We want to pick out one thing and say, “That. That is the cause of my LS.” And then by removing that cause, we heal. It doesn’t appear to work that way.
Everything is connected. There is an entire system at play.
When I began to manage my blood sugar levels (again, something that became necessary in menopause), I noticed a reduction in hot flushing and fatigue. I balance my blood sugar not only through food but also by not overexercising, stressing or overthinking (yes, that’s a thing for me. My busy brain burns a lot of fuel).
So, what’s up with blood sugar and histamines?
It’s often overlooked yet there is a strong connection between histamine and your blood sugar. Research has shown that blood sugar imbalances can increase your histamine levels. Stabilizing your blood sugar is an absolutely critical aspect of improving histamine intolerance and MCAS symptoms. 1Dr. Becky Campbell
This is actually what triggered me into diving deeper into LS and histamines. I came across a study that suggested there were mast cell granules in lichen sclerosus biopsy samples. 2 What were the mast cells trying to accomplish?
Mast cells and histamines
Mast cells, and the histamine they release, are first responders in times of infection. It’s believed that mast cells recruit neutrophils and other immune cells, and take them to places where autoimmunity is causing destruction. This activity results in an intensification of localised inflammatory response, causing and sustaining tissue damage. 3Healing Histamine
Keep in mind that some of this comes back to gut health. The gut usually keeps oxalates and histamines in check. If you choose to experiment with a low oxalate/low histamine diet, remember, the end game is a healthy gut.
One study suggested that inflammation and intestinal permeability (leaky gut) caused by bacterial imbalance were likely involved in histamine intolerance. Another study showed that 30%-55% of people with digestive symptoms also have histamine intolerance. Bacteria produce histamine, so an overgrowth of bacteria contributes to histamine load. 4Dr. Ruscio
As we mentioned in Lichen sclerosus and oxalates, how we prepare our food has a lot to do with how we digest it. This holds true for histamine in the diet.
Grilled seafood had higher histamine levels than raw or boiled seafood. For meat, grilling increased the histamine level, whereas boiling decreased it. For eggs, there was not much difference in histamine level according to cooking method. Fried vegetables had higher histamine levels than raw vegetables. And fermented foods didn’t show much difference in histamine level after being boiled. 5National Library of Medicine
One of the well-known symptoms of histamines is itching. Many other symptoms accompany histamine intolerance, but that’s one symptom that LS sufferers deal with a lot. Seek out a nutritionist or professional to assist you, or keep a food diary and notice if histamines play a part in your LS.
Okay, that’s enough brainwork today. Gotta’ keep that blood sugar in check.
Read the next post in the series: Lichen sclerosus diet
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**This blog is meant to inform, not diagnose or treat specific health conditions. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis and treatment. Always consult your doctor or health care practitioner.