Low and High Histamine Foods Lists

Hi! Welcome to the Low and High Histamine Foods List.

This list is to give you a place to start in working on eating low histamine. There are many different histamine lists online. Some were created by listing every food someone reacted to. But those reactions may not have been due to histamines. Some lists include a lot of processed, packaged foods. But processed foods can make Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance worse over time.

I wanted this list to be as reliable as possible. So I took the best research available about histamine foods to make this list. I recommend including lots of high nutrient foods from this list. Foods like cauliflower, onions, and blueberries have anti-histamine properties. So load up on the anti-histamine foods!

Remember that histamine levels work like a bucket. You might be ok with 1 strawberry or 1 bite of pineapple. But if you combine a few bites here and there of high histamine foods, your bucket might overflow.

Your histamine bucket can be more full due to exposure to seasonal allergens, mold, fluctuating hormones, dehydration, stress, etc. So keep this in mind when making food choices.

There are other types of foods that people with MCAS or Histamine Intolerance may react to. These include lectins and oxalates. So try new foods slowly and cautiously until you know how your body will respond. This list is meant to be a starting place for you to make your own personal list. If you seem to be reacting to a lot of foods that are low histamine, you may have additional food sensitivities. If this is the case, you can reach out to me for help. I can help you customize this list to your own list.

The long term goal is to support histamine pathways to work correctly and reduce mast cell over-reactivity so that we can include more foods over time. Many higher histamine foods have great nutrients. So we want to try to bring many of those back on board at some point when it is safe. I was once down to a very small number of safe foods. It has taken a lot of work to get foods back in my diet. But it isn’t healthy to be on a very restricted diet long term. I can now eat everything on the low histamine list below. I can also eat small amounts of firm avocado and dried cranberries. I want this for you too!

Just let me know if you need my help by emailing us.

Sending the best for your health!

Beth O’Hara, Functional Naturopath

Key to the Mast Cell 360 Low Histamine Diet Foods List:

* = Has been noted as higher histamine, but contains high amounts of histamine lowering nutrients that can balance

Italics = particularly high in histamine lowering nutrients, Emphasize these

![Food Name] = High in pesticide residue – buy organic

-L = Lectin: may trigger those with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome

-O = High Oxalate: may trigger those with Oxalate issues, quantities given after the O are for those watching oxalates. DO NOT go low oxalate cold turkey – this can make you very ill. If you have oxalate issues, be sure to work with a qualified Heath Care Practitioner who is very experienced in this area to guide you.

Important Notes for Mast Cell 360 Low Histamine Diet
Phase I: Elimination – usually 6 months

Think of this phase as going back to basics. You’ll take out all High Histamine foods, Histamine Liberating foods, and Diamine Oxidase (DAO) blocking foods.

  1. Start with the Phase I tips in the blog post The Mast Cell 360 Starter Low Histamine Foods List & Why you Shouldn’t use Most of the Online Histamine Foods Lists if you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance.  I recommend at this phase you avoid all dairy (except ghee), eggs, fish (even frozen Wild Alaskan salmon) and all high histamine foods.
  2. Avoid packaged and processed foods.
  3. Freeze all leftovers after cooking. Bring your own properly prepared meat to restaurants during Phase I Elimination
  4. Be sure to follow the Meat Handling tips here.
  5. Emphasize nutrient dense herbs and vegetables that are histamine lowering.
  6. Follow this phase for 6 months
  7. Keep a food diary of foods and symptoms so you can track if you may have other food sensitivities or intolerances beyond Histamine. This is common to have.
  8. Follow the other Low Histamine Diet Tips in these 2 posts: How to do a Low Histamine Diet Part 1: Identifying High Histamine Foods and How to Do a Low Histamine Diet Part 2: What to Eat
  9. Once your Histamine symptoms are significantly improved, you can go on to Phase II. If you significantly improved within 6 months, there are other factors you need to address. Be sure to book a Mast Cell 360 Case Review with me if you get stuck.
Schedule Case Review including your Mast Cell 360 Root Cause Analysis

Grains & Carbs - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

Any Gluten free grains:

  • Amaranth – O
  • Rice – O, L 
  • Millet – O 
  • Oats– O, L 
  • Quinoa– O, L 
  • Rice, black – O, L 
  • Rice, brown – O, L 
  • Rice, white – L 
  • Sorghum, Black – O 
  • Sorghum, Popped– O 
  • Sorghum, White – O 
  • Plain gluten-free pasta and crackers – likely O, L

Resistant Starches to feed good gut bacteria (Avoid with SIBO): 

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Foods made with:

  • Anise
  • Artificial colors
  • Artificial flavors
  • Bleached flour
  • Cheese
  • Chocolate
  • Cinnamon
  • Cloves
  • Cocoa
  • Margarine
  • Preservatives
  • Restricted fruits
  • Some jams, jellies
  • Any food made with or cooked in oils with hydrolyzed lecithin, BHA, BHT
  • Commercial pie, pastry, and fillings
  • Baking mixes
  • Dry dessert mixes
  • All packaged rice and pasta meals

Gluten

![Corn]

 

