So I have been doing a lot of research into histamine intolerance. There are many food items on the "high-histamine" food list that I know I react to and avoid, but I never associated them with histamines before. What really drew my attention was my long-known (but never understood) indigestion after eating slow-cooked or pressure-cooked meats. I have been making gelatin-rich bone broth by cooking lamb and beef shanks in my pressure cooker. It tastes amazing and leaves me with several meals of meat and broth. But despite cooking totally clean, I was having reactions that I did not have when I ate lamb or beef steak.
So understanding the relationship between long-cooked or leftover meat and histamine explains a lot. However, this leaves me with a problem. I gave up bread and nuts a long time ago. I had no issue removing citrus fruit and tomatoes and smoked meats when I felt they were causing me problems. But now I'm looking at removing not only a large component of my diet, but one that was supposed to be helping me. Not to mention my only means of making meals in advance. I can't exactly fry a steak in the lunchroom at work.
So is anyone else trying to navigate the world of histamine intolerance? How do you do it? How do you get gelatin and broth into your diet if you can't eat slow-cooked meat protein? What the heck do you eat when you can't cook fresh meat? I have to admit this has me pretty bummed.
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I used to be histamine intolerant, but it seems like after I healed my gut it totally went away and now I pretty much eat anything. If you can't tolerant homemade broth, have you tried just purified gelatin like the Great Lake organic stuff? There is probably something in the homemade stuff that is irritating your inflamed digestive tract.
I ate a lot of raw meat when I was on this diet. And raw fish. Raw fruit. Six months later I started adding in "normal" foods and I've been fine ever since.
I've been suspecting Histamine Intolerance for about a year, and I completely identify with your frustration. How can such a catch-22 exist? I went on a pretty restrictive diet as an experiment with acne, but got all these new things like flushing and a puffy face and swollen hands, as I was eating a lot of mackerel, kimchi, spinach, leftover meat etc. If indeed HIT is the case, then it's like being banished from Paleoland, and of course I've already exiled myself from every other diet. No fish or shellfish? No histamine-rich beef liver? No pork, no bacon, and even no beloved ruminant if it's been aged (i.e. most grass fed beef) or left in the fridge overnight? No sauerkraut, fermented cod liver oil, kefir? No high-intensity exercise? A messy mix of plagiarized or conflicting lists of acceptable foods? Hardly any information on the internet? Optimal paleo seems like a damn cake walk compared to this.
The only possible cure I'v seen is healing the gut, as Melissa mentioned, which is hard enough, but now I have to navigate throught a gut-healing protocol without fermented food or broth? An intolerance to it's own remedy? It's like some cruel joke!
For the past week I've been doing just that, a intro-style GAPS diet of gently cooked beef/lamb and squash/vegetables in broth, raw egg yolks, along with a high-quality powdered probiotic. Also l-glutamine, pure ascorbic acid, and magnesium. I'm still having daily symptoms. Could it be the broth? The aged grass-fed meat I bought frozen from a local farm? Maybe I don't even have this? Makes me want to move to Montana and just sneeze into my ice cream for the rest of my days!
If your body is producing excess histamine, that indicates you are an undermethylator - your body is unable to process the histamine. Methylation is a body-wide process that goes on continually and there are many sub-cycles within methylation. If there is a problem at any point in one of those cycles, the whole cycle is thrown off causing potentially many different kinds of problems - food intolerance, mental health issues, hives for example. An undermethylator doesn't have enough methyl groups for a required reaction in the body to take place, leading to dysfunction.
I suggest doing some research on people that have treated their undermethylation and resolved the amine issue. I am an undermethylator myself yet I don't seem to have a problem with amines in food.
Methylation treatment goes hand in hand with the Failsafe diet already mentioned and gut problems are always implicated in food intolerances.
It can be tricky to find a doctor savvy treating this sort of thing but they do exist. I'm on a Facebook group of people dealing with similar problems to yours. Let me know if you're interested in more info.
Best wishes :)
I used to have a BIG problem with Histamine response thinking, (brainwashed by the med comm), it was grasses, pollen, etc, and finally learned/realized it was food/gut related. Giving up dairy, (10 yrs ago), refined sugars, grains, beans, not long after, it went away...completely...as did all allergies. I will tell you, beyond the food, Quercitin, 1000mg/day, seemed to re-boot my system, as I can have anyone of those foods as a treat with no response. -Billy
An old thread, I do have something to add worthy of bringing it up again.
