Histamine Intolerance Test (DAO)
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An accurate and reliable test for Histamine Intolerance
✔️ Conducted in specialised certified German labs
✔️ Accurate sample testing
✔️ Available as an add-on to IgG food allergy or stand-alone test
Histamine intolerance can be caused by a deficiency or an inhibition of Diamine Oxidase (DAO), which is the enzyme responsible for the breaking down histamine in our gut. Histamine can lead to allergic-type reactions after consumption of certain foodstuffs. A simple blood test will reveal whether your symptoms are being driven or worsened by an underlying histamine intolerance.
Histamine Intolerance Test (DAO)
Could your symptoms be related to excess histamine? The symptoms of histamine intolerance can overlap with those of IgG food allergy, so we often recommend this test as an add-on to our comprehensive IgG tests. However, you can also test for histamine intolerance on its own.
✔️ Conducted in specialised certified German labs
✔️ Tested with blood serum for accuracy
✔️ Only DAO test available in Australia (direct to consumer)
What is histamine?
Histamine is a natural and important compound of the human body regulating blood pressure, the immune system and is involved in the nervous system. In general the body is able to balance the histamine release. In allergic reactions excessive release of histamine is responsible for the allergic symptoms. In this case anti-histamine may help to reduce the released of histamine.
But histamine is also present in high concentration in certain foods. Another source of histamine may be your gut flora. Particularly when you have SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth) with the participation of putrefaction flora.
What is histamine intolerance?
People have an enzyme called diamine oxidase (DAO) which is present in the gut and decomposes histamine ingested with food. 3% of the population have a genetically determined severe DAO deficiency leading to manifest histamine intolerance and around 20% have a milder form of histamine intolerance. In this case symptoms mainly depend on the amount of histamine ingested or if DAO inhibitors are present.
A potent DAO inhibitor is alcohol. Many subjects only symptoms of histamine intolerance when they consume alcohol, particularly red wine. But also certain medications are potent DAO inhibitors. Histamine intolerance can be caused by deficiency in vitamin B6, copper and inflammation of the intestinal mucosa.
How can you detect histamine intolerance?
Histamine intolerance mustn’t be confused with histamine release from an allergic reaction. Neither IgE nor skin prick tests are able to diagnose histamine intolerance. Histamine intolerance can only be identified by testing the activity of diamine oxidase (DAO) in blood.
Foods rich in histamine
- Alcohol (esp. red wine and champagne)
- Sea food, fish (particularly tuna, swordfish) and fish sauces
- Raw meat sausages (e.g. salami, bacon)
- Vegetables (e.g. tomatoes, spinach and eggplant)
- Fruits (e.g. strawberry, pineapple, banana)
- All fermented foods are susceptible to be rich in histamine
- Potent DAO-inhibitors
Symptoms of DAO deficiency or histamine intolerance:
- Gastrointestinal complaints
- Tachycardia, arrhythmia
- Menstrual pain
- Itching, red skin
Want to test for histamine intolerance and IgG food intolerances? Check out our ImuPro Bundle
Taking the Histamine Intolerance test
1. Place your order
Once we receive your order, a test kit is sent to you. It includes a Pathology Request Form, so you can have your blood drawn at a pathology centre near you. It also contains collection instructions and a transport tube so you can safely send your blood serum sample to ImuPro for testing.
2. Your sample is tested
In an extensive analysis by our specialised laboratory in Germany, DAO enzyme activity is identified precisely and reliably.
3. You receive your results
Your report will be emailed to you with options for treatment. If you have also purchased the Basic or Complete ImuPro food allergy test, the reports can be combined so that each food that is high in histamine will also be clearly marked.
Watch this video of the ImuPro procedure.
Note: You don’t need a GP referral for your test, as we provide the relevant forms. If you’re located outside of Australia, please contact us before ordering as the process differs slightly.
With your test, you will receive:
- An analysis of your blood sample to determine whether a DAO deficiency is present; giving you an accurate measurement of your DAO level.
- If DAO deficiency is present, avoidance or limitation of histamine-rich, and histamine-releasing, foods may be recommended and possible supplementation with a DAO enzyme replacement or other vitamin supplements may also be useful (DAO enzyme and vitamin supplements not provided by ImuPro).
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Histamine and histamine intolerance?
Histamine is an important chemical which is generated in the body itself and also supplied through food. Histamine is stored in mast cells and nerve cells and is available there to be released. A problem may arise if there is an overabundance of histamine and it is unable to be broken down by means of the enzyme Diamine oxidase (DAO). If the enzyme is not available in sufficient quantity symptoms of a histamine intolerance occur.
Can I have a histamine intolerance as well as a delayed food allergy?
Yes a histamine intolerance is indicated by low DAO enzyme activity and can cause histamine related symptoms. At the same time you can have delayed IgG reactions to food. With a histamine intolerance you need to reduce the amount of histamine rich food you have in a meal. With a delayed IgG reaction you need to eliminate those foods for a period of time before gradually reintroducing them in to your diet. The ImuPro Bundle Test will combine the results of the Complete 270 foods and your DAO test results.
If my results show I am not histamine intolerant, what else could it be?
Symptons can often present the same but the causes and therefore the testing is different. If your DAO test results show normal DAO enzyme activity then it wont be the reason for your symptoms. Further diagnosis such as IgG (ImuPro Test), IgE classic allergy or other tests should be carried out to find the cause.
What foods are high in histamine?
Food items that undergo a long ageing process are particularly rich in histamine. Examples of foods rich in histamine alcoholic beverages (especially champagne, red wine and wheat beer), aged cheeses, chocolate, aged or cured meats like salami, vinegar, tomatoes, citrus fruits, strawberries, pineapple and some nuts like cashews and walnuts.
What’s the difference with the DAO (Histamine Intolerance) Test and other histamine tests?
The DAO (Histamine Intolerance) test is not measuring histamine levels. It is measuring the DAO enzyme activity in your body which is responsible for breaking down the excess histamine in food. If you do not produce enough DAO enzyme you cannot break down histamine adequately and that can lead to allergic type symptoms. We are the only company in Australia who offer this type of test direct to consumer. If the test results indicate an intolerance, you can change your diet and reduce your intake of foods containing histamine. Once you have measured your DAO level, it is not likely to change too significantly over time. This is unlike tests for histamine itself which can change dramatically depending on environment and diet. We analyse DAO activity via a blood serum sample.
Do I have to stop taking anti-histamines prior to testing?
No you dont need to stop taking anti-histamines. Just stop histamine rich food 2 days prior to blood collection: alcohol, cheese, chocolate, cured meats, fermented foods, and if applicable DAO supplements such as DAOSIN or Histame
How do I know if this test is right for me?
If you react to foods like wine, cheese or chocolate and get an allergic type reaction such as red or itchy skin, runny nose, asthmatic type conditions, sinus congestion/blocked nose or headaches then it could be because your body is not breaking down the excess histamine contained in food. Once we measure your DAO enzyme it is a good indication if your symptoms are caused by a histamine intolerance or not.
Do I have to eliminate high histamine foods from my diet?
If your test results show you have low DAO enzyme activity then you need to cut down the amount of histamine rich foods you have in a meal. (Unlike the IgG ImuPro results where you need to eliminate elevated foods for a period of time).