Vegetables - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

All pure fresh and frozen vegetables and juices except those listed to the right

Especially:

  • Artichokes – O 
  • Arugula 
  • Asparagus 
  • Basil 
  • Beets – O (very high oxalate)
  • Bok choy 
  • Broccoli 
  • Broccolini 
  • Brussels sprouts 
  • Butter lettuce 
  • Butternut squash 
  • Carrots 
  • Cauliflower 
  • ![Celery]
  • Chinese cabbage 
  • Chives 
  • Cilantro 
  • Collards 
  • Cucumber – L 
  • Daikon radishes 
  • Dandelion greens 
  • Endive 
  • Escarole 
  • Fennel 
  • Garlic 
  • Green and Red cabbage 
  • ![Kale] – Curly – O 
  • ![Kale] – Lacinato or Dinosaur 
  • Kohlrabi 
  • Leafy greens 
  • Leeks 
  • Mesclun 
  • Mint 
  • Perilla 
  • Mizuna 
  • Mustard greens 
  • Napa cabbage
  • Nopales cactus – O 
  • Onions – any kind 
  • Parsley, curly – O 
  • Parsley, flat 
  • ![Peppers, bell or hot] – L 
  • Purslane – O (very high oxalate) 
  • ![Potatoes] – O, L
  • Radishes 
  • Red and green leaf lettuce 
  • Rhubarb – O (very high oxalate) 
  • Romaine 
  • Scallions 
  • Squash, Winter – L 
  • ![Squash, Summer]– L 
  • Swiss Chard – O (very high oxalate) 
  • Watercress

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Eggplant – L, O 

Pumpkin – O 

Sauerkraut 

![Spinach] – O (very high oxalate) 

![Tomato] and all tomato products – L 

Mushrooms 

All vegetables prepared with restricted ingredients

Fruits - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

![Apple]
Apricot – fresh
![Blackberry] – O
![Blueberry]
![Cherry]
![Cranberry]
, fresh
Currant, fresh
Cantaloupe (rock melon)
Figs, fresh
Honeydew
Kiwi – O
Lemon – 1/2 tsp (not always
tolerated in elimination)
Lime – 1/2 tsp (not always
tolerated in elimination)
Mango
![Nectarine]
![Peach]

Pomegranate – O
![Pear], Bartlett or Bosc
![Pear], other variety- O
Plantain – O
*![Raspberries] (limit to 1/4 cup –
not always tolerated in
elimination)
Watermelon
Fruit dishes made with allowed
ingredients

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Dried fruit
Avocado
Banana
Date
Grapefruit
![Grapes] (often have mold)
Loganberry
Orange and other citrus
![Papaya] – O
Pawpaw- O
Pineapple
Prunes
Plums
Raisins
![Strawberries]
Fruit dishes, jams, juices
made with restricted
ingredients

Meat, Poultry, & Fish - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

Be sure to follow the meat handling tips in this post.

All pure, freshly cooked meat (except beef) or poultry:

  • Chicken
  • Turkey
  • Quail
  • Ostrich
  • Duck
  • Goose
  • Bison (not ground)
  • Pork
  • Lamb
  • Rabbit

Try farmer’s markets or US Wellness Meats * for pastured chicken, turkey, and rabbit that are frozen right after slaughter

Frozen Salmon, gutted and frozen within 30 minutes of catch (like Vital Choice Fish King Salmon*)

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Beef (due to aging)

All other fish and shellfish

All processed meats

All leftover cooked meats

Ground Meats

Cured meats: bacon, salami, pepperoni, luncheon meats and hot dogs 

Eggs - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

***Many people don’t tolerate eggs. Unless you have run an Egg Zoomer test, you should avoid them in the Elimination phase.

Lower Histamine Foods

***All plain, cooked eggs (if tolerated)

Pasture Raised is best 

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

All prepared with restricted ingredients

Raw egg white (as in some eggnog, hollandaise sauce, milkshake)

Legumes - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

Lentils, especially black (legumes are higher lectin, use in moderation) – soaked overnight in water and pressure cooked – L, O

Freshly cooked beans (pressure cooked is best) – L, O

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Peanuts – L, O

Canned beans or lentils, L, O

Nuts & Seeds - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

Almonds – O (very high oxalate)
Brazil Nuts (only 3-4 nuts/day max) – O
Coconut Meat, Fresh
Coconut Milk, 100% Coconut Milk only (no additives)
Flax
Hazelnuts – O
Hemp Protein Powder – O
Hemp Seeds – O
Macadamias – O (if over 1/4 cup)
Pecans – O (if over 1/4 cup)
Pine Nuts – O
Pistachios – O (if over 1/4 cup)
Pumpkin Seeds – L
Sesame Seeds – O
Sunflower – L

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Walnuts – O
Cashews – L, O
Peanuts– L, O

Dried Coconut

Fats & Oils - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

Grass Fed butter
Ghee from Grass Fed Cows
Cold Pressed Avocado Oil
Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
Sesame oil
Extra virgin olive oil
Extra virgin palm oil
(unprocessed)
Cold Pressed Flax Oil
Macadamia Oil
MCT Oil

