Meat Broth_ The Gut-Healing Bone Broth Alternative for people with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance (Low Histamine, Low Lectin, Low Oxalate, Low FODMAP, Low Salicylate)

Meat Broth: The Gut-Healing Bone Broth Alternative for people with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance (Low Histamine, Low Lectin, Low Oxalate, Low FODMAP, Low Salicylate)

When you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance, bone broth is one of those “healthy” foods you may have to let go.

I’ve made bone broth so many times over my life…

I worked so hard to recover my health. And I tried anything I could get my hands on! Bone broth was one of the early things I came across over 15 years ago.

I first got into making bone broth when I was following the Weston A. Price Foundation. And their way of cooking traditional foods.

I’d make bone broth with all kinds of beef bones. I even used chicken feet! This was to get the maximum gelatin and collagen content for gut healing.

I had read how good it was supposed to be for healing the gut. And also for joint health.

Back then, I was dealing with all kinds of gut symptoms. But I was also struggling with pain in my joints. And difficulty walking.

I had fatigue, severe allergy issues, and anxiety. And at that point, no one really had any clue of what was happening with me – And I certainly didn’t.

So, making bone broth was one of my early forays into healthier eating.

I had cleaned up the processed foods in my diet. And I’d taken out most of the sugar. And then I was also working on learning which foods were the most nutrient-dense.

Now, when I take something on, I take it on fully. So, I became a bit of a master when it comes to making bone broth.

I was also making ferments, my own kefir, and my own sourdough bread. So, I was doing quite a lot of cooking from that Weston A. Price perspective. And it’s a really great way of eating for a lot of people.

I loved the philosophy of Weston A. Price. And I loved the focus on going back to our more traditional ways of eating. And for restoring our health.

I thought these would be the magic bullet for my health concerns.

The problem was that I didn’t know that I had both Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance. And these foods were a nightmare for mast cells and my histamine levels.

Eventually, I realized that the bone broth was actually triggering a lot of my symptoms.

And it made me so sad to give it up and let it go!

When I figured this out, I had to start going against what I thought was correct about health.

And I had to start opening my mind to what was right for my personal health and my unique situation.

So, what is it about bone broth? Why is it thought to be healthy?

And if it is healthy, why does it cause problems for Mast Cell Activation Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance?

That’s what I’ll be covering in this article.

What’s the big deal with Bone Broth? What to know when you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance

Intestine Mast Cell 360

Bone broth can certainly be food that can help many people’s gut and joints. (Unless you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, Histamine Intolerance, or Oxalate Issues like me).

There isn’t a lot of solid scientific data on bone broth.

But, bone broth has many reported benefits.

Such as:

  • Providing an easy-to-digest source of key vitamins and minerals
  • Amino acids like glycine and arginine that can support the gut
  • Soothing the gut lining and promoting healing
  • Improving joint health due to its collagen
  • Promoting restful sleep due to its glycine content
  • High protein source

Bone broth is believed to help lower inflammation. And also provide amino acids needed by the gut lining. This is why it’s often recommended for gut support protocols.

Many people who are dealing with conditions such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) use bone broth to help their guts. This includes Crohn’s Disease & Ulcerative Colitis. It’s also recommended for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO).

And bone broth has become a major health fad over the past few years. And a lot of people have done well with it.

However, it may lead to problems if you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance. I’ll explain why in the next section…

Problems with Bone Broth for Mast Cells & Histamine Levels – what to know when you have Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance

Meat Bones Mast Cell 360

The main reason why bone broth causes problems for those of us with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance is the histamine!

Meat or bones that are cooked for a long time release a fair amount of histamine into the broth.

And that’s the very thing we’re trying to avoid.

Beyond the histamine, there are other problems. Bone broth is rich in the amino acid glycine. And unfortunately, glycine can be converted to oxalates and glutamate in the body.

Unfortunately, it’s still high histamine even if you cook it in the Instant Pot.

