Low Histamine Food List
When you’re choosing to decrease the levels of histamine in your diet, it’s just that: decreasing. It is simply impossible (and actually unnecessary) to try to eliminate histamines. They’re everywhere. However, reducing your intake of histamine along with combining foods that are high in histamine with other foods can help reduce your histamine load. Use this list to help you lower your histamine load.
Foods That Contain Low Histamine Levels – Eat These!
For those on a Low Histamine Diet, be sure to increase these foods in your regular meals. Notice the emphasis on fresh in this list.
- Fresh Meat (cooled, frozen, or fresh)
- Freshly Caught Fish
- Chicken (skinned and fresh)
- Egg Yolk
- Fresh Fruits – with the exception of strawberries, most fresh fruits are considered to have a low histamine levels (also see the Histamine Liberators list below)
- Fresh Vegetables – with the exception of tomatoes
- Grains – rice noodles, yeast-free rye bread, rice crisp bread, oats, puffed rice crackers, millet flour, pasta (spelt and corn based)
- Fresh Pasteurized Milk (and milk products)
- Milk Substitutes – coconut milk, rice milk, almond milk
- Cream Cheese & Butter (without the histamine generating rancidity)
- Most Cooking Oils – check suitability before use
- Most Leafy Herbs – check suitability before use
- Most Non-Citric Fruit Juices
- Herbal Teas – with the exception of those listed below under DAO Blockers
Foods That Contain a High Level of Histamine – Don’t Eat These!
High histamine foods are good to stay away from as much as possible.
- Pickled or Canned Foods – sauerkraut
- Matured Cheeses
- Smoked Meat Products – salami, ham, sausages
- Beans and Pulses – chickpeas, soy beans, peanuts
- Nuts – walnuts, cashew nuts
- Chocolates (and other cocoa-based products)
- Ready Meals
- Salty Snacks, Sweets (with preservatives and artificial colorings)
Histamine Liberators to Limit
Histamine Liberators are foods that are low in histamines themselves, but they help release histamines in other foods. These aren’t necessary to stay away from, but they are good to limit.
- Most Citric Fruits – kiwi, lemon, lime, pineapple, plums
- Cocoa and Chocolate
- Beans and Pulses
- Wheat Germ
- Additives – benzoate, sulfites, nitrites, glutamate, food dyes
Diamine Oxidase (DAO) Blockers
DAO Blocks are foods that can prevent specific enzymes (diamine oxidase enzymes) from breaking down histamine in the body.
- Black Tea
- Energy drinks
- Green Tea
- Mate Tea
Debatable Histamine Foods:
- Yogurt – depends on the bacteria culture used
- Egg White – it is a histamine liberator only when in its raw state
Other Histamine-Related Foods
- Yeast – even though it does not contain histamine as such, yeast serves as a catalyst for histamine generation during manufacture. There is no yeast in the end-product.
Learn More about Histamine
Our bodies are complex, and there is usually more at play than we think. What most don’t take into consideration when addressing histamine-related health issues is genetics. Whether you’re on a low histamine diet due to histamine intolerance, or simply trying to reduce high histamine foods for general health, you will benefit from understanding how your genes are related. Learn more about histamine and genetics here!
Our body has two distinct methods of clearing things that could bring it harm: our immune system kills living toxins (bacteria, virus, parasites…) and our detoxification pathways clear non-living toxins (chemicals, heavy metals, drugs…). We have one other system that sits somewhere in the middle between the immune and the detoxification systems that helps with both: the mast cells. Read more about Histamine’s Double-edge Sword in the Formation and Progression of Cancer.