I’ve taught people on six different continents how to look for on their own, and they find all these problems in their house all of a sudden because they just need to know what to look for.
[00:20:03] Dave: Do you think most people are going to learn, or is this something that you and your team of national inspectors– I know you guys can come in and look at it, but I mean, are you going to have AI stuff on an app where you just take a picture of your room, and it’s like mold, mold, mold, mold, mold? Please tell me the answer is yes.
[00:20:20] Brian: Listen, the dream is there to figure that out, but it’s not something that’s happening tomorrow. I talk about it internally at the company. We have this internal concept that we talk about as PAK. And everything that we do in the company needs to fill this PAK. And the PAK is P, A and K, price, access, knowledge. Those are the three things.
The only reason that somebody doesn’t make an action that improves their health, it’s too expensive. That’s price. They don’t have access, this is too hard to get it, or knowledge, they just don’t know any better. If everything that we do addresses each one of these three things, there’s literally no reason that every single person in the entire world wouldn’t handle this.
And so we are trying to fill our PAK with every single advancement that we make, every single division that we create. Everything that we do is in an effort to provide more into this PAK so we can ultimately help more people. So it started with us going into the houses and doing it all on our own. To get back to your question, are we just expecting people to learn all this stuff?
The next step was I created a training program. It’s called Mold Finders Method. Literally broke down our entire inspection process to the point where you could do it as if you’re doing paint by numbers as a kid. In every room, there’s only so many places that things typically manifest, and there’s only five signs of hidden water damage. The five signs of hidden mold growth that we just talked about. There’s five types of water damage, and in every room, there’s a majority of places where things manifest.
If you know what to look for and where to look for it, you’ll find it every time. It’s how my team is trained. This is like the method. The Mold Finders Method is how our team is trained to go through every single space in a house. So I turned that into a training program, and we actually taught people how to do this. Did not go into their house. I didn’t look at a single picture of anything they had going on, and people are finding 10, 15, 20 things in their house, and they’re testing them, and they’re finding all these problems because we taught them how to. There’s all this stuff, but that requires work.
You have to learn how to look at this stuff. Here’s a training program. Go learn. What did we talk about earlier? People that are impacted by this, their brains don’t work very well. So to expect them to sit down and go through a course to teach them how to look for what they need to look at is not the most beneficial way to help them. So that was the starting point, which then turned into the app that I talked about at the beginning of the day, which is called We Inspect Together.
And what that does is it takes Mold Finders Method, it sticks it into an app on your phone. You say, hey, Brian, I’ve got two bathrooms, and a bedroom, and a kitchen in my space. Okay, cool, the app pre-populates. Just take pictures. You don’t know what you’re looking for? Just take pictures of these spots like this. The same way if you had a car insurance claim, and they’re like, go around your car and take a picture of your bumper, and take a picture of your fender, and just send it to our guys, and we’ll tell you what it looks like.
[00:23:20] Dave: I like that.
[00:23:21] Brian: That’s what it is. And that’s basically what we are in-testing on now, but like I said, by the time this comes out, it’ll be out fully rolling. But we’ve been developing that for two years. And that’s going to fundamentally change the way that this industry works because people now don’t have to rely on a Yelp mold inspector who doesn’t know what they’re doing, and they’re looking for mold on walls, and they think that something has to be wet right now for there to be a mold problem. They have all the wrong information on how to do this. You don’t need to worry about it. You don’t have to use that anymore. You can have something that’s a lower price point. There’s price. It’s accessible. Anyone with a phone can do it. And knowledge.
[00:23:58] Dave: Wow.
[00:23:58] Brian: All that I do is talk all day about this stuff. And you get access to our consultants and our team. So it’s not like you’re just doing it and hoping. It all filters back to my team of inspectors and consultants that are reviewing all of your information and giving you guidance on protocol and all that stuff. It lumps it all together. It’s going to be incredible. It’s not for everyone. Some people want someone in their house, and that’s always going to be there.
And that’s obviously the core of what we’ve done, and we will do that. But to make the big, big impact on humanity, which we really want to do, it’s not by going into 100 houses a month or 200 houses a month. It’s by having a platform like this that turns that into 1,000 or 2,000 a month where you can help that many people. And that’s where we’re going.
[00:24:43] Dave: I like that a lot because asking mold people to learn how to be mold experts when you’re in a place where your brain can barely learn– by the way, this is affecting tons of students. People think they have ADHD or behavioral problems. They just have brain poisoning from mold. But when you try to do that, it’s not going to work very well.
Let me ask you this. Let’s say I have mold, and there’s a study or a report that just came out that 53% of people in the US right now don’t have $1,000 of available cash. This is not how the country was 20 or 25 years ago. Well, there have been, I’m just going to say, people who are ethically challenged making changes in our alleged governance of the country. And this isn’t a political thing. It’s a government thing, not a party thing, and the behavior of large companies and censorship and all the other stuff.
So if you’re in a situation like that and you’re going, good, God, I just found that there’s four things, which is relatively small number, where there’s water damage in the house. There’s a rotting window sill above my bed that’s probably actively making you sick, but not only are you overwhelmed with mold, that makes everything feel harder than it is, you are actually financially right on the edge, and it feels 10 or 100 times worse than it is because of the mold. Are you going to start dropping into this helpless feeling like, there’s no way I could afford to fix this thing, and I have three other things to fix, and if I don’t, I’m going to die?
