Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List (Grocery List with Printable!) + latte recipe! (2024)

I may receive a commission if you purchase through links in this post. I am not a doctor; please consult your practitioner before changing your supplement or healthcare regimen.

A sometimes discouraging challenge arises for many of us when health circ*mstances lead us to adopt two restrictive diets at the same time. This post combines two diets: low-histamine and lectin-free (or low lectin), to help those who need to navigate grocery shopping and cooking (and eating!) with many new restrictions. This Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List article is meant to free up your mind a bit on the subject, reduce stress and help you make one more big step toward wellness.

This article also includes one very special recipe, by way of encouragement: Chicory Breve Latte! (Find it toward the bottom of this post.)

(Scroll down to get the low histamine & low lectin diet printable! 🙂 )

My Story

For those of you who are curious, this is the diet I am doing right now! I had a recklessly healthy summer, and I exercised too much (because I felt great)! One day I went for a long jog (for me) when there was smoke in the air from nearby fires. The lymph nodes behind my ear swelled up, a rash broke out, my energy tanked … and I have never been the same since! I am doing SO much better now, but it took me tens of hours of research to understand what happened to my body. Now I will plod on to get well again. I should have been more careful. Now I know two triggers to be more careful of in the future!

Usually there is a silver lining, and in my case there is one too: My belly has never felt so good. All those years on the GAPS diet weren’t enough, because Dr. Natasha didn’t share about lectins. While it’s no walk in the park to eliminate them, my gut is healing in new ways, and for that I am grateful!

UPDATE!!! I am super encouraged and excited to share with you that I have a new breakthrough. The rash that started behind my ear ended up moving to different spots on my face. I won’t go into all of the details here, but suffice it to say that I’ve spent months researching how to overcome my histamine issue, extreme lectin sensitivity and rashes. Please read or scroll to the bottom of this post for the details of my breakthrough.

Low Histamine, Lectin-free Diet

Because of the work of Dr. Steven Gundry and his book, The Plant Paradox (find it here), knowledge about lectins and their link to leaky gut has spread. This news can be empowering when it leads to improved health. The work of Dr. Ben Lynch (here’s his book Dirty Genes) has helped many of us to find reprieve from onerous histamine intolerance symptoms. But ultimately, the two are related: Lectins can induce mast cell reactions, which cause histamine intolerance symptoms.

The key message to understand in reading about histamine intolerance is this: Look beyond it to the root cause, which is always leaky gut, an imbalanced gut microbiome, diet and usually additional factors like stress or environmental factors. With a low-histamine diet and this goal in mind, a lectin-free diet is the logical next step, sometimes and often paired with a healing diet like GAPS or AIP; (AIP already emphasizes the omission of lectins from one’s diet but GAPS does not). Healing the gut for many means … needing to remove lectins!

The work of Dr. Moneret-Vautrin also supports this conclusion. She is a professor of medicine in France and specializes in immunology and allergies. Although less well known in America, Dr. Moneret-Vautrin’s histamine studies link the healing of the gut and the reduction of one’s histamine threshold with eliminating legumes and grains, essentially lectins!

I have not included foods prohibited on these diets. Find lists for what not to eat on a lectin-free diet here and those to avoid for a low-histamine diet here. Over time, some of the prohibited foods may be reintroduced, by trial and error, one at a time, while other foods will remain triggers and should be avoided long term.

To read more about both of these diets and to find additional resources scroll to the bottom of this post.

In short and by way of introduction, lectins are proteins often found in foods containing seeds, with some exceptions. Lectins are also found in some roots and in early stage leaves. High histamine foods are usually aged. Foods that are not high in histamines themselves but that encourage mast cells to release histamines are also ones to avoid, as they may cause the same symptoms. Unfortunately these foods include favorites like cocoa and shellfish. But remember, oftentimes these foods may be added back into one’s diet after a period of regaining balance or healing leaky gut.