This is because pressure cooking can lower the lectins in foods. And it can certainly reduce the cooking time. However, it’s not going to remove the oxalates or glutamates.

Wondering how you’ll ever be able to make delicious soup again? Don’t worry – In the next section, I’ll give you an easy and tasty alternative!

What to do instead: Meat Broth: The Gut-Healing Bone Broth Alternative for people with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance

Chicken Meat Broth Mast Cell 360

So, what can we make instead? Meat Broth!

Meat Broth is a wonderful alternative to slow cooked (histamine-rich) Bone Broth.

Are there still benefits, despite the shortened cooking time? Absolutely. Here are some benefits of meat broth:

  • Still has the healing amino acids
  • Supports the gut
  • Very soothing to the digestive system
  • Can drink it on its own or use it in recipes like these: Creamy Cauliflower Veggie Soup or Low Histamine Stroganoff
  • Much lower in histamine
  • Much lower in glycine (fewer oxalate/glutamate issues)
  • Easy to make
  • Can freeze in cubes for future meals

To make sure you’re getting the benefits without the drawbacks of bone broth, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Next, I’ll share a few cooking tips for keeping your meat broth low histamine.

Cooking Tips on Meat Broth: The Gut-Healing Bone Broth Alternative for people with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance

Cooking Tips Mast Cell 360

There are some tips I wanted to share with you before you get started on this recipe. To make sure you get the most out of this new technique for broth.

Here are a few cooking tips for meat broth:

  • Use low histamine meat
  • Buy pasture-raised meat and wild caught fish
  • If you’re going to make fish broth, make sure it’s wild salmon flash-frozen right after it’s caught. Vital Choice* has the lower histamine I’ve found.
  • Buy meat as fresh as possible – frozen right after slaughter. Your best bet is your local farmer.

    If you don’t have access to someone local, go with US Wellness Meats. Their pastured chicken, turkey, and rabbit that are frozen right after slaughter

  • Try not to use beef, because 99% of beef bones are aged
  • You can use chicken, turkey, lamb, etc.
  • Don’t let the meat or fish sit in the fridge after thawed. It will start to build histamine.
  • Make a big batch and freeze for recipes or even just as a drink to soothe your tummy
  • I really like these large 100% BPA free food grade silicone trays for freezing meat broth in. Each compartment is 1 cup. Which is the perfect size for a recipe or for drinking. They come with lids, so they’re easy to stack:
  • If you’d typically use black peppercorns in your broth, use pink peppercorns (Black pepper is high in histamine and oxalates).
  • Use flat leaf parsley instead of curly parsley. Flat leaf parsley is lower in oxalates.

All right – Now you’ve got some notes from the chef. Let’s get cooking!

Here’s the recipe for low histamine, delicious Meat Broth…

Recipe for Meat Broth: The Gut-Healing Bone Broth Alternative for people with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance

Meat Broth Mast Cell 360

The great thing about this recipe is that it’s very versatile. You can add any combination of seasonings to adapt it for your soup recipe. Or even for your mood!

Not only that, but you can also easily double, triple, or quadruple this recipe.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups low-histamine meat, thawed
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 onion, chopped (sub green onion tops for Low FODMAP)
  • 2 cloves garlic (sub garlic infused olive oil for Low FODMAP)
  • 1 teaspoon unrefined sea salt (like Celtic or Real Salt)

Optional Seasonings (pick any combo that work together for you):

If you are avoiding salicylates, then stick with cilantro, parsley, onion, and garlic.

  • cilantro
  • ginger
  • lemongrass
  • Italian parsley
  • rosemary
  • thyme
  • oregano
  • basil

Directions

  1. Heat water in a pan until boiling.
  2. Carefully add meat, vegetables, salt, and any seasonings you wish.
  3. Simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Take off heat and let cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Strain and enjoy as is, freezing any leftovers. Or transfer to BPA-free ice cube trays and freeze for future recipes. Be careful not to burn yourself!

