More about Histamine and a Little More on Glutamate

Last night I posted the stuff about glutamate and histamine before watching the entire video. The woman obviously has done a lot of research and succeeded in getting her daughter out of the autism spectrum. So that’s a helluva accomplishment. And in my eyes, it’s heroic because she’s obviously a mom who cared and continues to care enough to feed her daughter as well as eat herself, the foods that agree with her daughter’s metabolism and keep her healthy.

However, those foods are primarily vegan. She does say in her talk that they use meat for flavoring. But they don’t use a lot. I looked over the recipes on the website and noticed that many of the ingredients are exactly the foods that give me a histamine reaction.

One recipe is orange almond cake. Sounds yummy as hell, but I’m running like hell from it because yesterday my brain swelled after eating two oranges.

I’m pretty sure I mentioned that I’ve had milder symptoms of histamine reactions so I am familiar with it a little. I did some reading on it before and you can bet I’ll be doing a fuck load more now.

I am still feeling the effects from the reaction I had yesterday. I have a head ache, I’m sound sensitive and  my eyes feel tired and around them feels swollen. I’ve had circles under my eyes for decades but they didn’t always come out in  photos, making me pretty photogenic. That’s not the case anymore and you can see them bright as day…one reason I don’t take any photos of myself now and certainly wouldn’t post them if I did. My point there is that maybe they are a result of the histamine intolerance. And may even explain some of the borderline traits that have been present in me…in addition to my environment being part of the cause too.

I have no doubt that a person could have the histamine problem in younger years and not notice it because it’s more internal, effecting things not seen or it’s not as intense so goes unseen.

Anyway, I’m sort of digressing a bit. Because my point was that the woman whose talk I posted and listened to last night, was helpful, but not the whole picture for me.  She did mention histamines and made an interesting connection to glutamate, which is what basically sent me in the direction of researching the histamine issue again.

However, her daughter and her didn’t have histamine reactions so the foods will be different as to what they can eat.   For example, they stay away from meat. Since glutamate/glutamine is an amino acid, of course it’s in meat. Meat is a high protein food with every single amino acid. So she apparently doesn’t think it’s good for people with glutamate excess.

But I’m finding beef to be one of the less reactive foods for me. And I did read on another site that when all amino acids are being consumed as a whole protein, then it has a very different response in the body.

I’m not saying that no one will have a histamine reaction to eating meat. I’m basically saying that it’s very individual. That being said, on most of the lists I’m finding for people with histamine troubles, red meat is a green light. I saw chicken as fine, but without the skin. And I’d go a step further and say ‘without the bone’ for any meat. Because bone broth is high in histamine.

There is a suggestion that it’s because of the long cook time, but if you have brain swelling, do you really wanna take a chance at all, in eating something that includes cooked bones from steak or chicken??? I certainly don’t.

I also mentioned wanting to be on keto. Well, that’s a plan and a goal, but since this histamine response is so severe now, that’s what needs the focus and going keto is a process for anyone who’s been eating so shitty anyway.

First things first, and I’m dealing with a crisis and sticking to what I’d call safe foods is more important than getting into ketosis right now.

Some of the foods are similar, as far as people who have a glutamate excess should stay away from hydrolyzed proteins…like bone broth, protein powders, so should someone with histamine response.

But I can tell you, I won’t be eating many sweet fruits. Those oranges put a serious scare into me with how much my brain swelled after eating them…and guess what, citrus is a very high histamine food.

It’s unfortunate that so many foods that are actually healthy for most people, can be detrimental to those with histamine issues or glutamate excess.  And of course so can many and actually most foods that are not healthy.

So I’m trying to look on the bright side:
-The low histamine foods are enough to be able to eat somewhat of a variety but not so many to feel to terribly overwhelmed. I think the testing is overwhelming though. Just because it’s low histamine doesn’t mean it won’t produce histamines.

But also,  this will certainly keep me away from pizza, cheese steaks and hoagies.


Glutamate Overload Possibility and Histamine Intolerance

I just wanted to stop in and give an update. Not something I usually do but I just want to for this.

I am struggling with some pretty severe issues. I’m not completely sure what’s going on but when I eat many things now, my legs and ankles swell up. And I know that it’s not limited to only those parts of me.

