2

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Low-Histamine, Paleo Friendly Chow? Does such a thing exist?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 07, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Since going paleo, I developed sudden congestion, sneezing fits, blood shot eyes, and eventually a sudden skin rash when I ate lots of slow-cooked meats & bone broths.

When I upped my consumption of V8, spinach, banana & strawberries, I got a grinding headache which hurt so much, my eyeballs actually hurt.

To rule out histamine intolerance, I want to pick some staple paleo foods which are low in histamine.

Are any of the following BAD from a HISTAMINE perspective?

  1. Coconut Oil
  2. Coconut Milk
  3. Coconut Water (e.g. Peach Mango Coconut Water by Vita)
  4. Sweet potato
  5. Yams
  6. Rice Noodles
  7. Real Salt or Sea Salt
  8. Kerry Gold Butter
  9. Milk
  10. Kale
  11. Cantaloupe
  12. Watermellon
  13. Blueberries
  14. Pears
  15. Apples
  16. butternut squash

I know that spinach is bad for histamines, but how about KALE?

I do realize that left-overs are bad, and aged meats are particularly so. Grass fed or not, I believe that all beef is aged about 3 weeks before I will see it in my supermarket.

Does that mean I should avoid beef during my low-histamine trial?

From what I've read, pork is not aged, but is particularly high in histamines. Should I avoid pork all together?

Since I don't have access to line-caught fish which is gutted within 30 minutes, should I rule out all fish for now?

I know chicken skin and dark chicken meat is really high in histamines, so chicken breast seems like the safest bet.

I buy this brand:

alt text

I called the company and found that the slaughter date is 11 days before the date on the package. So, as soon as it hits my supermarket, I but it and put in my freezer.

I understand lamb isn't aged so as soon as they put out ground lamb in my supermarket, I buy some and freeze it.

Since the histamine thing is about protein aging / deteriorating, I think I should go fairly low protein during my trial.

I live in the city so I really don't have access to freshly killed cows/chickens.

Are there any support groups for Histamine Intolerance? I've searched really hard and am having trouble finding any.

I'm concerned about not getting nearly enough potassium in my diet.

Any histamine related tips would be very much appreciated. This trial poses some very challenging cath-22's.

Thanks a bunch, Mike

PS: I just started taking a multi-vitamin because I read that some of the b-vitamins are important co-factors required to make the DAO (the thing that breaks down histamines).

PSPS: I also took 1000mg of vitamin C because I read that vitamine C helps break down histamines once formed/released.

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on August 16, 2013
at 12:27 PM

scratch that. I'm back to histamines. I got a magnesium RBC test which showed my magnesium is fine. I'm getting plenty of the other electrolytes. And, during vacation, eating lots of slow cooked meats and other high histamine foods, I broke out in the same type of skin rash that started 3 years ago (which ultimately led me to paleo)

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 27, 2013
at 02:25 PM

I no longer think that histamines are the main issue for me. I keep coming back to electrolytes and hydration. I have found citations that indicate if you get dehydrated, it can provoke a histamine response. Currently, I'm trying to increase potassium in my diet, and decrease salt. Here's an interesting animation which describes the potassium / sodium pump in your body: http://highered.mcgraw-hill.com/sites/0072495855/student_view0/chapter2/animation__how_the_sodium_potassium_pump_works.html

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on June 26, 2013
at 08:45 AM

Suze, you can get a blood Histamine test done in Australia, tho it may not be covered by Medicare if your doc does not bulk bill (cost approx $135 to $160 depending on lab). The result may give you some useful info. Laverty's take weeks to run this test, Douglass Hanly Moir should be quicker.

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on March 03, 2013
at 02:33 PM

I did a salicylate challenge with no problem. I started with baby aspirin over several days ,then tried full strength aspirin. No effect! Yeah ! My food world is small enough!

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on March 03, 2013
at 02:21 PM

I will need to triple check but I think I am having a histamine issue with kale - had 3oz on two occasions

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:01 AM

Thank you @roberto for an awesome answer! I was up all night googling various aspects of low histamine and I'm ready to give it a shot. Looking back on 2 years of food diary notes, histamine fits perfectly with my particularly bad food reactions. I'm optimistic this is it. I'm ready to give it a try!

