Yellow mold - how dangerous is he?

Yellow mold has a very bad reputation, especially because of its past. Which types of mold can be colored yellow, and which of them are dangerous, you can learn in this article, which diseases can cause these molds.

Typical yellow mold

A yellowing may occur in several types of mold fungus, but the typical "yellow mold" is the species Aspergillus flavus. Another name for the mold is Penicillinum rubrum (which actually means red) and is found worldwide. You can find it both in the air and in the ground. He belongs to the group of the so-called watering can mold.

Particularities of yellow mold

Aspergillus fl. Forms colonies, like all mold fungi species, but chooses mostly seeds. Preferred settlement areas of the mold are all seeds which are either high in fat or high in starch. These are above all:

  • peanuts
  • Corn
  • most cereals
  • pistachios
  • cottonseed


Yellow mold can be dry and flaky. In some cases, however, a clearly grainy consistency is possible. In some cases, it can also have a very greasy appearance.


Yellow mold can also turn brownish or greenish over time, depending on its age and location of infection. A determination of color or consistency is not possible - only one expert is able to make a determination.

Earlier meaning

Yellow mold was found in many Egyptian royal tombs and burial chambers. Through contact with the poisonous products of this fungus in the tombs, some of the archaeologists and workers died of serious diseases.

Disease-causing effect

Aspergillus flavus produces so-called mycotoxins (fungal toxins). The dangerous toxic substances of Aspergillus are the so-called aflatoxins. In Aspergillus flavus these are predominantly the groups B1 and B2.


Aflatoxins are very dangerous toxins, but they only have a harmful effect if they enter the human body. Some states are also suspected of storing them as potential biological warfare agents. Even at a dose of 10 μg / kg body weight, aflatoxins can be fatal (that's 10 millionths of a gram).

Diseases caused by aflatoxins

At high dose, aflatoxins cause acute liver failure. Also, heart failure or renal haemorrhage are possible at high dose. These diseases are summarized under the term aspergillosis. In a lower dose especially the aflatoxins of group B1 belong to the strongest carcinogenic substances. Breathing the dust over time can also lead to lung cancer.


In the case of yellow mold, be sure to be careful when touching, as this may cause toxins (aflatoxins) to be absorbed. Attention must also be paid to the danger of possible inhalation. Mouth guards and gloves are required in any case, but still great care is needed.

Tips & Tricks

Yellow mold can be very difficult to detect in pale yellow color, or can be discovered very late. Helpful is a mold test, if one suspects.

Video Board: 17 Signs Of Mold illness And How To Tell If You Are At Risk