Do you have more than just Histamine Intolerance? Take the Mast Cell Activation Syndrome Symptoms Survey.
The symptoms of both Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance can vary widely and involve multiple body systems. It is easy to confuse the two. Histamine Intolerance, though, is only an issue with too much Histamine. Whereas, Mast Cell Activation Syndrome is much more complex.
The mast cells are present in a majority of tissues in the body and can release over 200 inflammatory mediators. The symptoms in Mast Cell Activation Syndrome tend to be wider spread and more significant than in Histamine Intolerance. I’ve observed thousands of people with Histamine Intolerance. I’ve found that many people who think they only have Histamine issues in fact also have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome.
This was true for me too. For years I thought I only had Histamine Intolerance. When I read about Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, I thought that certainly couldn’t be me. Lowering histamine foods helped me a lot. And supporting the 4 histamine degrading pathways (like Diamine Oxidase and Methylation/HNMT) helped me as well. But my symptoms didn’t completely clear up.
Then I was knocked flat after getting a mild concussion, taking several trips, and getting some injuries. I just couldn’t bounce back. I finally had to face the facts that I have both Histamine Intolerance and Mast Cell Activation Syndrome.
Are you wondering if you might have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome too?
Take a look at the symptoms below. The important thing to remember is that you definitely don’t have to have all of these symptoms to have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome. Usually, people with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome have at least 2 systems that are affected. For example, you may have digestion and skin symptoms. Or you may have insomnia and chemical sensitivities.
Some people may only notice symptoms in just one system without being aware of issues in other systems.
Symptoms of Mast Cell Activation Syndrome
The symptoms of Mast Cell Activation Syndrome can be divided by body systems. They can include any combination of the symptoms below. Read these symptoms to see if you relate with at least 2 categories:
- Systemic symptoms: overall fatigue and feeling bad (malaise), food, drug, environmental, and chemical sensitivities, chills, sweats, sense of being cold all the time, inflammation, swelling, swollen lymph nodes, weight changes
- Musculoskeletal Symptoms: osteoporosis and osteopenia (even in young people), arthritis that moves around, general muscular and bone pain, hyperflexible joints, degenerative disk issues
- Skin Symptoms: itching, flushing, hives, easy bruising, reddish or a pale complexion, burning sensations, dermatographia (persistent redness or white marks after scratching skin), slow healing of skin, hair loss, rosacea, psoriasis, eczema
- Cardiovascular Symptoms: feeling faint or fainting, chest pains, fast heartbeat, heart palpitations, dizziness and lightheadedness when standing up, low blood pressure
- Digestive Symptoms: mouth burning, gum inflammation, diarrhea, constipation, cramping, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, reflux, trouble swallowing, throat tightness, malabsorption, bloating, elevation of liver enzymes, high cholesterol, food sensitivities and food allergies, irritable bowel syndrome, and obesity may occur due to fat metabolism and absorption issues
- Brain and Nervous System Symptoms: brain fog, short term memory issues, trouble recalling words, headaches, migraines, depression, loss of pleasure in life, nerve pains, trouble with attention, anxiety, insomnia, dizziness, tinnitus, numbness, sweating, temperature changes, tingling and numbness in arms and legs
- Lungs and Respiratory Symptoms: congestion, coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing, asthma, increased mucous production, post-nasal drip, sinus congestion, frequent throat clearing, sinus and/or nasal swelling, nasal polyps
- Eye Symptoms: eye pain, redness, trouble focusing, inflammation in the eyes, blurry, itchy, watery, irritated
- Reproductive System Symptoms: endometriosis, painful periods, male and female infertility, hormonal imbalances
- Urinary Tract Symptoms: inflammation of tissues, burning, pain with urination, urinary tract infection type symptoms
- Anaphylactic or Anaphylactoid Reactions (can be life threatening): difficulty breathing, itchy hives, flushing or pale skin, feeling of warmth, weak and rapid pulse, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness and fainting
- Other conditions that may be related to Mast Cell Activation Syndrome: Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue, Interstitial Cystitis, certain cancers, Crohn’s disease, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Diabetes, Ehler’s Danlos Syndrome (EDS), Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Autoimmunity, such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, and Multiple Sclerosis
That’s a lot of possible symptoms and correlated conditions! Remember, this is because the mast cells are in nearly all tissues in your body. The specific symptoms you will have will depend on where in your body the mast cells are being affected.
Mast Cell Activation Syndrome Symptoms Survey
This symptoms survey is for informational purposes only and is not meant to diagnose or treat any condition.
This is a survey on Mast Cell Activation Syndrome Symptoms I developed for both my Master’s Thesis and Doctoral Dissertation. This Mast Cell Activation Syndrome Symptoms Survey is based on the work of top experts in the field and my own clinical observations of thousands of people with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (Afrin L. B., 2016) (Afrin L. B., 2013) (Akin, Valent, & Metcalfe, 2010) (Theoharis C.Theoharides, et. al., 2012).
The higher your score, the more likely you are to have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome. If you have a score over 50, you should probably investigate whether you might have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome. You can set up a Mast Cell 360 Case Review if you want to explore this more.