Ready to take the next step? Check out the Mast Cell Nervous System Reboot:

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References for Meat Broth: The Gut-Healing Bone Broth Alternative For People With Mast Cell Activation Syndrome or Histamine Intolerance

Achamrah, N., Déchelotte, P., & Coëffier, M. (2017). Glutamine and the regulation of intestinal permeability: from bench to bedside. Current opinion in clinical nutrition and metabolic care, 20(1), 86–91. https://doi.org/10.1097/MCO.0000000000000339

Arora, B., Peacock, M., Robertson, W. G. (1989). Effect of glycine on urinary risk factors of kidney stone disease. Nutrition Research. 9(9), 1027-1031, ISSN 0271-5317. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0271-5317(89)80063-6.

Clegg, M. E., Ranawana, V., Shafat, A., & Henry, C. J. (2013). Soups increase satiety through delayed gastric emptying yet increased glycaemic response. European journal of clinical nutrition, 67(1), 8–11.https://doi.org/10.1038/ejcn.2012.152

Henrotin, Y., Mobasheri, A., & Marty, M. (2012). Is there any scientific evidence for the use of glucosamine in the management of human osteoarthritis?. Arthritis research & therapy, 14(1), 201. https://doi.org/10.1186/ar3657

Hsu, D. J., Lee, C. W., Tsai, W. C., & Chien, Y. C. (2017). Essential and toxic metals in animal bone broths. Food & nutrition research, 61(1), 1347478.https://doi.org/10.1080/16546628.2017.1347478

Kawai, N., Sakai, N., Okuro, M., Karakawa, S., Tsuneyoshi, Y., Kawasaki, N., Takeda, T., Bannai, M., & Nishino, S. (2015). The sleep-promoting and hypothermic effects of glycine are mediated by NMDA receptors in the suprachiasmatic nucleus. Neuropsychopharmacology : official publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, 40(6), 1405–1416. https://doi.org/10.1038/npp.2014.326

Leidy H. J. (2014). Increased dietary protein as a dietary strategy to prevent and/or treat obesity. Missouri medicine, 111(1), 54–58.

Scaldaferri, F., Lopetuso, L. R., Petito, V., Cufino, V., Bilotta, M., Arena, V., Stigliano, E., Maulucci, G., Papi, M., Emiliana, C. M., Poscia, A., Franceschi, F., Delogu, G., Sanguinetti, M., Spirito, M. D., Sgambato, A., & Gasbarrini, A. (2014). Gelatin tannate ameliorates acute colitis in mice by reinforcing mucus layer and modulating gut microbiota composition: Emerging role for ‘gut barrier protectors’ in IBD?. United European gastroenterology journal, 2(2), 113–122. https://doi.org/10.1177/2050640614520867

Razak, M. A., Begum, P. S., Viswanath, B., & Rajagopal, S. (2017). Multifarious Beneficial Effect of Nonessential Amino Acid, Glycine: A Review. Oxidative medicine and cellular longevity, 2017, 1716701. https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/1716701

Wijnands, K. A., Castermans, T. M., Hommen, M. P., Meesters, D. M., & Poeze, M. (2015). Arginine and citrulline and the immune response in sepsis. Nutrients, 7(3), 1426–1463. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu7031426

Yamadera, W., Inagawa, K., Chiba, S. et al. (2007). Glycine ingestion improves subjective sleep quality in human volunteers, correlating with polysomnographic changes. Sleep Biol. Rhythms 5, 126–131 https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1479-8425.2007.00262.x

Zdzieblik, D., Oesser, S., Gollhofer, A., & König, D. (2017). Improvement of activity-related knee joint discomfort following supplementation of specific collagen peptides. Applied physiology, nutrition, and metabolism = Physiologie appliquee, nutrition et metabolisme, 42(6), 588–595. https://doi.org/10.1139/apnm-2016-0390

Zhu, S., Huang, M., Feng, G., Miao, Y., Wu, H., Zeng, M., & Lo, Y. M. (2018). Gelatin versus its two major degradation products, prolyl-hydroxyproline and glycine, as supportive therapy in experimental colitis in mice. Food science & nutrition, 6(4), 1023–1031. https://doi.org/10.1002/fsn3.639

Comments

  1. Pat

    When you freeze the broth, how do you reheat it — and do you ever use the microwave.
    Thanks!

