Understanding Histamines

For over two decades, histamine intolerance hijacked my life.

Back then, I thought histamine = nuclear-level environmental allergy symptoms like terrible congestion, itchy eyes, and chronic sinus infections.

I had no idea that histamine was also to blame for my digestive issues, overactive bladder, acne, asthma, brain fog, insomnia, and anxiety. Histamine intolerance just wasn’t something that people talked about. (Regrettably, most doctors still don’t…)

In fact, because I was taking so many antihistamines, I assumed that histamine was a bad thing. That couldn’t be further from the truth!

Fun fact: Before I was a Functional Health Coach, I was a teacher. So let me put back on my instructor hat for a moment and explain what histamine is, how you become intolerant, and what to do about it.

Understanding your symptoms is the first step to ending them.

So what is histamine exactly?

Histamine is a chemical produced by the body that is an important part of our immune system, and it is absolutely essential for life.

In addition to generating your own histamine, many foods and drinks also contain histamine. Some of histamine’s vital functions include mediating allergic reactions, helping you digest food, aiding hormone balance, keeping you awake during the day, helping with muscle contraction, and communicating messages between the body and the brain.

Not to sound dramatic, but without histamine, we’d die.

When you have just the right amount of histamine in your body, no histamine-related symptoms should occur. But when too much histamine builds up, you can develop a potentially devastating condition called histamine intolerance.

Histamine intolerance doesn’t mean you are extra sensitive to histamine – after all, histamine is essential to life for ALL humans.

Typically, people become histamine intolerant because the enzymes needed to break down histamines are either deficient or inactive, and often, the mast cells that release histamine have gone rogue. And when that happens, boy, will you feel it!

Because you have histamine receptors on cells all over your body, too much histamine can cause problems in every system.

That’s why you might have symptoms with your skin, gut, brain, and respiratory systems all at the same time. It’s also why histamine intolerance often goes undiagnosed.

Usually people suffering from histamine intolerance end up on what I call the “Specialist Train.”

They spend years bouncing from specialist to specialist for all their seemingly unrelated health issues. That means invasive testing, a pile of medications, and surgeries or injections that treat the symptoms but actually make the root problem worse.

Along the way, you can start to doubt yourself and wonder, “Is this all in my head? Why don’t my symptoms make sense? WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?”

Loved ones and doctors grow increasingly skeptical, while you grow increasingly sick.

As you begin to question your symptoms, the resulting anxiety can be extremely isolating. To complicate matters, all that stress is guaranteed to worsen your histamine intolerance!

I know all about that cycle of doubt and negative self-talk because it was my story for 20+ years.

I went through multiple unnecessary surgeries and had a medicine cabinet full of prescriptions to mask the symptoms of my neverending list of health complaints – prescriptions that came with terrible side effects and only made my histamine intolerance more severe!

The mast cell issues at the root of my histamine intolerance continued to increase, even as I maintained Priority Passenger status on the Specialist Train.

Thank goodness I found out how to get off that awful ride and heal my histamine trouble! Let’s do the same for you.

Do you have symptoms of histamine intolerance?

Histamine intolerance can cause issues with every system in your body:

  • Skin (hives, itching, rashes)
  • Respiratory (wheezing, sneezing, sinus issues)
  • Gastrointestinal (diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, bloating)
  • Neurological (brain fog, headaches, anxiety, insomnia)
  • Reproductive (infertility, irregular hormonal cycles)
  • Urinary (urinary frequency, pain, UTIs)
  • Cardiovascular (racing heartbeat, dizziness, blood pressure fluctuations)

Sadly, histamine intolerance is becoming increasingly common. It is usually triggered by a variety of environmental factors, including chemicals in our food and environment, mold exposure, hidden infections, heavy metals, various medications, gut issues, and chronic stress.

Histamine intolerance starts because your mast cells go rogue, and it can bring on a host of other serious issues as well.


Mast cells contain histamine and other chemicals, and they are located near the surface of almost every tissue in your body. Mast cells are your first line of defense against danger and act by triggering an immune response and inflammation. When they stay in overdrive, the result is called Mast Cell Activation Syndrome.

In addition to histamine intolerance, conditions often associated with mast cell issues include:

  • Allergies and asthma
  • Anxiety
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Celiac disease
  • Multiple chemical sensitivities (MCS)
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Acid reflux (GERD)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Migraines
  • Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS)
  • Skin conditions like acne, eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea

Relief means getting your mast cell problems and histamine intolerance under control.

I’ve been there, and I know it can be overwhelming.

When you’re struggling with so many health issues, it’s hard to even know where to begin! A great place to start is by following a low-histamine diet and strictly eliminating gluten.

Beyond diet, it’s imperative that we investigate hidden triggers such as gut infections, hormone imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, and heavy metal toxicities. We can then use that information to craft a personalized care plan for your life and needs.

After conventional medicine thoroughly failed me, I was enormously blessed to discover functional medicine. I finally had access to the right lab tests and protocols to address the underlying causes of my rogue mast cells.

I found healing I didn’t think was possible, and it’s possible for you too! It’s time to end your awful histamine symptoms and regain incredible energy, vitality, and freedom.


Schedule your Breakthrough consult call with me now so we can get you off of the Specialist Train and on the path to healing. (And I do mean “now” – life’s too short to spend one more second feeling sick!)