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What To Eat When You Have A Migraine

Dietary Supplements For Migraine Prevention

The 10 Best Foods for Migraines – What to Eat When You Have a headache – Diet for Migraines

A majority of patients with migraine have tried using minerals, herbs, and vitamins to treat their headaches. Patients have different reasons for using supplements, including the idea that they are more natural or do not require a prescription. Because these complementary and alternative treatments can affect pain pathways and other body functions similar to prescription medications, it is important to be aware of the nature of these supplements, including potential side effects and the quality of evidence supporting their use for migraine prevention.

Foods To Eat When You Have Migraine

If you are having migraine problem or severe headaches, painkillers are not the only way to treat it. And Painkillers have various side effects too. So, I would help you with natural and nutritional supplements that can help to relieve the pain. And it is essential to include a variety of nutrient-dense foods into your diet, especially foods that are rich in magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamin B2. You should also be drinking lots of water and stay hydrated the entire day.

Here are some beneficial food options for you:

Foods To Eat When You Have Migraines

If you are living with migraines, you by now might have an idea that certain foods and drinks can trigger an attack.

Although it is very important to know what to avoid, focusing on the foods to incorporate into your diet matters, more as it may prove to be helpful in reducing the frequency or severity of migraine attacks or other types of symptoms of migraine headaches.

Heres a list of foods to eat when you have migraines:

1. Bananas Give You Energy When You Need It

Bananas are the top most suggested foods to eat when you have migraines. This quick and easy snack could help you stave off a migraine attack or an episode of hypoglycemia, which could lead to a headache. Reach out for a banana instead of looking for highly processed foods like granola bars or candy.

Bananas are great foods to eat when you have migraines to get quick energy recovery, and they are also high in magnesium, which can be helpful in managing symptoms of migraine headaches.

Bananas contain approximately 74 percent water, so there are hydration benefits as well,

2. Watermelon Provides Fluids to Keep You Hydrated

Did you know that watermelon is actually considered a vegetable because of the way it is produced? Although some people would argue of it belonging in the fruit category because of its sweet flavor as well as higher sugar content.

Many fruits and vegetables, because of their high percentage of water, have a hydrating effect, and the fresher it is, the higher the water content.

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How Do I Determine Which Foods And Drinks Are My Headache Triggers

One common suggestion for figuring out your own personal headache triggers is to track the foods and drinks you consume in a daily food headache diary. You may consider yourself to be sensitive to a certain food or drink if you get a headache consistently 20 minutes to 2 hours after eating that certain food.

However, keep in mind that even though it sounds simple to track what you eat to try to figure out what foods and beverages might trigger your headache, its not this simple.

Problems with food headache trackers

Is it truly the food or drink that is causing your headache or is it one of the many ingredients or chemicals in these foods? Foods consist of many ingredients that contain many chemicals. Chemicals include nitrates/nitrites, phenylethylamine, sulfites, tannins, tyramine, salicylates, aspartate, added sugar, alcohol, caffeine, gluten, glutamate and capsaicin to name a few.

Even beyond consumed foods, drinks and ingredients/chemicals are other factors that must be considered that may complicate identifying the true trigger of your headache. These factors include:

Collard Mustard And Turnip Greens

What To Eat When You Have Migraine

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.

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How Else Can Migraine Be Treated

Some over-the-counter headache medications can help with the pain, such as Tylenol or Excedrin . If your migraine attacks are more severe or frequent, your doctor may prescribe medications or other treatments for you.

For relief without pills, your doctor may suggest trying Botox injections or using a neuromodulation device like the Cefaly Dual.

Resting in a dark, quiet room helps some people. For extra help, a cold compress on the head can have a numbing effect. There are also natural remedies you can try, including supplements like:

What Does A Migraine Feel Like

Anyone who has ever experienced a migraine might know that it is not the same as getting a common daily headache, its quite different. This is mainly because the intensity of the pain is greater, and it is accompanied by several other enervating symptoms.

This condition is in simple language a severe headache, that begins from one side of the head and is usually accompanied by nausea or sensitivity to light and sound. This is a result of temporary changes in nerve conduction within the brain.

Migraine causes inflammatory changes in the nerve cells that cause that striking pain in the head.

Before a migraine pain begins, some people experience aura. Aura is the flashes of light or tingling sensations experienced in the limbs. While some people report irritability, certain food cravings, or feelings of depression before the migraine strikes.

Once your symptoms of migraine headaches start, you may become specifically sensitive to light or noises.

One may also feel nauseous or feel like throwing up. This striking pain and symptoms accompanying it can last anywhere between few hours to several days.

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Migraine Pain Is Almost Unbearable Here’s What You Can Do Food Wise To Ease Pain And Help Prevent Future Debilitating Headaches

Migraines and severe headaches are one of the most debilitatingand commonailments in the United States. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey found that 20 percent of women and almost 10 percent of men reported having a severe headache or migraine in a three-month period. If youre one of them, put some relief right on your plate with these seven foods that ease headache pain.

