Bread can be a healthy addition to your diet, as it’s loaded with great ingredients that supply your daily protein intake and also help you cut down on sugars. So what’s the big deal? Purchasing bread with few preservatives usually means loaves of bread tend to have a shorter shelf life. Unfortunately, however savory these loaves can be, they usually become moldy, which results in us accidentally taking bites from slices of moldy bread.
Worry not, as eating these fuzzy green mold spots on slices of bread will cause us no harm. However, there is no greater scare than realizing you’ve eaten mold. Although it may make you gag, being grossed out is probably the worst thing that can happen. “In all likelihood, nothing bad will happen to you, especially if you have a healthy immune system,” said SciShow host Michael Aranda in a YouTube video.
However, let’s not forget that mold is a type of fungus that some people can be allergic to. According to Aranda, these allergies aren’t very serious, but there have been situations where eating mold-infested food has been fatal. Aside from the allergy concern, the separate issue with eating mold is the mycotoxins it contains. “These are chemicals various molds make under certain conditions that are toxic to humans and other creatures,” said Aranda. “For the most part, if you consume a little bit once or twice, you’ll probably be okay. But in larger doses, or over longer periods of time, they can become an issue.”
So how do you handle moldy food? Well, it depends on the type. Mold is easier to spread in soft foods because of the way it grows. Whether it’s on cheese, bread, meat, or dips, it should be tossed out immediately. With denser foods like carrots, strawberries, or hard cheeses, it doesn’t spread as easily, so mold is only present in the visible areas. Since mold hardly spreads, it makes it easier to cut out the spoiled parts and eat the remaining part of the food.
“If you see mold on food, there’s a good chance it’s also loaded with bacteria by that point, which means, mycotoxins or not, you could still get sick. It’s better to play it safe and find another snack,” Aranda explained.Related: 6 Ways to Keep Your Produce from Rotting
Overall, if you find you’re eating moldy bread or food, don’t panic; you’ll be fine. However, you might want to look twice at your food selection next time.