On today's live stream, I've got some very interesting information to share with you. I want to talk about how to use saunas for detoxification of mould. This is a really interesting approach because certainly every week on these live streams we talk about a lot of the building related factors associated with mould exposure and how this can make you feel very unwell and the fundamental microbiology underpinning why this is a serious public health threat. But I often don't spend enough time focusing on the research literature that shows practical methods for detoxification of mould. I want to talk about that today.
Now, before we get into this, because it's a big week in the microbiology world, I need to talk about some of the breaking news that's been occurring. We are going to get into that now. Well, it is World Neglected Tropical Diseases Day. Now, I realize that this occurred on the 30th of January, but I wanted to mention this because this is one of those underappreciated events that occurs on the health calendar each year, and there are a range of fungal mediated diseases, which have been captured in this very important day that I just want to quickly highlight. Two of them are getting increasing attention by the World Health Organization, and one of them is called farmer's lung.
This is an acute fungal infection, which causes severe facial deformations, and this is really a severe problem especially in developing countries. Mycetoma as well is a soil fungal and bacterial related illness that is picked up through cuts and abrasions predominantly in the feet, which leads to the formation of these solid masses that eventually can cause damage to bones. I know each week we talk a lot about the relationship between the built environment in urban context and the impact that mould has, but you need to bear in mind that these world neglected tropical diseases, moulds and bacteria flourish in damp, humid, wet conditions. There are a whole host of these which certainly don't get enough research funding.
World NTD Day is a very important day to mark on the healthcare calendar and I really just wanted to draw attention to this quickly. I also want to talk about a new study that came out by the Royal College of Physicians in the United Kingdom and this is a follow on from last week whereby we were talking about a whole range of risk factors to young children, predominantly in school and university age, from the built environment and how you can open up a dialogue with your school about some of these conditions. I didn't even know that this study came out until I discovered it this week, and they were actually talking about a whole host of the factors which impact on the health of young people in the United Kingdom.
Top of the list is mould, followed by a cooking smells and carbon monoxide, which is related to poor ventilation. These are the dominant list of factors which people complain about within the built environment. It's very interesting to note that the Royal College of Physicians have released this important study, and I suggest that you download this and read this for yourself. Again, they cover some very important information to be aware of that is being produced for the schools to take on board and actually do this to practically control the indoor air quality potential problems to reduce the healthcare burden. Top of the list, again, is opening windows to bring in fresh air, the use of dehumidifiers and also air purifiers. These are the take home messages from this report.
Again, I urge you to download this and read this because it's very, very important and is a follow on from last week's live stream. Now, anyone who has logged into any social media this week has probably been confronted with the potential corona pandemic, which is particularly problematic in China and becoming a problem in a lot of other countries around the world. What I want to focus on now are these dashboards, which are these visual ways of representing not only the infection level, but the number of cases of coronavirus, the number of deaths, and the number of recoveries.
There are a range of these dashboards which have been developed and they are very, very credible and important sources of information which anyone who is tracking this really serious viral infection problem needs to be aware of, and the first one is developed by John Hopkins University. Academic computer scientists have developed this dashboard and I've put up the link at the bottom of this live stream. This screenshot was taken last night, and you can see that 427 deaths had been recorded. There are a whole lot of interactive features in this dashboard, but there are others out there. The World Health Organization has also produced an interactive dashboard, but I certainly consider the John Hopkins University one superior.
Now, also overnight another very interesting company called Acoer.com are taking advantage of blockchain-based platforms on which to also develop their own visualization platform for tracking the disease. You can see that, again, early this morning the number of total deaths had increased from last night. Unfortunately, this disease is getting worse. The infection rate I should say is getting worse, and I suggest that anyone who is following these outbreaks should be looking at these credible sources to track the statistics in pretty much real time.
What is very interesting about the tracker that I have up on the screen now is it also provides information on the Google Trends, and there has been a worrying development in that social media is certainly being sensitive to some extent with regard to the infection information that is coming out on the platforms. This really is to combat misinformation and fake news, but you can certainly see that in this blockchain-based visualization, the Google Trends search is actually decreasing. Really we don't have any reasons for that, but I suspect that there are a number of pressures being placed on news agencies to ensure that information coming out is credible.
At the end of the day, the credible information really comes down to the transmission rate, the infection rate, the number of people who recover, and that sort of information. I urge you to move in and have a look at these dashboards for important information. Now, the main topic of today is how to use saunas for detoxification. This is also important because detoxification, the whole concept around this is that with environmental pollutants, not just moulds, but also other pollutants, chemical pollutants and other infections, there is a rich history of using heat in a way to provide a healthcare modality. I want to go over in part one of this live stream what some of the literature says about this.
The first paper that I want to review came out by an author by the name of Janette Hope back in 2013, and she talked about a whole range of different ways to detoxify from mould. But before we jump into what her paper says, I want to review the context of this because up to 50% of illnesses are thought to be caused by exposure to indoor air pollution. That is an incredible figure because the cumulative impact of the air we breathe, the surfaces we touch does have an impact on that overall health. Other case statistics have stated that up to 10 to 50% of the indoor environments in developed countries such Australia, Europe, India, Japan, and the United States are affected by indoor dampness. That is a lot of buildings that are potential health threats to people.
Of course, just reviewing how this occurs, mould exposure causes illness by either direct infection via allergy and toxicity or irritation, and the severity of the exposure is linked to the range of symptoms. Of course, this is connected with the overall health of the individuals and, of course, their nutritional status. Janette Hope says quite a few things and her paper lists a number of different treatment modalities. We're going to be going over only one of them, but I do need to list these because they're probably very familiar to the mould toxicity community out there. Obviously mould avoidance and reducing your exposure is the number one method to see a reduction in your symptoms.
