337. The Mold Medic: How to protect your home & family from mold toxicity with Michael Rubino

Michael Rubino

DISCLAIMER: This podcast is presented for educational and exploratory purposes only. Published content is not intended to be used for diagnosing or treating any illness. Those responsible for this show disclaim responsibility for any possible adverse effects from the use of information presented by Luke or his guests. Please consult with your healthcare provider before using any products referenced. This podcast may contain paid endorsements for products or services.

Mold specialist, Michael Rubino, breaks down why the invisible mold molecules you can’t see are damaging your health and home.

Michael Rubino is an international mold remediation expert with nearly a decade of field experience working with individuals who are immunocompromised to improve the air quality in their homes. He is a council-certified Mold Remediator by IICRC and ACAC and a contributing member, sponsor, and speaker for the Indoor Air Quality Association. He works with roughly 75 to 100 families each year as they return to their homes after mold exposure.

DISCLAIMER: This podcast is presented for educational and exploratory purposes only. Published content is not intended to be used for diagnosing or treating any illness. Those responsible for this show disclaim responsibility for any possible adverse effects from the use of information presented by Luke or his guests. Please consult with your healthcare provider before using any products referenced. This podcast may contain paid endorsements for products or services.

I've covered many niche topics on this podcast, but this is the first one I'm doing about mold. The issue is fresh on my mind as I'm about to embark on an extensive remediation process with Michael Rubino, the mold medic, for my new crashpad in Austin, Texas. 

I hate to break it to you, but you're probably living in a mold-infested box. This stuff isn't "out there" – it's literally in your lungs, inside your sofa, and under your sink. What's worse is that certain mold species produce mycotoxins, making things extra complicated for your health and home. 

Michael Rubino knows so much about the ins-and-outs of construction, mold, and remediation and he's committed to getting the truth about mold, its causes, and how to get rid of it (FYI: cleaning it off does not help). 

Think of me as the mold messenger: your health and home are going to thank me for it. 

If you’re looking to remove mold in your home Jill’s Miracle Mold Deluxe Detox Box is a great place to start. Claim 10% off your first order with code STOREY10.

10:28 — History of Mold

  • Types of mold you need to look out for
  • How different building infrastructures hold mold
  • Vapor barrier fails and lumber storing errors
  • How quickly mold grows and spreads
  • Mold in new buildings and cold climates 

30:44 — How Mold Multiplies 

  • How radioactivity speeds up mold production 
  • Why cleaning mold off your walls makes things worse
  • Killing vs removing mold 
  • How mold moves around your house 

40:44 — Inspecting Your Home 

  • Signs of a good mold inspection
  • Why MSQPCR testing is the future 
  • Testing for mycotoxins 
  • Furniture choices 

49:29 — Testing Yourself for Mold Exposure

  • Detoxifying from mold
  • Mold, the CDC, and insurance policies 
  • Symptoms of mold exposure 
  • Why seasonal allergies do not exist

1:11:44 — The Mold Remediation Process

  • Tests and protocols
  • Cleaning mold with a HEPA-vacuum 
  • Rubino’s unique team approach
  • Writing The Mold Medic 

More about this episode.

Watch it on YouTube.

[00:00:00]Luke Storey:  I'm Luke Storey. For the past 22 years, I've been relentlessly committed to my deepest passion, designing the ultimate lifestyle based on the most powerful principles of spirituality, health, psychology, and personal development. The Life Stylist podcast is a show dedicated to sharing my discoveries and the experts behind them with you. Here we are in a moldy house, dude. What are we going to do about it?

[00:00:27]Michael Rubino:  We're going to fix it.

[00:00:28]Luke Storey:  We're going to fix it. Hot damn. So, in five years that I've been doing this podcast, I've never covered mold. I've talked about a lot of things that are, I think we're going to find out related to mold, EMF, Lyme disease, all this kind of stuff that can be related to the mold issue. But I'm super pumped to actually dive in on this niche topic, because like EMF, I think it's one of the greatest threats to our health.

[00:00:54]Michael Rubino:  Totally.

[00:00:55]Luke Storey:  And as I had the inspection done in this house, as you know, but just to give the audience some background, we did find some mold. And when we did that inspection, I was like ready to pull the plug, no, I'm going to back out of the offer, we're done. And then, I thought, let me give it a shot. Let me talk to a couple of people. And then, we got in touch. So, I'm super stoked. Turns out, it's not as bad as I thought. And it's fixable. It's doable. So, I'm going to just dive right in. Let's just go into the history of mold and building related illness. When did this start to become at all publicly known as a health issue for people?

[00:01:31]Michael Rubino:  That's really in the late '80s and early '90s, they started talking and studying mold, the health effects on mold. There was that big case in Cleveland where many infants died. And at that time, they had linked it to the Stachybotrys that was in the building. They later walked back those claims in 2001, which obviously is very interesting. But I would say, '80s and '90s, they really started diving into that, that mold does impact the health.

[00:01:59] And since nothing really has changed since that, they walked back those statements in 2001, except for just some functional medicine doctors that have really been outspoken and done some amazing things. But from the government, essentially that's 2001, it's like, well, some people are sensitive to mold, and that's really it. And based upon what I see every day, I'd say that's far from the truth.

[00:02:21]Luke Storey:  Yeah. It's interesting in the times that we find ourselves in that the mantra coming from the powers that be is trust the science, but if the science is actually there, we're not supposed to trust it. Anyway, I digress. What are the different types of mold that we want to look out for that would be in a place we work, hang out, live, et cetera?

[00:02:44]Michael Rubino:  So, toxigenic, allergenic, and pathogenic, because mold is ubiquitous. It's part of our ecosystem. It does have a form and function outside. It's breaking down dead matter, things like that. You want it to exist, you just don't want it to exist in high quantities inside your home, especially ones that are really more prevalent in water damage. The things like pipe breaks, roof leaks, et cetera, those are going to be some of the more toxigenic, allergenic, or pathogenic molds that can cause neurological symptoms, allergylike symptoms, maybe the onset of a cold that just never quite goes away, things like that.

[00:03:16]Luke Storey:  So, since mold has been here presumably far longer than humans, and we've been building buildings ever since we figured out how to get out of a cave, I sense that the mold issue has been here forever, right?

[00:03:31]Michael Rubino:  Sure.

[00:03:32]Luke Storey:  Do you think that it's been made worse by the way we build buildings now or have we actually improved the problem? So, if you go back to, I'm thinking of these amazing castles you see in Europe or something like that, do you think, were those guys having mold problems or was this something that they sorted out back then, and when we got into the drywall and lumber building of houses like we do now, that it became a problem?

[00:03:59]Michael Rubino:  Well, I mean, if you go travel the world, you go to some of these older castles, you'll notice that it smells musty or that there's mold present. I think that we started introducing building materials like drywall and insulation that can hold onto water and moisture for much longer periods. And obviously, stone wood or cement wood, I think you're having that more toxicity. There's chemical reactions in the building materials that take place too that also impact us.

[00:04:26] And also, I think that humans were never really developed to live in these enclosed spaces. And especially now, the way we build homes, we're building them tighter and tighter. We're taking away ventilation. We were developed to live in caves and live out in the open doors, so we never had this problems. Our health problem started occurring when we started slamming up houses in three to six months, not paying attention to the way we need to be building them, and people started getting sick. And now, we're realizing, here's the problem. 

[00:05:00]Luke Storey:  From an architectural and builder standpoint, what are some of the worst corners that are cut in general practices now? I know when we were speaking earlier, you were talking about how a construction crew will bring in a bunch of lumber and just set it right on the wet ground, and then that becomes the studs of your house that is now infested with mold spores, essentially. What are some things like that that people are doing that's really dumb? 

[00:05:26]Michael Rubino:  So, I mean, I would say that the two biggest problems that I've noticed like right from the get go are vapor barrier issues. They'll install a vapor barrier incorrectly. There'll be gaps, tears, breaks, rips, et cetera.

[00:05:38]Luke Storey:  What is a vapor barrier for those that barely know how to use a hammer? Myself included, at the top of that list. 

[00:05:45]Michael Rubino:  A vapor barrier, you put down before you actually pour your foundation. And the point of it is to keep the moisture from the dirt from getting into the living space on the floor level, right? So, for instance, obviously, you have a floor right now, where we're sitting on. 

[00:05:59]Luke Storey:  A moldy one, yeah.

[00:06:00]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, moldy wood, right? Underneath that floor, you have a cement pad, okay? 

[00:06:04]Luke Storey:  Alright. 

[00:06:05]Michael Rubino:  Underneath that cement pad, there's a vapor barrier.

[00:06:08]Luke Storey:  Oh, word. Really? I didn't know that.

[00:06:09]Michael Rubino:  Like a sheet of plastic underneath the cement.

[00:06:12]Luke Storey:  So, when you see they come, and excavate the dirt, and make it flat here, and then they lay concrete, I always just thought, it's just a slab of concrete, you just throw a house on top of it. There's a barrier in between the dirt and that concrete.

[00:06:26]Michael Rubino:  There should be. That's the way we build houses these days. We intentionally put a vapor barrier underneath the concrete. And what that does is that stops the moisture from the earth getting into your house, right? Because typically, on top of that concrete, you have two options. You're going to basically put wood floor laminate, some sort of layered product on top, or you're going to bond directly to it with like a tile. When you have a layer on top and you have moisture that intrudes in between that layer, it gets trapped. So, now, you have mold that's growing in between your floor and the cement slab just like right here, right by this door.

[00:07:00]Luke Storey:  So, let's say that moisture barrier was not done at all or not done right, what harm is it to just have a bunch of mold growing under your floor if you never tear up those floors? Can it just kind of do its thing down there or is it eventually going to find its way into the rest of the house from the floor?