Fortified Whole Grain Cereal

What To Eat When You Have Migraine | The Foodie

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, consuming adequate amounts of riboflavin can help keep migraines at bay. Thankfully most cereals are fortified with the nutrient, so it’s super easy to sneak it into your daily diet. Wheaties, Fiber One, and All Bran are all Eat This-approved and overflowing with the soothing nutrient. Curious which cereals to steer clear of? Check out our special report about the unhealthiest breakfast cereals.

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Low Tyramine Diet For Migraine Attacks

Tyramine is a common compound found in aged and fermented foods. Those on an anti-depressant class of medication known as MAO inhibitors are actually advised to avoid all foods containing the substance, as doing so can lead to severe headaches, increase heart rate, nausea, vomiting, and high blood pressure.

The following are some common food groups and their level of tyramine:

Instead Of: Products With Wheat Flour

For some people with migraine, wheat-based foods may trigger or worsen migraine headaches. Wheat can also cause gastrointestinal problems for those who are sensitive to it. Thats the last thing you want if one of your migraine symptoms is nausea.

Try: Rice- or oat-based products

Gluten-free foods have come a long way in the last decade. Gone are the crumbly breads, hard crackers, mushy pastas, and dry muffins of the past. Rice-based pastas are especially well-tolerated for those with migraine, potentially due to the high magnesium and niacin content. Brown rice is also a staple part of the elimination diet that is often suggested to migraine sufferers in order to diagnose triggers.

Oat flour and oats in general are also an excellent, mild food for upset stomachs that can come with migraines. A migraine diet that includes oats for breakfast is a great start to the day.

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Spinach Could Help Migraines Go Away

This dark leafy green vegetable is particularly rich in magnesium. One cup of cooked spinach contains 157 milligrams, making it an easy and excellent way to start increasing the magnesium levels in your diet. Add spinach to your scrambled eggs in the morning, toss some baby spinach into your salad at lunch, or make sautéed spinach with garlic as a side for dinner.

Food And Drink Additives

12 Best &  Easily Available Foods to Eat When You Have Migraine

Food and drinks today have many additives. There are flavorings to enhance the flavor of foods and preservatives to extend shelf life and sugar substitutes to replace real sugar. The various chemicals, including artificial sweeteners like aspartame, can produce headaches.

Though monosodium glutamate is not used as much as it once was, it is still found in products like soy sauce, packaged foods and meat tenderizers. Other additives triggering headaches include substances like phenylalanine and nitrites.

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Pcrm Recommendations On Foods To Eat When You Have A Migraine

PCRM or Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine promotes plant-based diets and foods to improve ones health status. Whole, natural foods that do not contain any added preservatives or artificial flavors are a good choice to start when it comes to modifying your diet.

Research done on 42 adults found that elimination of possible dietary triggers or consumption of a vegan diet may prove to be beneficial for people with migraines.

According to PCRM, one should work upon incorporating preventive foods that are pain safe. These are those foods that generally do not cause a trigger for any condition, including migraines.

The PAIN SAFE foods include:

  • orange, yellow, and green vegetables, such as summer squash, sweet potatoes, carrots, and spinach
  • carbonated, spring, or tap water
  • rice, especially brown rice
  • dried or cooked fruits, particularly non-citrus kinds such as cherries and cranberries
  • natural sweeteners or flavors, such as maple syrup and vanilla extract

According to the Association of Migraine Disorders and American Migraine Foundation, foods like fresh meats, poultry, and fish are migraine-safe foods. Keep in mind to avoid versions that are processed, smoked, or made with tenderizers and broths.

The American Migraine Foundation also states that some water-soluble vitamins like vitamin B-2, or riboflavin, may help in decreasing the frequency of your migraine headaches.

Smoked Or Processed Meats

If you’re eating meats or vegan meats that are processed, they likely contain additives, such as nitrates and nitrites, which can dilate blood vessels and cause headaches in some people. Plus, these meats also have tyramine, says Rizzo, which might lead to the onset of head pain. You’re better off grilling or roasting a plain piece of unprocessed meat and pairing it with fresh veggies instead of pickled or fermented ones.

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The Best Foods To Eat To Help Prevent Migraines

There aren’t any foods that will totally prevent migraines, but some are “pain-free foods,” according to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine . “They recommend a plant-based diet as a way to improve your overall health, and these foods shouldn’t trigger any migraines,” says Rizzo. These foods aren’t necessarily linked to migraine prevention, but they are harmless to eat and generally healthy.

My Tips To Stay Nourished

Got migraines? These are the foods to eat (and avoid) | Your Morning

In this article, I discuss some of the barriers to eating well while suffering from migraine attacks, some food prep I try to always have on hand in the event of a migraine attack, as well as easy and quick ways I make sure I stay nourished when I don’t have the ability to go out and buy food or cook my own meals.

