Mold Avoiders – A New Recovery Help Forum for Toxic Mold Illness Sufferers

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August 28, 2015

By Lisa Petrison

Individuals who have developed a severe hyperreactivity to toxic mold often have a very difficult time getting the information that they need in order to move toward recovery.

Avoiding mold at the level required in order to get clear is a challenging endeavor that requires a good bit of skill. In addition, knowledge about how to use additional treatments to foster healing from mold illness is still in its formative stages.

The new Mold Avoiders help site is designed to provide individuals who are suffering from toxic mold illness (and related diseases such as myalgic encephalomyelitis, chronic Lyme or fibromyalgia) the help they need in order to move toward wellness.

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The book “A Beginner’s Guide to Mold Avoidance” is the basis for the new forum as well as the Facebook group.

The site includes an “Ask the Experts” help desk; extensive archives of information about mold avoidance and healing from mold  illness; a section for rating locations; and a general discussion forum.

It is designed to provide those who already have read the book “A Beginner’s Guide to Mold Avoidance” (written by Erik Johnson and me) with more detailed information and support with regard to both mold avoidance and healing therapies.

The new forum will supplement the existing Mold Avoiders Facebook group, which now has more than 900 members.

Following is some more specific information about the new site.



This feature will allow those with questions about mold avoidance or about healing from toxic mold illness to get answers from those who are qualified to answer them.

Experts will include individuals who have improved their health substantially subsequent to starting mold avoidance; trained healthcare professionals; mold researchers and toxicologists; and well-regarded mold remediators and inspectors.

Questions in the Ask the Experts section may be answered by anyone who fits into one of these categories. Please submit responses on the relevant thread on the site or to me (

Experts can sign up to receive the questions to be answered via email so that they will not have to remember to visit the site to participate.

Experts who are interested in participating can go to this link to learn more details and to sign up for emails. Please also feel free to just send me your email directly ( and I will add it to the list.

Those who would like to submit questions to be answered should send them directly to me ( for consideration.

Help desk questions will be anonymous (posted by me) and may be shared publicly in order to increase interest in the forum. Answers will be available only to forum members.



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Questions and answers about mold avoidance from the Avoiding Mold page are included in the archives section of the new forum.

The archived discussions on the Mold Avoiders site provide those interested in learning about mold avoidance or recovering from mold illness access to extensive information from past discussions.

The discussions are compiled from the Mold Avoiders Facebook group, the Q&A’s from the Avoiding Mold Facebook page, and discussions on the standalone Locations Effect forum.

Almost 1500 threads are currently included in the files.

All information is organized by topic so that those looking for specific information can find it easily. A search function also is available.

Archived threads are read-only.

The responses to questions on mold avoidance and other topics by people who have improved their health by pursuing avoidance from the Avoiding Mold page also are summarized in a new PDF book, called The Avoiding Mold Archives: Questions & Answers about Mold Avoidance from 2013-2014.

An additional new book compiling writings by mold avoidance pioneer Erik Johnson – called Erik on Avoidance – will be released shortly.

A summary of my own comments from a private email group that I participated in from 2011-2012 (called “A Place to Get Clear”) also is included in this archives section of the forum.


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The Locations Effect allows participants to rate how they felt in various places they have been.


Up until now, The Locations Effect has been a standalone forum that allows individuals with toxic mold illness and related conditions to provide Yelp-style ratings and reviews of how they have felt in different locations.

The more than 600 reviews from the site have been moved to their own section in the Mold Avoiders forum.

Please browse the section on The Locations Effect in the new site to learn more about feel-good and feel-bad locations – or submit a review of your own experiences.

So that information can be accessed quickly and easily, there is no discussion in this section – reviews only.


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For the sake of simplicity, all general conversation on the forum is in the “Current Discussions” section.



So that the new forum will be as easy to use as possible, all general discussion on the Mold Avoiders site will take place in the Current Discussions section.

Please feel free to start new threads or to contribute to existing threads in this section.

Any topic of any sort that might conceivably be of interest to those pursuing mold avoidance for health reasons is welcome in this section.

Discussions on Facebook will continue to supplement the discussions that take place in this section, with older threads from both being moved to the forum archives.

Please link to archived threads in order to draw attention to them in current discussions.

It would be my preference for more casual discussions (including links to blogs or articles) take place on Facebook but more substantive discussions about mold avoidance issues take place on the forum.

It is much easier for me to provide in-depth comments on the forum than it is in the teeney-weeney comment boxes on Facebook, for one thing.