[00:07:17]Michael Rubino:  It definitely will find its way into the rest of us from the floor. So, every time you open a door or window, you're changing the building pressurization. So, if you're drawing air negatively and that air gets pulled from interstitial cavities like underneath your floor, it's going to get pulled out in the environment. Same thing with the HVAC, you have these returns, right? These returns are sucking air in to the HVAC. They're conditioning it and it's supplying it back out. So, these returns actually draw air negatively and are pulling pressure, and again, drawing things from interstitial cavities.

[00:07:46]Luke Storey:  Interesting. Wow. I'm going to learn a lot about construction, too. If one was moving into a house or so fortunate to be able to just build a house from the ground up, what are some materials or practices that are better or worse in terms of mold happening later on?

[00:08:03]Michael Rubino:  Yeah. So, we talked about the vapor barrier, the other problem is the lumber. I'm not saying that we need to get rid of lumber, I'm just saying we need to be more mindful about using lumber. In the construction process, and I've seen this firsthand in many different cases, even personally, where the lumber gets stuck in the mud for three to four weeks before they even put it up, especially right now with the building boom that we're going through.

[00:08:25] I mean, people are delivering lumber, and they're sitting for weeks and weeks before that even goes up. Now, what happens in between those weeks and weeks, it's going to rain, right? The ground gets wet, it's going to hold moisture longer than 24 hours. Mold can grow in as quickly as 24 hours. That's going to be one of the biggest shocking tidbits that people always thought it takes weeks, or years, or months, right?

[00:08:46]Luke Storey:  That's nuts. And pardon the interruption, but I've always felt when I see a leak, I'm like, yeah, we should probably deal with that in the next couple of weeks. You know what I mean?

[00:08:54]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[00:08:54]Luke Storey:  Like any time you see water inside the house, obviously, you want to fix it, but it's never been urgent to me. It's like as long as the leak stopped and it's not continuing, where you're going to get a flood or something like that. But in LA, it rarely rains, and when I lived there for all those years, there would be times where there was a little leak. And I thought, oh, okay, as long as there's no puddle of water, we'll just go in there and deal with it. So, 24 hours.

[00:09:14]Michael Rubino:  Twenty-four hours, it can grow in as quickly as 24 to 48 hours. That's the threshold.

[00:09:25]Luke Storey:  Do you remember where you were when I just interrupted you? I'm sorry.

[00:09:25]Michael Rubino:  Yeah. So, this mold can grow in as quickly as 24 to 48 hours when it's raining and the lumber's sitting in the mud. What do you think happens? Right? We get trapped moisture in between the lumber and mud. Think about it like if you were to take a piece of cardboard, and you got it wet, and then you laid it on top of this floor, that trapped moisture is going to stay there for a long period of time until you remove the piece of cardboard and allow it to air dry.

[00:09:46] So, any time you have something sitting up against something else, you're going to have the potential to trap moisture. So, enter lumber on dirt, guess what also happens to be in dirt? Mold. It's in dirt. It's on trees. It's out in the environment. So, now, you're having mold with wet lumber. It's going to grow in as quickly as 24 hours. It's right there. It's a perfect storm for it to start growing. So, there, it does, right? And as it keeps raining, it just keeps growing and expanding.

[00:10:15] So, mold grows and colonizes. The other crazy tidbit of information is mold is microscopic. By the time you see it, there's already a lot of it there. So, that's the other crazy thing. So, when I started seeing mold all over lumber in new construction houses, I was like, oh, my God, this is a problem. There's actually one case where we tested it, there was 1.5 million spores on a brand new house. So, I started thinking, well, what are we going to do about this? Right? A, the first step to any change is making it aware, so people are aware of it, so that there's a need for change.

[00:10:48] Now, it's, what should we do about this? Well, there's a couple of different things. One, you can get it off the dirt, so get a platform where it's delivered on and set on top of, so that it's elevated six, 12 inches off the dirt. This way, when it rains, it's not, again, puddled up, and then trapping the moisture in between the dirt and lumber. And that should just be standard practice. The second thing, I think, that needs to happen is when you erect the house, you can treat it and make sure it's fully dry before you start introducing insulation and drywall.

[00:11:17]Luke Storey:  Got it. Yeah, because I've noticed you'll see a house that has been framed, and then they put up the particle board or plywood, then it rains. So, some people are probably just, go ahead and put up sheetrock or drywall like on top of that, or siding, or whatever while it's still wet. 

[00:11:34]Michael Rubino:  And then, it's wet, and then guess what, you're putting another piece of material on top of it that's going to trap the moisture longer, and then it's drywall. So, you know drywall, it gets wet and it just becomes mush.

[00:11:44]Luke Storey:  That's crazy. So, right now, there are millions and millions of people around the world living in mold boxes for these just mistakes made during the construction process that could be avoided if more people listen to a podcast like this one.

[00:11:58]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, totally.

[00:12:00]Luke Storey:  Speaking of that particleboard, whenever I see someone building a house with that, I always think, bad move, because I think that that particle board is going to be off-gassing much more than your average plywood. Is that true?

[00:12:13]Michael Rubino:  Oh, yeah, because it's usually MDF, or some sort of pressed board or pressed wood, right? So, all that glue and adhesive in between, I mean, it's usually like flakes of wood just glued together. Yeah, of course. You're going to have off-gassing and biocies.

[00:12:28]Luke Storey:  Is there any difference in the potential for mold growth between those two, with like doing your siding with real plywood versus that particleboard or same difference? 

[00:12:38]Michael Rubino:  Because it has so many different layers to the particleboard, and again, it's going to be more semi-porous than the traditional plywood would be, yeah, you're definitely going to have more potential for trapped moisture in between the product. It's going to stay wet longer and definitely has a better potential for mold to grow.

[00:12:55]Luke Storey:  Got it. Is there ever a case where your roof leaks, or there's a leak under the kitchen, or bathroom cabinet, or something like that, a pipe burst or something, is there ever a case where that water is present for a couple of few days and mold does not grow or is it just an automatic thing whenever there's a water leak that you're going to have mold?

[00:13:16]Michael Rubino:  It's a great question. Honestly, there is a chance that water is present and mold does not grow. But I would say it's very unlikely, considering, again, mold is part of our ecosystem. You are going to have some mold migrate into your environment. What's a really good example of this is if you go and check your toilet lid, I guarantee you, some people are going to do this right now. 

[00:13:37]Luke Storey:  Sounds gross already.

[00:13:38]Michael Rubino:  If you take the toilet lid off your toilet tank and just like flip it over, look at the back side of the toilet tank, but then also look inside the tank itself. If you find mold in there, don't freak out, but you'd probably have mold somewhere else. And because it's abundant in the air, it's just going to fall where it falls. And your toilet tank happens to be a good source of water. So, it gives you that idea of like, when something is wet for longer than 24 hours, because it's already in our air, it's already in our environment, it has a very high chance that a spore or two are going to fall on it, right? It's going to stay wet for a long period of time and has that ability to start growing and colonizing from there. And one spore turns into 100 spores very quickly.

[00:14:19]Luke Storey:  I think the thing that is most shocking about this conversation to me is that it's microscopic. Because when we looked under a couple of the counters here that in the mold report said, there's water damage here, you want to remediate this area, which thankfully, as you know, we're going to demo the kitchen and all the bathrooms in this house anyway just because they're horrific-looking, no offense to the sellers. But they're just outdated. 

[00:14:44] That's a more polite way, less judgmental way to say that. But no, I mean, it's an older house and whatever. But I saw the report, and then I went and looked under the sink, so I was like, I mean, I see where there was water leaks. It's a little discolored and whatnot, but I didn't see any mold. I was like, I don't know. They're being a little too scrutinizing here. And then, when I looked under there with you, I'm like, yeah, look, in the report, it says, there's mold, but there isn't any.

[00:15:06] And you're like, yeah, that's mold. It's just invisible. That to me is kind of a pisser, to be honest, because I think most people that are somewhat mold-aware are maybe looking around for it. And if they see it, they'll do something about it. But if they don't see it, they just assume. So, based on the fact that there's a low chance that you could have a water leak and not have mold, it sounds it's much more likely that if you have any kind of water leak and even if you don't see the mold, it's probably there.

[00:15:37]Michael Rubino:  I'd say like pretty much maybe 1% of the time, if you have a water stain, and you were to actually test it for mold, you would find mold. I've only seen like maybe one or two shots in my entire career where like it came up clean. And I think that for me, that speaks volume just because I see a lot of cases every single year, it's just unlikely. And it's not impossible, it's just very, very unlikely, because again, these materials that we use on top of layers, I mean, even drywall, right? You're going to have your two-by-four insulation drywall, you have all these building materials that, again, are touching each other, if it gets wet enough, I mean, you're going to have trap moisture. It's just very unlikely.

[00:16:17]Luke Storey:  Is there any cutting-edge, badass stuff you can build with? Are these paints that you can use that will not allow mold to happen or, I don't know, a different kind of drywall that's mold-resistant? I mean, is there anything that helps with that or is it pretty much just any time you get water present or too much moisture, it's going to find its way?

[00:16:38]Michael Rubino:  It's a good question. There are some products out there that are inhibitors, I would say. So, for insulation, I love Rockwool. It's a mineral wool, its antimicrobial properties. There's magnesium oxide board, which is like a drywall alternative. I mean, it pluses and minuses just like anything else. But it's water-resistant, not waterproof. A lot of people have that misconception that it's waterproof. It's not waterproof, but it is water-resistant.

[00:17:04] They also make moisture-resistant drywall. Now, again, there's a lot of controversy with the chemicals that are needed to create theses products and things like that, but it is, again, moisture-resistant. It's not waterproof. So, if you have a leak, and it gets wet, and it stays wet for longer than 24 hours, odds are, you're going to need to remove it. For me, because I know what I know, if something gets wet, I'm like, tear it out. It's just not worth it, right?