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Worst Foods For Headaches


I know. I know. Thanks, Captain Obvious. But its too common not to put on the list. Headaches from alcohol tend to creep up either immediately or in the form of the dreaded hangover the next day. In fact, people who get migraines may experience a headache after only a single small drink.

Interestingly, research suggests that migraine sufferers tend to drink less alcohol than their headache-free counterparts, likely because of the risk of an attack. What remains less clear is if its the alcohol or some other component of a drink that triggers it. Tyramine, phenylethylamine, histamine, sulfites, and flavonoid phenols are commonly found in our favorite drinks and have all been suspected as a potential cause of migraines. In fact, its not uncommon for studies to suggest an increase in migraine episodes following a glass of sulfite- and histamine-filled red wine.

Want to cut back on the chance of an attack? For one, drink moderately . No weekend benders for you! And two, choose a light colored drink like gin or vodka over red wine or dark liquors, which tend to have lower amounts of headache-inducing histamine and sulfites.

Excessive Coffee

Ah yes, take away the morning Joe and get ready for a real pounder. One Norwegian study found that individuals with the highest intake of caffeine were 10 percent more likely to get headaches and migraines. Other population-based studies have concurred, citing a greater prevalence of headaches with excessive levels of consumption.

Bananas Give You Energy When You Need It

Looking for something quick and easy that could help stave off a migraine attack or an episode of hypoglycemia, which could lead to a headache? Reach for a banana rather than highly processed foods like granola bars or candy, suggests Brown.

Bananas are a great food for quick energy recovery, and theyre high in magnesium, which can be helpful when people have headaches, she says.

Bananas are about 74 percent water, so there are hydration benefits as well, Brown says.

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How To Identify Triggers

If you have migraine, almost anything can be a trigger. This means it can be very difficult to identify your potential triggers. It may also be a combination of a few things that seems to lead to a migraine attack. And a trigger may not lead to a migraine attack every time, which can confuse things even more.

Here is an example of how combinations of triggers can work: A young woman has identified that her migraine attacks appear to be triggered when she skips meals, is feeling stressed and when she is about to have her period. If she comes home late from a very stressful day at work, her period is just about to start, and she goes straight to bed without eating a proper meal, she will almost certainly have a migraine attack. However, if she skips dinner another time, when the other triggers did not happen, she will probably not have migraine attack.

Many people find that they sometimes go a long time without having a migraine attack. During this time, your body may seem to be less sensitive to triggers and you may find that even the combination of your usual triggers doesnt result in a migraine attack.

How Can You Tell If A Food Is A Trigger For Your Migraine

12 Best &  Easily Available Foods to Eat When You Have Migraine
  • Eating a certain food should trigger a headache within 12 to at most 24 hours.
  • Limit the food of concern for four weeks and monitor your headache frequency, severity, and response to treatment using a headache diary.
  • If there is no change in your headaches, then that food alone may not be the trigger.
  • Cautiondo NOT restrict all possible trigger foods from your diet for an extended period of time. This is not likely to be helpful, and too much concern about avoiding foods may be another stress, as well as decrease your enjoyment of mealtime.
  • Restrictive diets should not be tried or followed during pregnancy. These diets are not likely to be helpful, and may prevent adequate nutrition for both mother and fetus because of the reduced consumption of calcium-rich and vitamin-rich foods.
  • Restrictive diets should NOT be used in children and adolescents because of doubtful benefit, and significant social disruption. Prohibiting the child from sharing a chocolate Easter basket with his siblings or the teenager from attending a pizza party can significantly add to the social stigma of having headaches.

Keeping a headache diary and following your lifestyle factors along with diet may help you identify patterns to your headache. Onset of menstrual cycles, work stress, sleep routine changes, and fasting may all be confounding what is thought to be a food trigger for headache.

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What You Eat May Make A Difference In How Often You Have Migraine Attacks

If you experience migraines, you know that they can be brought on by a variety of factors. These can include high stress levels, sleep disruptions, weather changes, and your diet, including what you eat and drink, and when.

Dietary triggers are some of the more common triggers reported by people with migraines, says Vincent Martin, MD, director of the Headache and Facial Pain Center at the University of Cincinnati Gardner Neuroscience Institute in Ohio and president of the National Headache Foundation . Part of the frustration of living with migraines can be trying to figure out what triggers them. You might have a glass of red wine one time and have a headache, another time, you dont, he says.

First, its good to understand how migraines differ from other types of headaches. According to , a headache specialist in the department of neurology at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona, migraines are not just headaches but an issue of brain state, meaning senses like touch, sight, and smell are also affected during a migraine.

While scientists debate the exact cause of migraines, theres no doubt that environmental factors such as diet play a role in triggering them. To prevent migraines , try making these small adjustments to your diet.


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