Tomatoes, Here I Come…

1 Feb

Today is the last day of my low-histamine diet (never mind the date; there is a time difference).  During the course of this month, despite any bitching and moaning ;-), I only felt truly deprived a few times.  I discovered a few staples that tasted good and kept me satisfied.  Unfortunately, I also increased my sugar intake.  Since so many other flavor enhancers were restricted, I went a little nuts with the maple syrup and molasses.  I also felt inconvenienced and became bored with my options quickly.  I looked forward to a different diet with new food choices.  Obviously if I had a sensitivity to histamine, this time might never come!  So again, I may whine about not being able to eat a favorite food for a short time, but there’s little sympathy to be had when it’s a choice I’ve made for myself.

Cravings experienced: chocolate, tomatoes, & hummus (Hummus was the worst!) – None were that severe or lasted very long.  Treats at work were not as tempting as I expected.  I think it helps to have the mindset that something is purely “off-limits”.   In normal circumstances, one might struggle with the mind game “Do I eat the cupcake?  Do I not eat the cupcake?”  As a result, a fixation on the item is created until the dilemma is solved.  When eating the cupcake became a non-option, I was able to shut off that obsessive switch and direct my attention elsewhere.

Sins to confess: I didn’t intentionally eat any high-histamine foods in January, but a couple of mistakes were made:

#1. For my birthday, Derek and I had some friends over.  Derek bought some snacks for the occasion including: spicy hummus (damn him!), salsa (it’s like he was trying to torture me), pizza (the smell was a little enticing…), and corn chips.  I browsed the ingredients list on the bag of corn chips.  My brain processed: corn, oil, and salt.  Bingo!  I could eat those! (or so I thought).  A few days later, I was happily munching on remnants from the bag of chips and reread the label.  This time I noticed “canola/corn/soy/and or safflower oil”.  My heart sank.  How could I have been so careless?  Of course…soy is in everything!  Let’s just pretend that there wasn’t any soy oil in this particular bag of chips.  It did say “and/or” 😉  I briefly contemplated continuing to eat them.  After all, the mistake was already made, they tasted really good, and nobody would have to know!  Well, I’m happy to report that I stopped eating them immediately.  I don’t want to cheat.  That would completely defeat the purpose of the experiment!

#2.  In a frenzy of planning for my next diet, I started to lose track of what I could and couldn’t eat.  It was hard to keep the current and new restrictions straight in my brain.  I cooked up a big ol’ batch of red beans to eat during the yeast intolerance/candida diet.  I put a jar in the fridge to eat the following day.  Eat them I did.  After the fact I realized…wait a minute!  I’m not supposed to eat any red beans on the low-histamine diet.  Grrr!  At least I made it until the 30th before this mistake.

Here’s what I ate my last day as a histamine-intolerant (It is freakishly close to what I ate on my first day as a histamine intolerant, but I promise I did branch out a little bit. :-))

Breakfast: Smoothie made with a banana, kale, & carrot juice; a brown rice cake with chunky Valencia peanut butter and maple syrup – Green smoothies are a new thing for me, but I think they are quite awesome!

Lunch: Big bowl of mashed mung beans with molasses, nutritional yeast flakes, tahini, & peanut butter; 2 small pieces of yeast-free rye bread (bought for next diet) – My new favorite quick meal is flavored mashed beans with bread for dipping.  Yum!

Supper: Rye bread with peanut butter and apple slices; macadamia nuts

Hmm…lots of peanut butter and sugary syrups.  Wonder why 🙂

Lessons learned: I had expected the low-histamine diet to be one of the “easy” diets.  After further research, I learned that a low-histamine diet would be very challenging and restrictive indeed!  Eating out would be a nightmare on this diet.

Food intolerance often exists on a spectrum.  An extreme form of histamine intolerance known as histaminosis may require someone to be very strict in their approach.  Those with a higher tolerance may be able to incorporate a few histamine-containing foods into their diet on an occasional basis.  In either instance, I have the utmost respect for the daily challenges they face.  I look forward to furthering my quest in my empathetic endeavors with my next restrictive diet: yeast/mold allergy + candida.



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