Today, I ate two tiny oranges and not only did my legs and ankles swell up, but so did my brain. I could feel it. I could feel it in the part of my skull that makes up my forehead the most. This has happened before but not like today.

I am still trying to figure out which foods are okay but I can tell you for sure that oranges are an absolute no way.

When I’m reacting really badly I also get this prickly itchy feeling in random places on my body.

I’ve gone through something similar before but it was always mild and it would just go away. At those times I did some reading on histamine intolerance so I believe that to be an issue…but only part of the issue.

The other thing I just happened to stumble on and can’t remember exactly how or what the first thing was, is glutamate…to much of it in the brain. It causes different symptoms for different people. I’m getting swelling and histamine intolerance.

It wasn’t too bad until the other day when I decided to test some bone broth that I had made in the Instant Pot. Big fucking mistake.

The biggest frustration is that I’m reacting to things now that I wasn’t before.

Like I was eating oatmeal with raw milk, maple syrup and cinnamon and I was fine. But the last time I ate it, I swelled up. Of course with a variety of ingredients I’m not sure what it is, but I can guess since I’ve been reading. It’s probably the milk for sure. But it could also be the oats…but it might not be. Some people with this issue can eat oats, but it’s on the list of things high in a glutamate…or triggers a glutamate response.

I was able to eat my own homemade mayo before, but the last time I ate it my legs swelled up. That could be the small amount of apple cider vinegar in it, or the little bit of mustard or the onion powder I like to add to give it some flavor.

I also made the mistake of seasoning up some chicken thighs with garlic powder, onion powder, dried basil and oregano. I reacted to that too. But it could also be the fact that I left the bones in.  The bones is what’s used for broths and creates glutamate.

For the seasonings, the glutamate comes from the drying process, not necessarily from the plants themselves.

Today I had a cheeseburger and a half, cooked in butter. I was fine. Whew right? Well I had the same this afternoon minus the cheese and my ankles blew up…just a little, but still.

However, I THINK (but can’t be sure) that my ankles actually blew up in reaction to a supplement I took. It was a capsule of hawthorn berry and rhodiola. I had already taken a plain hawthorn berry capsule after breakfast and I did okay on that. But just the timing of when my legs swelled, made it difficult to pin-point the herb for sure.

My head hurts right now. I am surprised really at how clearly I’m thinking, which is why I decided to do this right now.

Oh and something else the glutamate imbalance causes is sound sensitivity. Even a plastic fork being dropped on the counter top in the kitchen, while I’m in my bedroom feels like it severs a nerve.

So did you know that it’s apparently common for this to happen to adult children who were abused as children?

I’m sure my indecisiveness of diets didn’t help. I’ve fought with myself for decades now trying to figure out what I should and shouldn’t eat. It was the diagnosis of interstitial cystitis that sent me all over creation on the internet.

I believe that a keto diet would be best. BUT I can’t just start eating the keto way without going gradually because I get hard and scary heart palpitations when I try.

I thought I’d try a carnivore diet too.  Big old rock and hard place with that too. I actually felt better in my brain, even for the short time I did it. I thought more clearly, I was more relaxed, my road rage was close to gone, anxiety about tailgaters was definitely lowering. But my hair was falling out in the shower, I mean at least 20 strands at a pop. And the arrhythmia was scary af.

So I started eating some oatmeal and some white rice again. The hair loss slowed and the heart palps went away.

But both of those things are back. Not as bad but it doesn’t matter. The fact that those things are present means something is wrong. And now the swelling. I’m scared and frustrated.

For dinner I had some white rice and napa cabbage cooked in butter. I was worried because I had cooked the rice with dulse. Seaweed is on the list as a trigger. And the cabbage, I had no idea.  And so far rice has been fine but if it wasn’t tonight I wouldn’t know it because of the other ingredients.And then the butter…I haven’t seen it on any list, but ya never know.

I seem to be okay from the foods I ate for dinner, but I’m hungry again since I didn’t have much rice left. And I didn’t want to overdo the cabbage in case it was a problem.  Bad things happen when a brain swells, I didn’t want to instigate that and I didn’t know if I was or not.

