1095. Histamine Intolerance: Unraveling Its Complicated Puzzle


One of the most confusing things in medicine is histamine intolerance. Histamine is a substance your body produces when it needs to get rid of something. For some people their body seems to remain in a high state of alert, overreacting to everything.

Dr. Martin says it really is an autoimmune reaction and he used to see it a lot in his clinic. For some women, every one of their hormones, cortisol, estrogen, insulin, thyroid were out of whack.

Join Dr. Martin as he unravels histamine intolerance and its complicated puzzle in today’s episode.


Announcer:  You're listening to The Doctor Is In Podcast, brought to you by MartinClinic.com. During the episode, the doctors share a lot of information. As awesome as the info may be, it is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any disease. It's strictly for informational purposes.

Dr. Martin: Well, good morning everyone, and once again, welcome to another live this morning. Hope you're having a great start to your day. Always great to have you on with us, and we appreciate it very, very, very much. I want to talk today about histamine, okay? I've had a few people ask me about histamine intolerance, and let's go into that a little bit today, but I used to use an expression in my office. You know me, I like to tease people, and I get the odd person in, and I would tell 'em, don't donate your body to science. You'll confuse them. Okay? That was an expression I liked to you, okay? Don't donate your body to science because you'll confuse them. Man, you never seen stuff that is as confusing as what we call histamine intolerance.

And really what that is is, okay, what is histamine? Histamine, a substance that your body produces to eliminate things. Okay? So for example, when you use an antihistamine, okay, so MAST cells, M A S T, they release histamine. So I used to know, even without looking at a patient or taking any other test, if I took their blood and I saw all these mast cells. Mast cells are white blood cells that release histamine. And a lot of times people would come in and when I looked at their blood, I saw all these mast cells, and then I would turn to them and said, you've got allergies. And some of them were so bad that I used to say, I think you're allergic to yourself. So histamine released by mast cells.

When you take an antihistamine, right, you ever take an antihistamine for allergies, or even when someone has a cold, they often recommend Tylenol cold and flu or whatever. They're usually an antihistamine in there, so you stop sneezing and coughing as much, right? Because your body is just trying to get rid of something. The problem with histamine intolerance, what happens is that it's always in a high state of alert and it's overreacting to things. So you see people, allergies, and it's not just allergies or asthma though, by the way, okay? Because when you have a severe histamine intolerance, you're allergic to everything just about including yourself. It really is an autoimmune reaction. And I used to see this a lot. Oftentimes I would call it a category five storm. Every one of their hormones were out of whack. Cortisol, estrogen, insulin, thyroid, right out of whack, and they were in a storm, and you know, you know what a storm's like if you've ever been in the water in a storm. So the body is overreacting.

Now, people that suffer with these kinds of things, they're a mess. And for me, in the office, what I used to do is I said, look, I'm going to give you a program, and everything we do is based on lowering your response, your autoimmune response. Now we're going to help you with that. It's going to be a journey. It's not going to be easy because there's several things that have to be corrected. Okay? Now, let me give you some of the symptoms that these people, because if you can google histamine intolerance, but here's what I used to see in the office. Like I said, they had big time hormonal problems. They had gut problems. Usually acid reflux was common. I used to see that and they had bloating. One of the issues, and I used to tell 'em, look, okay, I think it's important we understand this. When someone has a histamine overreaction, it's high state of histamine all the time. It starts in the gut all the time. That's where it starts. And if you don't fix the gut, you can't fix the problem.

These patients used to come in to see me, and they never got any kind of relief, really. And I said, well, it's because the physicians or whatever, they're putting bandaids on it, they're not getting to the root issue. You got to fix leaky gut. But it's not just leaky gut. It's yeast, an invasion in your body. It's invaded your body, fungus, candida, and your body is overreacting to it. It senses a foreign invader, and the body's overreacting to it, okay? That's the root problem, and it really is autoimmune when you think of it. Auto self immune. That's what it means. The immune system is turning on itself, and it's flagging almost everything that comes in as a foreign invader. And the reason is because the immune system is preoccupied with an invasion of candida fungus, and believe you me, trying to get mainstream medicine to take this seriously is like pulling teeth, if you know what I mean. Mainstream medicine, unfortunately, when it comes to anything complicated like this, they deal with symptoms.

So antihistamines, even steroids like prednisone, it lowers inflammation. So let's do that. Yeah, but that's a bandaid. An antihistamine is a bandaid. It's not getting at the root problem. You have to start with the leaky gut. Yes. Plus you have an invasion, invasion of fungus. How did that happen? Well, usually it's a perfect storm. Usually it's a perfect storm. Antibiotics which are lifesaving can be leads to leaky gut because it kills all your good bacteria and thus, the invasion of the third army. People who are under a lot of stress. Stress, it's pouring gasoline on the fire of inflammation. So it's usually a combination of things and then bad eating even. Well, doc, I know I don't feel good, yeah but you're making it worse because you're feeding the invading army. And if I could just get to understand that, listen, it's not your fault. This has been building up over the years.

