What better time to bring up high-histamine food, than when many of us are busy stuffing our faces in celebration of Lunar New Year. Histamine is a chemical that is produced by the body and is also found in certain foods. It plays a role in the immune system and in digestion, and it is also involved in the body’s response to allergens. Some people may have a condition known as histamine intolerance, which occurs when the body is unable to effectively break down and metabolize histamine.

This can lead to symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, rash, and nasal congestion.

What Are High Histamine Foods

High histamine foods are those that contain high levels of histamine or that can stimulate the production of histamine in the body. Some common high histamine foods include fermented foods such as alcohol, vinegar, and fermented dairy products; aged or preserved meats; and certain fruits and vegetables, such as avocados, tomatoes, and bananas.

There are several factors that can contribute to histamine intolerance, including genetics, certain medications, and underlying health conditions. For example, people with allergies or asthma may be more prone to histamine intolerance, as these conditions involve an overactive immune system. Additionally, certain medications, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), can inhibit the body’s ability to break down histamine.

What Are Low Histamine Foods

There are also a number of foods that are generally low in histamines, which may be helpful for people with histamine intolerance. These include fresh meats and seafood, most types of fresh fruits and vegetables, and some grains such as rice and oats. It is important to note that the histamine content of foods can vary depending on how they are prepared and stored, so it is always a good idea to check labels or consult with a healthcare professional for more information.

Experts generally recommend a low histamine diet as a potential treatment for histamine intolerance. This involves avoiding high histamine foods and limiting the intake of other potential sources of histamine, such as certain medications. It is also important to pay attention to portion sizes and to eat a balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrients.

It is always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before making any major changes to your diet, as a low histamine diet may not be appropriate for everyone. A healthcare professional can help to determine the cause of your symptoms and recommend the best course of treatment.