Relief from Histamine Intolerance

As said in my previous post what Histamine intolerance is, I mentioned that a histamine intolerance stems from a lack of the enzymes that break histamine down. If that happens histamines consumed with foods en histamine released from mast cells starts to build up within the body as it’s not broken down fast enough.

This means that there are several ways in which one can try to get the symptoms of histamine intolerance down.

The lack of these enzymes can come from a genetic problem, an injury in the gastrointestinal track, the inhibition of these enzymes or a shortage of certain minerals and vitamins that are used to create these enzymes. If the enzymes are inhibited by certain medicines, chemotherapy or the use of alcohol. This can be reversed if the factor inhibiting them is taken away. Restoration can be helped with the aid of those vitamins and minerals necessary for functioning, these can also help in any other instance if there is a lack of the enzymes.

There are also supplements on the market that contain diamine oxydase (DAO), and can provide some relief.

A third way is avoiding eating those foods that are rich in histamine. By following a diet. This is the main way a histamine intolerance is treated, and a way to diagnose it as well, but the diet can be pretty hard.

The fourth way, is to stop the histamine in the body from starting a reaction, this is what antihistamines do. They block the receptors histamine binds to, so no further  reaction occurs.

Vitamins and minerals

Vitamin C is well-known for its antihistaminic working, in this article the show that in a lot of cases blood histamine levels are directly correlated to the vitamin C levels, and that the intake of vitamin C will lead to less histamine in a matter of days.It functions as a cofactor of DAO, just like vitamin B6 does.

Diamine oxydase, the enzyme that breaks down histamine in the blood and the gut, depends on vitamin B6 to function, so if a shortage of B6 arises, the enzyme is practically useless. The intake of vitamin B6 often leads to a higher activity of DAO, at least in vitro.

Magnesium is also quite important in the histamine metabolism, a shortage  increases the activity of histidine decarboxylase in some tissues. Histidine decarboxylase is the enzyme that makes histamine from histidine. While at the same time a lack of magnesium leads to lesser activity of DAO.

Calcium is a mineral that is said to help combat histamine allergy levels, by flushing it out, or stopping the secretion, for both of these I’ve found some basis the literature, but it seems a rather complex. so I haven’t yet fully figured this out.

Copper is another cofactor of DAO and able to reduce histamine levels. It’s not often recommended to supplement, but seeing its function, it could provide some relief.

Zinc inhibits the release of histamine from mast cells. And is also sometimes mentioned as a supplement that can help.

Manganese also inhibits the release of histamine from mast cells. And just like zinc is mentioned sometimes.

So the main vitamins and minerals that can help, are vitamin C, vitamin B, magnesium and calcium. Vitamine C can be taken in a dose ranging from 1000 to 5000 mg. Vitamin B, one should be careful with, see my warning about it, I wouldn’t recommend going above a dosage of 25 mg, as 1 to 2 mg is enough. Magnesium can be taken up to 500 mg, I recently read this, about it causing diarrhea and what can be done if this happens. Calcium you can just add the recommended daily amount which is about 800 mg.

DAO supplements

There is also Histame and DAOsin, these are same thing, coming from Sciotec a company based in Austria, which found a way to extract DAO  from porcine kidneys. They do contain some extra ingredients as stabilizers. So it can provide relief for a lot of the people suffering from a histamine intolerance and for some it can make things worse. Or doesn’t seem to work at all. The only way to find out, is to try.


But the main way, which also helps in healing an injury or infection in the bowels or colon is to keep to a strict diet. Avoiding foods that can upset the gastrointestinal tract, those that are rich in histamine and those that are able to release histamine from the mastcells. Many diet examples can be found on the internet, though a lot of these have different opinions about certain foods and it can get quite confusing. Soon I will go into more depth with these lists, and do some more research on them. Hopefully that can shed some light on the matter. Since they make me crazy! I’ve been on the diet for about 8 months, and I permit myself quite some freedoms without having it affect me too much. Some things that aren’t good don’t set me off, as the threshold at which reactions start isn’t reached. But this also means, that I won’t notice those things I try to add to my diet, but that are bad even though they were mentioned as safe on some kind of list.

For example I had started to eat some cheese again, it’s not recommended on the diet, but as one needs to try new things every so often so you’re not to restricted I tried it, just really young one the 24+ , one sandwich didn’t cause trouble  another didn’t either, but when I started to eat it more often and more on a daily, since I love cheese, it became apparent that it made me really tired. One of the most important things is to diversify your food, and rotate often. So you don’t eat one thing to often.