Again, symptoms. What did I used to see? Insomnia, panic attacks, severe anxiety, nausea. They were nauseated. Heart palpitations, lightheadedness, headaches, fatigue, fainting, hives. They get you to carry 'em. Hives. I said, you're allergic to yourself. Don't donate your body to science. You'll confuse them. But again, I'm a why guy. Why is this happening? And again, if you take a careful history, you'll see that usually there's a pattern even years before this all occurs, and even as teenagers, if I saw it in women, I rarely ever see this in men. Not that I didn't rarely. Men are so uncomplicated. Really, women are complicated. If you don't know that in medicine, you're out to lunch, okay? Women are complex because of horrormones. It's complex, but men can get leaky gut too, and they can have problems, but it usually doesn't manifest itself like this. It can, but it's rare.

What happens in a constant state of histamine, okay? The adrenals get exhausted. You see, this is stressed, okay? You know me when I do this, okay? Your body's in an high alert, the fight or flight. You gonna run o are you going to fight? Okay? Now, that can be because a person's personal life, but the adrenals can't tell the difference between an environmental like chemicals and being inundated with toxic chemicals, air fresheners, and this and that and the other thing, or it's stress from an antibiotic. I was reading an article the other day about Cipro, okay? Which is still a very popular antibiotic. It bothers me that it's still popular and they give it out like candy still for urinary tract infections, even sinus infections. My friend, when you go to your doctor and you need an antibiotic, don't take cipro. It's got a black box warning on it, meaning that even the F D A and Health Canada put a warning on it that it can cause major problems.

One of the most recent is that it's saying it's causing abdominal aorta dissection that can kill you, but I've seen it over the years, caused major problems, and if you've taken cipro years ago, it can put you into a histamine intolerance. I've seen it happen. And again, am I against antibiotics? No, I'm not, but boy, oh boy, there's been a real curse. The long-term effects of them have been disastrous in a lot of cases. Okay? Back to those symptoms. So your adrenals, okay, the fight or flight they release, what hormone? What hormone does your adrenal's release? You guys know this. The main one that I talk about all the time. Cortisol, right? You guys are smart. Annette, you guys know this. And cortisol, Francis, you got it, Jeannette. You got it, Lynn. You got it, you guys. I'm telling you, Barbara, you got it. It's cortisol, and cortisol is wonderful. It can save your life. Wanda, cortisol. You're right, Anna. Okay, you're right. It's cortisol.

Cortisol is your friend until it's not, because you're not meant to be in that state, okay? Look for a long time, and when it's there too long, those adrenals get exhausted, okay? They get exhausted. Now, back to histamine. Okay? Back to histamine. It's really, really important to get to the bottom of what's going on, and a person needs to start at the gut level. Remember, a gut brain connection. A lot of people have brain fog with this too, when a lot of people have headaches, inflammation in the brain, it started in the gut, and yeast travels. It can go to your lungs, it can go to your sinuses, it can get into your brain, and it can be a major, major factor in autoimmune.

As a matter of fact, any autoimmune, in my opinion, is leaky gut and the invasion of that third army, I used to see it, but again, it's difficult to change a lepers spots medicine. God bless them. Don't give them something new. Nah, yeast, come on. It can't get into your bloodstream. You would die if you had a fungal infection. Well, you are going to probably die from it, but it's a slow down. You have no idea how many times I heard that in my practice. Patient's telling me, the doctor said, Doc Martin, he's crazy. You have to develop a thick skin. You have to develop a thick skin.

I was telling someone the other day, I really don't care, guys. I mean this. I really don't care what doctors think of me, because if I did, I never have practiced the way I did. I really don't care. I'm not trying to beat Dale Carnegie, okay? You got to be old like me to know who Dale Carnegie is or was, right? He wrote a book, how to Win Friends and Influence People. Well, I wasn't trying to win friends in my practice. I wasn't trying to be your friend. I was trying to tell you the truth, and if that got back to your physician, I don't care. They do their thing. I do my thing. That's what I used to tell patients all the time. I do my thing. Are you ready to trust me? Because I want you to start by doing this, this, and that. Okay?

So these people were very, very unwell, and some of you listening today know exactly what I'm talking about because you're very unwell and it's complicated, and no one has really sat you down and told you what I'm telling you this morning that it started in your gut. It probably started years and years and years ago. It might have started with the first time you ever took an antibiotic. It wiped out your good bacteria, and you got an invasion of fungus in your body. You're the canary in the coal mine. Your body was sensitive and for some hypersensitive, and you overreact to everything, and you go, doc, what do you think about food testing? Don't spend any money.