[00:17:29]Luke Storey:  I think the interesting thing about it too, and for those listening, we're going to get into the health implications, which is why you would care about it, it's not just because mold, oh, that looks ugly, the wall is a little black. No. I mean, this stuff can kill you. So, we're going to get into that a bit. But I think one thing that's fascinating to me that I never knew is that you can have a brand new building that looks beautiful, really high-end building, home, office building, whatever, that's full of mold and no one would ever know. I think that's really weird.

[00:17:59] And additionally, from what I understand, even in a really dry climate, for example, Arizona, we were just in Sedona, Arizona, for a couple of months looking for houses before we decided to move to Texas, and a bunch of people there, our friends, were like, hey, be careful when you're buying a place, mold is terrible here. And I was like, what? My skin is about to fall off. I'm literally turning into a corpse every day. It's so dry. And they're like, mold is really bad. So, is that true? I mean, does the humidity in the ambient environment matter? Will you have bad mold in a really dry place and more so in a more humid climate, or does it just go everywhere?

[00:18:41]Michael Rubino:  Well, I think the climate definitely sets the context. Like in Florida, where I live, it's high humidity pretty much year round. So, when you build a house, you have to build with that in mind. You've got to either have really good ventilation that allows this hot, humid air to escape or you have to enclose the space and dehumidify it really thoroughly to make sure that the humidity doesn't get into that 55% percent danger zone where mold can start to grow inside your home. So, I think it depends where you're at. And obviously, in Arizona, you have less humidity, right? So, what ends up happening when you have less humidity, now, you start adding humidity, so now, you have these people adding these humidifiers all over their house inside their HVAC, right?

[00:19:20]Luke Storey:  That's what I did. Dude, when I would wake up in Sedona in the morning, the windows would be frosty. I would crank that thing. It feels good. I mean, humid air feels good on your body, right?

[00:19:31]Michael Rubino:  Sure. But now, you're like adding all this excess humidity, and now, you start to see signs of mold growing around your windows, and you're like, ah, you're always cleaning it, you're not understanding why, you have mold growing on the grout around the shower, right? You're just kind of like always cleaning mold. You're adding so much humidity, because you don't have any in those climates that you're creating your own mold problem inside your own house.

[00:19:51]Luke Storey:  Wow. So, if you live in a place that is dry and you want to humidify, then you would have to find a way to humidify where you can actually track what the levels are and keep them in the optimal zone. Likewise in a place like Florida, or here in Texas, or at least in this part of Texas where it's quite humid, you want to get proper ventilation, and I'm assuming, keep the interior of the house at a certain humidity level. So, A, what's the sweet spot of the perfect humidity where you feel comfortable and healthy, but don't encourage mold? And B, how would one even determine how much humidity is in your house?

[00:20:31]Michael Rubino:  Yes, I think the sweet spot is probably that 40% to 45% range. When you have 55% percent and up, you really start to get in that danger zone. And outside of buying hygrometers, which would be the tools that we would use professionally-

[00:20:45]Luke Storey:  It sounds too complex already.

[00:20:46]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, getting humidistats, I mean, a lot of the new thermostats have humidity reading inside the house as well. So, you start there, but you can add, if you have a larger home and you want to kind of cover more ground, you can buy standalone humidistats and put them around different places that kind of tell you the humidity in that area. They're not 100% accurate, but they give you a good range and idea.

[00:21:11]Luke Storey:  You can tell if you're at 90%, at least, and you need to do something about it.

[00:21:14]Michael Rubino:  Well, you should be able to tell that just by being in the space.

[00:21:17]Luke Storey:  Yeah. You're like, sticky as hell for doing nothing. That's what I hear about the summers. Everyone's like, man, you don't want to be here in the summer. I go, what? Who cares? Sun? Give me sun. They go, no, you'll see. Hopefully, I don't. Hopefully, I'll love it. Interesting thing that I've heard over the years in terms of the relationship between EMF, which is something I talk about all the time, and mold is that mold tends to proliferate faster in a high EMF environment. Is there any truth to that? And if so, why?

[00:21:51]Michael Rubino:  Yeah. So, there's been some studies that definitely show that EMFs, well, actually, the radioactivity causes mold growth to actually speed up. Mold, what's interesting is, again, it's an alive organism, right? Microorganism. And when it feels threatened, definitely, just like any other organism out there, it's trying to reproduce as quickly as possible. At the same time, certain species of mold produce what's called mycotoxins, which are a fungal toxin produced by certain species of mold, then the word toxin, meaning toxic, so it can cause harm to humans, animals, et cetera.

[00:22:27] And again, we don't really know what makes it feel threatened, but for whatever reason, I guess the frequencies of EMFs make mold feel threatened. When I start to think about that, I'm thinking, well, it kind of makes sense, right? Because if humans can get adversely affected by EMFs, why wouldn't mold that's a tiny microscopic organism not be affected by EMFs?

[00:22:47]Luke Storey:  The difference might be, is when a human being is under threat, they don't typically go, how do I say this? Spread their seed everywhere. If I'm really afraid for my life, the last thing I'm looking for is sex. So, I think it's interesting. Mold, it's this living organism. It has its own innate intelligence, right? So, when it gets threatened by EMF or maybe remediation things, you tearing out a cabinet, the mold gets pissed and just starts jizzing everywhere, basically.

[00:23:17]Michael Rubino:  Essentially, yeah. I mean, I guess humans, if you're threatened, your fight or flight kind of kicks on, right? And you're looking to either flee or fight and stay. But I think at some point, instinctively, we have that intuition of reproduction, right? We don't know why, but it's just kind of our instinct.

[00:23:34]Luke Storey:  Right. So, the mold is just going, okay, we're under threat, we need to make sure that we stick around. And so, let's start putting these spores out everywhere?

[00:23:42]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[00:23:44]Luke Storey:  This is maybe technical, but I'm curious, okay, this mold is microscopic. And then, when it gets agitated, and is fighting for survival, and wants to spread, it sprays out spores, which are also microscopic. So, all this is going on and we have no idea at all?

[00:24:05]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[00:24:06]Luke Storey:  And if you see the mold, like what we saw in the garage, that's the nastiest, bottom of the stairs, like that's legit black mold. I mean, even I would know like, holy shit, don't stick your head in there. But in that case, say I get in there with a broom, and I like start sweeping, thinking I'm sweeping that black mold off, and I kind of get rid of it, and I think it's clean, what have I just done?

[00:24:27]Michael Rubino:  You're going to get it aerosolized. Yeah, you're going to obviously agitate it. It's going to become aerosolized and it's going to just get all over the garage. It's not something I would recommend doing.

[00:24:38]Luke Storey:  So, it's not just bad because I'm going to be breathing it right there, it's bad, because now, it's literally going to fill up the whole garage with spores, and just be everywhere in the air, and then settle on things in there? 

[00:24:51]Michael Rubino:  Totally.

[00:24:52]Luke Storey:  And so, say I did the—I mean, obviously, we're talking hypothetically here. I would hopefully never be this dumb, but I'm sure I have been at some point in the past. Let's say I go down there, I'm like, I'll just fix this myself. I'm not paying 10 grand for remediation or whatever. So, all our stuff stored in the garage, so if I stirred up that mold, and then maybe I painted over it with KILZ, mold killer, I spray bleach on it, or whatever, and we put new drywall there, and then I move all that stuff from the garage into the house, it's now been infested, I guess you could say, with spores that I just stirred up.

[00:25:26] Is that going to encourage mold growth inside the house or is that just going to be a health risk? Because the couch that's in the garage now is covered with spores, and then the dog and cat, and we all breathe it, because we're sitting on the couch where the spores were. Like how does it spread, and then get in us to the point where we're going to have health problems?

[00:25:46]Michael Rubino:  Alright. So, there's a lot that happened in that scenario here we got to break down.

[00:25:51]Luke Storey:  This is my Flintstonean breakdown of something very complex. So, now is your turn. I pass you the ball. Break down the complexity for us. 

[00:25:59]Michael Rubino:  We're going to talk about, first, I highly recommend not putting bleach or painting over mold with KILZ, or any mold killer, or anything out there that's supposed to be this magical solution.

[00:26:09]Luke Storey:  Why?

[00:26:10]Michael Rubino:  Three reasons why. One, there's an opportunity. There's a moisture or water intrusion that created the opportunity for mold to grow in the first place. None of that solves that problem. And so, it'll just keep coming back, right? 

[00:26:22]Luke Storey:  Noted.

[00:26:23]Michael Rubino:  The second thing is you're not, even the CDC, and this is something that I actually agree with for once, is they don't want you to kill mold, they actually want you to remove it. So, I look at mold as I look at a weed. It's actually really similar. Weeds produce seeds, mold produces spores, weeds have roots that grow into the soil, mold has roots called hyphae that grow into building materials.

[00:26:49] And so, when you look at that in that simple analogy, now, you say, do you want to actually remove mold fully by ripping its roots out or do you want to just chop the stem off and kind of hope it doesn't come back? We know that with weeds, if you just chop the stem off, it's just going to come back. Same thing with mold. That exact scenario is exactly how it happens. And so, when you're just pouring bleach on it, yeah, you may help get rid of some stuff on the surface, painting over it again, really, covering it, it's just going to grow right through the paint eventually.

[00:27:21] But that's kind of how we want to actually remove it in that scenario first. The second part about this whole scenario is kind of, what happens with the contamination? So, you have mold growing in there. It's getting aerosolized. It's settling on stuff. When you agitate it in that exact scenario, let's say it has 10 spores per cubic meter getting into the air right now, it could be tens, hundreds, maybe even millions getting into the air at that point, because you're really agitating it.

