Histamine producing gut bacteria is one of the leading causes of histamine intolerance in my clients.
It is well established that histamine can be produced by bacteria in fermented foods, but there is an emerging body of research, showing that the microbes within the human gut can also produce, regulate, or degrade histamine.
We can therefore no longer assume that mast cells are the sole source of histamine in the human body.
Indeed, one of the key sources within my client base is dysbiosis. Once the histamine producing bacteria is addressed the histamine intolerance reverses.
Despite this clinical experience, the research is still emerging. Here is what we know so far.
The role of bacteria and mast cells is an emerging area of medical research.
Mast cells are best recognized for their role in inflammation, allergies, and lectins, however, the role of bacteria and mast cells are also crucial.
Yet mast cells play a critical role in the defense against and clearance of pathogens, bacterial, and viral infections.
There is a significant body of research demonstrating that pathogenic bacteria or bacteria cell-wall products activate mast cell to produce an anti-bacterial response.
This natural role of mast cells seems to have slipped off the radar.
A recent discussion paper co-authored by Theoharides highlights the impact on bacteria and mast cells. I have also updated this post in November 2017 following a highly detailed Swedish review of the role of mast cells in bacterial infections.
This paper so mirrors my observations that I wanted to highlight these views whilst waiting for the research to catch up.
Over the last year or so, I have been using zeolite rather than prescription medication, to successfully detoxify mold, only to find that in addition to mold, zeolite binds histamines providing another way to neutralize excess histamines in the gastrointestinal tract.
Gut bacteria diversity is one of the key drivers of health.
The American Gut Project, and the Twins UK project, found that building diversity had a comparable effect to taking medication, and low diversity to disease. It’s that important.
Within the functional health community, there is a lot of focus on killing pathogens, viruses, and other bad guys. Many functional tests are aimed at identifying them – such as the Gi-Map™ test.
In my experience, you need both, otherwise, health is never quite restored. You are either busy shoveling the water out or busy trying to plug the holes in a leaky gut and biome.