22fd82abf435768244f8d074430cd1e6

(590)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:03 AM

see above, I edited my answer

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 07, 2012
at 04:01 PM

@Roberto: how long does it take to completely process all the histamines in your body once it gets overwhelmed and they "spill out of your bucket"? (Is it the kind of thing that take hours, days or weeks)?

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 07, 2012
at 03:50 PM

Awesome info @Roberto - much appreciated. BTW, do you eat (or have reactions) to the 15 foods in the list? On one high-histamine list I saw pumpkin, then became concerned about butternut squash (ratz, I forgot to list that, let me edit the original question)

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4 Answers

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1
22fd82abf435768244f8d074430cd1e6

(590)

on June 07, 2012
at 03:20 PM

Hi. I was diagnosed with HIT when I was a kid when I had urticaria. Urticaria went way after about 2 years of low histamine diet, but I always had "random" trouble with food. Even with paleo I didn't solve my problems. Then I remembered about HIT, and I found out that its symptoms can be different, so today I have different symptoms: bloating, sudden loose stools, and hypo tension. Also a bit of hitching..

ANYWAY, everyone is different so not everyone reacts the same to histamine rich foods. Also what makes it a bit hard to self-experiment, is that being histamine a quantitative problem, you often react differently with the same food.

I find leftovers are a quite a big problem for me. This is true for protein rich foods, such as eggs or meats, some veggies should be OK but I'm still not 100% sure.

For what concerns Kale, it's problematic for some people, so I'd suggest avoiding it.

For what concerns beef/poultry/pork: I don't seem to have a problem with beef or pork (maybe pork a little bit). I think there is a huge difference in the histamine levels of stored uncooked meat versus stored cooked meat (leftovers). Also, slow cooking is a big NO NO. I also think that might be the problem with chicken skin (i.e. when you roast a chicken it's a slow cooking method and a lot of histamine is produced). Histamine is always in the outer part of the meat.

HIT is a real pain to deal with, but for me, when I recently found out what the problem was, I had a huge improvement in the way I felt. I am still "balancing" as it's been a new discover. Also I think that spring might be more problematic if you have even a bit of seasonal allergy, because your histamine level will be higher in general. Also if you have any allergy, that will make things worse.

VitC "should" help as it is a natural anti-histaminic (I am still unsure if it's actually noticeable), but it doesn't solve the problem of HIT. HIT is most likely caused by a deficit in diamine oxidase (DOA). DOA is a copper regulated enzyme that breaks down histamine.

Currently I am experimenting with copper supplementation as it has been shown that a diet low in copper can lead to reduced level of DOA in rats. Too early to draw any conclusions on my n=1 experiment.

Copper supplementation is suggested by Paul Jaminet. In his opinion low copper could cause high LDL (which I have). Also copper food sources are not food I usually eat, although my plan is to start eating more liver. Zinc/copper ratio though is quite a complicated matter...

Edit:

I am not sure about how long it takes to overcome a high histamine level. I suppose it is different for everybody. For what concerns the food:

Coconut Oil: I don't consume much as I only recently found a good bio brand. It shouldn't be a problem but I am not sure. Coconut Milk: I think it might be problematic as it's in a can.. last time I had a full can it was problematic. Probably I can have a little bit with no side effects. Coconut Water (e.g. Peach Mango Coconut Water by Vita): fresh coconut definitely OK. I don't think bottled should be a problem either though. Sweet potato/Yams: can't really tell the difference between the two. Anyway they're fine with me. Rice Noodles: I don't eat them, but shouldn't be a problem. Real Salt or Sea Salt: should be OK Kerry Gold Butter: I consume GHEE as I am lactose intolerant and it gives me no problem at all. But GHEE is all fat, butter has proteins as well (where histamine is formed). So NOT 100%sure.. Milk: see above. Milk should be fine if fresh, otherwise I am not that sure. Kale: spinaches are very problematic for me. Cantaloupe: not sure Watermellon: not sure Blueberries: I eat them in moderation, don't seem to be a problem. (raspberries and strawberries are). Pears: haven't had them in a while Apples: safe butternut squash: not sure

In general I recommend the usual n=1 experiment. Remove anything that you think it might be problematic or advised by low histamine diets and then reintroduce one at a time. One way I found that it works is basically remove all high histamine diet, then one night I have one of the things I think are problematic. If it's a food I want to reintroduce as a staple in my diet then that day I would have a fair amount of it (for instance half an avocado). If you only have a tiny little bit then you might think it is OK, but then when you eat it more often it might cause you trouble...

