Allergies - Food Community
931 Members
Avatar universal

Tyramine intolerance - hidden allergy

Hello everyone, I am a 40 y. o. musician and I enjoy a healthy lifestyle ( balanced diet + daily exercise). My health is good except for a recently diagnosed intolerance to Tyramine. For ex. if i eat a few slices of salami on an empty stomach it will trigger an attack, which is always the same : i get a really fast heartbeat + increased blood pressure + nausea 15 mn after ingestion. Sometimes the heart palpitations last for 1/2 h ( 120-130 bpm), and the nausea + lightheadedness will last for a day, it depends on the type of food, if i am tired etc...
I am 99% sure the culprit is Tyramine, which is a natural amine found in all foods but much higher in foods that are aged, fermented, pickled  ( salami, cheese, sauerkraut, smoked salmon, anchovy paste ), in foods that have been stored for a long time ( nuts, dried fruits) and also in overripe fruits like bananas, oranges and avocados.
The list of foods I was reacting to was so eclectic, I couldn’t find the link between them for a long time, it was very perplexing and scary and i lost a lot of weight.
I did a lot of research, started an elimination diet and asked many doctors before a neurologist mentioned the cheese migraine symptoms to me. Later I found a list of Tyramine loaded foods in which I recognized every single food that had triggered an attack after I ingested it. There is no test to confirm my theory but since I eliminated these Tyramine loaded foods from my diet I feel much better and less terrified of eating, and I am even putting some weight back on ( 112 lbs for 5’4”).
Soon hopefully I will feel strong enough to start reintroducing these foods into my diet in very small quantities to get myself desensitized, unless of course one day I wake up free of this strange condition that appeared for no reason and might disappear the same way.
I guess what is very puzzling to me is the fact that this sensitivity appeared out of the blue, that the symptoms are so violent and that I DO NOT get migraines. People who have problems with foods high in Tyramine usually are either migraine sufferers and/or on antidepressant ( MAOs).
I do not take any medication and my symptoms are always exactly the same 5 to 10 mn after ingesting the culprit food : tachycardia + hypertension + tremors + nausea and sometimes light headache when the attack is really bad. After having had about 14 attacks within the last 12 months it is such a relief to be able to eat again !
So I guess now my goal is to put the word out and ask as many persons as possible is they have ever heard of a patient with the same symptoms, which is why I posted this text.
Does anyone have the same symptoms or know anything about Tyramine ?

21 Responses
Avatar universal
  I think tyramine effects glucose uptake and insulin sensitivity. The heart reacts to changes in insulin levels, which can cause the palpitations.  Perhaps you are becoming more insulin sensitive, for some reason?
Congratulations on finding the culprit causing your symptoms! Great sleuthing!
168348 tn?1379360675

My daughter has the same thing (tyramine) and within 36 hrs of eliminating it in her diet ALL her symptoms went away .. migraine/joint pain/loss of concentration and word retrieval issues.  It took about 3 weeks into a total food elimination diet thru her allergist to find both tyramine & sulfites.  And, this was 10 yrs ago.  Today .. she avoidds and is fine.  We were told it is most likely a severe intolerance and not a true allergy in my dd's case.