There’s still swelling in my ankles and legs but that seems to be left from the oranges and since it’s been exacerbated since this afternoon, it’s still hanging around. My ankles are not getting bigger though from what I can see.

Okay so that’s about it for now. I’ve only been reading about this for a few? maybe more like a couple days. So I don’t know that much, except that it can cause quite a few different so called ‘mental’ illnesses.

It’s stress that is the underlying cause of all of this. Emotional stress, psychological stress, physical stress. And with all the trauma my tolerance to stress is so low. The last decade alone was enough to put my brain and body through hell.

Of course when it rains it pours. (Huh! Seems like a theme doesn’t it?)

There are other things going on too besides this so it feels like I’m caught in an undertow.  And now I’m afraid of food.

The woman speaking here has a young daughter who was diagnosed with autism. Her daughter no longer meets the criteria for autism.

Weird…For Liking the Rain

My last post (been a little while) was about the rain and how I loved it as a kid. And even how I love it now.

Right after I saw that my friend Bethany commented on it, I didn’t read it because I wanted to clean up the kitchen from my breakfast and come back and read it then. Kind of wanted to savor it I guess. I don’t get many comments (not whining) so when I do it’s nice to have something to look forward to reading.

If that’s weird, so be it.

While I was in the kitchen cleaning up I started to think about what I’d written in the post about the rain and I thought about how my mother thinks/thought I was weird for loving the rain.  We’d be talking on the phone on a rainy day once in a while and she’d make a comment about how it was miserable out and I’d say, “I love it.”

She’d say, “I know you do.” And then tell me I’m weird for liking the rain.

I never took it as an insult. Never. I used to laugh and think that I’m actually special and different for liking the rain.

But today, I’m in a mood. I’m so irritable. So thinking of her saying that to me, I’m thinking I might say something more along the lines of, “I’m weird? For liking the water that falls out of the sky? For liking something mother nature is supposed to do naturally? I’m weird for liking something that helps our food grow? Do you know that when it doesn’t rain for a long time we have droughts and the plants die? If we had no water, the animals would die. The humans would all die. If that’s weird then fuck it. I guess I’m weird…not to mention proud to be weird for that.”


Relaxing Rain (Video)

It’s been gray and cloudy here for the last few days. We’ve had sporadic rain and today it is still coming down.

I love it.

For all the tension and misery I lived through in my home environment, concerning my father’s unpredictability, I always had a cozy and warm feeling when it would rain.

Perhaps it was just something as simple as having shelter and a warm bed, physical protection from the elements, that gave me that feeling.Or maybe it was the freedom it represented to me, something I’m only thinking of now.

It stays with me to this day. Rainy days just tend to bring up warm and fuzzy feelings for me.

I used to sit and color when it rained, particularly during thunderstorms. There was a feeling of safety in that.

For four years we lived in a house with a big front porch. When it rained, the three of us (children) would go out and play as if we were on a ship. We’d pretend to fish and dive off the steps into the turbulent ocean.

In warm weather as long as the rain didn’t include a lightning storm, we also played right in it. Nothing like the feeling of wet cool grass and soft ground under your bare feet.

When we belonged to the swim club and it started to rain, we’d keep swimming. The pool stayed open as long as it wasn’t a thunder/lightning storm. The first time I discovered that you can’t feel the rain drops on your skin when you’re already wet from swimming, I was amazed.

I still take comfort in the rain. I love the sound of it falling on the leaves and the way the tires sound as they drive down a wet road. The sounds of the birds add an additional layer of tranquility as well.

Rain always seems to make the world look surreal.

The rain is one of the pleasant triggers from childhood. And I’m grateful for that.

Mothers’ Day Delayed Triggers

It seems like when one of those trigger days comes up, other stressful shit snowballs and everything feels hopeless.

Of course I’m talking about mothers’ day as the trigger day. And even though I felt like I sailed through it all right on the actual day, it’s apparently caught up to me.

Last night I ran some errands. When I was sitting in my car in the Trader Joe’s parking lot I saw a guy walking between cars in the lot and he glanced at me. No doubt it was because I had just started my car, he needed to walk behind my car to get to his and he wanted to make sure I saw him too so I wouldn’t rear end him.