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 07, 2012
at 04:01 PM

@Roberto: how long does it take to completely process all the histamines in your body once it gets overwhelmed and they "spill out of your bucket"? (Is it the kind of thing that take hours, days or weeks)?

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 07, 2012
at 03:50 PM

Awesome info @Roberto - much appreciated. BTW, do you eat (or have reactions) to the 15 foods in the list? On one high-histamine list I saw pumpkin, then became concerned about butternut squash (ratz, I forgot to list that, let me edit the original question)

22fd82abf435768244f8d074430cd1e6

(590)

on June 08, 2012
at 08:03 AM

see above, I edited my answer

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 08, 2012
at 11:01 AM

Thank you @roberto for an awesome answer! I was up all night googling various aspects of low histamine and I'm ready to give it a shot. Looking back on 2 years of food diary notes, histamine fits perfectly with my particularly bad food reactions. I'm optimistic this is it. I'm ready to give it a try!

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on March 03, 2013
at 02:21 PM

I will need to triple check but I think I am having a histamine issue with kale - had 3oz on two occasions

0
B0e9df1f84791df7fd6e91216e31720e

on September 30, 2013
at 12:39 AM

You might also want to look at oxalates. They can also cause a lot of problems.

0
Aa50de2c2633b087edcde0c00ec61f30

on June 26, 2013
at 04:14 AM

Hi Mike Are you sure its histamine that is your problem? I am trying to find out if I am Histamine or Amine Intolerant. My Doc hasnt heard of DAO testing here in australia. Most of your list of foods is all high in Amines. How did you determine your intolerance between Amines and hISTAMINE? i think a lot of the foods are similar?

Thanks Suze. here is a link to Michelle Ferris website re Amine Intolerance. She has a marvellous list of foods that tells you wether they are high to low in Amines, the foods also include Histamine. Great website.

www.aminerecipes.com www.thelowhistaminechef.com

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on June 26, 2013
at 08:45 AM

Suze, you can get a blood Histamine test done in Australia, tho it may not be covered by Medicare if your doc does not bulk bill (cost approx $135 to $160 depending on lab). The result may give you some useful info. Laverty's take weeks to run this test, Douglass Hanly Moir should be quicker.

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on June 27, 2013
at 02:25 PM

I no longer think that histamines are the main issue for me. I keep coming back to electrolytes and hydration. I have found citations that indicate if you get dehydrated, it can provoke a histamine response. Currently, I'm trying to increase potassium in my diet, and decrease salt. Here's an interesting animation which describes the potassium / sodium pump in your body: http://highered.mcgraw-hill.com/sites/0072495855/student_view0/chapter2/animation__how_the_sodium_potassium_pump_works.html

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on August 16, 2013
at 12:27 PM

scratch that. I'm back to histamines. I got a magnesium RBC test which showed my magnesium is fine. I'm getting plenty of the other electrolytes. And, during vacation, eating lots of slow cooked meats and other high histamine foods, I broke out in the same type of skin rash that started 3 years ago (which ultimately led me to paleo)

0
D95fc428af83cdb84706dd85588a7724

on June 08, 2012
at 03:28 PM

Is there a possibility that an intolerance to salicylates could be the cause of your chronic urtacaria and your reaction to histamines?

That is what causes my CU and histamine reactions.

http://www.urticaria.thunderworksinc.com/pages/lowsalicylatediet.htm

7fc82eebafd44badc73c520f44660150

(3275)

on March 03, 2013
at 02:33 PM

I did a salicylate challenge with no problem. I started with baby aspirin over several days ,then tried full strength aspirin. No effect! Yeah ! My food world is small enough!

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