Dr Joneja interview: histamine intolerance & mast cells


It lives! I haven’t managed to finish the transcription – having not transcribed anything longer than five minutes since my days at CNN, I totally forgot how much of a bugger it is. Yes I know, that’s what outsourcing is all about, but I wanted to extract all the good stuff for us to enjoy – quickly. Dr Joneja was kind enough to offer me 90 minutes of her time so the interview has been spilt into two. Part 1 is below and part two will be posted this time next week.

For those of you not familiar with her work (do you live on Mars perchance?), Dr Janice Joneja is a pioneering histamine and allergy researcher, immunologist and dietician. Here’s a little interview taster:

– Why you may still be able to eat tomatoes

– How lowering your histamine level can help minimise allergies (if you’re histamine intolerant or lacking the histamine-lowering diamine oxidase enzyme)

– Why elimination is counterproductive (wait, haven’t I been saying that too?)

– How to figure out whether you have histamine intolerance (not what you’d expect a doctor to tell you!)

– Why high histamine food lists vary

– The answer to why some low histamine foods still bother you (starts with a B!)

– Why some foods with antihistaminic properties still appear on high histamine lists

– 3rd generation probiotics that poop out histamine lowering diamine oxidase

– How your brain is tripping up recovery

Since it’s not clear in the interview, I thought I should share what it is that shocked me about the interview: Dr Joneja’s approach to treating histamine intolerance is pretty much step by step how I healed myself. More than anything, hearing that I am on the same track as a doctor who has made a difference in so many people’s lives was truly wonderful. Yes, I know I have physical proof (medical tests), but knowing that people out there are watching my recovery and cooking up the recipes that took me from my “deathbed” (so it seemed for a long while) to the incredible health I now enjoy, is a responsibility. I’m overwhelmed to see I’m on the right track, but a little sad that I didn’t meet Dr Joneja a few years ago.

So here it is, the Dr Janice Joneja interview on the role of diet and nutrition in histamine intolerance, mast cell activation and mastocytosis:

Then don’t forget to isten to part two of our interview here.

We cover:

– How antihistamines are driving up your histamine level

– Which hidden food additives are torpedoing your recovery

– Why you shouldn’t worry about going too low histamine

– The biggest danger you’ll face on the low histamine diet

– Her approach to salicylate intolerance

– Brain fog

– How excess histamine is causing anxiety disorders

– Why histamine makes you crazy!

– The five most important steps in histamine intolerance recovery

About Dr Joneja

Dr. Joneja is a researcher, educator, author, and clinical counsellor with thirty years of experience in the area of biochemical and immunological reactions involved in food allergy and intolerance. She holds a Ph.D. in medical microbiology and immunology, and has been a member of the academic faculty of the University of British Columbia and other universities. Currently, she is an adjunct professor in the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences at the University of British Columbia, and an Honorary Research Fellow in the School of Biosciences at the University of Birmingham in England. Dr. Joneja is also a dietitian (RD), registered in the College of Dietitians of British Columbia, a member of Dietitians of Canada, and the American Dietetic Association. For 12 years she was head of the Allergy Nutrition Program at the Vancouver Hospital and Health Sciences Centre. She is the author of five books and a dietetic practice manual on food allergy, and her work has been published in peer-reviewed scientific and medical journals, as well as in popular magazines. Dr. Joneja is a respected lecturer at universities, colleges and hospitals internationally, and regularly appears on television and radio call-in shows as an expert in her field.

It’s finally here! Man Food – a high nutrient antihistamine and anti-inflammatory ingredient filled book geared towards guys, women who love to work out, yoga like they mean it, or just load up on healing nutrients. Features my personal shopping list of antihistamine and anti-inflammatory foods. 

The Anti-cookbook and all liquid Anti-Detox Book, don’t treat any conditions, but feature a plethora of the high nutrient antihistamine and anti-inflammatory ingredients that have been instrumental in helping me feed myself on a limited diet. The Anti-cookbook features a six page list of antihistamine and anti-inflammatory foods and comes in regular and Paleo. 

The Low Oxalate Cookbook features antihistamine and anti-inflammatory rich recipes. 

Don’t miss the Low Histamine Beauty Survival Guide for non-toxic beauty tips, the skinny on histamine releasing (mast cell degranulating) beauty ingredients, antihistamine and anti-inflammatory beauty alternatives and the top brands natural brands I’ve found.

Take a peek at my other low histamine and antihistamine cookbooks for more high nutrient recipes and sign up to my mailing list for freebies. 

Please remember, even antihistamine and anti-inflammatory foods can hurt us, please always exercise caution and consult a medical practitioner before adding new foods. 


Check out these other Healing Histamine blog posts


Yasmina was an award-winning broadcast journalist with a decade of experience covering war zones for CNN and the BBC. She devoted her journalism skills to researching and writing about histamine. Click here to learn about her. Each post is carefully and fully referenced with the latest scientific research. Not sure where to start? Here’s a four week meal plan and overall Histamine Reset.

4 Week Histamine Reset

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