[00:27:50] It's going to be kind of activating a lot quicker. Now, you have a lot more volume per cubic meter that's going to be settling on your stuff and that's stored inside the garage right now, then you're going to be picking that up, bringing it into your house, so you could be potentially bringing millions of the spores in. And when you do a test, usually, like an air quality test, you typically have like 100 or 200 mold spores outside, and you have 100 or 200 inside, millions, bringing inside, is not a great idea, as you can imagine in that quick synopsis. 

[00:28:24] Now, it's going to be getting into your stuff, which obviously could get into your breathing zone. It's on your couch. You sit down on your couch, right? A dust cloud of mold pops up essentially, if you can visualize that. It's going to get in your breathing zone. It's going to enter the body. Also, we have HVAC concerns. So, now, again, it's in your environment, the AC kicks on, the AC is sucking air up, right? 

[00:28:47] Some of that air is going to have more than it. Again, it's going to now get into the coil. The coil constantly condensates. So, what that means is the coil is pretty much always wet, perfect environment for mold to grow. So, your mold that was just on your couch gets aerosolized, gets into the HVAC system, the HVAC system now becomes a mold factory, and here we are.

[00:29:09]Luke Storey:  Brutal.

[00:29:10]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[00:29:11]Luke Storey:  Is there any difference between temperatures? 

[00:29:16]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[00:29:16]Luke Storey:  So, like if you got those spores in your system, is it going to grow faster if you're blowing heat than AC or vice versa? Does it matter or even just in the climate that you live? I mean, I mentioned Arizona, it's hot as hell and they have tons of mold. Does that matter or is it all really about the moisture?

[00:29:33]Michael Rubino:  It's really about moisture and humidity. It's not so much about temperature. But the key with temperature is, again, people don't realize, temperature differentials create condensation. So, if it's super cold outside, super hot inside, and you don't have good insulation, you can have condensation developing. I'm sure people have seen this all the time, like where it's really warm inside and really cold outside, and there's like a frost developing on the window, right? And that's that moisture basically condensating, that can create, again, a wet environment, especially if that condensation gets into your wall cavities, now, you have wet walls, right? These are all problems to consider when actually looking at temperatures. It's really the temperature differentials.

[00:30:13]Luke Storey:  Interesting. Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. So, I'm thinking about also that frost on the windows goes the other way, too, right?

[00:30:21]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[00:30:22]Luke Storey:  That's wild, man. Okay. Let me see. Where do I want to go with this? Okay. So, testing. You could walk through your house and just visually check, we determined that that's going to suck, because it's microscopic and it's invisible in many cases, but still could have harmful effects on your health. So, part of the thing that I did when I moved in here was get that mold inspection, hired what I thought was a pretty fancy company, that I knew something, I knew that I wanted a place that did like swab tests, not just testing the air inside and outside. I mean, I kind of had that together, but it was pretty expensive. I think it was like a couple grand to get the inspection.

[00:31:08] And they did all kinds of different samples, and then apparently sent them back to a lab. And then, I got the report, which said, these are the types of mold that we found. These are the areas that they were, with photos and all of that stuff. But I'm guessing based on my limited experience that there could be a huge differential between how one testing company does it and another. So, when people are shopping around like hearing this, going, oh, shit, I better check my house for mold, or I'm building, or just about to buy, or rent, or whatever, what do people want to look for in terms of having their home inspected? Because we definitely can't rely on ourselves to do it.

[00:31:45]Michael Rubino:  Now, I'm glad you brought that up, because as you know, there's a massive disparity just between this industry and professionals in it, like period. A mold inspection should look a lot like a home inspection when you're buying a house. I think if you've ever been in that position, a guy's in there for like four or five hours looking at every nook and cranny of that house. Mold inspection should be done the same way.

[00:32:07] It shouldn't just be this guy who comes in for 15 minutes, takes one air sample in the middle of the house, and goes, yeah, you're all good here, because you're going to get this false sense of security thinking the house is perfect only to move in and find potential problems later after you've already closed. That's anyone's worst nightmare. And I wouldn't say a lot of our clients, but I've dealt with a lot of people that have been in that predicament.

[00:32:27] And it's really disheartening to kind of shell out every dollar you have on buying a house, and then, boom, you don't really even have the funds to remediate. So, I would say, definitely make sure you hire a good inspector, someone that's going to be there for hours, really looking out for your best interests. And they should do an array of testing. Do I think that air is completely obsolete? No. If you know how to do it right, I think it could be useful, but doing it right does not mean you're doing it in the middle of a room. 

[00:32:58] Swab testing is important, too, if you see like a water damage stain, kind of like what we saw under your kitchen sink, again, the naked eye, you would think, ah, it's just a little bit of water damage, right? Swabbing that area to see if it is a problem is a good idea. But there are also different types of testing that's a little bit more on the progressive side, kind of more into the realm of where we need to go as a culture, and that's MSQ PCR testing, which is a big name brand, if you will, is called ERMI, which was developed by the EPA, HERTSMI, there's EMMA. There's a couple of different variations, but MSQ PCR is a technology that it's developed off of. 

[00:33:36]Luke Storey:  And it's more accurate than the other PCR test, I'm hoping?

[00:33:39]Michael Rubino:  Yeah. Well, what it does-

[00:33:42]Luke Storey:  I couldn't resist.

[00:33:43]Michael Rubino:  Yeah. What it does, it basically gives you like the DNA of what's there. So, if you have, let's say, five spores of Stachybotrys in your environment and 100 spores of Cladosporium, it's going to tell you that. And so, what it does is actually to test the dust. The limitations of it obviously are we don't know if that Cladosporium was from 10 years ago or if it was from yesterday. So, it tells you how contaminated the space is, which is good data to have, but it doesn't tell you where it came from.

[00:34:11] So, you have to do that in conjunction with actual source testing, as I call it, which is kind of the testing required to identify where the problem areas are that need to be remediated. You also can test for mycotoxins, which is another, again, it's produced by mold. And especially if you're someone who's immunocompromised, I think it's really good to understand, because you can actually do similar testing too on the medical side to see if it's in your body as well. So, if it correlates with your house, odds are you know that your house is causing you adverse health reactions.

[00:34:44]Luke Storey:  Oh, so you can actually get your body tested for mycotoxins? 

[00:34:46]Michael Rubino:  You can.

[00:34:50]Luke Storey:  So, you've got the mold itself. You've got the mold spores, like its seeds essentially. And then, is the mycotoxin the waste matter of the mold or like why do they produce mycotoxins?

[00:35:05]Michael Rubino:  So, it's just a self-defense mechanism for whatever reason it feels threatened. It could be EMFs. Maybe you had a remediation done, but they didn't fully remove everything. And throughout that remediation, mold produces mycotoxins. Maybe mold started to dry out, got brittle. And again, as a self-defense mechanism, it starts producing toxins. There's a lot of different ways that mycotoxins can be produced and only certain species produce it.

[00:35:33] It's a good idea to test for it in that regard, so you can understand if that's something that you have to deal with, because there's a whole thing to do with dealing with that. And you're talking about fabric. You have to get rid of fabric, because in most cases, you're not going to remove mycotoxins from it. Mycotoxins kind of act as a chemical residue. If you look under a microscope, it kind of looks like black tar. It's like a sticky residue. So, if you think about that, it's going to be kind of hard to get rid of that from fabric that soaks it up like a sponge.

[00:36:01]Luke Storey:  So, this is what you hear about, if someone has mold infestation and they have to get rid of all their furniture, all their clothes, all the rugs, like they literally just have to dump every single thing in their entire house and just trash it.

[00:36:13]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, that's typically one of the protocols if you have mycotoxins, you're very minimalist at that point to make sure you get rid of everything. 

[00:36:19]Luke Storey:  But not necessarily with other types of mold that don't produce mycotoxins. You could get away with remediation, and salvage your personal belongings and stuff?

[00:36:29]Michael Rubino:  You definitely have a better chance of success with that. Think about it like looking at this couch, for instance, right? Mold spores, as we know, they're microscopic. If they get embedded into these fibers, I mean, even with a vacuum, you may not fully get rid of every mold spore that could potentially be here. So, you're going to want to really understand a range of sensitivity. Every individual is going to be different. So, if you know you're really reactive to mold, you're going to want to air on the side of caution as much as possible.

[00:36:57] At that point, you're making lifestyle changes, right? You're going to go with leather products as opposed to fabric. You're going to have as minimal carpeting as possible. And you're really going to kind of like live with that in mind. Anything that you can clean, anything that's like non-porous that can be cleaned and disinfected properly, you're going to want to kind of lean more towards that direction when you're buying furniture and things like that to kind of live that minimalist lifestyle.

[00:37:21]Luke Storey:  Wow. That's interesting. And I've known so many people that have mysterious health problems, and they go down the rabbit hole of being misdiagnosed, and trying all these different lifestyle changes, and supplements, and things like that. And then, eventually way, way, way down the road, find out that they were exposed to mold, and also, that they happen to be particularly sensitive to it. So, like with a functional medicine doctor or something like that, how does one even test if they've been exposed to mold? And if they are, if they would be considered sensitive or just a normal person?

[00:37:58]Michael Rubino:  The only way to really know if you're sensitive is to really find out if you're sensitive. And unfortunately, it's kind of, usually, you find out the hard way.

[00:38:06]Luke Storey:  So, based on symptoms? 

[00:38:08]Michael Rubino:  Based on symptoms. Like once you identify that mold is the problem, and you know you get rid of mold, and you move out of that environment, because typically, when you're doing a remediation, you're walking away from your home while it's being remediated. You're going into a safe space where you can heal. And usually, you're meeting with someone like a functional medicine doctor to put you on some sort of program to help detoxify. Now, there are certain people that have this HLA-DR gene where they literally just cannot methylate and detoxify properly at all.

