Toxic: A Healing Handbook by Dr Neal Nathan


I discovered this book by Dr. Neal Nathan when I was desperately seeking an explanation for my daughter’s intense feeling that something was very, very wrong inside her. Her feelings were accompanied by chronic lack of energy, constant pain, loose-y goose-y joints, poor cognitive function, inability make new memories, inability to get a good night’s sleep, sensitivity to light, sound, touch, her computer, other people, a distinct lack of caring about other people, mood issues, and a general withdrawal from the world. Her standard blood tests showed chronic inflammation but no smoking gun. I was so happy when I found Dr. Neal Nathan and his book – Toxic: Heal Your Body from Mold Toxicity, Lyme Disease, Multiple Chemical Sensitivities , and Chronic Environmental Illness. It not only explained what was going on but guided me through her multi-year healing process – and my own too!

Toxic: Heal Your Body from Mold Toxicity, Lyme Disease, Multiple Chemical Sensitivities , and Chronic Environmental Illness - by Dr Neal Nathan

Dr. Neal Nathan’s Healing Background

Western medicine excels at dealing with acute, life threatening issues like broken limbs, a stopped heart, or a penetrating wound. Most western trained medical doctors have a specialty in either one type of person (e.g. children) or one part of the body (e.g. podiatrist).

Chronic and complex illness is completely different in nature and requires supplemental training and experience for the practitioner. Dr. Neal Nathan, over the course of more than 40 years, developed a specialty in working with people who were chronically ill in so many ways that no other doctor knew how to help them. His patients were incredibly sensitive to treatment, had every system of the body affected, and experienced things that “could not happen” according to established western medicine ideas.

For these patients, he slowed down, asked questions, thought out of the box, keep diving deeper into the “why?”, experimented, failed, and succeeded at helping these very ill people get better. He now trains other practitioners and wrote this very accessible book for people without access to a healthcare provider like him.

Getting Rid of the Toxic Problem

Dr. Nathan discusses several complex chronic illnesses that he addresses with very similar approaches. This works because the illnesses all involve toxins living inside the cells – not in the blood or muscles or single part of the body. Actually inside every cell of your body. Your cells know they are being attacked. They hate it. They respond with what we now call the Cell Danger Response. In order to fully heal the body, you not only have to remove the toxins, but you must convince every cell of the body that it is no longer in danger. This will likely be more challenging than negotiating with a two year old!

How do you get rid of the toxins? Very carefully! The pathways to excrete the toxins must be open and flowing so you do not accidentally mobilize toxins (shift them from one place in the body to another) – wreaking havoc as they move around and making you feel worse. Step one is often to make constipation a thing of the past. Your daily poo is a powerful detoxification pathway! Dr. Nathan waits to support higher liver and kidney function until your digestive tract can safely remove the toxins – since they can and will recirculate through the blood/gut/liver connection if you are constipated. Think baby steps! First Poo. Second detox organs. Third cells.

Dr. Nathan has many terrific discussions about how/when/why to support the body’s natural ability to detoxify itself. Why does the body of someone with mold exposure need this kind of support? Mold turns down the immune system. Mold quiets the hormonal messengers and endocrine function. Mold lowers your ability to think, sense, and process using your brain. Mold saps your energy for life and healing. Mold is stealthy and you need a strategic, adaptive plan to get rid of it.

Rebooting Every System in the Body

When the toxins are gone, are you healed? Not yet. The toxins generated by mold and other sources residing inside the cells damaged every system of the body to some degree. Once the toxins are removed, the body often needs help to return to full operational capacity – a process Dr. Nathan calls a reboot.

He devotes one chapter for rebooting each body system. He explains the options he is familiar with that stimulate and support that system so it can get going again. The options run the gamut of western medicine, eastern medicine, alternative medicine, and grandfatherly sensibility. You may need to reboot every system or only a few. Time will tell! A large number of the rebooting tools discussed by Dr. Nathan are tools available here at Zen and Vitality for your convenience.

Work with Zoa to Heal Yourself from Mold

Dr. Nathan’s book is a fabulous guide through the garden of tools that he has found are helpful with his chronic mold patients. Most people are not going to grab a copy of his book and DIY their mold healing journey. You will seek out a practitioner who can help guide you as to the order to do things, which tools are appropriate for you, and how to prioritize and offer support for the body to detox and heal.

Functional medicine doctors can be great healing partners but come at a high cost and low frequency of communication. There will be lots of searching for the root cause and testing (at a high $$ cost) so they can see the full picture of your internal health. A huge part of the journey to heal from mold is lifestyle oriented – not the specialty of a functional medicine doctor. You are likely to get a long list of instructions, medication, and supplements but very little day to day support.

When you work with me for your mold healing journey, we develop a close working relationship so you get the help you need when you need it. I provide ways to communicate with me daily if needed! We can do the testing needed to keep you moving forward, but we consider your feelings and symptoms first. I do love data – I am a PhD scientist after all! We can work closely with your doctor or separately and independently (for most things).

My approach is gentle like Dr. Nathan’s. If you are sensitive and struggling, we will take micro-sized steps and go as slow as you need. If you are constitutionally strong like I was and eager to “get it done”, we will go faster. I am all about lifestyle and daily actions to help you detox and heal. I’ve got the tools, knowledge, and experience to help you. Let’s talk!

My Blog Posts about Mold


Go to Top