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Could these 3 Mast Cell Activation Syndrome Pain Reduction Support Tips Help You?

Many of us with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome have some level of chronic pain. This can be from inflammation, from muscular pain, or from joint pain.

When the mast cells are over reactive, they release inflammatory chemicals. These chemicals can cause swelling and discomfort.

If you are in a mast cell flare, there can be a cascade of inflammation. That inflammation can put pressure on nerves and cause generalized pain.

Mast cells in the muscles can also become over reactive. When this happens, the muscles can get painful like fibromyalgia pain. Joints can be affected as well in MCAS.

In many people with MCAS, the mast cells can become overactive in the ligament and tendons. This makes those ligaments and tendons looser and  spongier. As a result, the joints can be less stable. The reduction in stability can cause increased pain.

I’m often asked by my clients with MCAS what to do for pain. Many over the counter pain relievers, like NSAIDs, can cause histamine release.

Many prescription pain relievers are problematic as well. Fortunately, there are some good natural pain relieving supplements that also stabilize mast cells.

Here are my top 3:

1. Boswellia Serrata – this supplement is great for supporting the joints and surrounding connective tissue. It is also an excellent mast cell stabilizer.

Regular use of Boswellia can support pain reduction as well. It is important that the Boswellia be standardized to be effective. I use Pure Encapsulations Boswellia.

For daily use, I take 1 capsule 2x/day with food. In a flare, I take 2 capsules 2x/day with food. Always take with food or it can bother your stomach.

2. Magnesium – Magnesium is one of the most important nutrients you can supplement. And almost everyone is low in it.

Magnesium is involved in over 380 processes in the body. Magnesium is really critical for proper nerve signaling and muscle functioning. Magnesium supplementation has been shown in research to reduce nerve pain. It can also reduce muscle spasms.

Not just any Magnesium will work, though. The oxide form isn’t well absorbed. The citrate form is often made from fermentation, so it can cause histamine reactions.

Some people get migraines from the aspartate form. Some people love the glycinate form, and others get anxiety from it.

I’ve had the best luck with these two forms:

Magnesium Malate – Magnesium malate can support reduction of muscle discomfort. It also can support energy production. I take in divided doses and dose to bowel tolerance. (This means you want to take the maximum you can take without getting loose stools.

Start with 1 capsule 2x/day. Increase by 1 capsule/day until you get loose stools. Then back just until you have normal stools again.)

Magnesium Threonate  is the only form of Magnesium that can cross the blood brain barrier to reach the brain. I use it to support reduction of nerve pain and restful sleep.

I take 3 capsules at bedtime. If I’m feeling anxious, I also take 1-2 capsules in the morning. Magnesium Threonate does not usually cause loose stools, so it can be taken easily with Magnesium Malate.

3. Pure Encapsulations Phyto UltraComfort – a blend of White Willow, Boswellia, Curcumin, and Devil’s Claw. This is more of an as needed supplement than something to take daily.

We’ve already covered the benefits of Boswellia. Willow bark, curcumin, and cat’s claw all reduce prostaglandins – molecules involved in pain signaling. Devil’s Claw has been shown to support musculoskeletal comfort. There is also a little phenylalanine – an amino acid that supports the calming of pain receptors.

White Willow is the natural form of aspirin, so don’t use this blend if you are allergic or sensitive to aspirin or salicylates. And blends may not be right for those who are still struggling to take most supplements or are hypersensitive. Otherwise, you may really like this blend. It’s best taken with meals. The usual dose is 2 capsules between 1 and 3x/day, as needed.

Finding the supplements that are safe when you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome can be tricky. I hope this gives you some new ideas and some options to help with pain!

Need additional support with supplements? Join my Top 8 Mast Cell Supporting Supplements Master Class by clicking the link below. 

What do you use for pain support with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome? Please share your top go-to supplements in the comments below!

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  1. Amy Natzke

    Hello, Beth, and thank you for all this good information. It is so helpful for me. I have a question: is there any chance of the malic acid in the Magnesium Malate causing an increase in the histamine level?

    Thanks so much.

    1. Beth O'Hara

      Hi Amy! Thanks for reading! That’s a great question. Malic Acid is different from malate. The brands of magnesium I link to in the post do not contain malic acid and are generally well tolerated by those with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance.

  2. Wendy

    Hi Beth, this article was so helpful to me. I do have a question though: can you take the Magnesium Threonate at night to help you sleep and then take the Magnesium Malate during the day for muscle and joint pain? Or would that me a “magnesium overload?”


    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Great question, Wendy. It’s often helpful to take different forms of Magnesium because they have different actions. So generally, it wouldn’t be overload. Too much magnesium causes loose stools so you can always watch for that.

  3. Melissa

    Thank you so much for this. I have had issues with low blood pressure since being diagnosed with MCAS…do you know if magnesium malate will lower my blood pressure even more?

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Melissa,
      That’s an important question to talk with your doctor about.


  4. Michelle

    Hi, I was wondering if you know where I can get the Designs for Health Magnesium Malate. I’ve taken it for over a year and love it but it hasnt been around for months. I also saw its not on your site for purchase anymore. Do you still recommend it? Thanks so much!

  5. May

    I also use Smidge Sensitive probiotic powder – it’s low histamine, has no fillers, and has a low price per dose.

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi May,
      We aren’t familiar with that product, but are glad to hear you found something that worked for you!

      Suz, MC360

  6. Nicole

    Hi, What might help for post dental cavity fixes, with tooth pain after anesthetic wears off?
    Nicole k

    1. Jamie, Mast Cell 360

      Hi Nicole. We cannot say what will or will not work for you since we are unfamiliar with your individual case, but you may want to try Phyto UltraComfort on an as needed basis as stated in the post above. Best of luck with your dental work!

  7. Andrea

    Hello Ms. O’Hara,

    I hope you are well. Have you ever heard of NAC setting off a mast cell flare? I took it at the end of October and finally connected the dots that the NAC was causing my acidic pain in the muscles in my back. I quit taking it and the pain went away. I started at one-third the dose (200 mg) and the pain came back within 45 minutes and is now chronic even though I stopped the NAC the same day! I am panicked that this will now be forever.


    1. Jamie, Mast Cell 360

      Hi Andrea, we are so sorry to hear about the pain you were experiencing. With MCAS, everyone is so individual it is hard to say what someone may or may not react to. We always recommend stopping any supplement that causes a reaction and discussing with your licensed medical provider about your concerns. If you are still experiencing a flare you might find the following blog helpful: https://mastcell360.com/making-a-mast-cell-activation-syndrome-flare-up-plan/

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