[00:26:22] Brian: That’s where a lot of people are.
[00:26:23] Dave: Yeah. So what to do about that? By the way, it’s not that you are going to die. It just feels like you’re going to die. What’s going on is you have mold in your home. It’s a manageable problem. It can be very serious. It makes you feel really bad sometimes, but not always. And it may be why your kids are throwing food at you and they’re much angrier than they should be for being five, or whatever it is. So it matters, but how do you deal with it when you don’t have big dollars to throw at fixing mold that you’ve identified, say with your new low-cost app?
[00:26:53] Brian: Yeah. Well, listen, so that is why we’re trying to figure all this stuff out, two years ago, we had to fly to your house. We had to go through this whole thing. Cost for that is more. Drop cost, drop cost. The training course still exists if people want to get into that at even a lower price point. But the thing is what do you do about it.
If you’re a mold inspector, you’re not really a consultant. You’re someone who’s coming in. We like to call them pump jockeys internally. They just come in, run air sampling pumps, pump, pump, pump. I’m in and out of your house in 30 minutes. I collect my money for my samples, 70% of what’s going to give you false negatives. And we run off and do our thing. We do five of those in a day.
Their business is based on volume of low-cost stuff, churn, churn, churn. The problem is that the data that comes in is wrong all the time. And then because they’re doing five a day, or whatever they’re doing, is a single individual person running all around town like that, they don’t have time to actually talk to you short, even learn what they need to learn to be able to talk to you and give you guidance on what has to go on.
So on our end, we actually have a team that works on every project. So you have the inspector that’s in the house, but then there’s what’s called the lead consultant, which is in our main office, and they’re overseeing the inspector, but they’re the one that does all the communication with the client, all the guidance, all the consulting.
And it’s really, really important to separate out those two roles because if you don’t have enough time to have conversations with people about what the information you’re giving them actually means– and you saw this yourself, when the information comes, it’s like, whoa. There’s a lot happening.
And if you don’t have the guidance to walk you through that, you can start to spiral. And that’s where you start to get to the feelings that you’re talking about. It’s hopeless. There’s nothing I can do. I’m just going to sit here and die. Because you see a report that identifies problems and that immediately is going to elicit a feeling of either fear, or hopelessness, or overwhelm.
And so what we have to do and what we’ve learned working with people that are sensitive is you have to apply context to this stuff. The information that we’re finding in just testing and reports, it’s all just hard data. That’s what it is. This is what the problem is. This is the best way we know how to fix it. It’s not applying priorities. It’s not understanding their living situation. It’s not taking into account their goals and what they’re trying to figure out, or their limitations, or anything like that.
You start getting into these conversations like– and even in renting, there’s all these sub goals. I’m renting, and I just want to get out of the house. I’m renting, but I want a little something for leaving because I feel like all my stuff is contaminated, so I feel like I need to get some compensation before I get out of the house. It’s not just wanting to leave. It’s about getting compensation. Just those two goals change the entire way that you test a space.
So you build a story in terms of your testing around the goals that you have, and then we talk through how do you prioritize, how do you leverage certain things, how do you have conversations with the key players in the game to help you get to where you need to be? I was the first person I saw this happen to before I even knew that mold was a thing.
Mark, who’s my father-in-law, who was with me when we came to check out your place that you were in, he went through my space. I knew nothing about it. My landlord sent in somebody who said everything was fine and was one of these pump jockeys that were there for 30 minutes. Mark comes in. He’s in my house, my 800-square foot apartment, for three hours, finds eight things that are going on, and then asks me, what’s your goal? What do you want to happen here?
[00:30:51] Dave: Wow.
[00:30:51] Brian: And I’m like, what do you mean? Because you don’t think about that stuff when you’re going through it. And he asked the questions, do you want to stay? Do you want to leave? What do you want to do? This or that? And so he helped me get out of the lease. Partially because I was dating his daughter, I think he was a little more hands-on at the time.
[00:31:06] Dave: Yeah, that might help.
[00:31:06] Brian: He might have been with someone else. But he showed me how that piece, the consulting piece, the guidance piece is just as important as the identification of what the problems are in the space. And when you marry the two of those things together, that’s where all the stuff you just talked about starts to diminish because somebody feels like, oh, I have a plan. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Here’s my approach. This is how Brian got out of his three leases in LA and all the death pits in LA that exist out there.
Every single time I moved in LA because there was a water leak and I had to get out and it was a formula of full inspection, test two to three things that I felt really confident were a problem, and then I have a letter written by an attorney that says, here’s how this is going to go down. And that will scare pretty much any landlord into just letting you out of your lease because they don’t care. There’s a framework. I’ve seen it work. Share that with somebody in a consult. Here’s how it works. Here’s what you can do to achieve that goal. That’s one example.
[00:32:04] Dave: This is a major problem, and I’ve heard this probably a 1,000 times over the last 10 years because I did the documentary, because I’ve been pretty public about what mold did to me until I fixed it. It’s part of my biohacking journey. People call and say, my landlord doesn’t believe me. They came in. They sprayed bleach on the mold. By the way, does that work?
[00:32:25] Brian: No.