Are you interested in working with a practitioner 1:1?
If so, you can apply to see if the Mast Cell 360 Practice is a good fit for you. Click the button below:
Please rate each symptom below on a scale of 0 to 5.
0 = you do not experience this symptom
1 = symptom is very mild
2 = symptom is slightly bothersome
3 = symptom is moderate
4 = symptom is severe
5 = symptom is very severe
- Feeling Cold
- Weight Gain
- Weight Loss
- Appetite Increase
- Appetite Decrease
- Hair Thinning/Loss
- Irritated Eyes
- Light Sensitivity
- Ear Pain
- Ear Congestion
- Mouth Burning
- Mouth Sores
- Dental Decay
- Itchy Throat
- Sore Throat
- Post-nasal drip
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Painful lymph nodes
- Pain in left upper abdomen
- Swollen nasal passages
- Swollen sinuses
- Trouble catching breath
- Sleep Apnea
- High Blood Pressure
- Low Blood Pressure
- Heart Palpitations
- Chest Pain not from heart attack
- Abdominal pain
- Pelvic pain
- Endometriosis (women only)
- Decreased Libido
- Erectile dysfunction (men only)
- Muscle pain
- Joint hypermobility
- Unexplained mood changes
- Memory issues
- Trouble concentrating
- Difficulty finding words
- Painful periods (women only)
- Easy bruising/bleeding
- Slow healing
- Get infections easily
- Food sensitivities
- Chemical sensitivities
Total your score:
What to do if you have a lot of symptoms related to Mast Cell Activation Syndrome
I hope your score came back low. That would be good news!
But, if you scored 50 points or more, I strongly recommend you look further into Mast Cell Activation Syndrome.
The next thing you should do is click below to download my Mast Cell 360 – 7 Most Common Root Triggers in Mast Cell Activation Syndrome Report.
You should also read these posts:
If the Free Report and the posts make a lot of sense in your case, apply to see if the Mast Cell 360 Practice is a good fit for you.
Without addressing the Root Triggers in Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, this condition unfortunately will get worse over time. However, if you do start supporting your mast cells in the right ways and in the right order, you can get so much better. I once was bedridden and could barely walk, even using a cane because of Mast Cell Activation Syndrome. I had no quality of life and didn’t want to live.
But I figured out how to beat this! And now, I run a very busy practice and can easily walk over 2 miles. This is a completely different life I’m living. That’s why I’ve dedicated my life’s work to helping others like you with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome get their lives back. If you need help, you can get started with getting your health and life back now by clicking this button:
Are you interested in working with a practitioner 1:1?
If so, you can apply to see if the Mast Cell 360 Practice is a good fit for you. Click the button below:
It’s important you know that this blog post is for informational and educational purposes. It’s not meant to treat any health condition or to be prescriptive for anyone. Always be sure to work with your healthcare practitioner.
Before you change your diet on your own, please make sure you’re working with a healthcare practitioner who can help you with this.
Success Stories from others with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance
Hearing others’ success stories kept me hopeful when I was so sick. I want to share these with you to help you see there is a lot of light if you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome. I was one of the sickest people I have ever met. But now I feel very healthy. These people have regained their health too. I hope these stories help you!
“Before I met Dr. Beth, I could not get rid of chronic Lyme symptoms and I was having so many reactions to foods and environmental insults. I felt like I’d never get better. I didn’t understand Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) and Histamine Intolerance so I was mainly going after Lyme and heavy metal toxicity symptoms using herbs, homeopathics and supplements. Turns out I was taking and eating a lot of things (like ferments) that kept me from getting better. I believe now that the Lyme had no longer been an issue for years, and it was actually undiagnosed MCAS as well as underlying issues caused my metals, molds and genetic mutations.
I really wanted to work with someone who understood genetic analysis and how that related to the symptoms I was having. After serendipitously speaking with one of Dr. Beth’s other clients I suspected I could have MCAS and wanted to address it.
Through working with Dr. Beth, I now understand my genetic issues. I know how to take care of myself around food and environmental triggers. And I now know that I still have heavy metal and mold toxicity to work on to feel 100%.
Working with Dr. Beth’s Mast Cell 360 program has helped me understand MCAS and how oxalates and lectins cause flares for me. I also understand what works and doesn’t work for my body, given my genetics. I am now a new person. I can imagine my future again and I’m taking steps to rebuild my life.
The first thing I noticed were less mast cell reactions. I had been having constant burning mouth and red neck. I even broke into hives when I showered. This went away after about 8 months. My brain fog is nonexistent most of the time (that was a huge issue I was dealing with). My neurological inflammation improved, joint pain improved, and my energy has massively improved. My anxiety and agoraphobia are gone too. My life has changed to nearly normal. I still have improvements to continue to make, but I think I mostly need to increase my stamina which has been on hold for 8 years.
When I had my first Case Review with Dr. Beth, she believed it would take me about 18 months to really feel better. She was right on target! It’s been 16 months and the relief from my symptoms has exponentially grown in the last few months. I will be forever grateful to Dr. Beth for putting me on the road to wellness.”
