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Is Dark Chocolate Bad For Migraines

Dark Chocolate Vs Milk Chocolate

Is Eating Dark Chocolate Actually Healthy? DOCTOR’S THOUGHTS!

White chocolate or milk chocolate does not have any cocoa beans in it. It contains cocoa butter, milk, and sugar. So, it is just a sugar bomb and it does not have the same amount of nutrients as dark chocolate has.

It is basically that you take dark chocolate and add a lot of sugar and milk to it, which brings down all its health benefits. On the other hand, dark chocolate contains millions of health benefits. It contains 70 perfect cocoa.

This higher amount of cocoa is responsible for its health benefits. Because, higher the cocoa percentage, the more flavonoids it will contain. That means a higher antioxidant potential and a lower risk of diseases.

So, is dark chocolate healthy? Yes, definitely it is! Dark chocolate has more advantages compared to its side effects. Hence, it can be considered as a healthy food.

If You Eat Chocolate Every Day You Might Be Sleepier

If you find yourself making the choice to eat chocolate every day during a mid-day slump, it may boost your mood, but it can also send you into a slumber. While chocolate does contain caffeine, dark chocolate contains serotonin, which helps you relax and can make you quite sleepy.

For those looking to hit snooze on sleepiness, milk chocolate is the treat you should eat. It contains no serotonin, according to Sleep.org. In fact, a 1.55-ounce bar of Hershey’s milk chocolate has about the same amount of caffeine as three cups of decaffeinated coffee, as noted by Health.

Interestingly, a 2002 study done at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital in Virginia linked eating chocolate to nightmares in people who have rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder, or RBD, as reported by New Scientist. Those with RBD may “unknowingly act out violent nightmares,” leading to “thrashing” and “shouting.” The researchers believed that the caffeine in chocolate may block how the body paralyzes people while they dream. “I admit this is just a case report, but I still think it’s interesting,” researcher Robert Vorona told BBC News.

Eating Chocolate Every Day Can Cause Migraines

We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it turns out that you can experience major pain if you eat chocolate every day. Some people who consume chocolate have reported an increase in migraines. While they may seem similar, migraines and headaches different and when you experience a migraine, what happens to your body can be debilitating. According to the American Migraine Foundation, alcohol is the biggest food trigger for migraines with chocolate following closely behind. Twenty-two percent of people suffering from migraines have attributed their pain to this tasty treat.

This apparent link between the consumption of chocolate and the onset of migraines does make sense. Some of the chemicals found in foods like cocoa have been known to make migraines even more prevalent.

However, before migraine sufferers with a sweet tooth ditch their beloved chocolate altogether, the American Migraine Foundation notes that no scientific studies have actually proven that chocolate really is responsible for triggering migraines.

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But When Does Caffeine Help A Migraine

Caffeine is what Dr. Crystal calls a âdouble-edged sword,â because while it can trigger headaches, itâs also an active ingredient in some migraine relief medications.

According to the American Migraine Foundation, caffeine affects the activity of adenosine, a naturally occuring and necessary brain substance. During migraine attacks, adenosine levels in the blood rise. Caffeine can block specific brain cell receptors adenosine typically bind to, stopping its effects. Caffeine also has vasoconstrictive properties that can restrict blood flow. Since blood vessels vasodilate, or get larger, before a migraine attack, caffeine can help counterbalance that effect, thus decreasing pain.

âCaffeine helps relieve headaches by its own analgesic, or alleviating, effects, and by enhancing the analgesic effects of aspirin, acetaminophen and ibuprofen,â Dr. Crystal says.

Thereâs still much research to be done to determine exactly how caffeine results in acute anti-migraine and pain control, but the evidence is there: A 2017 study published by The Journal of Headache and Pain found that combining caffeine over-the-counter pain relief medications significantly improved relief compared to using the medication alone. And while treating headaches with non-medical options is sometimes effective, The American Migraine Foundation recommends limiting this to two days a week.

