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What are High Histamine Levels?

High histamine levels occur when there's an excess of this chemical in your body, often triggering allergy symptoms like sneezing, itching, and watery eyes. Histamine plays a role in immune responses, but imbalance can lead to discomfort. Visualize your body's reaction as a red, swollen area in response to an allergen. Curious about managing these levels? Discover more about your body's histamine balance.
Andrea Sigust
Andrea Sigust

Histamine is a substance found in the tissues of nearly all plants and animals, and is based on the molecular structure of ammonia. It is the product of a natural process that removes carbon, oxygen and/or hydrogen atom compounds from the amino acid histidine. In humans, histamine is most commonly known for its role in allergic reactions, but it also is associated with other roles in the body, such as sleep regulation, digestion, immunity and sexual function. When humans have an allergic reaction, high levels of histamine are released from body tissues to help fight infection. High histamine levels could be a temporary condition, such as in an allergic response, or a chronic condition caused by disease or congenital factors.

Temporarily high histamine levels that stem from allergic reactions can be induced by a wide range of stimulants, from pollen to cat hair to fermented food. Symptoms can include sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose, hives, nausea and diarrhea. Treatment generally revolves around alleviating symptoms and removing the source of irritation until the histamine levels and other body functions return to normal. Non-prescription medications such as antihistamines, which block the body’s receptors to histamine, are commonly used.

Symptoms of histadelia include low levels of serotonin.
Symptoms of histadelia include low levels of serotonin.

Chronic conditions that cause high histamine levels include mastocytosis and various autoimmune disorders. Treatments vary with the condition. They can include the use of epinephrine, mast cell stablizers, corticosteroids, antihistimines and other theraputic approaches.

"Histadelia" is a term that was coined by Carl Pfeiffer, a biochemist, to describe high histamine levels in relation to certain mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia. Even though high histamine levels and correlating symptoms are commonly acknowledged in the medical industry, histadelia is not a universally accepted condition, term or classification. Proponents of histadelia cite that it is more prevalent in males, and up to 20 percent of schizophrenics have high histamine levels. Symptoms of histadelia include low levels of serotonin and dopamine, elevated basophils, obsessive-compulsive-disorder tendencies, delusional thinking and sparse body hair. Treatment of Histadelia is said to take as long as 12 months, and it includes biomedical care that involves nutrient replacement.

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    • Symptoms of histadelia include low levels of serotonin.
      By: snyggg.de
      Symptoms of histadelia include low levels of serotonin.
    • Nausea is one possible symptom of high histamine levels.
      By: Johan Lenell
      Nausea is one possible symptom of high histamine levels.
    • Histamine levels play a role in sexual functioning.
      By: Ivan Montero
      Histamine levels play a role in sexual functioning.
    • HIstamine levels play a role in sleep regulation.
      By: bramgino
      HIstamine levels play a role in sleep regulation.
    • High histamine levels can cause allergy symptoms like watery eyes.
      By: chuugo
      High histamine levels can cause allergy symptoms like watery eyes.
    • Cat hair and other allergens can induce high histamine levels.
      By: dashabelozerova
      Cat hair and other allergens can induce high histamine levels.
    • Treatments for high histamine levels may lead to difficulty concentrating and extreme fatigue.
      By: Halfpoint
      Treatments for high histamine levels may lead to difficulty concentrating and extreme fatigue.