Avatar universal
I have the same since a year, and cured since 4 months. the diet is severe, but I'm getting weight as replacing many things by other things which are sugar based probably. I'm taking pills too (against hystamine) : Xyzall, 3 times per week. There is well a test, the firts one is small capsules against the skin, then they check reaction after 2 days, than 4 days, and one on the skin with a drop of reactant, then they pick and see the reaction. After 2 months, it has decreased already due to the removal of bad food (pork, potatoes, tomatoes, cheese, all thinks that can get old and ferment). According to doctor he expect me to go back to normal life after 12 to 24 months.
My main problem was oedema, mainly of contact
I'm 52 years and Belgian
Avatar universal
I experience chest pains very soon after eating dark chocolate, shark meat, bison meat, aged cheeses (cheddar, etc.)... it is so consistent and predictable.  I also used to get migraines - but just chest pains.  They go away after a few minutes, but I still have to learn to curb my portions of high-tyramine foods.  
Avatar universal
I have a severe intolerance to Tyramine, and maybe other things - who knows?!  I realised what it was over 14 years ago, but know the symptoms were there for about ten years previous!  The only things I can eat now without succombing to severe and prolonged pain are:  pasta, carrots, parsnips, peppers, apples, melons and pears.  Over the years it has gotten worse, the list didn't start out this short!  And I've lost about 3 or 4 stone over time!
I've asked for help repeatedly from my GP, but they're not interested and just say that there is nothing they can do.  And I keep getting worse.
What do I do ?!!
681148 tn?1437665191
I am a migraine sufferer myself.  Now I am intrigued and will definitely do some research about Tyramine.  I do have food sensitivity issues as well, so this looks like a worthy research to do for myself.  I never heard of Tyramine and the neurologist never mentioned it before.
Avatar universal
tyramine is a catecholamine releasing agent. tyramines sends my blood pressure sky rocketing(hypertensive crisis) and then i start vomiting, usually all day. i have had this problem all my life and only found out about it last year. i will be 64 in November. i wished i would have learned about it sooner.
681148 tn?1437665191
Yep, tyramine intolerance does affect migraines and IBS.  I had already eliminated many foods in that list because of preservatives for me.  I have stayed away from high tyramine foods and that helped.  Through my research I have found that gluten intolerance is actually a part of tyramine intolerance, so I recommend that you also eat a gluten free diet.  It made a huge difference for me.
Avatar universal
I had the same thing begin suddenly in 2014. I am healthy eater - or so I thought. After trips to doc and a couple to the ER I found that eating fresh food - not eating canned or pre-packaged eliminated most symptoms. My research uncovered a ton of info - I hope that you find this helpful: Regular coffee, tea, and soft drinks are on the list of things to avoid. Not sure about decaf. Canned and packaged food contains sulfites,  Nitrates and preservatives that trigger symptoms. Aged meats such a salami, pepperoni bacon, jerky, sausage, hot dogs should be avoided. Anything femented, aged can cause problems. Beer, wine, aged cheese, Seeds and nuts cause problems for those with the sensitivity.  I also eliminated bread as yeast is a trigger. Another trigger is Soy - soy oil is in many things so be sure to check ingredients.  Bottom line is I now eat only fresh beef, poultry and fish. If not eaten within 24 hours of cooking I freeze. If not cooking within 24 hours of purchase I freeze. I eliminated Irish potatos but still eat red and sweet potatos.

It's a pain but sticking with the freshness rule keeps me symptom free. Unlike your symptoms mine lasted for days and often did not occur for up to 48 hours after eating a trigger food. Doctors say developing allergies and sensitivties as we age is common. Tyramine sensitivity can only be treated by diet - I wonder if it ever goes away. As furballsmom stated: Gluten may be an issue. I had to eliminate wheat too and no more peanut butter - dang. Bottom line is I eat like a cave man and so far so good.
What may help to some degree is daily kefir.
Avatar universal
I have recently discovered that I too am suffering very severely and suddenly to Tyramine. I have had many visits to the ER with Hypertensive Crisis. I think mine came on after I started drinking Kombucha for the probiotics. Perhaps I drank too much of it and got some kind of Tyramine Overload. At any rate, it's been hit or miss but I am trying to be careful.  It *****.
Avatar universal
Can you give me a list of "safe" foods?
Avatar universal
To give you an idea what foods are considered "unsafe", I quote from Wikipedia:

"Tyramine occurs widely in plants and animals, and is metabolized by the enzyme monoamine oxidase.
In foods, it is often produced by the decarboxylation of tyrosine during fermentation or decay.

Foods containing considerable amounts of tyramine include meats that are potentially spoiled or pickled, aged, smoked, fermented, or marinated (some fish, poultry, and beef); most pork (except cured ham); chocolate; alcoholic beverages; and fermented foods, such as most cheeses (except ricotta, cottage, cream and Neufchâtel cheeses), sour cream, yogurt, shrimp paste, soy sauce, soybean condiments, teriyaki sauce, tempeh, miso soup, sauerkraut, kimchi, broad (fava) beans, green bean pods, Italian flat (Romano) beans, snow peas, edamame, avocados, bananas, pineapple, eggplants, figs, red plums, raspberries, peanuts, Brazil nuts, coconuts, processed meat, yeast, and an array of cacti."

So, once you have eliminated these foods from your diet, the rest might be considered "safe". But don't bet on it. Allergic reactions do not affect everyone in the same way.

Have an Answer?
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Find out what causes asthma, and how to take control of your symptoms.
Find out if your city is a top "allergy capital."
Find out which foods you should watch out for.
If you’re one of the 35 million Americans who suffer from hay fever, read on for what plants are to blame, where to find them and how to get relief.
Allergist Dr. Lily Pien answers Medhelp users' most pressing allergy-related questions
When you start sniffling and sneezing, you know spring has sprung. Check out these four natural remedies to nix spring allergies.