What Is The Key Difference Between Yeast And Mold: 5 Points

You have probably seen them and smelled them, but cannot tell the difference between fungi. Well, know what is the key difference between yeast and mold by taking the time to read this article. 

Fungi are normal and healthy in nature. However, when in high concentration, especially inside our homes and offices, they can be problematic and put our health at risk.

what is the key difference between yeast and mold

Yeast and mold are two of the most common types of fungi. Read through and let’s get on the journey of getting to know them.


What Is Yeast?

Yeast is referred to as a microscopic fungus that consists of a single cell. It is oval-shaped and usually white or colorless. 

It requires organic materials to obtain nutrients. Yeast is mostly found growing in nature but can also be grown for industrial use. 

It is used to produce ethanol through fermentation. Also, yeast is known in the baking industry for making dough rise. 


All About Mold

Another common type of fungi is mold. It grows in damp and dark areas and feeds on organic materials.

Mold is not only found in the areas of our homes but also grows on food. There are a lot of potential health effects and symptoms associated with it including asthma, allergic reactions, and other respiratory problems. 

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When caught on sight, it is very crucial to get rid of it as soon as possible. Mold comes in different colors like green, black, white, and brown. 

There is no practical way in eliminating mold and mold spores. However, it can be controlled by eliminating moisture and reducing the humidity level.


What makes yeast and mold similar?

Aside from being fungal organisms, yeast and mold are similar in other aspects. They have a similar cell structure consisting of chitin, which is a glucose derivative.

They both undergo chemical reactions which makes them capable of deteriorating and decomposing foods. Some types of mold can even decompose porous surfaces in our home, like plaster and wood.

Mold and yeast both need a constant amount of moisture to germinate. Thus, this makes them vulnerable to heat, as it gets rid of moisture and kills fungal spores.

Unlike plants, mold and yeast do not require light to grow at all. Instead, they grow in completely dark areas, which allows moisture to remain longer.

In nature, mold and yeast are not good for human health. They can pollute the airways of an allergic person and cause reactions like sneezing, itchiness, and rashes.


Yeast Vs. Mold

There are several key differences to point out between yeast and mold. Here are some of them:


1. Growth environment

Yeast naturally occurs and is most prominent on plants, fruits, and soil. It can also grow on the skin and intestinal tracts of animals and humans.

It also occurs naturally in the reproductive organs of females and may even grow in our mouth and throat under specific conditions.

Mold also grows naturally but only exists when the conditions are right. It occurs on the organic matter when there is the presence of moisture.

Mold spores can be airborne, making them capable of spreading through our clothes, furniture, and even food. 


2. Cultivation time

Yeast only takes 24 to 36 hours to start growing after inoculation on media. Mold usually needs 24 to 48 hours to start growing, a little slower than yeast.


3. Health risks

Yeast overgrowth can weaken a person’s immune system especially if your body does not have enough strength to fight it.

Mold is very harmful to human and animal health. It can cause health reactions from mild to severe.

If your fur friend gets exposed to mold, here is an article that can help you on how to treat mold exposure in cats.


4. Benefits

Yeast is used widely in producing food and beverage. Naturally occurring yeast that can be found inside the animal and human body balances the different kinds of bacteria in the digestive system, keeping the body healthy.

Mold is also used in making food, specifically cheese. It is also beneficial in the field of medicine as it is the reason we have penicillin


5. Treatment

Yeast infections can be treated using antifungal creams, supplements, yogurt, and tea tree oil which has antifungal properties. To prevent yeast from growing in the areas of your home, make sure to keep them clean and dry.

Mold can be treated using home remedies like a combination of baking soda and vinegar. Bleach solution can also be used to kill mold spores.

If you want to know what essential oils kill mold, you can check out this helpful guide.



Both yeast and mold are sorts of fungi that have various properties and employment. Like what we have talked about, yeast is a microscopic fungus while mold is a growth fungus. 

You can tell them apart by their structure. Now that the question of “what is the key difference between yeast and mold” has been answered, you can walk at peace in your space aware of their properties and how you can treat and fight them.

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