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chronic urticaria/hives in adult

Home Forums HOMEMADE Natural Remedies and Health Support chronic urticaria/hives in adult

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    I have developed this nasty condition as was wondering if anyone else here knows anything about it. I had a skin biopsy as the dr. thought it might be urticarial vasculitis. I haven’t got the results yet.

    I can no longer go swimming because i break out in hives. I have been swimming in different types of water so I don’t think it’s an allergy to chlorine. It’s called cold-induced urticaria.

    The only way I can get relief is by taking antihistamines 4 hourly. The old sedating ones work the best.

    It seems as though a low salicylate diet is helpful too.

    Does anyone have any experience with this condition?



    Wow Gerri, sorry to hear, what a pain. Dd had a bf with this, which I learnt when I served him some ice-cream. Poor kid was so embarassed because he wasn’t yet used to having to explain himself.

    Sorry I have no suggestions for you, except to try the low salicylate diet. In fact try lowering any allergens you suspect might be putting your system under stress. Good luck with it.


    Can’t help with practical advice Gerri but maybe others can. :hug::hug::hug:z for you and I do hope you find some relief soon.



    My son has this.

    See the FAILSAFE website:

    This is the factsheet about the culprit.

    This is my contribution, which you can find on the website as well…

    [840] 635: Ribo rash and cold urticaria (August 2009)

    A few months ago, my son developed a sudden, allergic rash that came and went with seemingly no pattern. The rash starts as unbearable itching and then quickly develops into raised welts, like mossie bites, over most of his body, or sometimes, only one part of it, such as his hands. When it starts, as you might imagine, he is considerably distressed by it and often the only sure remedy is to put him into a bath of warm water. This takes away the itching within about fifteen minutes.

    We thought of all the usual suspects – things that had been applied to his skin, pool water, clothing, plants and more. We talked to our doctor who couldn’t explain it either without going through the full allergy testing drama. Then a friend of mine told me how she had been to see Sue Dengate and directed me to the Fed Up website. We read a bit about ribo rash and thought ‘Ah-ha!’.

    The week prior to the development of the rash was an odd one for us. We normally eat a mostly organic diet, which began out of concern for the environment as well as health. We still ate occasional takeaway and treats like any family. That particular week, the organics were out the window as we helped our friends renovate – it was a busy week and a lot of convenience foods were eaten. We ate, as it turns out, something with ribonucleotides every single day that week. These included Fantastic rice crackers, ready roasted chicken (several meals), hams and other deli meats, sausages, chips (hot and from a packet) and probably more.

    Then our son had the rash for three or four weeks, on and off, while we figured it all out (and of course continuing to unknowingly eat some of these foods). We had to keep him away from school, as the itching was unbearable, came on without warning at any time of day and the only solution was a bath.

    The rash also appeared on the place on his body where he was cold, e.g. hands and feet at the beach, at a home pool and in a paddle pool filled with rainwater. The weirdest one was the paddling pool – he only got the rash up to his waist – that was the part that had been in the water.

    Finally, when we made the connection, we cut out all foods containing ‘the dreaded 600s’. It took almost a week and a half for the rash to completely stop appearing. It appeared less and less severely each day.

    I thought that it would be good to try cutting all the artificial stuff out for a short time to see if there was any merit in it. Wow. What a discovery! We thought that his hyperactive moods at the end of each day were due to being ‘overtired’, in fact, they only happen on the days that he has eaten chemical food additives. Many behaviours that we had previously thought to be ‘normal’ have turned out to be brought on by chemicals in foods:

    · Preservatives: tears, moodiness, unable to be happy, as well as hyperactivity and babbling – usually next day reaction.

    · Preservative 282 in bread products – hyperactivity and babbling – about 30 minutes later.

    · Synthetic Antioxidants: irritability, opposition to small things, unable to be happy, tantrum like behaviour – about 8 hours later.

    · Colours: hyperactivity, babbling, bouncing – about four hours later.

    · Flavour Enhancers: rash, itching, recurring up to 10 days later.

    We would never have found these reactions without cutting all artificial food chemicals from our diet. We would never have connected a white, McDonald’s soft serve (2 colours) with bouncing off the walls four hours later. We certainly would never have figured out that terrible tantrum-like moments were due to eating chips (synthetic antioxidants in the oil) the day before. Since cutting all the 600 numbers out, our son has only had one more episode of the rash – following prescribed medication for croup, which turns out to have several nasty additives and which changed his behaviour too. We are very careful now and can even tell if he has been out with his grandparents and had a milkshake!

    The numbers that are a total no-go for us are 620-625 as well as 627, 631, 635. These ‘ribonucleotides’ are added to most barbecue, chicken or other savoury flavoured things like rice crackers, chips and other snacks, to some hams and processed meats, to sausages, to ready cooked chicken, to hot chips (think chicken salt), even to some brands of ‘plain’ crackers and more.

    A more full examination of failsafe eating has led to the discovery that my son is also intolerant to high salicylates, although moderate consumption is ok. A snack of strawberries or a glass of orange juice is enough to lead to behaviour changes – mainly oppositional. We were all fine with amines and natural glutamates. – Susan, Qld (More about cold urticaria -hives associated with cold – at


    Gerri, there are stories on the website about this appearing suddenly in mature adults. It may be worth looking into.


