Tuesday, October 18, 2011

What does a low-histamine-paleo diet look like?

My last post was a walk down food memory lane where I recalled the many common paleo foods I once loved with reckless abandon. Such a post might leave you wondering "what exactly can she eat?" Below are some of the low histamine dishes I enjoy these days...

Breakfast smoothie: blueberries, coconut milk, hemp protein, omega 3 oil, multi-vitamin, ground flax seed.
Coffee with whipping cream.
Burger and butternut squash.

Flank steak, parsnips, carrots and brussel sprouts.

Pork chop, cauli-carrot puree.
Roast pork.

Burger, sweet potato.
Burger, carrots, broccoli.
Roast pork, broccoli, yellow squash, brussel sprouts.
Funny thing is, even with all these histamine-related restrictions and skin troubles, I'm still committed to the paleo lifestyle (though occasionally when I'm having a skin flare-up I wonder why). The food above may seem rather bland and/or repetitive, but I say delicious.


  1. It's so awesome you figured this out and are sticking to it for your health!

  2. Have you tried Chia seeds yet? I take them everyday and I'm very happy with them.

  3. I've suffered from eczema for the last 14 years (I'm 42 years old) and have tried all the traditional remedies [steroids (topical and ingested), lotions, diets, light therapy, avoidance of detergents], without any success. In the past I have eliminated certain foods individually (tomatoes, milk, alcohol, bread), but hadn't noticed any positive effects. Just yesterday, for the first time, I became aware of the eczema/histamine link (from Wikipedia, of all places). I've often suspected that my eczema was food-related, and now I am almost certain it is. I had a terrible flare-up in the last week, and guess what I've been eating: pizza, wine, beer, pasta, tomatoes, bread, cheese, pickles, olives, spinach, eggplant, ice-cream, salmon, and wahoo fish steak (in a restaurant -- it tasted dry, bet it was old). Not a particularly bad diet (fish, vegetables), but all histamine-rich foods. The pictures you posted recently of your hand look like they could be mine. Last night I ate a steak with Swiss chard and Japanese yam -- and I didn't scratch all night. Today I found your blog. I think I'm going to be eating a lot like you do for the next few weeks. I'm curious: Has your eczema gone away since your last post?

  4. Peter - I'm so glad to hear from you! Eczema can be very frustrating. I had been hoping to find that magic bullet solution for months, I can only imagine 14 years. My skin still hasn't cleared entirely. I'm finding it a bit of a three steps forward, two - or three - steps back process. Overall, it's certainly better since I switched to a low histamine diet, no question there. Although I'm not knowingly eating any high histamine or histamine releasing foods, I still seem to flare up somewhat regularly (seems almost cyclical). My suggestion would be to go pretty strick for at least a month or more and see what results. Keep me posted!

  5. I have read blueberries and pork are high in histamine. Same for coffee. How is it these are in your diet?

  6. For me, these foods in moderation aren't a big problem. For example, a coffee on weekdays is fine as long as I'm eating low histamine otherwise. All that said, I'm willing to tolerate a certain amount of reaction for some small "indulgences", just have to keep them spaced out.

  7. I'm so glad I found your blog. My hands and arms look exactly like your pictures!
    Are you okay with pork? I thought it was very high in histamine.
    How much Histame do you take on a typical day?
    When are you coming back to Greenwich Village?


  8. I eat pork here and there and don't notice any significant impact. In a typical day, I don't take any Histame. I usually only use it when eating out or for special occasions (like Christmas) - not as a daily supplement.

    I was actually recently debating another visit to NYC this month - my sister-in-law is in an off-off-Broadway show: http://lamama.org/ellen-stewart-theatre/when-it-rains/

  9. I have JUST found out about the low histamine diet! Doctors didn't tell me about it and I was taking so many anti-histamines. I felt terrible. I slept a lot, gained a ton of weight, and was still having flare ups. My eyes would swell shut and I felt like pins were stabbing my face all day and night. I started an elimination diet and POOF- so much better! I am experimenting with foods now and I know when I react. I'll drink a ton of water and take a benadryl and I will be fine. I am getting tired of some of my food choices- just potatoes, chicken, salad and veggies. My friends eat ridiculously and the no alcohol thing is hard. Anyone have any suggestions??? Your blog is great and I want to try some of the recipes!

    1. I think most doctors simply aren't aware of it as a possibility (plus, it's easier to just medicate after all, isn't it? ;-)

      As for alcohol, may I suggest: http://paleothoughts.blogspot.ca/2012/07/drinking-low-histamine.html

  10. Hi all! There is a lot of info on Histamine Intolerance on Dr. Janice's Jonega website: http://www.allergynutrition.com/faqs-fact-sheets/ under the "histamine intolerance" and as a part of the answer. She is one of the leading experts on this condition. She has also written a book called "Allergy Nutrition" and there is a good food list. She also recommends for people who get a lot of headaches and hives to try a "low histamine and tyramine" diet which is also in her book. But you can see the diet here: http://www.mastocytosis.ca/MSC%20HT%20Restricted%20Diet%20Nov2012.pdf - hope this was helpful:)