Finding low histamine protein sources can be a challenge, and that’s if you do eat meat. Vegan sources of low histamine protein are even harder to find, and other than nuts & seeds, there are really only three types of protein powders that are low histamine: whey, hemp seed, and brown rice. Of these, whey and hemp seed are generally considered complete proteins, while rice protein contains 8 of the 9 essential amino acids.
The quality of these proteins sources is important to detail because not all proteins are created equal. There are dozens of amino acids which are needed by the body to build muscle, amongst many other things, but only 9 of these cannot be created by other means and must be consumed in food. If you don’t consume enough of one or more of these aminos, you’ll end up experiencing a cascading effect of symptoms that range from uncomfortable to devastating.
Therefore, you can see why it’s important to understand the composition of your food, especially if you’re trying to eat a low histamine, plant-based diet (which precludes whey protein from being an option, as it’s dairy-derived). Often such a path takes you to a lot of breakfast smoothies and quick oats for a simple, fast meal, both of which are very conducive to add a scoop of low histamine protein powder to boost their nutritional value. If you can tolerate dairy, whey protein is usually the go-to, as it’s inexpensive and readily available.
But many people have gastrointestinal problems with whey supplements, even though animal proteins are naturally complete proteins, so be careful when trying whey protein powders. Make sure you only buy the pure protein powder, unsweetened, unflavored, and without stabilizers of preservatives. If you still have a reaction, move on to trying rice protein powder or hemp protein powder.
Remember that you should always try reintroducing the whole foods of rice or hemp seeds before trying their protein powders. If you find that you can tolerate them, these two proteins are also great sources of fiber, easier on your digestive system, and contain small amounts of other nutrients, such as omega 3 fats & antioxidants. Just keep an eye out for ‘sprouted brown rice protein powder‘ or ‘hemp seed protein powder‘ when you’re next looking for a low histamine protein powder.