DAO is the histamine scavenging enzyme, and is believed to be more important than the methylation enzyme that degrades histamine. DAO is a copper containing enzyme, if you are deficient in copper therefore you might experience histamine intolerance.
Here comes the important bit, copper enzymes are also used to keep excess iron in check and prevent it from catalyzing all sorts of oxidation reactions. If you have an iron level that is too high a lot of your copper reserve is going to be put towards those enzymes lowering your DAO level, and potentially inducing histamine intolerance.
For myself, just 50mg of supplemental iron is enough to bring on histamine intolerance.
I am histamine intolerant since a couple of month. At least I know what I have since a couple of month :-) I found this website very informative: http://www.food-intolerance-network.com/food-intolerance/histamine-intolerance.html
I have a very limited diet due to food alergies and Paleo. It still works.
No nuts, coconut, chocolate.
I cook meat and bring it to work every day without soup. Just cook up extra and place it in the freezer. I also bring egg yolks or potatoes pre-cooked.
I haven't done enough research yet, but I've found (I think) a link between histamine intolerance and B12 deficiency. If you are gluten intolerant (as I am) and your gut is damaged, then you can get HIT and/or B12 deficiency from that. However, you can be B12 deficient for a dozen different reasons, including the gluten thing, low stomach acid etc. Today I found some info that stated that the body requires B12 for methylation and there is (perhaps)? a link between low methylation and histamine intolerance? I am B12 deficient...have been struggling to convince the medicos for a few years, am also gluten intolerant, have HIT, fructose malabsorption and salicylate sensitivity. There are other digestive issues but that's enough for now! I have recently started on 1000mcg of sublingual B12 daily and am waiting to see if there is an improvement in my HIT symptoms. I don't want to get too excited because I've been down that road so many times before, but I thought I'd put this info in here in case it helps somebody else and I'll report back if my HIT symptoms improve with taking B12.
Most of the attention for histamine problems is given to DAO or gut functioning. However, the histamine metabolic process is more complex that and significantly involves another enzyme - histamine-N-methyltransferase (HNMT). HNMT is synthesized primarily in the liver, so if you have liver problems you may not be producing enough HNMT to methylate the histamine. Another option may be that hypothyroidism is simply slowing down the methylation cycle of that you aren't getting enough nutrients that are important for the methylation cycle (e.g., folate, b-12, methionine). For example, although liver is demonized because it has high levels of histamine, it also has significant amounts of b-12 and folate, both of which support the natural histamine methylation cycle. In either case, I'm not convinced that histamine problems are a disorder themselves rather than a symptom of some other systemic problems.
In my journey, I've ruled out low DAO as a problem since supplementation did not help. Additionally, anti-histamines don't help worth a crap. To me, this suggests is a problem with the methylation cycle and I've started looking at other problems. I discovered elevated liver enzymes. I've also started looking at adrenal fatigue as a problem since that affects thyroid and methylation and interacts with the liver. So, don't think that you are doomed to eat low histamine forever. Treat it as a symptom and start looking into other causes for those symptoms. Fix those causes and your histamine problem should subside.
Another factor for some in histamine issues is mast cell activation disorder, a newly emerging dx category in the mast cell disease field. Unlike mastocytosis where the body produces excess mast cells (which would also be a histamine problem but more rare), in MCAD there aren't excess MCs but the rogue mast cells degranulate like crazy and spill their mediators (there are many), including histamine, inappropriately. Best overview I've seen is the Mastocytosis Society Canada website: http://www.mastocytosis.ca Low histamine diet plus other treatments are indicated.
I have high histamine and allergies and avoid bringing lunch to work. Instead I have a big breakfast and dinner. If I'm away from home I take Histame, also anti-histamines along with digestive enzymes.
I'm getting better on Paleo diet. Also started experimenting with cold exposure and this appears to be greatly helping both the histamine problems and the IgE allergies.
Here's my notebook of histamine web clippings as I've been doing my research on it: https://www.evernote.com/pub/pcguys/histamines
Hope someone finds it useful,
I found this very nice list of foods and their relative histamine potential:
I've also had really bad histamine intolerance. My advice is eat things your body can process easily for a few days. Steam leafy greens: asparagus, broccoli, parsley, fennel (so important). Try to stay away from spinach, in the digestive process it produces histamine.
What really worked for me, better than anything was fasting for a few days. Drink lots of naturally caffeine free teas preferably nettle and fennel and lots of water. At the end of the day just have steamed leafy green vegetables. It just gives your gut a chance to relax.
