Food intolerances can present in a variety of ways, constipation, diarrhea, abdominal pain, rashes, headache, low energy, brain fog, just to name a few. For some people this can be due to a histamine intolerance.
What is a histamine intolerance?
Histamine is a natural chemical, but an intolerance can occur when your body has trouble flushing histamine compounds out of your system.
Histamine is ingested via food and stored in nearly all tissues of the body. When released, it plays a role in a ton of different actions that all keep your organs functioning and body working healthily — things like helping the smooth muscle tissue of the lungs, uterus, and stomach contract (that keeps your organs working); dilating blood vessels; stimulating gastric acid secretion in the stomach; accelerating your heart rate.
Those with a histamine intolerance are often low is essential enzymes that help break down histamine in the body.
What foods are high in histamine?
Dietary amines such as histamine occur naturally in certain foods and come from protein breakdown. Levels increase in protein foods (meats, fish, cheese) as they age or ‘mature’, and in fruits as they ripen (e.g. bananas, tomato, avocado, pawpaw, olives. High levels are likely to be present in sauces, fruit juices, chocolate, flavoured spreads, nut and seed pastes, jams, and in fermented products (e.g. beer, wines, yeast extracts)
Histamines increase with maturation so some of the foods and drinks that you might think are healthy are often the culprits, including kefir, kombucha, vinegars and sauerkraut.
Can I get a test to check to see if I have a histamine intolerance?
An intolerance is different to an allergy so it can be difficult to diagnose. Food intolerance testing such as an IgG Food Intolerance test are an option, but an elimination diet, where you avoid aggravating foods and then slowly reintroducing them can help identify the problem.
It takes 3-4 weeks for histamine levels to clear out of tissues to a level that reduces most symptoms.
Okay, I think this sounds like me what can I do next?
I can design you a well-balanced four-week program that contains a wide variety of delicious, colourful and fun low histamine recipes.
Alternatively, I can arrange an IgG food intolerance test for you to do in the convenience of your home.