Completely understandable. He was watching out for himself.

But my mind goes to my mother and either a memory of something I’ve done before or something I can imagine me having done when I was just a little younger, likely after divorcing my father. If I’d have caught an age appropriate man glancing at my mother in the same way, it would not be above me to say, “There ya go mom, he’s checkin’ ya out.”  It would’ve been mostly a joke since once divorced, she had no interest in dating AT ALL.

Then I switched roles (in my mind) but in my case, my daughter was imaginary because I don’t have one. I pictured me in my mother’s role and a teen daughter saying that to me while we sat in the car together getting ready to pull out of our spot and go home with our groceries.  I even pictured what that might feel like to have such a presence in the car with me.

I started thinking about how I knew by the age of 13 that I didn’t want kids. Then I thought about how I’d felt slight regret in the past and thought how it might be nice to be THAT house where my teen kids friends all came to hang out.

Last night as I thought about it though, felt lonelier. I felt even more regret. I don’t regret not having children in the state I was in at the age I would’ve been having kids.  But I regret not ever feeling like I could be a capable parent.  I never felt grown up enough. I still don’t.

The thought of the type of man I would want to help me with the most difficult job in the world crossed my mind. I started to picture the kind of man it would take to help me raise one or two children. I’ve never been with such a man.

At that point, I realized that ever since the break up of a tumultuous, emotional roller coaster of a relationship in 2011/2012, I never stopped to think about what sort of man I would like to have in my life.

I’m not sure I ever really did. The men who I felt capable of raising children were not for me…not in my mind. They were too good for me. And I settled for men who, some good looking, but all of them were emotionally unavailable in some way as well as emotionally immature. At least I had the instinct to know better than to have kids with them.

But then it didn’t really have a whole lot to do with them. I was afraid to be pregnant and then I was afraid of how would the child be financially cared for. But most of all, I did think about how I would treat any child of mine. I had bad examples and somehow I knew that having kids was a bad idea for me. At the time I made the decision at 13, I just thought it was purely selfish. I thought I just didn’t want the burden and responsibility so that I could be free. But the truth is I didn’t want the responsibility because I didn’t think I could handle it and didn’t believe that I’d ever find a man would could either.

My thoughts then lingered to B as I drove to the next stop to drop some stuff off at Goodwill. At a stop light, I glanced over at a car sitting next to me. Inside I saw two people and felt sad. I wondered what their life is like. If they get along. If they have family. If they have support in their lives from both family and friends. If they were happy to be in the car together.

Because at that point, I was longing for company. But not just any company. I wanted someone I felt close to. Someone I felt safe with. Someone that I felt had my back and enjoyed being with. It was a more relaxed feeling to not have B with me. I can’t stand being with him in a vehicle. He doesn’t talk, and when I talk he doesn’t acknowledge most of what I say. He doesn’t see the same things I do and so there is this big ass gaping ravine between the two of us even when we are sitting next to each other.

So that led to frustration, sadness and more loneliness.

And this morning I realized that the AC wasn’t really working. Which means that in order to get attention to that, I need to call or text the wicked bitch of southeastern PA.  She’s got a history of invalidating complaints, blaming us and putting the onus on us to take care of certain things. Not big things like this. But that she’s done that at all, just added to the depression that already set in.

It’s bad enough to have the AC go ka-fucking-put on the first day it’s been hot in 2 weeks but quite another to know you have to deal with a difficult person (probably a narcissist) to deal with it.

Wounds that Time Won’t Heal (Link)

I found this to be not only an interesting article but an important one as well.

It connects trauma and the brain and what happens to the brain as a result of childhood abuse… all types of abuse: Psychological, physical and sexual.

I’m very interested in how the brain is impacted. I made the connection a long time ago, which is why I don’t really like the term “Mental” illness. Our brain is a physical part of us that has been damaged when traumatized, no matter the abuse.  And I think it’s sad and scary that this kind of thing isn’t taken into consideration more.

Here’s the link
Wounds that Won’t Heal

Rights and Responsibilities in Community’s Handbook Seem to be Outdated

I have come back around to wanting to file a complaint/report the two therapists from the DBT program I was in.

