While the agricultural world pours millions into avoiding mold toxins in animal feed, the medical world refuses to recognize how these ubiquitous toxins might affect human health. With numerous studies in animals on how different mold toxins might lead to various harms, you would expect some concern in humans. Until that concern leads to an adequate response, we can look to studies like these which suggest metabolic alterations in the liver and the lipid profile of piglets.
Although the comparison groups were very small, only 7 pigs in the control group and 7 in the fumonisin fed group, differences were found in several metabolic markers. On the lipid side, decreases occurred in docosapentanoic acid (DPA) and docosahexanoic acid (DHA) while increases occurred in arachidonic acid (AA). Thus the Omega 6 to 3 ration was slightly altered. Total saturated and monounsaturated fats were not affected.
Several potentially more important changes occurred in the liver. Malondialdehyde, a marker of oxidative stress damage was increased in the liver. Liver enzymes including alkaline phosphatase but not other enzymes. On microscopic examination of the liver, mild vacuolar degeneration of the hepatocytes’ cytoplasm occurred. The toxins had a mild effect on the liver of these test piglets over the 10 day course of the experiment.
With this study in mind, those in human medicine might want to consider how these mold toxins might be contributing to human diseases such as fatty liver or high cholesterol. In helping patients strive after healthier more abundant lives, functional MD’s like myself, we have to keep the whole of a patient’s life factors in mind in restoring health.
Ali, Omeralfaroug; Szabó-Fodor, Judit; Fébel, Hedvig; Mézes, Miklós; Balogh, Krisztián; Glávits, Róbert; Kovács, Melinda; Zantomasi, Arianna; Szabó, András. 2019. “Porcine Hepatic Response to Fumonisin B1 in a Short Exposure Period: Fatty Acid Profile and Clinical Investigations” Toxins 11, no. 11: 655.
Sanctuary Functional Medicine, under the direction of Dr Eric Potter, IFMCP MD, provides functional medicine services to Nashville, Middle Tennessee and beyond. We frequently treat patients from Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Ohio, Indiana, and more... offering the hope of healthier more abundant lives to those with chronic illness.