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Pat,
      Beth uses a microwave for some things, but not frequently. When she does use the mirco, she leaves the room while it is running. It depends on your own sensitivities as to what will be the best choice for you. You can reheat on the stovetop, too.
      –Suz, Mast Cell 360

  2. eileen

    Brilliant! Thank you for inspiring another home broth narrative. I just couldn’t bear to give up my broth.

  3. Debbie

    Does the meat need to be boneless or could you use a bone in chicken breast or a lamb chop? THANK YOU!!!

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Debbie,
      You’ll want to use boneless.

  4. Will

    Do you cook the meat in the broth or do you use precooked meat or is that a matter of preference?

  5. Cathy

    When you add 2 cups of meat – do you add the meat on the bone or just the meat itself. ie. do I add a whole chicken or just the breast/thigh?

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Cathy,
      You’ll want 2 cups of boneless meat.

  6. mom2one

    Why couldn’t I use frozen meat bones in my Instant Pot and cook for the shorter time? I use to do that before MCAS.

    1. mom2one

      I get the butchered feet and backs (uncooked) from the chickens my farmer processes and freezes.

  7. Valerie

    Is the meat added to the water raw or cooked? The picture looks like the chicken and onions were roasted first.

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Valerie,
      Either way will work! Hope you enjoy!

      1. Christina

        I thought for sure we were not allowed to ‘thaw’ the meat at all! That is was crucial to immediatly cook it from a frozen state and then refreeze it quickly so bacteria would not grow. To roast in the oven would mean bacteria! And to thaw as she states in the recipe would mean bacteria! Please clarify for me as I’m so concerned about any bacteria at all growing!

        1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

          Hi Christina,
          Great question. Histamine levels do increase the longer the cook time. This recipe calls for a 20 minute simmer. But you are correct that roasting for several hours would increase histamine levels. So, generally speaking, shorter cook time = lower histamine. You should be fine at 20 minute cook time, but it really does depend on how sensitive someone is.
          Thawing is necessary sometimes, but yes, cooking it from frozen in something like an instant pot is the most ideal. However, in instances where thawing is called for, you can thaw in the fridge until just frosty. Then cook as per directions. Just don’t thaw on the counter. That is the worst.
          I hope this helps to clarify.

          Best regards,
          Suz, MC360

  8. Jalissa

    Hi, isn’t the point of bone broth to extract nutrients from the bone? If there’s no bone in this soup, can it still provide gut healing benefits?

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Jalissa,
      You are correct that bone broth can be good for some people. However, for those with histamine intolerance, bone broth isn’t great. That’s because it is high histamine. Meat broth has the healing amino acids same as bone broth. And it supports the gut by being soothing to the digestive system. It’s also much lower in histamine and glycine (fewer oxalate/glutamate issues). So if you have MCAS/HIT, meat broth is the better option.

      Suz

  9. Laura

    Is there any pre-made brand at all that can be recommended for those that are bed ridden or simply don’t have the energy to prepare this??

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Laura,
      We haven’t tested any premade options ourselves, but maybe someone here in the community will be able to see your post and respond with anything they tried and worked. Generally, if you do look for pre-made options, frozen will probably be your best option (rather than canned) and just check out any ingredients against this foods list:
      https://mastcell360.com/low-histamine-foods-list/

      Suz

  10. Linn Rivers

    Would love to know if this will still be doable with ground meat? I buy flash frozen high quality bison and would love to get even more out of it! Thanks in advance! 😁

    1. Suz, Mast Cell 360 Team

      Hi Linn,
      We haven’t tried it that way, but if you have luck with it, please let us know!

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