Homemade salad dressings with allowed ingredients

Fresh meat drippings

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Fats and oils with color and/or preservatives
Hydrolyzed lecithin
Margarine
Prepared salad dressings with restricted ingredients

Spices & Herbs - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

  • Basil
  • Chives
  • Cardamom
  • Caraway
  • Cilantro
  • Cumin – O
  • Dill
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Lemongrass
  • Oregano
  • Peppercorns, Black, Pink, White – O
  • Peppermint
  • Turmeric – O
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Saffron

Curcumin powder can replace turmeric if oxalates are a
concern

Salt – unrefined like Real Salt, Celtic Sea Salt, Himalayan Sea Salt

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Allspice
Anise
Cinnamon
Chili Powder
Cloves
Curry powder
Cayenne
Mace
Mustard
Nutmeg
Paprika
Seasoning packets with
restricted ingredients
MSG

Foods labeled “with spices”

Foods labeled “natural flavors” or “artificial flavors”

Sweeteners - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Stevia, Monk fruit, and Inulin are your best choices. Sugar raises histamine levels, so limit your sugar intake.

Lower Histamine Foods

These don’t affect blood sugar:
Stevia
100% Monk Fruit – no fillers
Inulin

Use sparingly, avoid in elimination:
Coconut Sugar

Homemade sweets with allowed ingredients

  • Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Anything that raises your blood sugar will increase histamine levels:

  • Sugar
  • Honey
  • Molasses
  • Maple syrup
  • Corn syrup
  • Icing sugar
  • Pure jams, jellies, marmalades, conserves made with allowed ingredients

Flavored syrups
Prepared desert fillings
Prepared icings, frostings
Spreads with restricted ingredients
Cake decorations
Confectionary
Commercial candies
Artificial Sweeteners

Miscellaneous - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

Baking powder
Baking soda
Cream of tartar

Homemade relishes with allowed ingredients

Leftovers – freeze right after cooking

Cocoa butter (white chocolate with no additives)

 

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

All other chocolate and cocoa
Gelatin
Mincemeat
Prepared relishes and olives
Soy sauce, coconut aminos, Bragg’s liquid aminos
Miso
Commercial ketchup
Gherkin pickles
Most commercial salad dressing
Vinegars, including white, champagne, and balsamic;
apple cider vinegar is lowest and tolerated by some at 1tsp
Leftovers not frozen immediately after cooking

Additives:

  • Carrageenan
  • Sodium Benzoate
  • Potassium Sorbate
  • Lecithin
  • MSG
  • Citric Acid
  • Sodium Triphosphate
  • Potassium Triphosphate
  • Sodium Nitrite
  • Maltodextrin
  • Malic Acid
  • Guar Gum
  • Calcium Chloride
  • Xanthan Gum
  • Food colorings
  • Smoke Flavoring
  • Yeast and Yeast Extract

Beverages - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

Plain and carbonated mineral water

Filtered water with fresh squeezed lemon or lime (if
tolerated)

Herbal teas, except those listed to the right

Coffee – preferably avoid caffeine. If you must drink
coffee, then only lower histamine, mold free brands like
Purity Coffee*

Pure freshly squeezed juices of allowed fruits and vegetables – limit fruit juice due to sugar

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

Flavored milks
Fruit juices and cocktails made with restricted
ingredients
All other carbonated drinks
All black, green, white, rooibos tea
All drinks with “flavor” or “spices”
Beer
Wine
Cider
All other alcoholic beverages
Kombucha

Best tolerated Alcohol: top shelf plain vodka, gin, white
rum, silver tequila – avoid until Phase II due to
blocking of histamine degrading enzymes

Milk & Dairy - Lower Histamine and Higher Histamine

Lower Histamine Foods

***These dairy products are technically low histamine. But many people have casein and lactose issues. Start with only ghee in Phase I: Elimination. If you test negative for dairy sensitivities on a Dairy Zoomer, then you can try adding the others.

Plain A2 milk, goat milk, sheep milk
Ricotta cheese (from grass fed cows)
Cream cheese (from grass fed cows)
Cream (from grass fed cows)
Grass fed butter
Ghee from grass fed cows

Higher Histamine Foods – Limit These!

All prepared dairy products made with restricted
ingredients
All other cheese
All yogurt and kefir
Buttermilk

Schedule Case Review including your Mast Cell 360 Root Cause Analysis

References for the Mast Cell 360 Low Histamine Diet Foods List

de Wild-Scholten, Mariska. Understanding Histamine Intolerance & Mast Cell Activation

Environmental Working Group. 2019 Clean 15, Dirty Dozen List

Gibb, James L. Is Food Making You Sick?

Kullman, Pamela. Privately Compiled Notes

Joneja, Janice. Histamine Intolerance The Comprehensive Guide for Healthcare Professionals

Ykelenstam, Yasmina. www.Healinghistamine.com

*Some links in this document are affiliate links, which means I may make a very small commission if you purchase through the link. It never costs you any more to purchase through the links, and I try to find the best deals I can. I only recommend products that I love and use personally or use in my practice. Any commissions support providing these types of resources to those in need with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance for free. 

Thank you for your support!