So, I may be developing a reaction to histamines in food. I’ve been reading more and more about histamine allergies and my symptoms match the descriptions exactly. The list of high-histamine foods makes up most of my current diet, alas. That may be why I’m noticing symptoms getting worse- my interest in lacto-fermentation and increasing skill means I’ve been eating more fermented foods. And I drink my share of wine, too.
Histamine-Rich Foods (including fermented foods):
Alcoholic beverages, especially beer and wine.
Cheeses, especially aged or fermented cheese, such as parmesan, blue and Roquefort.
Cider and home-made root beer.
Dried fruits such as apricots, dates, prunes, figs and raisins (you may be able to eat these fruits – without reaction – if the fruit is thoroughly washed).
Fermented foods, such as pickled or smoked meats, sauerkraut, etc.
Processed meats – sausage, hot dogs, salami, etc.
Smoked fish – herring, sardines, etc.
Sour cream, sour milk, buttermilk, yogurt – especially if not fresh.
Soured breads, such as pumpernickel, coffee cakes and other foods made with large amounts of yeast.
Vinegar or vinegar-containing foods, such as mayonnaise, salad dressing, ketchup, chili sauce, pickles, pickled beets, relishes, olives.
So basically I can eat fresh meat, vegetables (but not any of my favorites), fresh fruit (except for my favorites), fresh dairy, whole cooked grains but not bread or any of the other fermented grain foods I love. Seriously, how will I survive without pepper sauce? I am going to gradually step down as I figure out what I still can eat. The foods that I know affect me the most- red wine, beer, vinegar, yogurt, salami, and fresh pineapple- these immediately make my cheeks flush hotly, itchy sinuses and sneezing, red eyes, and abdominal bloating. I had some homemade sangria a couple weeks ago made with red wine and freshly-squeezed orange juice and my nose ran for two days straight. These foods go off the menu today. I think the constant histamine reaction is triggering the new allergic reactions to other foods that have started recently like mangoes, coconut, and dates, complete with blistered palate and tongue, itchy throat, and upset stomach. I’m also going to keep a health log starting today to track symptoms. Supposedly if I can wean myself off these foods, let the symptoms calm down, and then slowly reintroduce them the reaction will calm down. Like all other inflammatory conditions you have to get the inflammation down first.