[00:32:25] Dave: Yeah. Spraying bleach on mold feeds the mold because there’s water in bleach.
[00:32:28] Brian: It pisses it off.
[00:32:30] Dave: It makes more toxins.
[00:32:32] Brian: Yeah.
[00:32:32] Dave: It’s like, hey, let me punch you in the face and then give you a lot of food to recover. It’s like weightlifting for mold. That’s what bleach is. But that’s actually not true if it’s on porcelain or something. That’ll actually kill it. But if it’s on any porous surface, you can’t do it. So the landlord doesn’t want to admit there’s a problem because then they would have to disclose it to someone else.
[00:32:53] Brian: Or they’d have to pay to fix it. Either way, it’s terrible.
[00:32:56] Dave: And it can be very expensive for landlords. And if you’re a landlord, and you’re saying, well, I turned the AC off because no one’s living there for three months, you’ve just created a mold bomb. A house with no environmental circulation, that’s closed off, stuff will grow. That’s how Mother Nature recycles.
So you have to keep at least a minimum level of circulation. There’s all these things that people don’t do. Even Airbnbs, I don’t stay in them very often because most Airbnb owners just turn off the AC until you’re there. And you walk in, you’re like, oh, it smells a bit funky. And you open the windows, and then the next day, you’re like, I don’t really feel that good.
So there are solutions to this, like air filters. There’s Homebiotic, which is a company that I started specifically around this problem. It’s an environmental probiotic you spray around, and it’s a bacteria that lays dormant and waits for mold. And then when mold comes out, it’s the same stuff that competes with mold in the soil, but now it’s in the home.
And it’s not going to fix inside a wall or something, but I know that if I’m in a hotel room that’s on the edge and I miss that around, and I come back a couple of hours later, it’s actually much better. So it’s something that’s very low-cost, $20. And it’s not one of my biggest companies. I barely talk about it, but it’s one of those things that certain mold people just know about, and it’s something that I travel with.
I don’t know what else to do though. I’m going to go back to that, I don’t have $100,000 to spend, and I might be able to move out, which is going to be financially devastating. I have to leave my mattress or maybe just get an airtight mattress cover and keep your mattress, but anything that mold could have settled in isn’t going to be safe unless I clean it. What’s the lowest cost way to get rid of say, mold in a room?
[00:34:35] Brian: It’s interesting because, if you look at it just in a vacuum of, I have mold in a space. How do I get rid of mold in a space? Well, let’s define what getting rid of it means. There’s levels of getting rid of it. Am I getting sourced, or am I just– it needs to be a combination of two variables. What is the health condition of my body, and what is the health condition of my house? And they need to be able to balance.
Now somebody who is really resilient can be exposed to more mold in a space because their body can handle it, and they find an equilibrium. Other people who are incredibly hypersensitive and one hit of it just kills them for two days, their bear is way low. So now that means that your exposure needs to be way low to find your equilibrium until you start building up your resilience.
And then, just like you said, with the space that you were in, you used to be really bad, but now you’re not because you’ve done some work, and you can handle being in a space for a little bit without completely crashing. And so I think as we’re talking about, well, what’s the cheapest, lowest cost, fastest way to handle something in a space? We’ll get there. Where’s your starting point?
Because if we don’t know where your starting point is, I can tell you, listen, the three easiest things you could do right now, get a really good air filter, open up your windows for 10 to 15 minutes a day, and do a super spring cleaning on steroids to get rid of all the subtle dust in your house. You do those three things, and you’re getting rid of a lot of the everyday exposure that’s going on.
[00:36:12] Dave: So this might be the one time you want to wear a mask, is when you’re doing a deep spring cleaning in a home that has had some mold. So you wear maybe an N95 mask. Uh, and I actually owned an N95 mask for that purpose before all of the nonsensical use of masks came up. And you actually really do put that on, and then you clean, or you have a cleaning service do it if you can, but it has to be you lift up everything. You dust all the books, everything.
And magically, you feel way better. And it’s not dust mites necessarily. They could be a problem for you, but it’s these little particles that just happen. So if you see dust building up, especially around the bedroom area, you got to just get it handled. That makes a huge difference.
[00:36:53] Brian: I think to expand on that because I think we didn’t talk about why the dust is an issue.
[00:36:57] Dave: Yeah, let’s do that.
[00:36:58] Brian: Yeah. The reason that having a really thorough dust cleaning can feel a big impact is because what happens when mold spores, or toxins, or even bacterial fragments, all stuff we’re talking about– and it’s not just that stuff, it’s everything. It’s insect fragments. It’s skin fragments off you. All the stuff that floats around our house, airborne pollutants, gravity brings them down, and they settle in dust reservoirs. And dust acts like a giant spider net or spider web basically, and it holds all this stuff.
Well, there’s this thing that’s called the human cloud effect. There’s studies that have been done on this. So the visual of this is if you ever watch Charlie Brown, there was the kid that was super dirty all the time, and he always had this cloud of dirt just surrounding him all the time. That happens to us.
Literally, every step we take in our house, every time we sit down, every time I bump my computer desk, except instead of dirt, gross, smelly dirt, which is what that was supposed to be, it is invisible particles that come up from dust settlement on your counter, on your couch, on your carpet. When you’re walking, it pops up into the air, and it becomes part of your breathing zone, and it creates what’s called a human cloud.