Ultimately that’s the goal with histamines: We should re-test our threshold regularly and keep a small to moderate amount of histamines in our diet, according to what our bodies can handle, always trying to keep food diversity.

Additional Note: A minority of patients who struggle with histamine overload or a sensitivity to lectins are also sensitive to salicylates. While this post won’t go into that arena, I have noted in the lists below in parenthesis when a food approved for being low in lectins and histamines has a high salicylate content, as it may provide good insight for some of you, as you track down your unique sensitivities.

The Combined Food List (Yes! Foods)

Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List (Grocery List with Printable!) + latte recipe! (1)

Oils

Algae Oil (This one was new to me, but it’s so good! Find it here. Use it like you would avocado oil, especially if you can’t have avocado oil.)
Avocado Oil
Coconut Oil
Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
MCT Oil (Find it here.)
Perillo Oil (Find it here.)
Red Palm Oil
Sesame Oil
Walnut Oil
Virgin Cod Liver Oil (Find it here.)

Acceptable Nuts and Seeds in Moderation

No more than half a cup per day is recommended. Nuts and seeds (not including chestnuts which are already cooked) should always be soaked in salt water to make them more digestible. Learn how to soak nuts and larger seeds here. Learn how to “predigest” smaller seeds (like flax and hemp) here.

Macadamia
Pistachios
Pecans
Chestnuts
Flax seeds
Hemp seeds
Hulled Sesame Seeds
Psyllium
Brazil nuts
Coconut
Blanched Almonds

Seafood

FRESH fish only: any wild caught, up to 4 ounces per day (no shellfish)

Condiments & Miscellaneous

Sea salt (very important natural anti-histamine!)
ACV (safe for some and not for others)
Or use ascorbic acid + water to make a safe vinegar-like solution (Find great non-GM AA here.)
-Mix 5-1/2 teaspoons water with 1/2 teaspoon AA; stir to dissolve. (source)
Baking soda
Baking powder
Gelatin (may cause a histamine response for some)

Fruit

Apples, fresh in season, (be cautious late winter through summer when they’re coming from cold storage)
Blueberries in season (sometimes high level of benzoates) and blackberries in season

Dairy

A2 raw milk, preferably pasture-raised, must be very fresh (I find I tolerate it well for the first 5 days after milking.)
French or Kerrygold butter

Non-dairy Beverages

Unsweetened coconut milk
Chicory Herbal Coffee (Recipe here. [Scroll down for Chicory Breve Latte recipe!] Learn about prebiotics here.)

In support of enjoying chicory:
… mast cells are a source of histamine that could be preventing a low histamine, or histamine restricted diet, from working. Allergens, bacteria, viruses, parasites, stress, chemicals, pressure, vibration, heat, cold, all trigger the release of histamine from mast cells. So while minimizing histamine intake from foods might work in the short term, preventing mast cells from releasing histamine, and other inflammatory agents that compound the symptoms of histamine, is paramount (source)

However, if you are sensitive to salicylates, it may be best to avoid chicory. Yasmina Ykelenstam, now deceased, but founder of HealingHistamine.com cautions those with histamine intolerance or MCAD to balance our plates: not too many foods with salicylates, some but not too many foods high in oxalic acid, not too many histamines etc. Balance is key long term. So chicory may be better for some than for others (source).

In other words, try out a small cup of chicory coffee, and see how you do! If your body can tolerate chicory coffee, it may be a true health food for you. I am thankful it’s a food my body loves, so it’s a treat I can have! We need to find those treats, so we’re content while we heal. Chicory is also a great prebiotic food and good for colon health.

