SIBO and histamine intolerance

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SIBO and histamine intolerance

Medically reviewed by:
Dr James Freeman

Let’s talk about histamine intolerance…

Why gut “superfoods” can really harm people with SIBO

SIBO can cause histamine intolerances, and histamines are present in lots of food thought as “gut healing” superfoods. They are common in aged food like bone broth, sauerkraut, and vinegars. All foods are often touted as “good for the gut” or “gut super foods’’ are for a healthy gut, but they can be incredibly problematic for people with SIBO.[1] They can cause a worsening of symptoms.

Why this happens is the SIBO bacteria interfere with diamine oxidase (dao Enzyme) on the intestinal lining. Dao enzymes are responsible for breaking down histamines. If histamines cannot be broken down, they cause allergic reactions, that may result in symptoms like a bloated face, headaches, rashes, Itching, hives, watery/red eyes and nasal allergies.[2]

It’s kind of like a secondary allergic reaction. It leaves you feeling unwell and uncomfortable, and the severity can vary. Some people don’t even recognize they have histamine intolerance due to their gut health and may blame other factors because the connection has only recently emerged in the medical literature.

Effects of histamine intolerance visual representation:[3]

1 Sorathia and Rivas, 2020
2 Comas-Basté et al., 2020
3 Comas-Basté et al., 2020