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07 Dec, Wednesday
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Why You Shouldn’t Eat Mouldy Bread

It’s 1 a.m. You’re yearning a peanut butter and jelly sandwich — or maybe a slice of grilled cheese. You open the bread bag and– ugh!– the bread is blue with mould along one edge. As you’re attempting to decide whether to throw the bread away, you keep in mind that penicillin is made from mould. That makes it OKAY to eat? Think again. Let Tropika Club run you through on what you should not eat mouldy bread.


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Mould and Mushrooms

If you eat that mouldy bread, here’s the thing on what may occur. Moulds originate from the very same family as mushrooms. In fact, if you look at moulds with a microscope, you’ll see that they often look like little mushrooms: stalks with spores on the top. These spores offer moulds their beautiful colours– such as the blue-green shading lining your now inedible bread.

While moulds may be pretty, they can also be hazardous. Many varieties– there are hundreds of thousands of moulds– cause allergies and respiratory issues. In some cases, moulds produce mycotoxins, a toxin that makes individuals, animals and other animals sick. And guess where among the most infamous mycotoxins– aflatoxin– grows? That’s right: on grains and nut crops– 2 things that make up lots of pieces of bread


Aflatoxin and Mould

Aflatoxin, a cancer-causing mould discovered around the globe, is one of the most studied and kept track of moulds out there. Despite all the attention it gets, this mould has actually not been gotten rid of– though manufacturing plants across the world are kept track of to guarantee levels of aflatoxin remain within acceptable limitations.

Aflatoxins are poisonous substances produced by certain kinds of fungi (moulds) that are found naturally all over the world; they can contaminate food crops and pose a serious health threat to humans and livestock. Aflatoxins also pose a significant economic burden, causing an estimated 25% or more of the world’s food crops to be destroyed annually.

Aflatoxins are potent carcinogens and may affect all organ systems, especially the liver and kidneys; they cause liver cancer, and have been linked to other types of cancer – AFB1
is known to be carcinogenic in humans; the potency of aflatoxin to cause liver cancer is significantly enhanced in the presence of infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV).



What about Penicillin?

Back to the 1 a.m. piece of bread with the mould on one edge. What if you cut off the musty bits and simply consume the rest? Certainly, that’s OKAY, best? Incorrect. What you see on the edge of bread may be only the suggestion of the mould. From the stalks, mould can shoot roots down into the bread. These roots are where the mycotoxins like to grow. Besides, undetectable bacteria that can likewise make you sick might be tagging along with the mould.

So, while your high school science instructor was right about penicillin being made from a mould, it is not a great idea to try to get this bacteria-fighting representative from musty bread. The next time you’re craving a PB&J or grilled cheese, have a look at your bread thoroughly. You may be better off without a midnight treat if there’s mould on the surface area.


Just Skip It

Aflatoxin, a cancer-causing mould found around the world, is one of the most studied and kept track of moulds out there. Back to the 3 a.m. piece of bread with the mould on one edge. What you see on the edge of bread might be only the idea of the mould. While your high school science instructor was ideal about penicillin being made from mould, it is not an excellent concept to try to get this bacteria-fighting agent from musty bread.


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Terence is Tropika Club Magazine's deputy editor who loves learning about animals and their behavior. He is also an anthropologist, so he is very interested in how different cultures interact with animals. He has worked in the publishing industry for over 10 years, and have been lucky enough to work with some amazing authors and editors.