In addition, the lack of privacy on Facebook means that it is not an especially appropriate forum for the discussion of personal health issues.

But I will be continuing to respond to posts on Facebook as well as on the new forum, regardless of the topic being considered.



For those interested, the ability to forum subgroups related to particular topics of interest to only some participants is available.

For instance, one participant has suggested “The Shoemaker Protocol” as an appropriate subgroup.

Other examples of appropriate subgroups might be “So Cal Mold Avoiders,” “Identifying Mystery Toxin” or “Treating Intestinal Parasites.”

If you have an idea of a subgroup that you would like to see on the forum, please let me know!



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The book “Erik on Avoidance” will be released shortly.

Both the new forum and the Facebook group versions of Mold Avoiders have as their foundation the book A Beginner’s Guide to Mold Avoidance, and it is required that participants already have finished the book or be in the process of reading it.

Information on getting a free PDF copy or the Kindle version is available on the Paradigm Change website.

All the discussions on both the new forum and the Facebook group are closed to the public. Although anyone can sign up to participate, the material is not available to be read by guests or search engine robots. I promise that this level of privacy will be maintained permanently into the future.

However, for the sake of creating a positive community, I am asking that everyone on the forum use their real first name or a real-seeming pseudonym as part of their user name. Please see this page of information for details.

I’ve ha a couple of reports that signing up for the forum using a smart phone or pad may be difficult or even impossible. If you have any problems signing up for the forum, please write to and I will be happy to sign up for you.  To expedite the process, please send along your desired user name, your email address, and a temporary password.

Mold Avoiders is presented by Paradigm Change (“information about the role of mold toxins in chronic multisystem illness”) as well as my organization Rabbit Hole (“information about mold avoidance for those who need it”).



Back from the Edge

The book “Back from the Edge” is available for free to those signing up for occasional email updates from Paradigm Change.

The links to the new Mold Avoiders standalone forum and the Mold Avoiders Facebook group.

The book A Beginner’s Guide to Mold Avoidance is required reading for those participating in either the new forum or the Facebook group.

The Mold Avoiders rules are also required reading for all participants of either the Facebook group or forum.

Learn some tips and tricks for getting around the new forum easily with the quick-start guide, Using this Forum.

The Paradigm Change website address.

Sign up for occasional emails from Paradigm Change and receive a free PDF copy of the book Back from the Edge, about the life of mold avoidance pioneer Erik Johnson. The book provides a readable introduction to many mold avoidance topics and also is available in an Amazon Kindle version.

A summary of other information about mold avoidance presented by Rabbit Hole is on this page of the Paradigm Change website.

The Paradigm Change blog and the treatment-oriented Living Clean in a Dirty World blog also provide information useful for mold avoiders.

Follow the Paradigm Change, the Avoiding Mold and the Living Clean in a Dirty World pages on Facebook for updates on mold-related topics.

Many other mold illness resources (including websites, patient groups and Facebook pages) are presented in the Mold Illness Community section of the Paradigm Change website.

Information on Dave Asprey’s excellent movie on toxic mold illness (which I am in) is on the Moldy Movie page of the Paradigm Change website.


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Last chance to participate in the Mold Avoidance Survey!


If you have done any kind of mold avoidance and have yet to complete the Mold Avoidance Survey, please help out by participating!

The results so far have been very informative and have attracted a good deal of attention from researchers in the ME/CFS and mold communities.

The current deadline for response to the survey is September 10, 2015.

A few of the survey findings will be presented at the upcoming Surviving Mold Conference in Phoenix on November 12-15, 2015.


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Discussion on the Facebook version of Mold Avoiders will supplement discussion on the new forum.



Nothing discussed in the Mold Avoiders forum or Facebook group should be taken as medical advice.

Nor should anything else presented by Paradigm Change, Rabbit Hole, Living Clean in a Dirty World, Lisa Petrison or Erik Johnson be taken as medical advice.

Please do not decide to pursue any kind of therapy based on the information on this new forum or based on anything else that any participants might say. Comments should be taken as background information for educational purposes only.

My suggestion is that everyone do their own due diligence in learning as much as they can about any healthcare treatment they are thinking about pursuing and then discuss it with a trusted healthcare provider before proceeding.

Please see the Mold Avoiders rules for more information on this topic.

Any and all civil comments from actual humans not selling commercial products are welcome on this blog.

Links on this page are in orange (no underlining).

Thanks very much to all for reading this blog.