I used to have these kits. I don't know if I have one around here, and there were labs that I used, okay? Once in a while, if a patient insisted that this is true, by the way, they said, well, I can take your blood and I'm going to send it to a lab and they're going to do food intolerances to you. Okay? I said, give me 600 bucks, okay? I'm going to send it out and you are going to get a complete report. Now, you know what that lab did? They gave me $200. They sent me a check for $200, okay? The 600 I sent to them, so they would do the testing for a patient, 200 came back to me. They actually wrote me checks. I didn't do it much. You know why I used to tell these patients? I said, why don't you do your own testing? Okay? Eat something. Take a record. Is it bother you? Flag it.

For some people, like I said, they were so hypersensitive almost everything. I said, well, there's no use doing a blood test. It's going to come back and everything's going to be off the charts. You're allergic to yourself. I said, trust me, let's start by fixing your leaky gut. Okay, so broad spectrum probiotics. I'd start from the top to the bottom as far as the digestive. I said, I'd have 'em on digestive enzymes. I would kill that SIFO. That was in their small intestine, that small intestinal fungus overgrowth. I said, we got to kill that. That's why I was huge on oil of oregano, and I put it right in my digestive enzyme. So we got to kill SIFO and don't feed the bears. You're coming off all sugars. No sugar whatsoever, okay? Not even fruit. God's candies can't have any for a while. I don't want you feeding the bears.

You have to let that yeast die. You're probably going to get a die off, and it's not going to be pleasant, but you got to trust me. We're going to walk you through this. Probiotics, digestive enzymes, no sugar, nada, and anything to turn to sugar, rapidly bread, pasta, rice, cereals, sweets, pastries, anything like that. Nada. I said, you're going to drink water, two liters of water every day and put some Himalayan salt in it. It's going to help with the detox process. You need to salty up the water a little bit. So it wasn't that complicated. My treatment was starting with the gut, getting rid of that invasive army. I said, look, this is probably for someone that was real bad. I said, you're on a project for at least a year with me, but you're going to be encouraged much earlier than that. But you got to trust the process because like I said, your body is so exhausted from releasing histamine all the time.

Okay, so drink water and drink coffee. That's it. Someone said, well, there's histamines in coffee. What a bunch of nonsense. The only reason you shouldn't drink coffee is if you don't like it. Okay? If you don't like it, what can I do for you? I feel sorry for you. It's real vitamin C with a thousand phytonutrients, I mean it. You're never going to get scurvy if you drink coffee, okay? You just won't. You'll never get scurvy if you just eat meat too. Eggs, meat and cheese. You'll never get scurvy promise. People think they need fruits to get vitamin C. Well, I'm not against fruits, except if you have a histamine intolerance. I would often put them on high D H A in order to lower the inflammation markers, get their C R P, because they usually was right through the roof, and they usually were extremely low in B12 and vitamin D. Vitamin D is a very important natural anti-inflammatory. It lowers all markers of inflammation, and these people generally were extremely low in those two vitamins. They were low in vitamin D, and they were low in b12.

So these were really the way I went at these things, and they needed a lot of coaching. I used to get people to write down, I said, you're going to start a diary, okay, a food diary, and we're going to figure this out. Okay? Because some people they, I mean, they were so limited at first, and then they watched as their leaky gut got better, they were able to expand their diet, but I mean, I would have their insulin down to almost nothing. They ate no crappy foods or crappy vegetable oils or nothing in the middle aisles of their grocery store. I was very strict with them, and then they found, they started feeling better and their headaches were much less, and their hives went away and their insomnia was better. They were starting to sleep better and things got better. Like I said, it's a journey. We used to tell those people, look, if you want a quick fix. Well, first of all, if any doctor offers you a quick fix run, cause they don't know what they're talking about. There's no quick fix for that. It's a journey and it was going to take some time.

Okay, that was fun, fun for me at least. And then, you know, guys, I gave you a little test this morning and you with flying colors, you know, you're thinking along with me. Oh, I love this audience. They're so smart. Okay? I mean it guys, we love you and you know that, and we love you dearly, and you know that too. Okay? And Friday is question and answer Friday, so send you questions then. Okay. We love that day. It's fun. Okay, you put me on the hot seat. I like that. I really do. I look forward to it. I thrive when you did an open line radio show for over 20 years, you got used to the hot seat. I like that. Okay. Okay, guys, we love you dearly and sincerely. We will talk to you soon.

Announcer:  You've reached the end of another Doctor Is In Podcast, with your hosts, Doctor Martin Junior and Senior. Be sure to catch our next episode and thanks for listening!

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