Sweeteners

Coconut sugar
Maple sugar
Maple syrup
Honey
Yacon

Low Carb Sweeteners

Stevia
Monk fruit
Hardwood-derived xylitol
Erythritol
Luo han guo

Prebiotics

Green plantains
Green bananas
Baobab fruit
Cassava
Sweet potatoes or yams (anti-histamine but high amounts of salicylates)
Rutabaga
Parsnips (high amounts of salicylates)
Celery root
Glucomannan
Persimmon
Jicama
Jerusalem Artichokes
Taro roots
Turnips
Tiger nuts
Green mango
Millet/Sorghum (thyroid suppressing effects, should not be eaten too often or if thyroid, adrenal or low energy issues are present)
Green papaya

Vegetables

Broccoli (high amounts of salicylates)
Brussels sprouts
Cauliflower (anti-histamine)
Bok choy
Napa cabbage
Chinese cabbage
Swiss chard
Arugula (anti-histamine)
Watercress (high amounts of salicylates)
Collards
Kale (anti-histamine)
Cabbage
Red Cabbage (anti-histamine)
Radicchio
Nopales cactus
Celery
Onions (some people have a histamine response to onions)
Shallots
Leeks
Chives
Scallions
Carrots
Carrot greens
Artichokes
Beets (high amounts of salicylates)
Radishes
Daikon radishes
Jerusalem artichokes
Hearts of palm
Okra (natural lectin blocker)
Asparagus (anti-histamine)
Garlic (anti-histamine)
Leafy greens
Romaine
Red and green leaf lettuce
Kohlrabi
Mesclun
Endive
Dandelion greens
Butter lettuce
Fennel
Escarole
Mustard greens
Mizuna
Parsley (anti-histamine)
Basil (high amounts of salicylates)
Mint (high amounts of salicylates)
Cilantro
Lemon Verbena
Marjoram
Rosemary (high amounts of salicylates)
Sage (high amounts of salicylates)
Tarragon (high amounts of salicylates)
Thyme (high level of benzoates [only an issue for some people] and high amounts of salicylates)
Oregano (high amounts of salicylates)
Purslane
Perilla
Ginger
Mushrooms (avoid during elimination diet, may be fine afterward)

Fresh Meat: Grass fed and grass finished, 4 ounces per day

Bison
Wild game (venison, elk, boar etc.)
Pork
Lamb
Beef
Chicken
Turkey
Other Fowl (duck, goose, quail etc.)
Pastured or omega-3 eggs (make sure whites are fully cooked; avoid during elimination diet, may be fine afterward)

Did I miss anything? Let me know! This was quite the list to assemble!

Briefly, while we’re on the subject, if you’re struggling with a histamine sensitivity, keep in mind that this state is not a diagnosis, but rather a symptom of mast cell activation disorder. While many of us can obtain relief from symptoms by reducing histamines in our diet, ultimately we should address the underlying cause. Nutrients and foods known to stabilize mast cells include prebiotics, probiotics, selenium, vitamin C, quercetin, bromelain, nettles, butterbur, peppermint, ginger, thyme, turmeric and holy basil (source).

As always, it’s also important to reduce stress, get enough sleep (if you can) and see a practitioner if you suspect heavy metals in your system.

Additional Resources

I spoke above about mast cells releasing histamines and that certain foods encourage this to take place. Conversely there are some supplements that discourage histamines from being released, which is certainly one of the broader goals in rebalancing the body after histamines have gotten out of control. Personally I have found one supplement to be the most helpful in reducing the release of histamines! It’s quercetin. (Find it here.) I take one capsule with each meal, and that supplement alone has made a huge difference for me.

Another great option is this supplement by Seeking Health (created by Dr. Ben Lynch) which adds additional similar support with nettles, bromelain and broccoli seed extract added to the quercetin. (I don’t take this one because my body doesn’t digest coconut oil well, and this pill contains a coconut derived product; otherwise I would.)

Vitamin C is also a great mast cell regulator. (Here’s a preferred source from Camu Camu berries. We take 1 teaspoon daily, minimum, which is about 700 mg. Vitamin C is flushed from the body quickly, so if it doesn’t cause loose stools, it may be ideal to take this dose twice daily. Consult your doctor for dosage.)