When we’re exposed to mold in a house, the source of mold may be behind a wall. That might be where it’s coming from. The source of the mold that’s hidden behind the wall is not actually what we’re breathing. Our face isn’t behind the wall. It’s creating what we’re breathing. Think like a factory. There’s a factory mile down the road. You’re not walking in the factory, but the smoke coming out of the top of the factory is the air pollution that you breathe when you walk outside.
The air pollution in our houses is the spores and the fragments of stuff that come out of the factories that are hidden behind the walls and in these water damage areas that we talked about. Your direct pathway to exposure therefore is what’s floating around. And a big chunk of that, huge chunk of that is settling in your dust and constantly getting resuspended into your breathing zone through the human cloud effect.
So if you remove the dust that is carrying all of the toxins and the contaminants and stuff, and then you walk around your house, there’s less of that to pop up in your breathing zone, less exposure, and you start feeling better for a short period of time. So that’s the connection between dust and why a dust cleaning can help you get a short term feeling better kind of thing, but it doesn’t mean the factory that’s back there isn’t still creating smoke.
And that’s the part that we have to understand, is if you truly are trying to long-term fix it, you have to bulldoze the factory down. You have to shut the factory down. You fire all the workers, make them stop creating stuff. And if you can do that, then you can do a final clean of the house and the dust cleaning, like we talked about, and then you’re not going to have any more that gets built in anymore.
So we get back to what’s your situation, what’s your health situation, and what’s your goal? I’m sensitive. I’m in a rental, and I’m not trying to be here long-term. Cool. So the two things that you need to do are, one, you got to try to package your testing and your data in a way that’s going to give you leverage to get out of your lease.
And the second thing you need to do is short-term interventions to help reduce your exposure and make you feel better for a shorter period of time before you get out and go somewhere else. That’s the consulting package, basically, in my mind, that I would put together for somebody that I’m talking to there.
[00:40:15] Dave: Okay. I’m liking that.
One of the things that I did run into, I am actually a fan of doing an air test because if it’s in the air, you know you have a problem, but you probably want to stomp around and kick up some dust before you do the air test, so at least you’ll get a reading. But what I did– there was a mistake. Before I stayed in a place for a little while, I ran an air test, and I didn’t find much. I’m like, all right. It’s fine.
But what I should have done was stomp around a bunch, or now, from learning from you and talking with you, if I’m going to stay in a place for a long period of time, I want to do a swab test to find the dust, what’s in the dust, because that’s such a problem, and I want to do an air test and have both. Is that a good approach?
[00:41:04] Brian: Honestly, I’d leave out the air test. I mean, you probably saw this when we were in your place too. We don’t do air samples in the middle of rooms anywhere.
[00:41:13] Dave: Interesting.
[00:41:14] Brian: There wasn’t one that we did in the middle of an open space anywhere because I know, and the reason I know this is because I did this in a study for a year on every house that I went into, 70% of the time, an air test is going to give you a false negative when there’s a hidden mold source in a wall, or under a cabinet, or under the floor three feet away, because it just can’t pick it up because there’s too many variables when you start thinking about air currents and this and that and all that stuff that’s moving around. Air sampling, the further away you get from the source, the less and less and less effective it gets.
So the only way that we really do air testing, we actually call it source identification testing, it’s to know where the source is. So what’s an example of that? I look at a wall, and I see the paint is chipping, and there’s bubbling on the baseboard like that, but there’s no mold on the front of the wall, so you can’t swab the front of the wall. There’s nothing there. Nothing’s going to come on a swab.
So how do I know if there’s mold behind the wall? Because the water damage is the clue and the red flag that tells me there might be something here, we do what’s called a cavity air test. Put a little hole in the wall, put a tube through the hole, connect the tube to the air sampling pump. Now I’m collecting air from behind the wall instead of random air floating around five feet, 10 feet away from it, and I get right on top of where I think the problem is.
And if I see there’s something there, I know there’s a problem right here. It’s right here. I found it. It’s right here. This is where it starts. And if you get in there and there’s nothing that comes up on the sample, you say, okay, I sampled an area where the water damage was most significant. We know that water plus organic material equals mold. Okay. That was my reason for testing it.
I get in there. Sample says there’s nothing there. I feel pretty confident that there’s not a big problem back there, if any. So we leave that alone now as we’re starting to go through lab results, and remediation plans, and protocols and what that looks like. But to get back to your question, if you’re first getting into a space and you’re just like, I just want to know if this place has a problem, how significant is it if it is?
I can tell where it’s coming from. It’s going to let you know if there’s something going on here. You do what’s called a dust test, and it’s literally a dust collection of the dust in the house. And it’s the same reason that we talked about. All this stuff settles down into the dust, and the dust acts like a spider web and grabs all of it.
In addition to just the home science of how things settle and all that, the other reason that dust sampling is way more effective than air testing is because air sampling can only look for what’s called a spore. So if anyone’s familiar with mold that’s listening to this, they’ve probably heard of mold spores. That’s probably what they’ve heard of.
[00:43:55] Dave: Right.
[00:43:56] Brian: So think of that like, um, when you’re a kid, and you pull up the flower and you blow on it, and the little things fly off.
