Histamine intolerance is a condition characterized by the inability to break histamine down properly, causing a histamine buildup in the body. This is usually due to a lack of the diamine oxidase (DAO) enzyme caused by genetics, certain medications, and even gastrointestinal diseases like Crohn’s and SIBO. This blog series walks you through everything you need to know about the histamine response, including supplements for histamine intolerance, and how to get back to optimal health!
In Part 1, I discussed the basics of histamine intolerance, its hallmark signs and symptoms, and some testing options to help histamine intolerance. Part 2 explained how to follow an elimination diet of high histamine foods. Now in the final part of this blog series, you’ll learn about helpful supplements for histamine intolerance and some of my favorite product picks!
Supplements for Histamine Intolerance:
Certain nutrients can help mediate the histamine response in the body and can be used for those with histamine intolerance in addition to a low histamine diet. As always, check with a healthcare professional before beginning any supplement protocol.
|What You Should Know|
|Copper||Copper is known to produce mild increases in DAO levels in the blood, and deficiencies are linked to increased histamine intolerance.|
This micronutrient is a metal and can cause toxicity if too much accumulates in the body. It’s best to assess your red blood cell (RBC) copper levels prior to supplementing.
Zinc and copper inhibit each other’s absorption, so if you have been taking a zinc supplement for a lengthy period of time, it might be worth checking your copper levels
Take copper separate from iron,vitamin C,and zinc to improve absorption
|Pure Encapsulations Copper Glycinate |
|Vitamin C||Important for immune health, Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that also helps clear histamine from the blood by increasing DAO production.|
As too much Vitamin C may cause loose stools, it’s best to start at a lower dose and increase gradually with a goal of 1000-2000 mg per day
|Vitamin B6||Vitamin B6 is a cofactor (a helper molecule) for the DAO enzyme.|
Supplementation with B6 may help increase DAO levels naturally.
|Quercetin||This is a bioflavonoid that helps calm inflammation in the body. |
Quercetin also blocks histamine release from mast cells, thereby reducing allergy symptoms.
|DAO enzymes||Taking a DAO enzyme can be helpful for short term relief and improve histamine clearance|| |
|Khella (Bishop’s Weed)||Khella is plant-based mast cell stabilizer that may be useful in reducing respiratory symptoms associated with histamine intolerance|| |
|Resveratrol||Found in the skin of red grapes as well as blueberries, resveratrol is an polyphenol antioxidant that helps quench free radicals and prevents cellular damage.|
Although grapes and blueberries are high histamine foods, resveratrol intake has been linked to decreased incidence of mast cell disorders by inhibiting tumor necrosis factor and interleukins, proinflammatory compounds.
Resveratrol is often found in combination with other antioxidants, although it can be taken on its own.
High potency resveratrol is pretty pricey, so it’s not a bad idea to try other supplements before this one!
|Pure Encapsulations Resveratrol |
|Milk Thistle||Milk thistle contains silibinin, a compound which helps decrease the release of inflammatory cytokines like histamine from mast cells.|
This product also stimulates the liver to more effectively detoxify the body.
|Probiotics||While fermented foods are high in histamine, taking a good quality probiotic to help balance the gut microbiome may be helpful for histamine intolerance.|
One study found that Lactobacillus rhamnosus diminished mast cell release of histamine.
There are also some bacterial strains that should be avoided because they promote histamine release. The bacterial strains Lactobacillus casei and Lactobacillus bulgaricus are found in fermented foods like yogurt that usually aren’t appropriate for those with histamine intolerance, so it is best to avoid probiotic supplements that contain these strands as well.
|Klaire Labs Pro-5|
|Combination Products||Certain supplements combine beneficial nutrients into one product.|
Sometimes it is better to see how you react to a single nutrient before trying them in conjunction with others.
Vital Nutrients Aller-C combines Vitamin C, quercetin and bromelain
BioGenesis Resveratrol plus Flavonoids combines resveratrol with other flavonoids like green tea extract, pine bark extract and bromelain
Complementary Prescriptions Histamine Balance combines Vitamin C, Quercetin, Bromelain and Magnesium
Protocol for Life Balance Aller-All combines B6, B5, Vitamin C, Zinc, Quercetin and Stinging Nettles
While these supplements can certainly help with symptoms of histamine intolerance and improve quality of life, they are not magic. It’s important to discern the underlying cause of your symptoms and work to eliminate them with proper diet and lifestyle changes outlined in Part 1 and Part 2 of this blog series.
Are you still not sure where to begin? If you need help navigating your issues with histamine, let’s set up a free consultation today!
GUEST ARTICLE CONTRIBUTED BY: ELIZABETH HERBERT, MS CANDIDATE AT THE MARYLAND UNIVERSITY OF INTEGRATIVE HEALTH
- Johnston, C. S. (1996). The antihistamine action of ascorbic acid. In Subcellular Biochemistry (pp. 189-213). Springer US.
- Oksaharju, A., Kankainen, M., Kekkonen, R. A., Lindstedt, K. A., Kovanen, P. T., Korpela, R., & Miettinen, M. (2011). Probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus downregulates FCER1 and HRH4 expression in human mast cells. World Journal of Gastroenterology : WJG, 17(6), 750–759. http://doi.org/10.3748/wjg.v17.i6.750
- (2001). Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine; Pyridoxal 5′-Phosphate). Alternative Medicine Review, 6(1), 87.