Certainly there are a lot of practitioners and authors and researchers and people with experience who have been able to demonstrate very clearly that mould avoidance, even if it's taken to the extreme, is possibly the only way to solve mould problems. Now, glutathione is another very interesting supplement, and there are a range of different ways of getting glutathione. Whey protein is one. There are specific nutritional supplements that aid the conversion of manufacturer of glutathione in the body. In fact, we're going to make an entire livestream on glutathione later this year, but this is related to the inflammation and mitochondrial pathways and that's something to be aware of.
Also, there is the important use of sequestering agents and many nutritional practitioners and integrative medical personnel are strong advocates of sequestering agents such as cholestyramine, activated carbon charcoal and that sort of thing because there is the premise that these are toxin within the body that need to be bound and then excreted from the body as well. Improving the nutritional status of people with mould symptoms and improving their overall immune function via the use of antioxidants is also covered in Janette Hope's paper, as well as introducing dietary interventions and probiotics, but we are going to be talking not just about health related improvements like weight reduction and exercise. Janette Hope also reviews the important opportunity presented by saunas.
She says not only are they relaxing, but I need to give you some background about the saunas. There are two different main types. There are dry heat saunas and there are far infrared heat saunas. They have multiple benefits, which is summarized in her paper. Then we're going to dive into some of the other research literature that also talks about this before and after her publication. The first benefit is that people with cardiovascular disease and a whole range of respiratory problems show improvement after spending time in saunas of either type. Also, people with elevated hypertension or blood pressure show quantifiable reductions in their blood pressure after sauna use.
There is a lot of research literature out there showing that the pain response is also treatable with saunas, and there's a lot of exercise physiology and some great work on this that leads back to inflammation research as well. There's some lovely research on chronic fatigue and saunas as well, but mould exposure is the topic of today's show, and so I'm going to restrict my attention to what we know about the use of saunas for mould exposure patients. Again, moving on, I want to quickly review what the literature said. In the first publication, which has been done by... You can see the URL at the bottom of this screen. Again, this clinician wanted to treat his patients and so he needed to reduce their allergy response.
He did this by applying antigen injections, either of mould antigens or of mycotoxin antigens, as well as providing nutritional support, antioxidant support. One of the modalities is the use of saunas. What he discovered is that 28 people who had been mould exposed were given these various protocols and all of them showed significant improvement with 27 out of the 28 being able to go back to work. His conclusions, and I urge you to read this paper yourself, the URL is listed below, that heat and physical therapy appeared to decrease these patients total toxic load of mycotoxins, and they became more energetic and less hypersensitive as the treatment progressed. You'll note that there's an interesting word in there called depuration. I didn't know what this meant.
I'm going to define it for you now. It is the action or process of freeing something of impurities, and this is one of the tenants of detoxification. There's excellent literature demonstrating that physiologically the body does seem to respond positively to these detoxification protocols, one of which we're covering today. If we move on now, how has this been achieved and who is going to benefit? Well, what this doctor did is he subdivided the group of patients into three groups, really their complexity classes depending on their symptoms. The first group was the people who got better very quickly and they got better via mould avoidance and maybe with the introduction of mould antigen injections to reduce their allergy response.
The second group of people are a bit more complex and they improved after desensitization, as well as the introduction of mould antigen injections and antigens of mycotoxins. That is the precise mycotoxin produced as a secondary metabolite by moulds, which causes a whole range of problems for people. Then the third group people received mould antigen injections, mycotoxin antigen injections, and a whole range of other methods, including sauna, nutritional support, and oxygen therapy. What were the results? Well, I'm going to tell you now. 85% of people cleared completely, 14% of people showed partial improvement, and 1% were unfortunately unchanged, but you need to focus on the 85% that got better.
Now, I do realize that this doctor applied a whole range of different protocols to the patients in the clinical setting, including allergy reduction with injections, but it is very, very important to note that the more complex group of people received the saunas and that led to them improving. Overall the percentages were very high, meaning that there is hope and really that's the whole point of today's live stream to say that there is some very good literature out there that should offer people who are suffering mould exposure a good degree of hope. What he concluded was that a sauna lasting 10 to 30 minutes daily was used for patients in this third group, the most complex group, to detoxify the body faster.
Now, next week in part two I'm going to be discussing how saunas have been used for detoxification in firefighters. In fact, I am just getting the full paper from one of the universities now, but what this paper has to say is that firefighters in their daily work are exposed to a whole range of environmental inhalable pollutants, these particulate matter, the fine and coarse particles. The fact that a couple of weeks ago we talked about pyro aerosols, which are these colloids that contain smoke particles and biological materials. These polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are associated with a whole bunch of adverse health effects, including putting a stress on the coronary system of the firefighters and being linked to several cancers.
This very interesting paper has come out talking about how saunas have been used to reduce the level of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in these people, and we'll be talking about that at length as well. I'm going to be talking about solar bathing and ageing because there is some excellent research as well, linking this practice with a whole bunch of other health related materials. In conclusion, it's been a big week in public health, especially with the coronavirus, but like all things, we need to get access to good data. I urge you to have a look at some of these dashboards which provides some new miracle commentary on this infection. I suggest that you review the literature that I've provided and certainly will be given in the show notes below regarding the sauna use.
You consider if you are acutely affected by mould exposure, consider and discuss this with your own healthcare provider and maybe this is something which will benefit you. In any case, my name's Dr. Cameron Jones. I hope you have a great week, and I'll see you next week. Bye for now.