[00:44:01] Dave: You blow on sister’s face, and then she starts crying, then she punches you in the face, and then you realize that that’s your entire relationship with your sister until the end of your life because of that one dandelion. Like that, you mean?
[00:44:13] Brian: Well, I don’t have a sister, so I can’t speak to that.
[00:44:19] Dave: Just messing with you. So dark, Brian, jeez.
[00:44:22] Brian: I know for real. Sorry, guys. Listen, this is going a whole other way. The last half of this is all relationships, health.
[00:44:29] Dave: Yes, it is.
[00:44:29] Brian: Now, think of that as the spore that comes off. That’s a spore that floats around. But what if the entire– let’s use a tree. It’s easier to visualize. The leaves on the tree are the spores. In the fall, leaves come off. Those are the spores from your colony. But you still have the entire tree. The tree has a trunk. It has roots. It has branches. It has bark. It has all this other stuff that’s on there.
None of that gets identified in a regular air sample. But in a dust sample, it can get all the way down to a piece of bark that happened to break off of that colony that has the same DNA signature as that mold type, and it can identify that within there. And why is that important? Because that is the true load of what you’re being exposed to.
Our body, when we breathe something in, doesn’t look at it and say, oh, it’s a spore, so I don’t like this, but anything else is fine. It breathes in whatever it breathes in. And if it’s any part of a mold colony, or even the toxins, or whatever, it triggers the immune response. It’s something that should not be in our body.
And so one of the studies that are out there says that the amount of fragment, so think the little piece of bark that broke off the tree as compared to the leaf that fell off the tree. The amount of fragments in a home can be up to 500 times the amount of spores that are there because they break off like that.
So our true understanding of exposure is better identified in a dust sample because you take out the variable of airflow patterns and all this stuff. You just go straight where you know it would be located, which is in the dust. Grab the dust. Now you know you’ve got it if it’s there, and the analysis on it is way more in depth, and it gets all the way to the species of mold.
So let’s say you’re somebody who knows that you have mold toxicity, and you’ve done a urine mycotoxin test, and you’ve got ultra toxin A, or you’ve got, fill in the blank of whatever toxin you have. You can now correlate that directly to the mold species that are in the house. And just from that, you could start getting understandings of what your environment means for your space.
But if you’re screening a new place, you do that– there’s a test that’s called The Dust Test, which is one of my companies, thedusttest.com. And what we did in that test is, in addition to just telling you what molds are present, the other thing that we did is we went back over three years of all of the inspections that we did and we figured out where your home would rank on the scale of every house that we’ve ever been into over that three-year period, and give you more understandings of how contextually your space would relate to that in terms of the percentile that you would fall into.
Because if somebody’s doing it for that reason, they’re like, I want to know if this space is a place that I should even move into, or is it too far gone, or I should look for another one, the only way you know that is with context. And so again, just like I said earlier, I could give you all the data, but if you’re not getting consulting, then there’s no context in what do you do.
The same with these lab tests. I mean, even human lab tests. Here’s all these numbers, what the hell does this mean? It’s the same thing. Without context, it doesn’t mean anything. It can actually be more scary than not scary without an understanding of what’s normal and what’s not normal and all that stuff.
So what we did is I took the last three years of inspection data, what we found in the homes, all that stuff, and integrated it into the report that comes out with the dust test. So now when you get a result from the dust test, you get all the actual raw lab stuff like you normally would with any dust test, but the other thing that you’re getting is the context. Where does my house rank on the scale on a percentile basis of all the homes we did?
And then the third thing we lumped into this, because again, consulting and context is key in all of this, free phone call with our team afterwards. You tie it in directly into the dust test report. There’s a link in there. You do it. We have your information up in front of us, and you actually get a consult with the people that know how to read these things on what it means for you.
And then what happens in that talk? The same things we said. Well, what are your goals? What are you looking for? Where’d you come from? What are you wanting to do? Based on all of this information, here’s the advice we would give you. None of that exists in the environmental world. There are some health lab companies that do stuff like that, but our side of it, nobody does this stuff, and it’s so important. It’s so important.
[00:48:54] Dave: It really is important, and it’s also– It’s hard to put words to it. That’s why there’s the documentary, that’s why I keep mentioning it just a little bit here and there in the world of biohacking, because the data I had from recording the movie was that about 100 million structures in the US have meaningful mold problems.
And it’s concentrated in schools, including colleges, college dormitories, libraries. Anything government funded, they just don’t do maintenance on. And so it just feels like your kids are healthy over the summer. Maybe it’s the sunshine. It probably is, but maybe it’s that when they go back into that classroom where the duct work hasn’t been cleaned in 30 years, and they can smell it’s a bit funky, and you can see stains on the ceiling tiles. We’ve got to not do that to our kids and our teachers. So things like that are happening all over the place.
What is the number or percentage of homes and offices that have a mold problem that you would estimate in the US today?
[00:50:00] Brian: So many. So EPA says about 50%. It’s wildly underrated. I mean, just–
[00:50:04] Dave: The EPA? Are they still working? Because I haven’t seen any results from what they’re doing for the last 50 years. So, uh, sorry, guys. You’re allowing glyphosate that’s never been tested on any bug except for honeybees, that’s causing seizures in earthworms, the things at the base of the food web. So I guess the EPA estimates 50%, so that’s wrong.