    Hi Gerri

    i agree with suz about the failsafe website ( tho my kids n i still cant eat things she says r ok 🙂 the joys of food issues, everyones different triggers)

    also RPA allergy and immunology dept have a website , its who i went thru with my childrens food intollerances ,

    tho not the cold hives, ( we managed to find out they were food intollerant early on) all three of my children and i sufer bad food reactions to sallycilates, preservatives, antioxidants , colours, flavours etc, .. we do get hives / rashes when overloaded too.

    the rpa book friendly food , is good in that it has lists of products and their salycilate /amine etc ,loads rated from low /med/high/veryhigh.

    my children are still on the low foods and sometimes mediums, but not all the time) sue dengates failsafe book has lots of yummy, safe recipes .

    best of luck working out what your particular triggers are.

    cheers Kate


    I get this sometimes, adult onset…I just thought it was at times when my stress levels were too high :shrug: I have never had it diagnosed as it isn’t too severe or often.

    :hug: good luck with a resolution; not a pleasant thing to have :noapprove:


    I have been working today so just caught up on the posts. Thankyou for the support and information.

    I have the booklets from RPA and am trying to follow a modified Fail-safe diet. Thanks for those numbers in the 600s Suz. I’ll have a look at the website.

    Here is a link to some pics of my rashes

    Off to that site to read more



    Gerri, that looks more like my ds’s ribo rash than hives. Maybe I’m just used to bigger hives.

    You poor thing, it looks so itchy!


    Oh wow! No, mine were more like a series of largish mossie bites. It took me sometime to work out that mossies probably were not biting me under my boobies :p

    Get well soon :hug: :kiss1:


    I get hives from something in the garden every year. I think it may be the Rye grass but not positive. :p Heat makes it worse for me.


    My son’s look like those pictures sometimes, like large mozzie bites at others, depending on the area and the amount ingested and the time since ingestion.

    It takes two weeks for the reaction to stop occuring, once he has stopped all ingestion of the additive. That is, is remains active in his sytem for up to two weeks.

    Failsafe taught us a lot – SIL with IBS, DH with asthma and me with excema – all linked to certain food chemicals which we only found by strict elimination.


    Thanks once again E, Learning, Suz and Gianna!

    The low salicylate diet seems manageable, but I haven’t quite worked out how that differs from Fail-safe. Is Failsafe stricter Suz?

    I have become addicted to Cottees pine lime cordial low joule cordial as I have been trying to loose weight. it contains Tartrazine and Brilliant blue. I’ll look up the numbers.

    Suz what other drinks do you suggest other than water and decaf coffee? I also like spicy food with herbs so that is going to be difficult. It seems as though the diet is fairly bland.

    I also have ibs with symptoms of bloating and fatigue after eating almost anything. I’ve got a feeling that it’s all related. It is so bad that for the last 18 months I haven’t been eating anything until midday so I can be a energetic in the morning. I’ve had ibs for as long as i can remember. Just in case you’re wondering I don’t have an eating disorder. I am 59 and weigh 62kg. I have lost about 4kg since I started the regime of not eating until midday. I drink Rooibos tea with my ‘favourite’ cordial and coffee with milk. I try to have a substantial lunch and dinner. It’s a form of intermittent fasting which is a recognised way weight loss strategy

    I’ve only had the chronic hive for about 6 weeks.

    Anyway enough of my ramblings. I am feeling like a hypochondriac! But i am keen to get to the bottom of this

    Thanks once again



    Gerri, first of all, you’re NOT a hypochondriac. And yes, it’s all related.

    The full failsafe diet is Free of Additives, Low in Salycilates, Amines, and Flavour Enhancers. (someone correct me if I’ve forgotten)

    The cordial is bad. Really bad. And the fact that you’ve said you’re addicted to it means it’s a big problem. You really need to stop drinking it. Now.

    Here’s the failsafe how-to-start page

    I suffered IBS too, and all I had to do was stop eating processed food. Easy!


    STOP drinking the cordial!! 😆 As Learning said – REALLY bad!

    Have you looked at Nourishing Traditions & Weston A. Price? I am following the guidelines (not a diet) in these literature and am feeling soooo much better. I have discovered that low fat, high carb is bad for me (I acknowledge everyone is different). My constitution does well on fat, protein and vegetables, (also similar – ‘makers diet’, ‘caveman diet’ – but I do NOT like the term diet which implies short term fix), and I am loving the new me (read energy finally increasing, mental issues diminishing). I think I have even lost some weight, as a pair of pants which was too tight before Xmas now fit 🙂

    I have included cod liver oil and coconut oil (organic) to my daily routine and now find I am not needing to take a million supplements like I was before! Eggs – eating heaps of eggs and my good bacon, salami and snags (nitrate free), raw cream, raw milk. Sugar and chocolate cravings are now non-existent – I was a chocoholic as those older ALSers will remember! I don’t even like the taste of chocolate now :jawdrop: Just love the food I eat 🙂

    Also, go find a natural health therapist. James in Wodonga (Chinese medicine) helped Margo with her skin issues (hope I am not speaking out of turn Margo :shy: )

    If you need any support let me know

    :hug: :kiss1:

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