[00:38:38] And so, they just get this constant buildup of toxins from being in a toxic environment that they're not able to detoxify. So, they absolutely have no choice but to vacate, perform remediation. And while they're in a healthy space, definitely detoxify with some sort of program, because for those types of individuals, I mean, most people can detoxify and even someone who's sensitive, your detoxifying maybe slower than the average person who's not impacted, but there is a subset of the population that just can't detoxify at all. And that's really where it becomes a major, major problem.

[00:39:16]Luke Storey:  So, someone's starting to have autoimmune-type symptoms or just mysterious stuff, are there standardized tests that doctors use, functional medicine doctors, et cetera, that can say, yeah, you've got mycotoxins in your blood, or we found mold on your skin, or how do they even know if that's what it is that seems to be troubling you?

[00:39:32]Michael Rubino:  Well, it has to be a doctor that's kind of mold-literate than those that tests for mycotoxins, because if you go to a doctor and you just say, I'm not feeling well, odds are, the doctor is going to be like, okay, well, are you depressed or do you have anxiety? That's like the first go-to thing, right? When they can't figure out what's wrong with you, they just immediately think like, oh, this must be like a psychological thing. For me, I speak to these people every single day, right? 

[00:39:59] And so, I know it's not psychological. I know that this is real. They're really having these impacts and it's a shame that they have to sometimes go through six or seven doctors to finally find someone that can help them. And that's what's really disheartening about kind of the state that we're in. I look at it as like when we smoke cigarettes, it took us like 50 years for like, yeah, cigarettes are bad. We're going to stop smoking cigarettes. We're kind of like in year 20 of this whole 50-year cycle, if you will, with mold.

[00:40:27] And so, yeah, we're definitely more aware than we've ever been, but at the same time, if you can go to a doctor, and have moldlike symptoms, and you're complaining about things, and they're trying all these batteries of tests to figure out what it is, and everything's coming up like, I don't know what's wrong with you, wouldn't you check mold? I mean, think about it. The average person takes 20,000 breaths per day, that's 20,000 potential times where you can have contamination enter the body. I mean, we consume air more than we consume anything else every single day, but we never look at air.

[00:41:05]Luke Storey:  There's an interesting correlation between EMF that comes to mind, in that when you look back on, we're talking about this earlier, doctors smoking cigarettes, building buildings with asbestos, I mean, on, and on, and on, spraying DDT on little kids so flies don't land on them, whatever, right? As we look back, and we're like, oh, my God, humans were such idiots. I can't believe they did X, Y, and Z. I always think about EMF that same way, when I'm driving around, and I see a cell tower next to somebody's bedroom, and I just go, oh, my God, in 100 years or whenever it is, hopefully, sooner than that, we're going to look back, and go, wow, how could we have been so dumb?

[00:41:43] But I think with the EMF issue, it's a bit tougher and perhaps slower than mold, because you have an entire industry, the telecommunication industry, right? And military, for that matter, that depends on wireless communications, right? And we've all become accustomed to it, but there's such a monetary incentive to suppress information, public knowledge around EMF, right? If I own a gas station, and you're AT&T, and you want to come put a cell tower on my roof, I might not think it's a great idea, but if you're going to pay me a couple grand a month to put it there, yeah, okay, right? 

[00:42:20]Michael Rubino:  Right. 

[00:42:20]Luke Storey:  So, there's like so many people getting paid, whereas with—so anyone that speaks out against it is going to be labeled a 5G conspiracy theorist or whatever. There's going to be a lot of pushback from getting that out and incentive from the people that are behind it to hide the things they know, like the tobacco industry, famously, right? But with Mold, it doesn't seem like there's anyone really to benefit from suppressing the information publicly about the health risks. Do you think that it's going to become more ubiquitous in terms of public awareness or are there hidden players behind the scenes that don't want us to know about mold because they're making money from hiding it?

[00:43:05]Michael Rubino:  Good question. I think insurance companies definitely stand to lose if there's more awareness surrounding mold. Remember, I asked you earlier, hey, did you check your insurance policy and see what your mold coverage is?

[00:43:18]Luke Storey:  Totally.

[00:43:18]Michael Rubino:  You're like, I have no idea. Odds are when you bought your house, you called your broker, probably was a good recommendation, you call this guy, like, hey, let me get some home insurance, he's like, no problem. And you're like, it's all done. They'll probably ask you some questions like, what year is the house built? And what's your roof material made out of? But like very simple, basic question. Did they want to ask you, how much more do you want?

[00:43:44]Luke Storey:  No, not at all. It wasn't even in the conversation, which is why I was nervous, because, well, I guess I'm getting rid of it at the outset, but I was nervous once I found that out. But yeah, I don't even know if it's in my policy. I have to look. 

[00:43:58]Michael Rubino:  I mean, I don't know the laws in Texas off the top of my head, but it may not even be in your policy at all, where you need to like call and add an addendum to your policy to get it. But typically, like most states have like a 10,000-dollar like minimum. And that's just kind of what when you call and get it, because no one specifically asked for more, they just throw you in a 10,000. Actually, you've had some quotes on remediation before we sat down.

[00:44:22]Luke Storey:  Yeah, the remediation quote was bizarre, because they're like, it'll be between at least 15,000, but it could be as high as 30. I'm like, that's a pretty wide spread. So, it's either half or full, you know what I mean? I was just like, ah, okay, we've got to figure something out that's a bit more specific. But to their credit, I didn't have the actual protocol from the inspection, I just had the findings of the inspection. So, they said they could narrow it down. But I was like, yo, we're starting at $15,000? Homie wants to buy some furniture in this place, not trying to like clean under the kitchen sink for $15,000. I want to do something fun, but yeah, it was shocking.

[00:45:04]Michael Rubino:  So, more than 10.

[00:45:05]Luke Storey:  Yeah, right. So, say I already lived here, and then discovered that I had mold, because my health went awry or something like that, I'm now bummed, say it does go up to $30,000 and my insurance only covers 10, I'm out of pocket for $20,000 plus any loss of livelihood or well-being that has so ensued from the damage caused by the mold physically. 

[00:45:27]Michael Rubino:  Yeah. Typically, a lot of these doctors that you have to go to for treatments, the insurance companies don't want to cover those treatments.

[00:45:34]Luke Storey:  Yeah, most of the good doctors aren't covered.

[00:45:37]Michael Rubino:  So, it's kind of a sham in that regard. Now, insurance companies, again, we all become aware, we start calling all these companies, and say, no, give me like $100,000 worth of coverage. And they're like, oh, it's only $14 more a month. Okay. Yeah, I'll have that, believe me. That's when things start changing and they start losing money on these claims. The only reason that they're winning right now is because anything that happens, they know they're really only tied to 10 grand. And so, times up by how many millions of people and you're really seeing how much they're mitigating losses by putting this kind of chokeholds on you and you're not even aware of it.

[00:46:12]Luke Storey:  But thankfully, I mean, I guess it depends how high up the pyramid you go, but the insurance industry, by and large, is not in control of the media industry, whereas the telecommunications companies are often tied in, if not direct owners of a TV network or something like that, right? So, getting damaging information out about EMF exposure and the telecommunications infrastructure is going to be much harder and fought against with much more determination than the insurance companies trying to hide the mold issue from people. So, basically, what they're doing is just, let's keep the maximum low so that if people do have claims, at least we're not going to have to pay the whole thing. If your remediation is $30,000, they'll have to pay 10. But luckily, they're not like censoring the internet, like making sure people don't find out about mold and whatnot, right?

[00:47:10]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, I don't think that there's that much. I mean, we know that there's some lobbying going on. We know that CDC has walked back some claims in 2001 based upon studies they did in the '80s and '90s that said, hey, mold is not great for our health. And now, all of a sudden, and it hasn't changed since 2001, it's still right on the CDC website, basically, well, some people can be allergic to mold. And so, for those people, it could cause some concern.

[00:47:37]Luke Storey:  Wow. God. Up until this moment, I trusted the CDC implicitly. That's shocking.

[00:47:43]Michael Rubino:  The power of lobbying, of course. 

[00:47:45]Luke Storey:  Right. So, insurance companies lobby CDC to kind of put the kibosh on the harshness of the situation.

[00:47:55]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, I mean, it's public record. You can see which companies are donating to which platforms. And it's all right there.

[00:48:04]Luke Storey:  Interesting.

[00:48:06]Michael Rubino:  You would never think, why would insurance companies want to lobby politicians? You would never think that they would, but they're giving millions away to them.

[00:48:12]Luke Storey:  Oh, man. I love having a podcast. I always like count my blessings, because you never know when someone like me could be disappeared from the internet for talking about forbidden topics. Hopefully, mold is still somewhat safe. Let's talk about some of the health issues. So, someone's listening to this show, and they're like, well, I feel great. Who cares? Like I'm not worried about it. And I don't want people to worry, but I want people to hopefully have some awareness around this.

[00:48:42] Maybe one of your relatives is ill, and they can't figure it out, and they've never even heard of mold, they think it's something that happens on your bread and that's it. And someone listening might be able to go, oh, those symptoms sound familiar? So, what are some of the things that mold do to you, or some of the symptoms, or even some of the co-infections, how it relates to Lyme, or autoimmune, or things down the road that someone could unfortunately have happen if they do get acute and long-term exposure?

[00:49:11]Michael Rubino:  Yes, I think if I were to survey my clients, that probably, the number one response I would get would be brain fog. I think that's kind of one of the clear symptoms that everyone seems to kind of correlate with. They have brain fog and other cognitive difficulties. I've talked to clients that have like severe slurred speech when they're in that environment. And unfortunately, when you're going through remediation, even though you know it's like, hey, you need to just like walk away and let the professionals do it, you have this like sense of urgency to protect your stuff, right? 