[00:50:25] Brian: I would tell you from the homes that I’ve been into, it’s 90. It’s very close to 90. I can actually count on one hand, all the years I’ve done this, five places that I’ve walked into, I didn’t really find anything in there. That’s it.
[00:50:41] Dave: I believe that. Now, some meaningful percentage of people are going, well, wait a minute. If you find something everywhere and everyone isn’t sick, therefore you’re oversensitive and you’re measuring things to an extreme level of purity. Even when I’m talking about mold-free coffee, which is something I created, and now I’m on Danger Coffee, which is my new brand that also includes minerals and a new level of testing, the definition of free, if you’re measuring parts per trillion, which no one does, is it possible there’s one molecule of mold in an entire shipping container of coffee? It’s not only possible, it’s guaranteed.
So it’s like, how pure is your water? Well, if you had really, truly pure water, like they use for semiconductor manufacturing, you can’t drink it. You put one drop on your tongue, and it messes with your cell integrity because it’s so pure. So what we want is we want a home that is free of the really toxic stuff. And some molds are worse than others. And we want a home with generally low levels, but not zero, right?
[00:51:52] Brian: Yeah. Zero doesn’t exist. There’s a few of these. You said one, like, well, if there’s mold everywhere, and not everybody is sick– not everybody has cancer, not everybody has this. Does that mean it’s not real? No, it doesn’t mean it’s not real. It just means that everybody’s body is different. Their exposures are different. Their genetic makeup is different. Their upbringing was different, and where they lived– there’s so many variables in somebody. Not everybody in the world got COVID. Not everybody’s going to get every single thing that goes on. It just doesn’t work that way.
Another one of the big arguments is, well, mold’s been around forever, and all of a sudden, now we’re getting sick from mold when we used to live in caves? Here’s the first thing, those caves were not airtight sealed. Those caves had big wide open doors in the front, so there was fresh air coming in. So when you were in the parts, air was coming out.
[00:52:44] Dave: Have you ever gone caving?
[00:52:47] Brian: I’ve been once. Yeah, I’ve been once.
[00:52:48] Dave: Okay. So where I grew up in New Mexico, I was in the Gold Prospecting Association of America. And yes, I was the New Mexico gold panning state champion when I was 10or 12
[00:52:58] Brian: Yes. Love it.
[00:52:59] Dave: So I spent literally my weekends as a child exploring 18th century Spanish minds in New Mexico with a group. And I’m sure it was dangerous, but hey, that’s why it’s called Danger Coffee. We had fun, and no one died. Therefore, it was good. Like skiing.
[00:53:13] Brian: Is that the tagline for your coffee? Have fun. Don’t die.
[00:53:16] Dave: It’s actually, who knows what you might do. Because people who are at full power do all sorts of things that might be dangerous but are also the things that make life worth living. So all of those things are full of mold, all those subterranean spaces, including subways, including– I’ve been in lots of caves for meditation and things like that, and way more often than not, there’s moisture.
But this is interesting. There is mold. There is bacterial growth, but it’s usually in balance, and it’s like the soil. So the mold doesn’t make a lot of toxins. And if it does, bacteria eats it. And it’s like a fermenting of a cheese, or it’s like kombucha. And it’s not that harmful, but if you’re hypersensitive, you’ll feel it.
And then there are other times where there’s, say, bats in New Mexico, and there’s 10 feet of guano, which is bat poop that’s built up over the years. That’s full of biotoxins. And if you breathe that stuff, it’s probably not good for you. And the people who’d mine guano would actually get miners lung, which wasn’t from coal. It was from bacteria from bat poop growing in their lungs. Most of that though has been exported to Wuhan, so it’s okay. You weren’t supposed to laugh, man. I can’t believe you laughed. What does that say about you?
[00:54:26] Brian: I’m a terrible person, if you couldn’t tell from this interview so far.
[00:54:31] Dave: First you make fun of my ex-sister, and then–
[00:54:36] Brian: Wait, you unknowingly were trying to talk about my imaginary sister. Don’t put it on me. Don’t put it on me.
[00:54:44] Dave: I mean, you’ve heard the show a lot, but one of my sense of humor, love languages, is putting words in other people’s mouths. So I succeeded.
[00:54:52] Brian: You did. You did. The last thing I like on that point, we can move wherever you want to go after this, is a lot of times people, they feel– Especially because it’s not everybody in the house is typically impacted. Usually, the man in the house is not nearly as impacted as the women or the children.
Maybe you can chime in on this more than me, but from what I’ve gathered, first off, mycotoxins are fat soluble. They want live in fat. Females have genetically more fat than men do, so it makes them a little more susceptible. And then kids, their immune systems are not developed yet.
[00:55:27] Dave: Did you just say that there was a difference between men and women?
[00:55:32] Brian: Yeah, I know if that’s controversial or not, but yes, it’s weird. There’s a difference between us.
[00:55:37] Dave: I can’t comment at this point. I’m so shocked. Yeah. if you have a higher percentage of body fat because you have larger breasts and you’re storing DHA on your hips and inner thighs to feed to your first baby, you might have different biology than someone who doesn’t have that. We have to think about that.