Histamine rich foods tend to be those that have aged and or processed. Bacterial activity converts the histidine to histamine, so the longer this bacterial activity can go on, the more histamine a food will contain.  There are also some other foods that contain lots of histamine even when still fresh, like tomatoes and spinach.


There are a lot of anti-histamines available on the market. In small dosages over the counter as hay fever medication. In general the main one recommended are those that block the H1 receptors. These are widely distributed throughout the body, and are the mediators in a lot of symptoms. Older generations easily travel across the blood brain barrier into the brain, where they also interrupt the histamine pathway that is active when you are awake, making you very drowsy and sleepy.

I’ve got fexofenadine prescribed by my doctor. These are from a new generation and shouldn’t make a person drowsy. But of course they did, luckily the effect wore off within a month, and by taking them at night I slept rather well for a view weeks.

H2 blockers are also often prescribed, these mainly regulate the secretion of stomach acid. And are often given in case of a stomach ulcer, or with acid reflux problems. But these receptors are also present in different parts of the body, one of the reasons they are also often prescribed to those with skin problems, like in case of urticaria.

H3 and H4 are hardly ever used.  H4 has only recently been discovered. And H3 has an inhibitory effect on histamine itself. It works as a negative feedback loop, to regulate the reactions histamine starts.

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15 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Thankyou so much for your helpful advice and relaying your own experience. I identify so much with much of the symptoms here and am going to try some of the remedies.

  2. Thank you for the time you have put into this. It is very helpful in my search to better understand my histamine imbalance issues

  3. I appreciate the great effort to br helpful and the simple way in which your research is shared; I have tried homeopathy, ayurveda & allopathic( applications only) when i have severe eczema in both feet in winters only; the relief is partial & subsides after winter. But in my childhood I was treated for this problem successfully by an old timer GP with injections of Calcium, Vitamin B12(Berin) & Liver Extract. Currently the standard treatment is with Steroids/ Anti- Allergens like Allegra; this is likely to cause the problem to move to soft tissues in lungs, kidneys & heart. Thank you for a more fundamental & non-supressive approach to Histamine disorders.

  4. Thank you.

  5. Great article. Thanks for the tips!

  6. I hardly comment, but i did a few searching and wound up here Relief from Histamine Intolerance | Hitting on HIT.
    And I do have 2 questions for you if it’s allright. Could it be simply me or does it appear like some of these comments look as if they are left by brain dead visitors? :-P And, if you are posting on additional places, I’d like to
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  8. Taking a diamine oxidase supplement with vitamin c and b6 all together definitely lessens the symptoms, except for red wine! Also just read another article that listed several drugs that inhibit the body’s ability to produce DAO. One of the categories is mucolytics – like Pseudoephedrine/Guaifenesin, which I’ve been taking for years. here’s the link –

  9. I think this is one of the most significant info for me.
    And i’m glad reading your article. But wanna remark on some general things, The site style is perfect, the articles is really excellent : D. Good job, cheers

  10. your comment on magnesium is incorrect and a safe dosage can range up to 1600+ mg a day for someone who is histamine intolerant. MG is not a dangerous mineral, it will cause loose stools if too much is taken, just decrease the dosage a little if that happens. Your RDA for calcium is low and this amount is gender specific — women need more than men and liquid supplementation of at least 1200 mg/day is a good starting point. B6 is also incorrect, a time release version will help manage the dosage but 100 mg/day is a good starting point.

  11. I have just learned about another cofactor for DAO that you, and pretty much everyone else, have missed. That’s because it comes from one level further away from histamine. The product of DAO is imidazole acetaldehyde. High levels of imidazole acetaldehyde cause a feedback loop to inhibit DAO. In order for aldehyde dehydrogenase, the enzyme which degrades imidazole acetaldehyde, to function, it must have NAD(P)+, which is a form of niacin.

    So niacin (or niacinamide, the non flush form) is required in order for DAO not to get feedback inhibition.

    Look at chart 2:

    This is from Wikipedia’s page for aldehyde dehydrogenase:

    “The active site binds to one molecule of an aldehyde and an NAD(P)+ that functions as a cofactor.”

    So anyone who has a lot of histamine will not have enough DAO if they don’t have enough niacin (or niacinamide). ( 500 mg -1 gm 3 times a day could be a starting place.) This can take lots of B6 and copper, too.

  12. Thank you for all the valuable information.
    Follow your advice, I bought a bottle of zinc. But I found that the ingredients include spinach which is high in histamines.

    Can I take this without trigger histamines intolerance? Or is there any zinc supplement no using spinach as ingredient? Kindly advise. Thanks a lot.

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