[00:49:47] You keep going in there for your favorite flip flops and you can't stay away. And it's like, I've seen people really just get debilitated with that. And there was one client in particular. I mean, like when you talk to her, she had, I mean, just standard American accent. And then, when you talk to her when she was like really going through a fit, she actually had like almost like a Japanese accent. It was the strangest thing. And that's when I knew.

[00:50:16] And I would ask her, did you go to the house today? And she's like, yes. I'm like, you got to stay away. I've seen some really, really strange things. The other thing that's pretty common is like skin rashes, like unexplainable like skin issues, rashes, hives, things like that, allergylike symptoms where you literally just—I personally think seasonal allergies don't exist. I think it's an environment that's impacting our bodies. 

[00:50:42]Luke Storey:  Really? 

[00:50:43]Michael Rubino:  It happens when pollen is in season, right? We have all that particulate that's entering our body. If you go on American Lung Association, CDC, EPA, they all talk about particulate matter, and pollution, and climate change, and all these other things. And you look at particulate matter, anything smaller than 10 micrometers, which mold happens to be, by the way, that gets into the body, it literally passes right through the respiratory tract and enters the bloodstream, which it says right on there on all three websites, that's the biggest health risk, is smaller particulate that can pass right through into the bloodstream. Mold happens to be that.

[00:51:20] So, if we're going back to saying, well, mold is really not that big of a deal, then based upon the particulate size, it is, right? So, again, when you have allergies, my professional opinion, I think that you're having these times where there's higher counts of particulate matter, whether it's indoors or outdoors, it's getting into the body and causing you these allergylike symptoms. So, if people talk about seasonal allergies, they're always like, yeah, it's in the summer, in the winter, right? And I'm always like, oh, yeah. So, you mean when you switch to air conditioning from heating, and when you switch from heating to air conditioning? Right?

[00:51:54]Luke Storey:  Oh, snap.

[00:51:55]Michael Rubino:  So, it's like as you're switching gears, again, when you're passing through the coil in the AC in the summer, especially when you're in a climate like the Northeast, or I guess the North, really, in general, you have the coil that's constantly condensating in the summertime, and then it basically just like slowly but surely dries out, and then you switch to heat, and now, again, it's pumping right through, and again, circulating that air again. It's just basically, you're having periods of rest, and then unrest with all this particulate matter entering the body. So, that's my professional opinion on what I think seasonal allergies really is. I think it has to do with the particulate matter.

[00:52:39]Luke Storey:  That's very interesting. I've never heard that. I like it when I do a show and I hear a lot of things I've ever heard. We're up to probably 100 things so far that like, oh, shit, I thought I knew some stuff. Wow. That's wild. Yeah, I'm not someone who, that I'm aware of, has suffered from allergies, but one thing I have noticed is traveling sometimes. If I walk into a hotel room and it smells kind of musty, if I'm there a few days, my joints will start killing me.

[00:53:04] I'll start having like, wait, I mean, I always have back pain, unfortunately, but it'll get a lot worse. My elbows will start hurting. Just weird stuff. And I've always thought, I bet those rooms are moldy, because after a few years of awareness of that, it's like I don't want to psychosomatically create sore joints, because I smell must, so it's hard with the nocebo effect. But is there a correlation there with mold exposure in like body pains, and aches, and things?

[00:53:29]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, muscle cramps, joint pains, body aches, all of that. I mean, you can get fever, and chills, and things like that for mold. And then, you have the array of mycotoxin exposure symptoms as well. I mean, there are certain mycotoxins that are known to be carcinogenic, cancer-causing. I don't want to jump down rabbit holes, but I've definitely seen some interesting studies correlating between cancer, not just lung cancer either, because you would think lung cancer, respiratory, but skin cancer and other cancers correlated with mold exposure due to the fact that there was mycotoxins present.

[00:54:08]Luke Storey:  Oh, wow. So, the mold's bad, but it's definitely like a double whammy if you got the type of mole that produces mycotoxins. You're totally screwed. On the note of mycotoxins, what do you think about the idea that much of the world's coffee supply has mycotoxins? When Dave Asprey came out with Bulletproof Coffee, I got so paranoid, I wouldn't drink any other coffee. And then, a few other companies came along that said, we also test for mycotoxins. So, do you think that's as big of a deal as it's made out to be or is it just a great way to sell out a coffee?

[00:54:44]Michael Rubino:  No, I think it's actually awesome. I mean, when Dave Asprey came out with Bulletproof Coffee, you don't understand like the level of excitement that I had.

[00:54:52]Luke Storey:  So, did you know about that issue already?

[00:54:54]Michael Rubino:  You know what, I did.

[00:54:55]Luke Storey:  Or you just knew about mycotoxins?

[00:54:56]Michael Rubino:  I knew about mycotoxins, right? I didn't know specifically that coffee was an issue. And then, obviously, it was kind of one of those things, where I was like, as he first uttered those words, I'm like, well, duh, they get stored in like dark, humid containers, right? I was just like, wow, yeah, that makes a lot of sense. And I drink coffee all the time and I literally remove mycotoxins from people's homes, why am I not drinking this coffee right now? 

[00:55:22] And it was just like, it was one of those things—I mean, I love the guy for creating this awareness of mycotoxins. It's in coffee. I'm trying to create that same awareness of it being in your home, impacting you on a higher level than how many cups a day of coffee you drink. But it's just cool to have that awareness that that popped up at a time where I'm really researching and developing techniques to remove things from people's homes.

[00:55:48]Luke Storey:  Cool. Yeah. He also did a documentary some years ago called Moldy. I don't know if you ever saw that.

[00:55:54]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[00:55:54]Luke Storey:  And it's funny, because he already had a pretty big name at that point, but I didn't really hear much—I mean, it wasn't an amazing documentary or something. It was just, gives you kind of enough information to go, oh, I should pay attention to that. But I kind of thought, I remember at the time, that that would have got more traction and been like a bigger splash in the health community at least. But it kind of was talked about, and then just sort of faded away. 

[00:56:17] But in this conversation with you, I'm realizing, this is even way more serious than I thought, even before we had this conversation. I'm like, holy shit, especially the microscopic thing, because that, to me, it's just like if I smell mold, then I get a little nervous. If I see it, I definitely don't go near it. But I would never go into a place, and just think, oh, there's probably mold in here that I can't see, you know what I mean? So, it's pretty tricky, this one.

[00:56:43]Michael Rubino:  It's kind of like COVID, right? You can't see it. So, it's this like silent, deadly killer that just makes people lose their mind over it. And mold, really, it's no different in that regard, where it's silent, you don't see it. And by the time you see it, it's already way too late, right? And so, I think it's one of those things where a lot of people are just like, ah, I don't really believe in it. I can see it. When I see it, I just kind of paint over it or we've been throwing bleach on it forever, so why not still throw bleach on it, even though it's been debunked that it's not an effective method?

[00:57:20]Luke Storey:  Hey, in terms of size, I don't know if you happen to know this, but with a mycotoxin, or a molds, or some sort of toxin from mold, in terms of size, would it be larger or smaller than a virus?

[00:57:35]Michael Rubino:  Well, the virus is going to be the smallest. So, you have virus, bacteria, mold, allergens, toxins, et cetera. 

[00:57:42]Luke Storey:  Okay. And do the masks that we find people wearing, these little blue, formaldehyde-sprayed, toxic, blue masks that cut off your oxygen supply, would those help you at all, if you had to deal with mold inside the house? Like say you just found a little bit in your shower and you wanted to scrub it off or something, I mean, would it do you any good to put on a little mask if you're around mold or does it just go right through it like a virus does?

[00:58:09]Michael Rubino:  Not at all. I mean, you could smell mold through one of those masks. Yeah, they're not.

[00:58:13]Luke Storey:  Yeah, so just pointless.

[00:58:14]Michael Rubino:  So, when we work, we have to wear like an N95 respirator, which is actually proven to stop 0.01 micrometers in size, which is just a touch below what a mold spore would be. The virus would be much smaller than that.

[00:58:30]Luke Storey:  And so, it would pass through a mask theoretically, easier than a mold spore even.

[00:58:35]Michael Rubino:  Well, because the virus is much smaller, so yeah, in theory, it passes through. The only science behind like wearing masks in the prevention is the actual liquid particles. Like if you sneeze, you're going to have these liquid particles that get aerosolized, those liquid particles are going to be larger and the mask will stop that. 

[00:58:54]Luke Storey:  Interesting point.

[00:58:55]Michael Rubino:  So, it will stop virus particles, because you're going to have, I don't know, I think there's a thousand virus particles or something like that inside one droplet, so yeah, you're going to stop some virus particles, but you're not stopping it completely.

[00:59:10]Luke Storey:  Okay. A little off topic there just because I'm a smartass, I couldn't help throwing that in there. People that listen to this show will understand why. Okay. So, we've discovered what causes it, building practices, the types of things that need to be done in order to test for it, some of the health implications, I guess I'd like to talk about some of the remediation practices. So, if you find someone to come do an inspection on your home, great, but then you find the mold, what do you do about it? How do we get it out, which is what I'm about to undergo here?

[00:59:50]Michael Rubino:  The first thing is getting the testing done. And testing obviously can vary in terms of expense. You said you paid a couple grand for it. 

[01:00:00]Luke Storey:  Yeah. And I think you said I overpaid.

[01:00:03]Michael Rubino:  Well, I think you overpaid for what you got, in my opinion. I've seen testing costs upwards of $10,000. Just so you understand, there are certain tests that you do that are more expensive than others and they have to pay the lab for each sample. So, the larger the home, odds are, you're going to have more samples that need to be taken, sent over to the lab, the lab charges for them. So, it can really range. But in my opinion, it's super important, right?