[00:55:56] Brian: Yeah. And listen, just on the toxin front, it lives in the fat. That’s where it goes. The interesting thing, though, is that our brains are primarily fat of everything else that’s going on, and this is why it’s not just a female, male thing. Men get this very significantly too. And a lot of the time, men like us–
[00:56:13] Dave: Or obese men like me. When I weighed 300 pounds, I probably had, I’m guessing 85 pounds of extra body fat. Actually, some of that was probably water from inflammation. Maybe it was 50 pounds, but if you biopsy fat from people, the fat is always full of mycotoxins. We’re storing it there, right?
[00:56:31] Brian: Mm-hmm. I guess the thing to make sure we’re not putting out there for people on this is that they think that it only happens to people who are overweight, because that’s not true.
[00:56:40] Dave: No, it commonly causes weight gain or weight loss. So really big fluctuations in weight, you look at that as a possible cause.
[00:56:49] Brian: Yeah, absolutely.
[00:56:50] Dave: Yeah. It can mess with your thyroid too. It’s a very common cause of Hashimoto’s, which can usually make you gain weight over time.
[00:56:57] Brian: And interesting point there to maybe wrap up the context of this, we’re talking like, oh, you’re just hypersensitive. You’re the weirdo. You’re the whatever. Most people aren’t like you. If you just look at autoimmunity, Lyme disease, PANS and PANDAS, which is pediatric neurological issues, in CIRS, chronic inflammatory response syndrome, which is just a genetic expression of HL aging, if you look at all of that, it’s 130 million people just in the US. That’s 40% of the entire US population is unequivocally impacted by mold exposure. Just those four things. Forget all the rest of the things. Just those four.
[00:57:39] Dave: You said something about PANDAS, and I feel like I need to define that for people in just a short story here. When I was a kid, about five or six, I moved into a new house in Albuquerque. The basement, my bedroom, had wood paneling, and it had been flooded and not remediated. Now, no one knew in the ’80s anything about stuff. And I had all of the weird mold symptoms, just crazy allergies no one could explain, rashes, asthma, behavioral disorders, weight gain, stretch marks started forming from the extreme amounts of estrogens, and just no one could explain it.
But then I started getting strep throat. When you have mold in your environment, the bacteria that naturally lives in your throat, it senses the mold as a competitor, and then it forms biofilms in your throat, and you get strep throat. So chronic strep throat is actually a sign of toxic mold in your environment. I was on antibiotics every month for 15 years because of this, because I would just get sick over and over and over.
When your body has strep bacteria constantly affecting you, strep bacteria express a certain protein on their surface, and when your immune system starts to attack that protein, it can also attack parts of your brain. That’s called PANDAS. And I had very likely– we couldn’t diagnose it back then, but the behavioral pattern of PANDAS is oppositional defiant disorder and other behavioral things. I most certainly had OCD, like facial scrunching, repetitive motions, stimming. I had a stutter, and I had oppositional defiant disorder.
Just look at my report cards from back then. High grades, but please don’t put him in my class again. He’s an asshole kind of comments. And it wasn’t intentional, but this was literally the interactions of toxic mold, strep bacteria, and immune function, and neurology. So this is happening to huge numbers of kids today, and the good news is now we know a lot about how to reverse it, but if you don’t know that PANDAS exists and you or your kids are getting chronic strep, look for mold because that could actually completely change your life.
[00:59:47] Brian: It’s a huge contributor. A lot of the families that we work with, their kids are– it’s not always PANS, PANDAS. There’s other neurologic things. You mentioned they’re more angry more often. Some things that have been described is like, my kid doesn’t seem like them. They seem like a different kid. Their personality has changed, things like that. And another thing is late-onstage bedwetting while we’re in with kids too. If you’re seeing any of these things happening in your kids, look at mold, look at toxins, look into PANS, PANDAS, look at all that stuff.
[01:00:20] Dave: Also extreme nightmares out of nowhere. Crazy, intense, vivid dreams like you’re being attacked, that’s oftentimes toxic mold, and it’s repeatable. People know this, but it’s just not common knowledge yet. So if those are happening, then you look up yesweinspect.com, and you’ve got a ton of resources there for people. And I know, Brian, yes, it’s a business for you, but you’re doing this because you care about it, which is why most businesses get started, unless they’re a copycat business just knocking off someone else, in which case it’s because you’re a parasite on society.
But I know that’s not what you’re doing. What you’re doing is you’re looking to highlight a problem, and you’re choosing a population of people who are hard to deal with because mold people oftentimes have spent all their money because they feel like crap, and they have a hard time making decisions and following through on them because they’re poisoned.
I know because I’ve been there, and you’ve been there. Your family’s been there. You’re doing this because you care. So guys, you want some information on this? It’s yesweinspect.com. You can use code DAVE on whatever you’re offering there. They get a discount on it. But just look at the resources.
And if this is ringing a bell for you, saying, that’s why my kids are acting different, or I’m acting different, or I moved into that new place, or even I bought a car that smelled like a turtle, maybe, just maybe that car is ruining your day and you need to do something about it. And that could include replacing the car even if you don’t want to or drive with the windows down. I have no idea.
But this is just a thing. It’s just like if you eat three plates of French fries and allegedly boneless fried chicken food product, well, if that makes you feel like crap, you stop doing it. If it’s your environment, you change it. And it’s at the very core of biohacking. Thanks for just sharing this knowledge.