When You Eat Chocolate Every Day You Might Experience Heartburn

8 Foods That Trigger Headaches

Chocolate has a not-so-special side effect that may have those with a sweet tooth thinking twice before treating themselves the dreaded heartburn. While chocolate may be good at keeping the heart pumping, another chemical found in this sweet treat, called methylxanthine, relaxes the muscles in the valve between the stomach and the esophagus. This causes the valve to stay open, giving stomach acid an easy escape into the esophagus to bring on you guessed it heartburn, according to the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.

In fact, because of this, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases recommends that people who suffer from gastroesophageal reflux disease avoid eating chocolate altogether just so they don’t have to deal with this condition. So while you may yearn to eat chocolate every day, it may not be worth it if you don’t also yearn for heartburn… and who does?

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Chocolate For Cold And Flu Symptoms What You Need To Know

It’s cold and flu season in North Texas, which means it’s time to restock the medicine cabinet. While you’re running to the store for tissues and cough drops, you might want to throw in some dark chocolate. That’s right: Research shows that dark chocolate containing at least 70% cacao may fight cold and flu symptoms.

Why Arent Bananas On The Migraine Diet

Bananas usually dont appear on lists of foods that trigger migraines, but they could trigger a migraine for people who are sensitive to tyramine, the same substance found in aged cheese. Studies show that the peel has about 10 times more tyramine than the banana pulp. There are no reliable studies on this, but you might want to avoid those stringy pieces of inner peel that stick to your banana if a food diary points to it as a likely migraine trigger for you.

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Collard Mustard And Turnip Greens

These greens are all high in magnesium and add delicious variety to your migraine diet. Known as traditional southern greens, this trio is excellent sauteed, braised, or added to soups. For example, check out this quick collard green recipe, or this recipe for southern collard greens. You could even add these greens into your pasta, for example this dish with pasta collard greens and onions.

Dairy Products As Migraine Trigger

Migraine trigger foods

The first category of 27 foods that trigger migraines is dairy products. Dairy products contain tyramine and casein, and this is a reason why migraine occurs. So we listed here foodstuffs, such as cheese, aged cheese, and milk.

With this in mind, we can definitely say that dairy products are a type of food to avoid, or to limit in the case of dietary migraineurs. On one hand dairy products can be a trigger for a migraine headache, on the other not. So it is kind of individual, varying from one migraineur to another. The concrete mechanism and process of occurring a migraine are explained below.

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Red Wine And Other Alcoholic Beverages Are Foods That Trigger Migraines

Sulfites, used as preservatives in red wine, are included in the list of foods that trigger migraines. Alcohol in any drink causes increased blood flow to your brain and can also result in dehydration, both of which might be headache triggers. “People with migraines tend to get worse hangovers from any type of alcohol,” notes Robert Daroff, MD, professor of neurology at the Case Western Reserve School of Medicine in Cleveland and past president of the American Headache Society. Alcohol will also trigger a headache in someone going through a period of cluster headaches.

The Dark Side Of Dark Chocolate

I love dark chocolate. You love dark chocolate. Everyone but the most soulless, coldhearted, and puppy-hating among us love dark chocolate. And I hesitated even writing this post because the scientific evidence that dark chocolate offers numerous health benefits when consumed in moderation is substantial and, in my opinion, undeniable. However, there is a dark side to dark chocolate. That doesnt mean dark chocolate is bad, just that nothing in this life is binary. Like any other healthy food we eat, there are caveats and limitations. Things to keep in mind.

So lets take a look at some of the murkier aspects of dark chocolate to see if theres anything we would be better of being aware of.

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When You Eat Chocolate Every Day You May Improve Your Memory

The next time you find yourself treating your tastebuds to some yummy chocolate, you’ll be happy to know that you could actually be boosting your brainpower too. One study from Loma Linda University gave us all the more reason to enjoy this sweet treat on a daily basis. Researchers found that within 30 minutes of eating chocolate specifically dark chocolate participants experienced an “increase of gamma frequency in a major area of the brain,” boosting memory recall and the process of new information, as explained by Healthline. What’s even better is that this lasted for hours after the sweet treat was enjoyed.