I documented part 1 here and part 2 is linked at the bottom of the post.

I had a rough day today. I won’t get too much into it because what I want to do here is focus on writing out the Rights and Responsibilities of the outpatient hospital I attended for DBT.

I found them a few weeks ago in the patient handbook I was given in the beginning of DBT. They are sprawled in tiny lettering across two pages. I scanned them into my computer, hoping I could enlarge the font so I could read it without a magnifying glass. Unfortunately the only way I could save something in text though was in PDF. And once in PDF if I want to do the kind of editing I needed to do…rotating the whole document and enlarging the font…I would have to pay a monthly fee for that. Well, fuck that. So instead, I’m reading it sideways and I used the + to magnify it on my screen. So I can type it out here.

Community is a very old building that used to be a regular hospital where surgeries were performed and babies were born. But now it is an outpatient facility for mental health. The first paragraph looks like it pertains to the place when it was a ‘regular’ hospital.  So it’s been quite some time since it’s been updated. Dial 0 on your telephone??? Well…you’ll see.


Your Rights and Responsibilities

As a health care facility, Community Hospital is dedicated to the prevention of illness and committed to delivering quality medical care and services to you and your family. All Community employees work to fulfill this mission. Your rights as a patient as well as your responsibilities as a patient are listed here. At any time, should you have questions concerning these rights, you may contact the administrator On-Call by dialing the Operator (dial “0” on your telephone or by asking the nurse caring for you to help you contact this individual. Please take a moment to review these rights, which are also obtained in the patient handbook (located in each patient room.)

As you can probably see, the above is outdated. I hope the rest isn’t. That’s kind of pathetic that they couldn’t update the opening paragraph at the top.

Your Rights

-You have the right to respectful care provided by competent personnel who will provide services in a manner that is consistent with your personal, psychosocial, spiritual and cultural values as long as they do not interfere with your care or present any harm or danger to yourself or others.

-You have the right to be informed of your rights as a patient at the earliest appropriate time in the course of your hospitalization.

-You have the right to have a family member or representative of your choice and your own physician notified promptly of your admission to the hospital.

-You have the right to full information in laymen terms, concerning diagnosis, prognosis, treatment (including information about alternative treatments) and possible complications. When it is not medically advisable that such information be given to you, the information will be given on your behalf to your next of kin or your designated/legal representative.

-Except in emergencies, the physician must obtain the necessary informed consent prior to the start of any procedure or treatment or both.

-You have the right to participate in your care, planning, treatment, discharge and transfer arrangements.

-You have the right to know the name of your attending physician, the names of all other physicians participating in your care, and the names and functions of other hospital personnel having direct contact with you. You have the right to be informed of any proposed change in the professional staff responsible for your care.

-You have the right to privacy concerning your health care. All aspects of your care are considered confidential and will be conducted discreetly. You have the right to have someone present while physical examination, treatment or procedures are performed, as long as their presence does not interfere with your care.

-You have the right to have all the records pertaining to your medical care treated as confidential in accordance with applicable laws.

-You have the right upon request by your designated/legal representative to access all information contained in your medical records, unless access is specifically restricted for reasons by your attending physician.

-You have the right to know what hospital rules and regulations apply to you.

-You have the right to have emergency procedures and services implemented without unnecessary delay.

You have the right to good quality care and high professional standards that are continually maintained and reviewed; to receive care in a safe setting.

-You have the right to be free from all forms of abuse or harassment.

-You have the right to pain assessment and management upon admission and throughout your hospitalization.

-You have the right to be advised when a physician is considering you for participation in a medical care research program or donor program. You will not be included in a research or donor program unless you or a legally responsible party has given informed consent prior to actual participation in such a program. You or a legally responsible party, may at any time, refuse to continue in any such program, to which you have previously given informed consent.

-You have the right to refuse any drug, treatment or procedure offered, by the hospital, to the extent permitted by law. A physician will inform you of the medical consequences of your refusal of any drugs, treatment or procedure.

I’m not going to bother typing out my responsibilities. This was hard enough on my neck, having to twist it side ways to read the patient rights.  It’s obvious from many of these that they pertain to an in-patient facility and it holds true for the patients responsibilities. Some of them still make sense for an out patient place but I can say that I was a responsible client according to their rules.