And I know because of the work you did, you’re down to what species of bacteria, what species of mold, and getting the data so that we can correlate the data with how we’re feeling, with how much energy we have, how much power we have, and then changing the environment until we’re at full power, so you can be really, really dangerous. I mean, who knows what you might do? You might actually dust so that you stay dangerous.
[01:02:37] Brian: Well, listen, thank you for having me on. I love the opportunity to chat with you as always, and it’s an honor to be on the show. And yeah, for you guys listening, it’s yesweinspect.com/dave. We have a special offer for you guys if you want, but regardless, free phone consults for you as well. So go there. You can do yesweinspect.com/dave. You can click on the button. That’s free phone consultation. If any of this resonated with you, just call us. It’s literally free. There’s no obligation. Just call us, we’ll talk to you.
[01:03:04] Dave: And, guys, I can tell you, Brian cares greatly about this, and so do I. And there are people who start companies with missions, and I’m doing a lot in my advisory work right now to build more ability to help people with real missions and visions, and it’s just because he cares. And it’s because I care that this episode exists. And just having seen him walk around with his neo-like vision, just trying to transfer that power to you. I know now when I’m going to an Airbnb or something, I walk in, and because of just half an hour with you shining a flashlight around, like, oh my God, that’s how you do it. So I feel like I upgraded my ability to spot mold, which was already pretty good.
So I think there’s a lot to learn. And so guys, that’s yesweinspect.com, use code DAVE, and you can also go to moldymovie.com. Watch the documentary for free. It’s an hour. And if you’re dealing with a doctor, or a landlord, or even a spouse, or a parent, or something, who doesn’t believe you, use the documentary to convince others, and then go to yesweinspect.com, call up Brian and his team, do the free consult, see if there’s a way they can help.
And there is a path forward, even if you’re feeling exhausted. And if you’re feeling completely exhausted, there is hope. And the first thing to do is maybe get the air better. Maybe it’s an air filter. Also, Brian, before we go, there’s thedusttest.com, which is a company you work with. So is that useful for people to do at home?
[01:04:37] Brian: Yeah. It’s one of the companies that I own. And that’s what we’re talking about, that screening test. It’s literally like a Swiffer pad. You just wipe the dust in your house, you analyze it, and say, hey, listen, do I have a problem here or not? Sometimes for people, you just want to get a little bit of information and create some validation before you decide that I’m ready to have an inspection or do this or that. This is a great tool for that. It’s very inexpensive in the grand scheme of things, in comparison to inspections and stuff like that.
[01:05:06] Dave: Is that different than the thing you’d buy at the hardware store?
[01:05:09] Brian: A 100% different.
[01:05:10] Dave: Okay, got it. Guys, there’s $20 products out there. You can buy one of those at the hardware store. It’s just not going to tell you what you’ve got. And I’ve gone deep on The Dust Test with Brian when we were chatting in-person. And I think that might be an early thing to do because if you’re thinking maybe this is the problem, but actually, maybe it’s not the problem. Some small percentage of people actually have Lyme disease. Most people who think they have Lyme just have mold that activated Lyme.
Probably 90% of Lyme people are mold people, but maybe you really have Lyme or maybe you have, uh, infection somewhere else in your body. And so if you get fixated on mold and you really go deep on it and you don’t get better, like what the heck? Well, maybe the right thing to do is go to thedust test.com. I didn’t realize that was your company as well. I just know you’ve talked about them. Can you give us a code for that as well?
[01:06:02] Brian: Um, yes.
[01:06:03] Dave: Code DAVE, guys. This is going to give you a personal discount for code DAVE.
[01:06:06] Brian: We’ll say DAVE, and then I’ll figure it out. Yeah.
[01:06:09] Dave: A Public arm twisting. Thank for that. Guys, you can tell we worked out a very big financial affiliate arrangement ahead of time. That’s right. This is just to get you a [crosstalk]. And by There’s the way, this isn’t selling either. It’s my job to curate people who are doing quality good work in the world of biohacking and then to shine a light on them and to help you know this is trustworthy, incredible, and then you decide what you want to do with your life. But if I don’t talk about the stuff that’s out there that works, how are you going to know what works? And how am I going to know what works if I don’t try all this stuff?
So this is something legit. I’m still probably a little bit less harsh about air sampling. For my home, I’d want to have an air sample, and I’d want to have a dust test, but I would do the air sample in a room that hasn’t been dusted for a while and do my normal activities so that you can really see what’s in the air versus what’s inside the wall. And I like knowing everything, but if you have a limited budget, I would say you do thedusttest.com, use code DAVE, and then for the air test, do you guys sell an air test even?
[01:07:19] Brian: Yeah. So through the app, basically, the way it works is we look at photos, we look at the stuff that they took the pictures of, like we described the car insurance, fender pictures, those things. And then we’ll look at them and say, hey, based on what we’re seeing, we’d recommend this test and this test right here and right here. That’s how we do it.
[01:07:34] Dave: You guide us. All right. That’s better. Cool. All right, guys, that is, I think, a really actionable episode for you. You’ve learned about bat guano, which is terribly important. You’ve learned about Brian’s personality disorders, and things like that. So Brian, I appreciate you sharing that with all of us.
[01:07:52] Brian: Of course. I appreciate everybody sticking around, so that’s great.