“As we age, we lose the ability for optimal cognitive thinking, our processing and memory, and recall,” researcher Lee Berk, DrPH, a dean of research at Loma Linda University, told Healthline. However, the flavonoids found in chocolate’s cocoa are thought to help, which could be especially useful information when it comes to older generations suffering from memory loss. “If we indeed can enhance gamma frequency, we might benefit,” Berk explained.

So the next time you need to boost your brainpower, maybe eat chocolate.

Can Eating Chocolate Give You A Headache

Chocolate: Good or Bad?

Chocolate is an indigenous South American food. Traditionally, the bean of the cacao tree was brewed with hot water, producing a bitter drink often mixed with dried chili peppers. Adding sugar to create the hot chocolate that is drunk today, and adding fats to create chocolate candy, occurred in Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries. Chocolate can create a sensation of well-being and alertness, but it can also cause migraine headaches in some people.

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Chocolate And Migraines As A Potential Mechanism Of Action

Migraine patients frequently describe that certain foods may induce or even exaggerate the severity of a headache attack . Chocolate is the most popular food trigger of a migraine, and it has been epidemiologically implicated in triggering migraine attacks, and the classic advice given by doctors to patients with migraines is to avoid it . Martin et al., in a review of the role of diet in the prevention of headaches, found that chocolate has been self-reported to be a precipitant for migraine headaches in 2%22% of migraine sufferers . Possible geographic variations in this matter may exist, as none of the patients among the Japanese and India survey groups reported chocolate consumption as a potential trigger of migraines .

Depression and other mood diseases often coexist with migraines and can exaggerate their course. Chocolate is known to have mood-enhancing properties, mostly due to its orosensory properties, psychoactive ingredients, and the activation of neural reward pathways . The consumption of chocolate may be associated with an improvement in the mood state, the attenuation of negative moods, or reduced odds of clinically relevant depressive symptoms .

All of this evidence shows that chocolate may act not only as a migraine trigger, but also as a protective factor, possibly decreasing the probability of an attack over a period of time .

Possible mechanisms by which chocolate may trigger or prevent migraine attacks .

Coeliac Disease And Gluten Sensitivity

Coeliac disease is a serious condition where a persons immune system reacts when they eat gluten and causes damage to the lining of their gut. When this happens, they have symptoms such as diarrhoea, bloating, vomiting and stomach cramps. There can also be serious complications if it is not treated, such as anaemia. There is no cure for coeliac disease and people with it need to avoid gluten all their life.

There have been studies into the link between coeliac disease and migraine. There is no evidence to suggest that coeliac disease causes migraine. It is thought that if people with coeliac disease and migraine follow a gluten-free diet, this may help with both of their conditions.

Gluten sensitivity is when a person has a bad reaction if they eat gluten. They may have similar symptoms to coeliac disease, but there is no damage to the lining of their gut or the risk of serious complications that can happen with coeliac disease.

Gluten is found in foods that contain wheat, barley or rye. These include pasta, bread, cakes, some sauces and most ready meals.

One of the symptoms of gluten sensitivity is headache. But there is no evidence that gluten sensitivity causes migraine. However, if you are sensitive to gluten, you may find that if you eat food containing gluten, it makes migraine attacks more likely or the symptoms more painful.

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If You Eat Chocolate Every Day You Could Lower Your Blood Pressure

Though you eating something sweet shouldn’t make your doctor happy when checking your blood pressure, it turns out it might be a treat for them too. Chocolate contains chemicals called flavonoids, which are found in cocoa, that may lower a person’s blood pressure, according to Harvard Medical School.

One study conducted by researchers from Germany’s University Hospital of Cologne and reported by WebMD found that enjoying 30 calories of chocolate each day which is about as many calories are in a Hershey‘s Kiss lowered blood pressure of those at risk of developing hypertension. However, the secret is to enjoy dark chocolate, which contains the highest amount of cocoa. Those in the study who ate white chocolate every day, which contains no cocoa, had absolutely no changes to their blood pressure. Researchers concluded that the higher the amount of cocoa in the chocolate, the healthier it is because of the many flavonoids it contains.

