Having the MTHFR gene mutation, additional SNP’s in the methylation pathway or poor methylation can contribute to histamine intolerance as the primary function of the methylation pathway is to produce the methyl donor called SAMe (also known as s-adenosyl methionine) SAMe is a cofactor for the HNMT enzyme which metabolizes intracellular histamine inside the cell.
Symptoms of poor methylation include histamine intolerance and all the symptoms associated with histamine intolerance. But what is the connection between poor methylation, MTHFR and histamine intolerance?
The MTHFR gene mutation is 1 of the common SNP’s in the methylation pathway among others that can decrease the ability of the body to produce SAMe to help with the metabolism of histamine, especially if there is a deficiency in folate and vitamin B2 coming from the diet as these 2 nutrients are needed for the MTHFR gene to function.
SAMe is a very versatile and precious methyl donor that goes on to support over 200 other functions in the body including the intracellular metabolism of histamine. A deficiency of SAMe can result in a reduced ability of the HNMT to metabolize histamine, therefore, resulting in symptoms of histamine intolerance such as asthma, allergies, itchy skin, nasal congestion, headaches etc. The MTHFR gene mutation is 1 of the common SNP’s in the methylation pathway among others that can decrease the ability of the body to produce SAMe to help with the metabolism of histamine.
How to improve methylation
For the methylation process to work optimally and produce SAMe, B vitamins are required along with magnesium. The primary B vitamins needed for the methylation pathway and production of SAMe are folate (B9), B12 and B2. If someone has SNP’s in the methylation pathway they can be more susceptible to histamine intolerance as having SNP’s in the methylation pathway can cause a decreased ability to produce SAMe.
Vegetarians and vegans often don’t get enough B12 and this can hinder the methylation pathway and ability of the body to make sufficient SAMe. Eating a diet with foods high in magnesium, B12, folate and B2 are crucial to naturally optimize methylation. Here is the best diet for someone with an MTHFR gene mutation.
The presence of inflammation also inhibits the ability of the enzymes to function and thus produce SAMe and support the metabolism of histamine…. With chronic inflammation being present in the body and inhibiting methylation you can see how symptoms of histamine intolerance can present with the root of the problem being connected to poor methylation and the production of SAMe.
Inflammation can come from a variety of sources such as inflammatory foods, hidden infections, SIBO and a leaky gut.
Utilizing curcumin which has anti-inflammatory properties can help to calm down inflammation in the body. Adding in anti-inflammatory omega 3 fish oils can also help to manage inflammation and support optimal methylation. Walnuts, flax seeds salmon, and chia seeds are other great sources of omega 3’s
Optimal Gi contains a blend of 11 herbs and nutrients to help calm down and soothe inflammation that is coming from the gut while promoting the healing of leaky gut.
Optimal PC which contains phosphatidylcholine indirectly supports methylation by freeing up the methyl donor SAMe to work elsewhere in the body such as in the HNMT enzyme. The Production of phosphatidylcholine requires SAMe as a cofactor as well and puts a huge demand on methylation as it uses up a lot of the body’s SAMe
Optimal multi minus one contains all the b vitamins plus magnesium and zinc to help ensure that all the necessary nutrients are on board so that the methylation pathway can work optimally. Optimal multi minus one does not contain any of the methylated b vitamins which many people with histamine intolerance or inflammation may be sensitive too. This multivitamin without the methylated B vitamins is often well tolerated in individuals who are more sensitive and prone to inflammation.
As you can see everything is connected in the body and getting to the root cause of histamine intolerance can take some detective work to find out what nutrients may be deficient, what is causing a pathway to become blocked and what is causing inflammation in the body. Some big but worthwhile questions that need to be asked. I highly recommend reading the book Dirty Genes by Doctor Ben Lynch to further understand how our unique genetics can influence our ability to metabolize histamine.
Another primary enzyme that is responsible for metabolizing histamine from food sources is the DAO enzyme which is primary found in the gut to break down extracellular histamine from food. The best way to initially reduce histamine in the body is to avoid foods high in histamine while providing the body with all the nutrients required by the DAO enzyme, HNMT enzyme and the methylation pathway to work optimally and that starts with the diet.
If you would like a nutrition program tailored to you and your needs contact me for your personalized nutritional program! If you would like to do genetic testing you can order an at home saliva test through ancestry DNA then upload your raw data through strategene to get your report personalized to you with clinically relevant SNP’s that may be present in the methylation and histamine pathways.
Hey! I'm Amber, a nutritional therapy consultant helping people to improve digestion, beat the bloat and lose weight. Sharing weight loss tips, gut health tips and whole food recipes that are gluten free. Grab your freebie below:)
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