by Bea Garth, copyright 2015
Editor’s Note: I wrote this letter to my bf’s daughter who is having trouble eating anything of late more than likely from gluten and possibly also histamine sensitivity. Many people have this problem with gluten even though they are not technically celiac. And even more have a problem with high histamine than I think most anyone realizes although there are others who suffer from low histamine–for them they usually benefit from fermented foods. Both groups seem to do better without gluten. Often those with a histamine problem, also react to the naturally inflammatory nature of glutenous foods even if they as said are not technically celiac. I decided to publish this letter and others like it in order to help address this problem. Certainly it has been a huge factor in both my health and that of my boyfriend as well as two other friends that I know of. To your good health in this New Year!–Bea
I am so sorry to hear you are suffering so much its difficult to eat anything! That is a rough place to be in.
If your gut is that sensitive, I think its best to start with eating only cooked foods, rather than raw at this time in order to give your gut a chance to heal.
I am hoping you do not have histamine/amine sensitivity, or if you do that its not that severe. At any rate, I think its best to go from simple to more complex in figuring these things out.
You said that eating meat agreed with you more than eating vegetarian meals, so I think you should go with that.
Thus I suggest you make up some chicken soup with lots of both green and root vegetables. I’d avoid heavy duty spices for now. However its likely something mild like parsley and/or fennel would be fine.
Chamomile and peppermint tea may agree with you too. I say may, since there are of course exceptions like with my friend Graeme. But for most people chamomile and peppermint are very soothing and healing for the gut and nervous system.
As said, another very soothing herb is fennel. You can actually buy the long white and green bulb at some stores. The fronds are very healing too. The fennel can be used both in tea and in your soup. Its easy to grow by the way, assuming you like it of course,
The rosemary is likely OK too unless you are particularly sensitive, plus its a natural antihistamine. Its good for both the digestion and nerves. The marjoram is another tasty natural antihistamine.
If you can handle it, ginger would be great. Its fantastic for the digestive system, is very tasty, plus is a very effective antihistamine.
If you are uncertain of the spices, just leave them out. Ditto with the onions and garlic–and even the beets. You can try them out again later on when you are feeling better.
Basic Chicken (Beet) Soup:
1 skinned fresh whole chicken, cut up. Cut off the big globs of fat if you can. Lots of places will skin the whole chicken for you as well as cut it up for free.
Cover in enough water to boil for a while.
Let simmer with the lid on until the chicken comes off the bones.
Remove the bones, or keep them in if you like (I always liked–extra calcium that way!)
2 to 3 peeled, sliced rutabagas
2 to 3 peeled, sliced beets (if there are beet greens–they are great to dd to the soup a little later on. Beets are optional–some with histamine condition cannot handle eating them right away)
2-3 large peeled, sliced carrots (I am allergic to them, but you probably are not!)
1 to 2 chopped leaks (only if you can tolerate it)
Boil above mixture for 5 or 10 minutes before adding in the greens for another 10 minutes (or until you can easily put a fork through the veggies):
chopped beet greens (?)
2 to 3 large stalks chopped celery
2 cups (stem peeled) cut up broccoli
2 cups chopped cabbage (only if you can tolerate it–bok choy is easier for some–but should be added in the last five minutes or so of cooking the soup since it cooks fast)
1 cup chopped fennel
1 tsp. rosemary
1 tsp. marjoram
1 to two tablespoons fresh chopped ginger, or 1 1/2 tsp. to 2 tsp. ginger powder
1 chopped red onion (only if you can handle onions of course!–red onions are better for you than other onions if you have a histamine problem)
3 or 4 chopped cloves garlic (ditto on handling it)
salt to taste
If you can tolerate it, its great with plain yogurt, esp. if you included the beets–a type of mini borscht!
If you suspect a histamine/amine sensitivity, then freeze the soup when its cooled down. I suggest you put it in small heavy duty plastic serving sized containers. You can date them so you know how old they are later on.
The less the soup sits around, the less histamine/amines it will have in it–again assuming you have a problem that way, which you really might not.
Further you can find a lot of good dietary and other suggestions at celiac.com, plus the low histamine chef online.
In addition, its very possible a good digestive enzyme complex could help you digest your food like Source Naturals Daily Essential Enzymes, and possibly HCL capsules. Or you could start simple with just bromelain/papain or pancreatic enzymes. Of course make sure the capsules are gluten and dairy free. For me and Chris with our histamine/amine sensitivity we have to make sure the capsules are not made of gelatin. Instead they have to be vegetarian.
I hope this helps.