HISTAMINE INTOLERANCE: WHICH FOOD LIST SHOULD YOU USE?

August 05, 2014 10:00 pm

Histamine Intolerance

When I first received my histamine intolerance diagnosis, which I later reversed, I eagerly sought clear instructions.

I simply wanted a list—a roadmap to eating well. However, the task was far from simple.

As I moved from one credible source to another, I encountered several dietary recommendation lists.

Each list was different, offering a confusing array of conflicting information. This challenge sparked my determination to create a reliable histamine intolerance food list.

Now, with over 50,000 downloads, many nutritionists actively use my trusted list.

I hope that sharing my food list empowers you to confidently navigate your health challenges.

The Insider's Guide to The Low Histamine Food List

My free list uses the best of existing lists to overcome their limitations.

It categorizes foods by their histamine relevance:

First, it focuses on histamine to confirm or rule out intolerance.

Second, it shows histamine levels in foods, aiding elimination diets and threshold setting.

Third, it uses scientific results from the ALBA database, not just anecdotes.

It also uses clinical data from the SIGHI and RPAH Allergy Unit for verification.

When discrepancies arose, we resolved them based on scientific literature.

My method assesses food intolerances one by one to avoid disrupting our microbiome and metabolism.

This careful approach offers a balanced, scientifically backed way to manage dietary sensitivities.

Comparison of Other Low Histamine Food Lists

Dr Janice Joneja

Dr. Janice Joneja, a dietitian with a Ph.D. in medical microbiology and immunology, brings over 30 years of experience, nearly half as head of the Allergy Nutrition Program at Vancouver Hospital.

Her list eliminates histamines and also targets tyramine. It groups foods simply to help make smart dietary choices.

Initially, Dr. Joneja’s list was a great starting point for managing my diet. However, it soon showed limitations. It lacked food classifications by histamine levels, which would have helped set personal thresholds more effectively.

Elimination Diet

RPA Allergy Unit List

The Royal Prince Alfred Hospital’s list targets not just histamines but also salicylates, amines, glutamates, sulfites, food colorings, and other additives.

This diet comes from ongoing trials in their respected Allergy Unit, a top authority on salicylates.

It emphasizes that histamine levels in food relate more to food quality and age than the food itself.

The goal is not to eliminate histamines completely but to find your personal tolerance level.

The list categorizes histamine levels as low, moderate, high, and very high—a detail many lists miss but I included in mine.

However, the list has issues. It removes all chemicals, not just histamines, often eliminating too many foods without clarifying if histamines are the real problem.

The diet also includes a lot of sugar, carbohydrates, legumes, and processed foods, which can inflame a damaged gut. Tests often show a link between gut damage and lectin intolerance.

This restrictive diet is hard to follow and usually unnecessary unless you have other intolerances. Such broad food elimination can harm the microbiome.

I found this failsafe diet ineffective, mainly because of its focus on grains and legumes. This led me to Dr. Moneret-Vautrin’s list.

Lectin Intolerance

Dr. Moneret-Vautrin

Dr. Moneret-Vautrin, a distinguished French professor of Medicine specializing in allergies and immunology, is not well-known in English-speaking countries despite her extensive work on histamine intolerance.

Her dietary approach is similar to Dr. Joneja’s but with a key difference: it highlights how certain foods, like grains and legumes, promote histamine synthesis in the gut.

This point is supported by my clinical observations and autonomic response tests, which consistently show a direct link between gut damage and lectin intolerance, emphasizing its importance.

This doesn’t directly link histamine and lectin intolerance but shows that lectin tolerance is a separate issue worth addressing.

In my practice, I start by identifying food intolerances, including lectins, through autonomic response testing.

Only then do I establish a person’s histamine threshold.

This systematic approach ensures tailored and effective management of dietary sensitivities.

histamine intolerance food list, histamine intolerance, low histamine diet, alison vickery, health, Australia

The Swiss Interest Group

The Swiss Interest Group Histamine Intolerance (SIGHI), a volunteer-run not-for-profit, offers its histamine intolerance list via an app.

This list’s major advantage stems from a survey of about 600 people, providing a diverse range of food sources and real-world testing.

However, the app’s reliance on data from real people, who may have varied health conditions, limits its effectiveness. The histamine classifications are, at best, general averages.

Moreover, the app does not allow for personalization, preventing users from tailoring the list based on their individual experiences with foods.

Food Intolerance App by Baliza

The Food Intolerance app uses published research as its foundation, with each study linked via hyperlinks for easy user verification.

This robust app lets users categorize foods by histamine levels—from low to very high—and various macronutrients.

It provides tailored filters for lactose intolerance, glucose sensitivities, or fructose intolerance. Its customization features truly set it apart.

Users can adjust food rankings and add personal notes to suit their unique biological responses. The result is a personalized, portable food list tailored to individual dietary needs.

Histamine Intolerance App by Ostec

LBA, Allergen dataBAnk, and TNO Nutrition & Food Research have performed detailed experiments to measure precise amine levels in foods.

The ALBA list, integrated into the Histamine Intolerance app by Ostec, offers sophisticated filtering options. These include DAO inhibitors, vitamin B6 antagonists, HNMT inhibitors, mast cell degranulators, and foods containing lectins, gluten, or lactose.

Such detail is crucial for cases of histamine intolerance linked to DAO or HNMT mutations. However, I found this level of detail unnecessary for my needs.

In the app, each food item shows the types of amines present—not just histamine. While useful for those with broader sensitivities, this detail was excessive for my histamine-focused needs.

A major downside of the app is its interface. You must delve into each food’s entry to see amine levels, and it lacks a simple “traffic light” system or amine-type filters.

This design makes the app an advanced “troubleshooting” tool rather than a quick reference guide.

Conclusion

So, which list is best for you?

The answer intriguingly could be any or none of them.

All sources are credible, but the real value lies in using these lists as starting points. Observe how your body reacts and tailor a diet to your needs.

Choose the list that best aligns with your situation and start there.

Remember, personalization is key. Adapt each food list to your personal health circumstances.

Don’t just broadly eliminate foods. Over-elimination can severely impact your gut microbiome and metabolic functions.

If your diet restricts you to a few foods, the problem likely isn’t just the food.

Also, working with a functional health practitioner is crucial to identify and tackle the underlying causes of your symptoms.

With the right approach, you can often resolve issues like histamine intolerance and other food intolerances.

To learn more about hacking histamine intolerance food lists, check out my blog post,  Safe Food Handling and Histamine Intolerance. 

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