[01:00:28] It's like, imagine trying to build a house with no blueprints. There's a reason you pay an architect 5, $10,000 for a set of blueprints, because now, you have a step-by-step plan of how to build this house properly. When you try to remediate mold, if you have a company that's willing to come in, and just willy nilly remediate and not have a plan, to me, that would be unethical, because you don't actually know what it is. 

[01:00:53] At that point, everything is being done on an exploratory basis, which is going to have very little success when you're literally trying to improve somebody's health. So, having that plan is step one. Once you have a plan, someone like me is going to know if it's a good plan or not, because if I get a two-page report from somebody, odds are, I'm going to be like, I'm not getting involved in this.

[01:01:14]Luke Storey:  And is the plan what they call the protocol?

[01:01:16]Michael Rubino:  Yes. 

[01:01:17]Luke Storey:  So, you do inspection, then whoever does the inspection, if you decide to move forward, you pay a little more money and they give you a protocol, then a remediation company fulfills the protocol. Is that the gist of it? 

[01:01:30]Michael Rubino:  Yeah. And that was what I had beef with, the fact that they were going to charge you for the protocol.

[01:01:35]Luke Storey:  Yeah, it was like another 700 bucks. 

[01:01:37]Michael Rubino:  I was like, wait a second. What do you mean? That's the whole point of doing the testing. Like you need the protocol to figure out what the action plan is to make it actionable and fix it. So, that was what I was so upset about when you told me about that. But anyways, you get this protocol. Now, someone like me who does the work understands where the mold is and what's going to need to be done to really resolve it. Just because you have a protocol doesn't mean that you have the expertise or knowledge to follow the protocol properly.

[01:02:06]Luke Storey:  Yeah, if you hand me a protocol, I won't know what to do.

[01:02:09]Michael Rubino:  That seems like a very elementary, especially if you've done remediation before, because you're going to be like, yeah, we put up some plastic, we have this machine, right? You know what's interesting, a lot of guys that do remediation don't even know how to use air scrubbers properly, which air scrubbers, if you've ever seen remediation done, typically, they're blue. They don't always have to be blue, but they're these blue machines.

[01:02:28] And what they do is they draw air in. There's typically a pre-filter and a HEPA filter, and then it exhausts the air back out. What you want to do is you want to draw the air into the filter, which is constantly kind of controlling under negative pressure, making sure that inside, that containment, it's not going into other parts of the home. And I was consulting on this project once, it was like one of these failed remediation projects, where the client was like, hey, I feel way worse after remediation, can you check it out?

[01:02:59] We ended up Facetiming, because I was like, I just had a feeling based upon what she was telling me. So, could you Facetime me and kind of show me what's going on around there? She had a machine that was set up outside the containment. Okay. And that was, I guess, just to circulate the air or clean the air. It was under neutral pressure, so there was no exhausting outside. And I guess their theory was to just recirculate the air and clean the air outside the containment.

[01:03:26] They were, in theory, trying to do something nice for the client. They had that set up to the max. Okay. They had another machine inside the containment. Containment basically meaning like a sheet of six-millimeter plastic that's erected to create a microclimate inside the room, where you're remediating and removing the mold there. The machine that was set inside was set halfway. So, let's talk about building pressure for a second. 

[01:03:52] So, that one machine is set halfway, so it's about half pressure, and the machine outside the containment was at full pressure. So, that is sucking more air outside the containment than, negatively, inside the containment. So, what's happening is as they're remediating, the machine outside is literally pulling mold from inside the containment through interstitial cavities because they have the ceiling open. So, it's basically just pulling the mold through the ceiling and bringing it outside the containment towards the rest of the house.

[01:04:18] So, what was the point of the containment, what was the point of the engineering controls if they're not set up properly? So, you have to have that expertise to make sure you know exactly what you're doing now or it looks good to the person that was there, and I was like, miss, you're not feeling well, because they're literally pulling mold into the space that you're in that they're not supposed to be doing. She was, oh, my God, what do I do? You need to call them right away and tell them to turn the one outside halfway and the one inside all the way up.

[01:04:45]Luke Storey:  Wow. And so, let's say your remediation goes sideways like that, because somebody Fs up or is it just worse than it ever was now? Because now, you've got spores all over your damn house instead of just under the kitchen sink.

[01:04:59]Michael Rubino:  To be careful in answering this question, odds are that the environment did already have contamination, but yes, now, it would be much worse, because now, they're drawing more of that into the environment. So, now, what they would have to do to fix that would be to aggressively clean the space outside the contained area to remove the contamination that didn't need to be there in the first place.

[01:05:20]Luke Storey:  Right. And say that you go under my kitchen sink with the sledgehammer right now and just get millions of spores all over this house, but you get it all out of the kitchen sink area, how do you clean it? Provided there's no furniture and belongings, but how would you clean it just off the walls, and in the vents, and on the floor, and everywhere that those spores got?

[01:05:41]Michael Rubino:  So, you're going to use a HEPA vacuum first to just get rid of the debris, because it's going to have a lot of dust and debris. Mold spores are going to bind with that dust and debris. So, you want to generally clean up the major dust and debris first with the HEPA vacuum. You want to vent that vacuum outside like you would the scrubber, again, to create that vacuum under negative pressure in case you have smaller particles that are going to pass right through the filter. 

[01:06:03] The HEPA vacuum, it's important to have a true HEPA vacuum. Don't buy a 50-dollar vacuum at Home Depot, and put a HEPA filter in there, and think you have a HEPA vacuum. That is not the case. HEPA ratings mean that they're well-sealed, right? And on top of having a filtration that traps smaller particles, that seal is very important, because otherwise, as you're vacuuming, it's just getting back into the environment.

[01:06:29] So, you want to HEPA vacuum all the surfaces, and then we use microfiber towels for this next part. Reason being is because any study done on microfiber towels are they're 100 times more effective than any other towel. And we're going to use a botanical disinfectant, apply it to the services of the home to help literally separate mold spores, mycotoxins, et cetera, from the surfaces into the microfiber towel, throwing the towel away.

[01:06:54]Luke Storey:  And so, what you guys do is once someone with your company, what's the name of your company again?

[01:07:00]Michael Rubino:  All American Restoration.

[01:07:01]Luke Storey:  All American Restoration. So, what you guys do then is just the clean up, once someone has an inspection and a protocol, you get that protocol, and go, this makes sense, and then you bring your people in, and they come do this stuff?

[01:07:15]Michael Rubino:  Oh, yeah. And we travel pretty much all over the country. And so, we're just all over the place, wherever we go, wherever we're needed, where someone is really not doing well and needs someone that has a little bit more expertise than the other 50,000 companies out there.

[01:07:30]Luke Storey:  And what do your workers have to wear? Are these in hazmat suits or? 

[01:07:37]Michael Rubino:  Oh, yeah. 

[01:07:37]Luke Storey:  I mean, I'm assuming this is a dangerous ass job if you're going in and basically taking poison out of people's houses. What kind of stuff are they wearing? Do they have to like go into a little room and get sprayed down afterward and stuff or what? 

[01:07:51]Michael Rubino:  You ever see the movie, Outbreak, they look exactly like that, actually. 

[01:07:54]Luke Storey:  Really?

[01:07:55]Michael Rubino:  Well, yeah. So, we just recently bought, well, every one of our guys PAPRs. PAPR is like those hooded helmets that look like spacesuits. The reason being is because when people start growing facial hair, they're not on top of their facial hair. Usually, you have to shave your beard, get a fit test, and it's got to have that suction to really make sure that it's tight against your skin. 

[01:08:19] So, instead of having quality control on, hey, did you shave your beard today, or is there a stubble, you can't come to work today, we decided we're just going to go to PAPRs so that these guys can live their lives and not have to worry about, crap, did I forget my razor on this trip and running around worrying about that? Now, they have a full PAPR. Also, with mycotoxins, again, mycotoxin is such an interesting topic, but we don't really know if they can get through the filter, because the filter is really made for a particulate.

[01:08:52] And technically, mycotoxins are really not a particulate. They could be more of an organic vapor. It's really like a chemical residue. And so, we're concerned about that, too. So, we're like, PAPR is the best option to make sure that our staff is well-protected. So, they literally wear these hooded suits now. And then, underneath that, you have basically full-on Tyvek. I mean, it looks like, you ever see like a cop show where people are cleaning up bodies afterwards? I mean, that's what these guys look like when they enter, they start working, and really exposing themselves to this.

[01:09:31]Luke Storey:  Is this common practice for other people to do remediation? Does everyone go that hardcore or they're just showing up in overalls and a little cheesy mask?

[01:09:40]Michael Rubino:  I mean, I've seen people like not even wearing suits, and just have like the paper mask, and it's like, whoa, not the right stuff to wear.

[01:09:47]Luke Storey:  Wow. Damn.

[01:09:49]Michael Rubino:  So, they should be.

[01:09:51]Luke Storey:  So, you're sealing off the area. You got this HVAC that's sucking everything out of the air. People are in a hazmat-type suit, then once it's all out of the home, you're pretty much good to go as long as you really are mindful about leaks and the humidity levels?

[01:10:10]Michael Rubino:  Sure. Yeah. So, after, you would post-test to make sure that it's fully gone. I mean, we're really good, but we can't see microscopic particles, so you still need to test and make sure that it's fully gone, so that you don't have this environment where it's easy to grow. You also have to correct the water intrusion or the opportunity that will allow mold to grow and colonize in the first place. So, if your roof leaked, you should repair your roof before you call me, because I can't do anything unless your roof is fixed, things like that.

[01:10:40] You always want to make sure. We do a lot of crawlspaces, basements, attics, where we're looking for issues where water is getting in, whether it's too much humidity, whether it's just moisture coming in through hydrostatic pressure, we're actually going in figuring out what's going on and correcting those issues as part of the overall remediation. So, sometimes, if people are looking like comparatively from our company to another company, their first instinct might be like, well, this company is more expensive.

