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Tyramine free diet

Related Terms

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Background

  • The tyramine-free diet is a way of eating that eliminates consumption of tyramine-containing foods. Tyramine is a substance derived from the amino acid tyrosine and commonly ingested as a component of a variety of foods, particularly aged cheese and wine. In normal quantities and without interference from other chemicals, consumption of tyramine does not produce any bothersome symptoms and helps to sustain normal blood pressure.
  • Tyramine is metabolized by an enzyme called monoamine oxidase (MAO). Certain individuals taking MAO inhibitors (MAOIs) such as phenelzine (Nardil) and isocarboxazid (Marplan) for depression or other psychiatric conditions are not able to metabolize dietary tyramine and are therefore instructed to avoid all tyramine-containing foods to prevent hypertensive crisis
  • Excessive amounts of tyramine may initially cause headache, heart palpitations, nausea, and vomiting and may lead to a hypertensive crisis that can be fatal.
  • Migraine sufferers often link headache episodes to consumption of foods rich in tyramine. The National Headache Foundation has published tyramine-free diet guidelines for this population of patients. Although few well-designed clinical trials exist studying the effects of tyramine intake in patients suffering from migraine headaches, clinicians often recommend the tyramine free diet to patients if other treatment methods have failed.

Diet Outline

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Theory/Evidence

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Safety

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Author Information

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References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

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The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.