“Metamorphosis. This word best describes my experience with Dr. Beth O’Hara. In the two years we have been working together, she has made a tremendous impact on my life. When I first came to Dr. Beth, I was struggling every day with MCAS and the accompanying excruciating fibromyalgia pain, migraines, joint pain, severe fatigue, depression, anxiety, panic attacks, and sinus problems. I also have Type 2 diabetes. Just getting the dishwasher loaded was impossible and I wasn’t able to drive myself. I had seen dozens of doctors and been on every medication imaginable, but I seemed to continue to get worse.
Dr. Beth recognized the food triggers that were causing my symptoms and helped me make changes to how I was eating. She also reviewed my genetics and explained in clear language that I could easily understand how my genes might be affecting my health and helped me with action steps on how to address genetic variants. With these changes, my fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis have decreased tremendously and my sinusitis has almost ceased to exist. My A1C is even down!
My Mast Cell Activation Syndrome is much better managed, and I’m able to drive and even enjoy life again. Life-changing. . .”
“Beth has a keen ability to know when introduce the next level or process and she has a wealth of knowledge and the tools to fit my individual needs, she knew exactly when to bring them on board. With her guidance, we incorporated supplements and food changes based on my DNA, along with changes I needed to make in my life to support my health, both body and mind. My histamine issues and inflammation are significantly better, and I am enjoying life in a whole new way.”
“When I was diagnosed with colorectal cancer, I knew I had to make some changes in my life. After going through radiation, chemo, and surgery, I decided it was time to take charge of my health. I knew I had histamine sensitivity, however, the information available was overwhelming and I was not sure how to figure out what was right for me. I turned to Beth O’Hara to see how genetic testing and personalized supplementation could help. Beth was able to analyze the DNA test results and help me to figure out the best foods and supplements for a healthy lifestyle for me.
Beth has been a wonderful help in navigating through the healing process. I feel so much better! Her vast knowledge, empathy, and calming demeanor have been such a blessing!”
“I highly recommend Dr. Beth. She is a true health detective. She combines genetic analysis, symptoms and medical test interpretation and figures out what foods, supplements and mind/body approaches are best. She understands how things work in the body and that everyone is different. She offers a very personalized approached at a very reasonable cost. There are many people out there doing genetics, but Dr. Beth’s approach makes her far better than the rest. She has succeeded where other doctors have failed.”
“I went to see Dr. Beth when I was having several areas of health concerns and wanted more holistic answers. She asked really great questions and listened with an open mind and an open heart, which helped her get to the bottom of what was causing my health issues. Dr. Beth can integrate information from DNA reports, lab results, discussions, observations, her knowledge of how the body works, nutrition, and lifestyle to provide individualized solutions that work for me. My histamine levels are way down, and I’m feeling much better after working with Dr. Beth. I recommend her for anyone who is experiencing health concerns and would like a holistic approach that addresses the whole person!”
“My experience has been that her knowledge of individual genetic tendencies allows her to pinpoint contributing factors in many complex health issues, particularly those in which histamine issues and inflammation were a contributing factor. Dr. Beth has also been an invaluable resource for me due to her extensive network of competent and skilled practitioners who, like her, are on the cutting edge of new ways to be healthy and whole in mind and body. I have seen significant improvements in my energy, neurotransmitter balance, and sleep and have even been able to come off some of my medications.”
“I came to Dr. Beth in chronic pain and fatigue that began with a shoulder injury that was not healing. I was barely sleeping at night and my body was full of inflammation. I’d been through a round of traditional PT and believed I was eating healthily, but I was just not getting better no matter what I tried. With Dr. Beth’s guidance, I began to recognize and understand MCAS and other underlying hyper mobility issues that I had. I began the MastCell360 protocol, got the right testing and began taking supplements that were gradually bringing me back into balance.
The supplement recommendations were also a game-changer for me, and I was finally able to break out of my long cycle of pain and inflammation. Dr. Beth truly is on the cutting edge of this field, and I am so grateful to her for it. I’m still healing, but it’s been such a huge transformation that I can barely even remember those days of chronic pain, sleep deprivation and hopelessness now.”
I’d love to hear from you now! How did you realize you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome?
Do you want to share your Mast Cell Activation Syndrome score to add to the research? If so, you can add your score in the comments below.
References on Symptoms of Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance
Afrin, L. B. (2013). Presentation, Diagnosis, and Management of Mast Cell Activaiton Syndrome. In Mast Cells (pp. 155-231). Nova Science Publishers.
Afrin, L. B. (2016). Never Bet Against Occam: Mast Cell Activation Disease and the Modern Epidemics of Chronic Illness and Medical Complexity. Bethesda: Sisters Media.
Akin, C., Valent, P., & Metcalfe, D. D. (2010). Mast cell activation syndrome: Proposed diagnostic criteria. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 1099-1104.
Theoharis C.Theoharides, et. al. (2012). Mast cells and inflammation. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) – Molecular Basis of Disease, 21-33.
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