[01:11:09] But like we've had clients that have seen the difference. Like if they've actually read the scopes of work, and side by side, they're like, oh, you're doing all of that for this? Yes. Oh, that makes sense. Yeah. So, you got to you've got to realize, I mean, if you just do one of those three things that I touched on earlier, which is correct the water intrusion, remove the source, and then clean up the contamination. If you only do one of those things, you haven't solved the full problem, and you're still going to have an environment that's going to impact your health.

[01:11:38] So, it's important you got to do all three of those things. And most remediation companies. Like if you go and take your three-day mold class, or in Texas, I think it's five days, which is amazing, at least two more days. You're not going to learn everything in three to five days, obviously, but when you're sitting there, they only tell you like, yeah, build these tents, and put these machines in, and remove the drywall, and spray it with biocide.

[01:12:03] They're not really touching on all those three things. And I think the whole industry is so far behind where it needs to be that I mean, it still shocks me every day. It's like, how am I one of the voices of reason here? Just a guy who grew up in construction his whole life and have literally seen the same things that our entire society has, has been like turning on this light bulb, saying we need to change.

[01:12:26]Luke Storey:  How did you get into this game anyway?

[01:12:28]Michael Rubino:  So, since I'm pretty much five years old, my dad's been a general contractor.

[01:12:33]Luke Storey:  Oh, interesting. That's why I was like, damn, this guy has good ideas when we did the walkthrough today. You're like, well, you could take that wall out, do this beam. I was like, how does this dude know this, man? I guess, mold gets everywhere. That's something else.

[01:12:44]Michael Rubino:  I mean, I've taken apart and put back together so many different buildings, so many different structures, it's just like kind of second nature to me now. I mean, I think I told you, actually, I've never bought a real house that wasn't a foreclosure that I didn't fix myself just because it's like, I know I'm going to have to remediate anyway, I might as well get it bottom of the market and fix it up myself. And then, a part of that experience, I've been designing my own houses with just like putting things together, so I started getting like that Martha Stewart eye with it as well. And so, on top of the mold and the construction background that I gained from being around my dad my entire life, it just really makes me a well-rounded construction guy.

[01:13:29]Luke Storey:  And then, what about the book? Tell us about The Mold Medic, and then we'll get out of here.

[01:13:32]Michael Rubino:  Yes. So, I wrote The Mold Medic, because it was one of those things where I'm like, am I going to solve this problem one house at a time or am I going to solve this problem getting the information out there? And so, I started realizing, I needed the book. I needed to get that information out into other people's hands, so that when you're reading the book, it's kind of like this awakening, like, oh, my God. Yeah. Duh, yeah, why haven't I been thinking about this all along?

[01:13:55] And the idea is like there are 50,000 restoration companies out there, I can't be the only one doing things the right way, I need other people to kind of wake up and start doing things the right way as well. And that's when I started really going down that path of, I need to educate. I need to start creating my own licensing, certification process to really teach other businesses how to do this. And then, if I can solve the problem and not have to do what I do for a living anymore, but help solve the problem, I think I would be just over the moon excited to be able to accomplish that, and then I can focus on, what's the next problem? Maybe we tackle EMFs together.

[01:14:33]Luke Storey:  Oh, my God. Please.

[01:14:34]Michael Rubino:  I think that's the next problem.

[01:14:35]Luke Storey:  Seriously. Well, I guess I'm 50% in luck here, because this house has great low EMF, but it has the mold. But imagine, dude, like these conversations don't happen, right? And someone moves into a house or apartment that is high EMF and high mold, I mean, you're screwed, especially if you're a sensitive type like myself and kind of a canary in a coal mine. I mean, a lot of people, they don't seem to be bothered by any of this stuff, really, but most people that I know that are pretty in tune with their body notice changes like that.

[01:15:08] And I think so many people out there are probably sick from one of those two things that just have no idea. They're working out, they're eating organic, they're doing all the right things, and they just cannot get well. It's crazy. So, thank you for your commitment to the work and for doing it right. And thank you for giving me some tips today with my contractor and making sure they don't not only poison me and the fam here, but their workers. You know what I mean?

[01:15:32]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, totally.

[01:15:33]Luke Storey:  Because I'm like, A, I don't want someone to come in and do mold remediation wrong, because I don't want my house screwed up, but I also don't want workers getting sick either. And yeah, I appreciate your time, and energy, and expertise, and commitment to getting this message out in the way that you are, man. It's very cool. It's kind of a bit of a niche topic, which I think is why I haven't covered it. And I was waiting on someone that could really break it down in an easy to digest way. So, thank you for being that guy.

[01:16:00]Michael Rubino:  Oh, well, thank you for having me. I really appreciate that. And yeah, definitely, as you see, it's a much needed message to get out there.

[01:16:05]Luke Storey:  Yeah, for real. For real. What's the last thing? Maybe I have mold exposure. I had brain fog. The last thing is I want your recommendations for three teachers or teachings that have influenced your life in any way you want. 

[01:16:20]Michael Rubino:  Three teachers or teachings that have influenced my life. That's a really good question and no one's ever asked me that. Wow. Well, I'd say, definitely my dad. I think without my dad, I mean, I wouldn't be here, and not just because of that whole thing, but just being around construction my entire life. I mean, there's no way that I would have the knowledge that I have today. So, he's definitely teacher number one. Teacher number two, hmm, oh, there was this woman, her name is Dr. Ferguson, in high school. She didn't really think I would really ever amount to anything. And so, I think just wanted to say thank you to her.

[01:17:04]Luke Storey:  Every teacher I ever had said that. I get it.

[01:17:06]Michael Rubino:  I was a clown in high school. And so, like I think kind of just when I finally was ready to grow up, I always had that seed planted in the back of my mind and it definitely made me realize that whatever I do in this world, I want to do good and help others. And it just kind of fell into this niche and pathway. And that was pretty cool. And we'll see, the last third teaching is. Rich Dad Poor Dad, the book. 

[01:17:37]Luke Storey:  Amazing. 

[01:17:38]Michael Rubino:  I mean, like, really opened my eyes to finances and I think I may not have a company today if I had not read that book.

[01:17:49]Luke Storey:  Same here, actually. 

[01:17:50]Michael Rubino:  It really puts things into perspective of how to really get assets and on the balance sheet. I mean, we've grown tremendously in size year over year since we started. And having to manage money going in and out was a really crucial experience that I've had to learn through. And I think reading that book, believe it or not, has really been helping me.

[01:18:13]Luke Storey:  Yeah. Robert Kiyosaki, I forgot about that book. And I don't think anyone else has ever mentioned that. Sometimes, there are repeats. There's the odd Jesus, and Eckhart Tolle or something like that, but I think you're the first Kiyosaki, so congratulations. One thing I did want to ask you, though, normally I cut it right there, but I just had a thought that might benefit people, would you have any recommendations for people that are dealing with mold-related illness in terms of some of the great authors, thought leaders, doctors? If someone's like, okay, I fixed my house or I moved out of that house, but now, I'm sick for mold. Like where could they go to find someone really badass to actually fix their health?

[01:18:55]Michael Rubino:  There's a lot of really good doctors out there in all different parts of the country. I think it depends where they live. I love Instagram these days. Like Instagram seems to be the platform where a lot of mold-aware doctors are really growing an organic following, where they're really posting really amazing tips every day about how to detox, what to eat, all these lifestyle changes that are going to help improve.

[01:19:19] There's Dr. Jess, Dr. Tania Dempsey, Dr. Jill Crista's really good, and her book, Breaking the Mold, is an amazing book. Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker is kind of, I think they call them the Mold God or something like that, because he was one of the first functional medicine doctors to really kind of mainstream, get into the mainstream on this. Dr. Tania Dempsey, if I ever mentioned her already, she's an amazing dude in the Northeast. I mean, there's so many to name all of them, but those are the few that come up.

[01:19:53]Luke Storey:  That's great. I thought you'd maybe throw out two, so that's good. And we put all this stuff in the show notes, so people listening can actually, on the app, just go down and click on these books and doctors, because I always want to leave people with a sense of hope, and not just like, oh, my God, I bet my house is killing me. You know what I mean? 

[01:20:09]Michael Rubino:  Yeah.

[01:20:10]Luke Storey:  Which it might be, but now, we know how to fix it. We know how to find some great experts to get the body back on track for those that have been negatively affected. So, thank you so much. And then, lastly, where can we follow you on social media, websites, and all that stuff?

[01:20:22]Michael Rubino:  Alright. So, to check out my book, go to themoldmedic.com. If you are interested in the service-based company for mold remediation, our website is allamericanrestoration.com. To follow me on Twitter or Instagram, it would be @TheMoldMedic.

[01:20:38]Luke Storey:  Cool. Mold Medic is a good name, by the way. Congrats on getting that URL. That was a score. I know how hard it is. When you think of a good name, you're like, it's always taken. 

[01:20:47]Michael Rubino:  Oh, yeah. No, I had to pay like a premium for that.

[01:20:48]Luke Storey:  Oh, you did? 

[01:20:49]Michael Rubino:  Yes.

[01:20:49]Luke Storey:  Oh, Damn.

[01:20:50]Michael Rubino:  Someone already thought of that, and bought it, and was sitting on it, but it was worth it.

[01:20:54]Luke Storey:  I had that happen a few years ago myself. I had to pay quite a bit of coin to wrestle the URL I wanted from a squatter's greedy little hands. Well, thanks, brother. I appreciate it, man. Thanks for coming to Texas.

[01:21:06]Michael Rubino:  Yeah, thanks for having me.

[01:21:07]Luke Storey:  Let's go, and get some barbecue, and have some fun.

[01:21:09]Michael Rubino:  Let's do it.

[01:21:10]Luke Storey:  Thanks, man.

[01:21:11]Michael Rubino:  Alright. Take care.



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