List Foods High in Tyramine

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Although many people have no problem with tyramine, this amino acid can trigger intolerance in some. Ingesting foods with tyramine can cause hives, fluid retention and asthma. The most common side effect, though, is migraine headaches. According to Depression Guide, because tyramine is naturally formed as food ages and proteins break down, we find it most often in fermented foods or those with more than moderate amounts of yeast.

Some meats like bacon are very high in tyramine.
Some meats like bacon are very high in tyramine. (Image: Brent Hofacker/iStock/Getty Images)

Cheese

All mature and aged cheeses contain tyramine, a byproduct of the aging process. Consequently, you must consider all foods that contain cheese, including casseroles and flavorings. Cottage cheese, Ricotta cheese and cream cheese are not aged and are, therefore, safe to eat if avoiding tyramine. According to Cleveland Clinic, the amount of tyramine in cheese differs according to differences in processing, aging and bacterial contamination.

Aged cheeses contain tyramine.
Aged cheeses contain tyramine. (Image: T_W_/iStock/Getty Images)

Meat/Fish

Normally, fresh meat or fish contain little tyramine. However, meats that have been kept too long, even though refrigerated, have increased amounts due to protein breakdown. Smoked, aged or fermented meat or fish contain significant amounts of tyramine. Hot dogs, processed sandwich meats, bacon and ham are very high.

Hot dogs are very high in tyramine.
Hot dogs are very high in tyramine. (Image: Purestock/Purestock/Getty Images)

Yeast

Although most commercial breads are safe, homemade yeast breads and sourdough breads contain substantial amounts of tyramine. Many prepared, canned or frozen foods, like soups and casserole, contain yeast. Check the labels.

Tyramine levels are higher in sourdough breads.
Tyramine levels are higher in sourdough breads. (Image: zhouhaoji/iStock/Getty Images)

Beans

Beans of all kinds contain tyramine due to protein breakdown. These include soybeans and bean pastes. Miso, tofu and soy sauce contain the most.

Soybeans and soy sauce have very high levels.
Soybeans and soy sauce have very high levels. (Image: Nicole S. Young/iStock/Getty Images)

Vegetables and Fruits

Overripe bananas, spinach and sauerkraut can be high in tyramine. Most fruits contain minute amounts that increase as the fruit ages. You should avoid all overripe fruit.

avoid fruits that are too ripe
avoid fruits that are too ripe (Image: Caleb Fleming/iStock/Getty Images)

Leftovers

All foods, as they age, form tyramine. The National Headache Foundation stresses that all food should be prepared and eaten fresh. The Foundation recommends freezing leftovers that you plan to keep more than two or three days.

freeze your leftovers if you plan to keep them for more than a few days
freeze your leftovers if you plan to keep them for more than a few days (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Beverages

Beer, ale, wines, whiskey and some liquors contain tyramine. You may also have to avoid non-alcoholic beers. Champagne, gin, vodka and scotch may be safe in very small amounts.

avoid alcoholic beverages like beers and ales
avoid alcoholic beverages like beers and ales (Image: Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images)

Additives

You will need to avoid or check labels on prepared, canned or frozen soups and casseroles. Also, avoid restaurant soups and casseroles. They may contain protein powders or bouillon, which will add to the tyramine level. Meat tenderizers and packaged or canned gravies and sauces contain high levels of tyramine.

check the labels of canned soups
check the labels of canned soups (Image: XiXinXing/XiXinXing/Getty Images)

Safe in Small Quantities

Chocolate and coffee may contain negligible amounts of tyramine. Avocados seem safe if not overripe. Consume peanuts, Brazil nuts and coconuts only in small amounts.

Chocolate may contain tyramine.
Chocolate may contain tyramine. (Image: Palle Christensen/iStock/Getty Images)

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