Most importantly, be fully aware of what your body is and isn't intolerant to. When you go on this very brief (two or three days) fast you can work out which foods set you off by introducing them one at a time.
Probiotics also really aided the healing process. Highly recommend. But do your research on which probiotics are good for a histamine free diet.
After a few days I started eating white fish and eggs. But only one portion every other day just to support my gut.
Really stay away from anything fermented - I mean ANYTHING.
I had strange intolerances, like butternut squash and garlic. Just respond to what your body can and can't process!
@Kelly 11To answer your original question of how to navigate food--I mostly eat out of the freezer. I cook in bulk, spread food on cookie trays and freeze. When frozen, the food is transferred to gallon zip lock bags. It's not exciting but around 80% of what I eat comes from the freezer. The staple foods always in my freezer are: Chicken, salmon, cod, potatoes, white rice, kale, butternut squash. Typical breakfast is potatoes, kale and 3 egg yolks sautéed in a pan. I add chicken on days I lift before breakfast. Lunch is a big salad with fish, blueberries and MCT oil as dressing (add frozen fish and frozen blueberries before I leave work and is defrosted by lunchtime). Dinner varies depending what my family is eating but when I'm on my own my staple meals are 1) Butternut squash, white rice and chicken or 2) Zucchini, onions or garlic, rice and chicken. I defrost frozen items then sautee with ghee or coconut oil. Hope this helps
Gosh i am pretty sure i have high histamines the body/mind has been dealing with mild anxiety and insomonia for over a month droped 20lbs but am eating better now,feel great physically can run and hike like crazy but muscle streangth went in the pooper.Watery eyes[or very dry,lots of saliva,sometimes itchy, back pain,joint pain insomonia[getting better]on no gluten and dairy products for the most part,nervous stomach and loss of appetite.Anyway i wish there was a good Doctor around here that was versed in this field. Karl
The GAPS diet advocates the use of meat stock early on in the diet when the body is not up to handling the longer cooked bone broth.
The meat stock recommended is cooked for 4-6 hours - meat and bones - and made into soups and stews.
This is much more healing on the digestive system than say bone broth done for 24 hours or more.
This kind of explains it:
Have you tried Quercetin supplements? I can't really speak on its effectiveness, but supposedly...
If you are histamine intolerant,flush, gastro issues, check out mast cell activation syndrome. That is probably your answer. It took me 43 years to figure it out! It must be treated, as it begins to affect things in the body.
Actually cooking increases free amines, Roberto. If you are doing better with cooked eggs you likely have an egg intolerance/allergy of some kind. In spite of what some sites may say it appears (to me at least) that the most reputable recommend egg avoidance (cooked or not) for those with histamine intolerance (though some might be tolerated in baked goods). Hope this post isn't above your English tolerance ;).
@Rob. I don't know how you are determining the origin of your reactions, but supplemental iron isn't always advisable (and 50mg is a lot). Again the issue with supplements is the quick rate of absorption as they are isolated/free concentrates. The human body strictly regulates iron levels through enterohepatic circulation. The warnings on iron supps, although directed at children, are certainly applicable to adults as well.
I HAVE BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH HISTAMINE INTOLERANCE APPROX 2 YEARS AGO AND IT SEEMS TO BE GETTING WORSE BY THE DAY. MY SYMTOMS ARE A SWOLLEN FACE, AS WELL AS SWOLLEN, PAINFUL AND ITCHY EYES AND THIS SEEMS TO BE LASTING FOR DAYS. JUST WHEN I THINK IT IS GETTING BETTER IT STARTS ALL OVER AGAIN. I HAVE BEEN PESCRIBED EBASTIL - AN ANTI HISTAMIN AND DAOSIN - WHICH HAS TO BE TAKEN ABOUT 30 MINUTES BEFORE A MEAL, HOWEVER, THAT DOES NOT SEEM TO MAKE THE SLIGHTEST BIT OF DIFFERENCE.
WHO HAS GOT THE SAME SORT OF SYMTOMS AND CAN GIVE ADVICE. ANY ADVICE WILL BE GREATLY APPRECIATED.
Kelly the Histame works pretty good for symptoms like flushing & itching and also seems to reduce stomach aches. It costs about $1 pill, so I only take it on occasion. It helps but does not completely eliminate my symptoms. I do have food allergies also so my symptoms may overlap. For me the Histame is worth the cost in order to have it available whenever necessary.