Need a best source for DAO?? DAO is the enzyme that breaks down histamines. I wouldn’t go without this supplement, what a blessing it has been to me! And I’m excited to share it with you because it’s 100% food-based, with just one ingredient: grass-fed kidneys (which are naturally very high in DAO). I LOVE this supplement. Find Ancestral Supplements Kidneys here. I take 6 capsules daily. (All other DAO supplements I’ve found contain many unneeded additives.)

I may write another post on overcoming histamine issues and fully healing leaky gut with lectin elimination. But for now I hope you find this article helpful. Honestly, cutting out so many foods was hard for me too!! (Especially cheese!, she said weeping … ) But alas, regaining our health is worth it!!

Much love, recovery of balance and wellness to you! ~ Megan

I’d love to hear your experiences too! Tell me about your process of diagnosing or recovering from lectin and histamine issues!

Here’s your Grocery List Printable! Or Pin it!

Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List (Grocery List with Printable!) + latte recipe! (2)

Ready for a healthy treat?! Here’s the Chicory Breve Latte recipe! Enjoy.

Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List (Grocery List with Printable!) + latte recipe! (3)

Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List (Grocery List with Printable!) + latte recipe! (4)

Print Recipe

5 from 19 votes

Low-Histamine & Lectin-free Grocery List AND Chicory Breve Latte Recipe {AIP, Paleo, Keto}

{Low-Histamine & Lectin-free Grocery List} + This cup of herbal coffee is absolutely delicious!! Chicory Coffee brews up dark and bitter, just like real coffee. Dairy version: Adding homemade A2 half and half is the perfect creamy embellishment. A2 milk and cream need to be pasture raised to be healthful. See if you can find a local farmer near you who provides this fresh health food. Otherwise, use unsweetened coconut milk. I prefer my cup unsweetened. But for an extra treat, I give the option below of adding raw honey or pure maple syrup (over the top yummy and special!)

Prep Time5 minutes mins

Cook Time5 minutes mins

Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack

Cuisine: American

Keyword: chicory, coffee, herbal, latte, lectin-free, low-histamine

Servings: 1 16 ounce serving

Calories: 505kcal

Author: Megan

Cost: $1

Equipment

  • saucepan

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces coffee hot chicory — see Recipe Notes for recipe link
  • 4 ounces milk raw A2, OR unsweetened coconut milk
  • 4 ounces cream raw A2, OR unsweetened coconut cream
  • 2 teaspoons raw honey or pure maple syrup, optional! I prefer no sweetener.

Instructions

  • In small saucepan combine milk and cream.

  • Heat gradually over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until piping hot and steamy (about 5 minutes) but not yet simmering.

  • Pour chicory coffee and half and half into large mug. Add optional honey or maple syrup, to taste. Enjoy!

Notes

Find Chicory Coffee recipe HERE.

Find bulk chicory root HERE.

Nutrition

Calories: 505kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 46g | Saturated Fat: 28g | Cholesterol: 167mg | Sodium: 97mg | Potassium: 346mg | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 1850IU | Calcium: 202mg

Additional Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List (Grocery List with Printable!) + latte recipe! (5)

Have you already adopted a low histamine and low lectin diet? I’d love to hear about your wellness journey.

Here’s the encouraging update on my wellness journey:

After months of research, I discovered the concept of Vitamin A toxicity. I started the diet that corresponds, and within two weeks my face rash was gone. Although odd to swallow at first, I am fully on board now with this concept. I encourage you to be very open-minded, because if you want to be well badly enough, I think you’re going to have some serious aha moments!

Here’s the first of several articles I plan to write on the topic and the printable grocery list that corresponds with the diet. Please comment below that article if you want any clarifications about foods that are okay to eat or how to start the diet.

UPDATE: My histamine issue is now resolved because of the Vitamin A Detox diet! Huge and exciting!! 🙂 I am about two months into the diet and expect continual overall health improvements (as well as ups and downs while my body detoxifies). I still eat low lectin but have introduced new foods in moderation from this list.

