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How To Clean Mold

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Molds are tiny fungi that thrive in warm and humid conditions, and reproduce by releasing spores into the air. These spores can settle on to damp foods, and the molds grow by degrading the food, while releasing toxins and acids which are beneficial to their growth. In some cases, mold can flourish even at refrigerator temperatures.

 

Certain molds cause allergic reactions in people, and some can produce ‘mycotoxins’, which can make you sick.

However, all molds are not bad, since they may help in the production of different foods, beverages antibiotics and even enzymes. Certain cheeses like Gorgonzola even have a covering of white mold on them to help develop flavor.

mold f foods like bread can cause respiratory distress, allergies and infection



CAN YOU SAFELY EAT MOLDY FOOD?

 


Although the mold appears to be on the surface of the food, when a food shows heavy mold growth, root threads have invaded it deeply. In dangerous molds, poisonous substances are often contained in and around these threads. In some cases, toxins may have spread throughout the food.

That means that even if you cut off the moldy parts of the food, you may still be at risk of infection.

Although they proliferate at warmer temperatures, molds can even grow in the refrigerator, since they can tolerate salt, sugar and preservatives better. Molds, therefore, can even grow on foods like jams and jellies, and cured meats and hams.

 

The only foods that can be eaten despite mold growth are hard cheeses, cured and hard meats, and vegetables like cabbages, carrots and bell peppers. To eat, cut off the section with the mold, including one inch of food from either side of the mold growth. This will eliminate the roots and spread of the mold, including the released toxins. Soft cheeses, fruits, vegetables like tomatoes, fresh meats, etc should be immediately discarded. 

 


HOW SHOULD YOU DISCARD MOLDY FOOD?

 


Do not sniff the moldy food. The spores may cause respiratory problems and allergies.


Put it into a small paper bag or wrap it in plastic and dispose in a covered trash can that children and animals can’t get into. The trash can should ideally be outside your home, like a dumpster.


Clean the refrigerator or pantry at the spot where the food was stored. Eliminate the source of moisture, and wash thoroughly with a solution of baking soda or bleach and water.


Check the nearby foods for mold growth, since mold spreads very fast.


Keep all sponges, dishtowels, mops, and cloths clean and free of a musty, dirty smell.


Be careful of the foods bought from the supermarket, since they can contain mold too.


Make sure the level of humidity in your home is below 40%, to eliminate the possibility of molds from all areas of your home.

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