Researchers advised, “Although the magnitude of the blood pressure reduction was small, the effects are clinically noteworthy.” However, as delicious as it may be, don’t think that eating chocolate every day can replace a healthy diet and exercise plan.

How To Minimize Caffeine Withdrawal Headaches

Headache Treatments : Dietary Treatment for Migraines

If youre trying to reduce your caffeine dependency by dialing back on your intake, unpleasant withdrawal symptoms can put a damper on your efforts. Minimize caffeine withdrawal headaches using the following techniques:

  • Wean off your caffeine intake gradually by reducing your intake by 25% each week. You can also try swapping out some of your regular coffee with decaf if you crave the taste of a steaming cup of coffee.
  • Read food labels to ensure that youre not consuming extra caffeine you arent aware of.
  • Use peppermint oil topically to help relieve inflammation and tighten muscles associated with headaches.
  • Drink plenty of water since dehydration can cause the brain to shrink in volume and cause a headache.
  • Apply an ice pack to your head to alter the blood flow or numb the area.
  • Stimulate pressure points to relieve muscle tension, which can cause headaches.
  • Get enough rest by taking naps or going to bed earlier than usual.

Caffeine headaches can be caused by a variety of triggers and withdrawal is one of the most common reasons. You can track your caffeine intake and notice how your body reacts so you can adjust your consumption and find the best way to wean your body from caffeine dependency while minimizing the withdrawal symptoms.

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The Best Way To Prevent The Flu Is Still The Flu Shot

If you haven’t gotten your flu shot yet, make it a priority. It takes about two weeks after a flu vaccination to develop antibodies that protect against influenza. Getting vaccinated can protect not only you from getting the flu but your family members, friends and colleagues as well. It’s a smart and easy way to score some points for adulting.

Nathan Holbrook, DO, an emergency medicine physician at Medical City Arlington, says the flu shot is still your best bet for avoiding influenza and prevents 5 million cases a year.

Check out your closest CareNow® location for inexpensive, quick flu shots for the whole family.

Find out how to prepare kids for their flu shots in Tips to Prepare Kids for the Flu Shot and Helpful Hints to Avoid Getting Sick.

Not All Chocolate Is Created Equal

I probably dont have to say this, but any chocolate with less than 85% cacao is veering dangerously close to Hersheys territory. The dark chocolate you eat should be bitter. It should bite back. It should last ten or fifteen seconds in your mouth before melting. Again, not all chocolate is created equal.

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How Do You Permanently Cure A Migraine

Talk to your doctor about a treatment plan that works for you. Avoid hot dogs. Diet plays a vital role in preventing migraines. Apply lavender oil. Inhaling lavender essential oil may ease migraine pain. Try acupressure. Look for feverfew. Apply peppermint oil. Go for ginger. Sign up for yoga. Try biofeedback.

Its Unlikely That Your Post

Everyday Foods Which Can Trigger Headaches And Migraines

Its an interesting theory, but its a very unlikely scenario, Dr. Green says. Neither she nor Dr. Natbony believes they have encountered this situation among their thousands of patients.

The pathophysiology of migraines is complex and not yet completely understood, Dr. Green explains. However, doctors do know that small amounts of caffeine can sometimes help relieve migraine pain, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke . It appears as though caffeine may do this by narrowing dilated blood vessels that might contribute to migraine discomfort. But doctors believe theres much more to migraines than fluctuations in blood vessel width. The vasodilation and vasoconstriction component is not thought to be as important as it , Dr. Green says.

Second, although caffeine can help treat migrainesespecially in combination with other drugs, like typical pain relieversit has not been established as an effective preventive drug for migraines, Dr. Green and Dr. Natbony explain. Its potential lies more in treating pain that has already begun, and even that power appears to be limited. If its a mild migraine, there are some people that do respond to just a cup of coffee, Dr. Green says. But thats not the case for most people with moderate to severe migraines.

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