Here’s my latest post on the topic: .

Low-Histamine AND Lectin-free Combined Food List (Grocery List with Printable!) + latte recipe! (2024)

FAQs

What foods flush out histamine? ›

Foods which are reported as having lower histamine levels include most fresh produce, fresh meat, certain fresh/frozen fish, eggs including quail eggs and most fresh herbs.

Can you drink coffee with histamine intolerance? ›

What coffee should I drink? If you have a histamine intolerance, there are some options to try. Organic coffee beans tend to be held to a higher standard, especially if they carry additional organic certifications. These beans are often more rigorously tested for mold or toxin exposure.

Can you eat bananas on a low-histamine diet? ›

Many health care professionals recommend limiting certain fruits and juices as part of a low-histamine diet. Consider avoiding: Banana. Pineapple.

Are scrambled eggs low-histamine? ›

Boiled, fried, or poached eggs aren't affected by cooking methods when it comes to histamine content. Eggs are low in histamines, this makes them ideal for the low-histamine diet. Chickpeas, peanuts, and lentils have been found to have low concentrations of histamines and may be safely consumed in a low-histamine diet.

What is the strongest natural antihistamine? ›

What is the most powerful natural antihistamine? Researchers haven't yet established any natural product as the “best” or “most powerful.” Natural antihistamines with the most research backing their use include stinging nettle, vitamin C, quercetin, butterbur, bromelain, and probiotics.

What are the worst histamine foods? ›

Foods high in histamine or triggering histamine release are the worst for histamine intolerance. These include fermented foods, cured meats, alcohol, aged cheeses, citrus fruits, fish, shellfish, avocados, tomatoes, nuts, and certain spices like cinnamon, chili powder, and cloves.

Are sweet potatoes low in histamine? ›

Sweet potatoes are low histamine while also stimulating the secretion of digestive enzymes from the pancreas, which is great considering that histamine intolerance often includes symptoms of digestive distress in many individuals.

Is peanut butter low in histamine? ›

Peanut butter is low histamine but does act as a histamine liberator; in other words, it triggers the release of the body's natural histamine. Every person has unique dietary triggers. Your reaction to peanut butter may be different than someone else's.

Is chicken high in histamine? ›

Foods that have been reported to have lower histamine levels and are thus to be preferred: Fresh meat (cooled, frozen or fresh) Certain fresh/frozen fish – hake, trout, plaice. Chicken (cooled, frozen or fresh)

Is rotisserie chicken low histamine? ›

Fermenting, culturing, aging foods increases their histamine content. Foods like rotisserie chicken, meat in the refrigerator section, lunch meat, beef that gets aged for 2 weeks etc have high histamine content.

What cheese is low in histamine? ›

Cheeses You May Try with Histamine Intolerance

The less aged the cheese is, the safer it is. If you are eating cheese, choose soft cheeses, such as mozzarella, ricotta, mascarpone, cottage cheese, and cream cheese. Opt for low-lactose or lactose-free dairy if you can to avoid lactose sensitivities.

What is a histamine dump? ›

A histamine dump happens when your body produces too much histamine that builds up in the brain. Histamine dumps often happen late at night or early in the morning. You might suddenly feel changes in body temperature, itchiness, or blood pressure changes as your histamine levels rise.

What neutralizes histamine? ›

But our journey doesn't end there because histamine then will move from your stomach into your small intestine where it comes into contact with an enzyme called the DAO or diamine oxidase. Now, DAO is our defense system within the intestine to neutralize histamine in our diet.

What blocks histamine in the body? ›

Antihistamines block cells from seeing histamine and can treat common allergies. Medicines like steroids can calm the inflammatory effects of allergies. And anaphylaxis needs to be treated with a shot of epinephrine, which opens up airways, and increases blood pressure.

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