Reading these was a bit disturbing because many don’t seem to pertain to mental health at all so that’s a concern.

The numbers and addresses don’t look like contact info for reporting abuse from mental health practitioners. They look, just like the above, like they are for a regular hospital environment.

I guess I will just call the main number and see where and who I need to call to report the abuse and file a complaint. And in addition where else can they direct me to for help for the C-PTSD since two of the therapists traumatized me too much for me to return to their building.

As I was writing all of that, it made me wonder if  could get some sort of compensation. I’m sure since I’m broke that is probably not an option. But it’s a thought.

This is so fucked up. I can’t believe the Rights and responsibilities in this handbook are out of date making the complete and utter bullshit. Seems to me that should be illegal!

A Bike, Tom, A Legless Man and Ozzy

Tom (and old boyfriend of mine) riding/driving a bicycle and I was on his shoulders apparently. But then there was a switch, when we got to this particular spot and it seemed like I was on the seat too, where we had to go through two glass doors.

There was a guy walking in front of us wearing a trench coat and a fedora hat.  He opened the door for us. But from a position so that he stayed in front of us and also opened the second door. The bike was slowing down so balancing was difficult and getting shaky.  After the guy in front of us opened the second door for us. The bike got really wobbly then and we didn’t make it out the door.  It started to poor and he “stood” right there at the door, his back to us, looking to the side as if looking for something or someone.

As I looked at the guy out there on the other side of the glass door, he suddenly had no legs and was just hovering there at the same height.   At first I mistook the rain for him peeing himself. But it quickly became apparent that the buckets of rain were engulfing his coat and then falling off in a blanket type pattern.

We didn’t want to get soaked so we decided to wait it out.  There was a waiting type area inside where we were out of the way of the doors so we/I went over there to the bench that ran the perimeter of this area. I felt this loneliness as I dismounted the bike. I lifted a cat off my back, which was supposed to be Ozzy, but it was just before I woke up and all I saw was the back of him.

Tiger in Town

I had a dream last night (or probably early this morning) about a tiger. I’m still shaking my head, because I can’t believe it, given the name of the blog.

I watched an old episode of Oprah last night before going to sleep. It was the one when she had Steve Irwin (The Crocodile Hunter) on along with a bunch of other animals, which included a couple of baby tigers.  I’m sure there’s more of a message in here than what’s on the surface. Something was already stirring in my subconscious. The show just gave my brain more tools so to speak to work with.

I was walking around the town I grew up in at night. It was down around an area where there are a couple small parks. Apparently the tiger had gotten out of where he was supposed to stay and tracked me down. When I saw him I was worried for him and myself. I didn’t want anyone else to see him and so I walked him back to what equates to a shelter.

The tiger and I were heading down this one street, past one of the parks and up ahead where this road comes to a T, I could see groups of people walking on the sidewalk on the opposite side of the street. (In real life this goes toward a train station.)

I got nervous but we kept walking because all I could think of was getting him back and hidden again.

We rounded the corner, where this group of people were walking across the street from us and just kept going. Of course the tiger didn’t care. He was completely unaware of consequences. But me, I kept my head down and hoped no one would say anything.

When we got to the corner, the tiger crossed the street alone ( a different street where the people were and it came to another T)   and went into a hole in the ground, that looked like a gigantic ant hill. It led up into a grass covered mound, where he had to stay to keep hidden from the public in order to stay safe.

I turned after watching him disappear into the hole and thought to myself, “Please stay in there. Please stay in there.”  I was expecting him to come back out but hoping he wouldn’t because it meant that harm could possibly come to him.

I remember another part of the dream where a woman was mad at me for keeping him hidden and that it was more important for me to keep him safe than to keep humans safe. I forget exactly what she said, but it was something like, “So you don’t care if people get hurt” But I think she was specifically referring to her kids.

She was sitting in a car while she was saying this, and I was at a telephone booth. And when she spoke to me, I turned around just before putting money in the slot. I listened to what she said and I said, “Well I can’t say that it’s something that won’t happen.”