Histamine Intolerance and Mast Cell Disorders

What are mast cells?

Histamine IntoleranceMast cells are part of your immune system and are located throughout your body. They contain chemicals that cause inflammation, such as histamine, heparin, cytokines, and prostaglandins. These chemicals are released to alert your body of a potential pathogen, infection, or other problem. They are also involved in digestion and wound healing.

What are histamine intolerance and mast cell disorders?

Histamine intolerance is generally attributed the body’s lack of enzymes that breakdown histamine in the foods you eat (i.e., diamine oxidase (DAO) and histamine N-methyltransferase (HNMT)).

Mast cell disorders, such as mastocytosis and mast cell activation syndrome, occur when the body either has too many mast cells, or has a normal number of cells that consistently malfunction. This results in an excess amount of inflammatory chemicals releasing in your body.

What are the symptoms?

Histamine intolerance/mast cell disorders cause a wide range of symptoms, and vary from person to person depending on the type and severity of their condition. Symptoms range from flushing, skin rashes, and migraines, to cardiac symptoms and anaphylactic shock. The Mastocytosis Society of Canada lists the following 58 symptoms:

  • Skin lesions or sores
  • Skin rash, spots, redness
  • Hives
  • Persistent fatigue
  • Itching
  • Flushing and severe sweating
  • Joint and bone pain
  • Headaches
  • Tachycardia (rapid heartrate)
  • Unexplained anxiety
  • Sudden blood pressure drops
  • Fainting
  • Persistent diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Sinus problems
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sunlight sensitivity
  • Temperature sensitivity
  • Difficulty with foods
  • Anaphylactoid reaction
  • Anaphylaxis
  • Gastrointestinal pain
  • Unexplained medication reactions
  • Enlarged liver or spleen
  • Eyes tearing/dry, eye pain
  • Persistent body/tissue pain
  • Difficulty exercising
  • Vertigo
  • Episodes low body temperature
  • Unexplained Vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Scents/odors/chemical reactions
  • Difficult periods (females)
  • Numbness/tingling in face and extremities
  • Skin feels on fire
  • Unexplained weakness
  • Vision problems
  • Hair loss
  • Mouth sores
  • Nausea
  • Swelling and inflammation
  • Odd reaction to insect stings
  • Anesthesia difficulties
  • Anemia
  • Thyroid problems
  • Decreased bone density
  • Liver/spleen/bladder/kidney pain
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Frequent urination
  • Recurring infections
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Constipation
  • Iron deficiency
  • Unexplained bruising
  • Malabsorption
  • Intermittent tinnitus or hearing problems

Source: http://www.mastocytosis.ca/signs.htm

How can Nicole help?

People with mast cell conditions are usually given a combination of H1 and H2 antihistamines and mast cell stabilizers and told to follow a low-histamine elimination diet. Unfortunately, low-histamine food lists often contradict each other leaving people unsure of what to eat. Moreover, following these lists often results in people restricting themselves to a very small number of foods. Not only can this result in nutrient deficiencies, but in some cases, the body’s immune system eventually turns against those few “safe” foods as well. Nicole was diagnosed with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and understands firsthand how overwhelming the healing process can be and that it is highly individualized. Along with continuous support, Nicole will provide you with customized tools and dietary and lifestyle strategies.

Nicole’s goal is to help you transition to a diet that is nutrient-dense, anti-inflammatory, and anti-histamine so that your body can heal. Getting diagnosed with a mast cell disorder can be very difficult, as it usually takes people and average of 5-10 years. If you suspect you have this disorder, Nicole can recommend health care specialists for you to work with and specific testing to request from your physician.

Nicole Dube Nutrition

P.O. Box 781
West Springfield, MA 01090

10 Commerce St.
Glastonbury, CT 06033

tel 844-563-5027
fax 844-347-5226

email us

Consultations are available in person, via Skype, and by phone.