Headaches, Migraines, and Diet

Those who are plagued with frequent migraines know how awful they can be, and many people who experience a migraine for the first time often times confuse it for a stroke.  A migraine can ruin your day, your week, and, for some, even their month, but there are a number of ways to help reduce the occurrence and risk of migraines, and one of the easiest and most beneficial is a change in diet.  The consumption of healthy foods that are based on the Paleolithic diet can offer help to those who struggle with frequent migraines, and there are also a number of nutritional supplements that can provide support.

What is a Migraine?
A migraine can leave the recipient bedridden and unable to move.  It occurs within the brain when the blood vessels become enlarged and the neurological pathways become more sensitive.  During a migraine the body also releases inflammatory chemicals around the blood vessels, and some doctors also believe that poor mitochondrial function may lead to the occurrence of migraines.  Nearly 26 million Americans deal with migraines, and women are most commonly inflicted.  Nearly 80 percent of migraine sufferers are women, and one in five women frequently experience migraines, while only one in sixteen men experience them.  Of the women who deal with migraines, 60 percent of them have migraines that are correlated to the menstrual cycle.

There are a number of symptoms that occur during a migraine, and sometimes only one of the symptoms is experienced, while other times many may be noted.  A migraine induces an intense throbbing that often only affects one side of the head.  During a migraine one may also experience nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light.  Initial symptoms tend to develop during the day time when the body is active, and 40 to 60 percent of migraines are preceded by these symptoms, which can last for hours or even days:

  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Sleepiness
  • Excessive Thirst
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea

People who frequently suffer from migraines may experience some relief by receiving regular sleep, and maintaining a regular sleep pattern.  The same goes for eating, and frequent exercise may also help.  It is also important to reduce the consumption of caffeine, as excessive caffeine is often times linked to increased migraine frequency.

How to Help with Migraines
The food that the body eats plays an important role in how it functions both positively and negatively, and this is certainly true in the case of migraines.  Foods that cause allergic reactions may also lead to migraines.  Foods that create gas or bloating, constipation, diarrhea, or low energy and fatigue often times also cause headaches, and any foods that cause these reactions should be closely monitored to see if they also induce migraines.  Studies have shown that eliminating foods that cause these negative digestive reactions or allergic reactions can greatly reduce the occurrence of migraines.  If one believes that a specific food leads to migraines one of the best ways to see is by eliminating it from the diet and waiting to see if it has any affect on the frequency of migraines.  Foods that have been found to most frequently cause migraines are wheat, yeast, corn, milk, grain, citrus fruits, and eggs.  Processed foods are also commonly linked to migraines.  Processed foods that are largely unnatural – and the additives that they contain, like preservatives, artificial flavors, and artificial colors – can increase the likelihood of migraines and headaches.  MSG, which is commonly included to add flavor to processed foods, has also been known to cause migraines.

The Paleolithic diet has gained a lot of traction in recent years as a way to help with weight loss and to consume natural, safe, and healthy foods.  The paleo diet largely consists of grass fed meats, fish, fruit, vegetables, and nuts.  It does not include grains, dairy products, refined sugar and salts, and processed oils.  Stopping the consumption of artificial sweeteners is also important, and many people who consume aspartame get migraines.  Consuming carbohydrates through vegetables – not potatoes or corn – may also help.  In fact, this diet may help with more than just migraines.  Cutting processed foods from the body can reduce the risk of disease and illness, and it may also help the body’s systems and processes to run properly.  The paleo diet is also a great way to help with weight loss.

There are also a number of supplements and vitamins that may provide help with migraines.  Perhaps one of the best places to start is with a magnesium supplement.  A magnesium deficiency is frequently the cause of poor nervous function, and magnesium is also needed to maintain proper cardiovascular function.  Some of the drugs used to treat migraines are calcium channel blockers, and magnesium helps to do this naturally and in a safer fashion.  Magnesium may also help to relax the blood vessels of the brain, and this action may combat migraines.  Vitamins that also provide support to the brain may also be of some help.  These vitamins include Vitamin C, riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, and folic acid.  Studies have also shown that when folic acid, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin B12 are taken together they may help to reduce migraines that are accompanied by aura by up to 50 percent over a six month period.  Another study also showed that 400 mgs of riboflavin may help to reduce the frequency of headaches by 50 percent.

Some doctors believe that migraines could be the result of poor mitochondrial function.  Because of this supplements that provide support to the mitochondria, like ubiquinol, may be of some help.  The mitochondria are responsible for providing the cells with energy, often referred to as ATP, and ubiquinol may also support the production of ATP.  Studies have also shown that CoQ10, which is an alternative form of ubiqunol, may provide some help.  Subjects who supplemented with 100 mg of CoQ10 three times a day found that their migraine symptoms were significantly reduced.  However, ubiquinol is considered the superior form for mitochondrial function.

Anybody that has had a migraine doesn’t want to experience it again.  Unfortunately, there are people everywhere that frequently get migraines, and this can hinder their life for days or months on end.  One of the best and safest ways to help fight the occurrence of migraines is with a healthy diet and supplementation.  The Paleolithic diet is a great place to start.  It provides great nutrition to the body, and it also helps to remove some of the foods that most commonly lead to migraines.  Supplementation may also help, and a magnesium or ubiquinol supplement may help to reduce the occurrence of migraines.  Many of our customers have used MigraSpray and found it to be quite effective. If you find yourself struggling with migraines make the necessary change to your diet today. Good Luck!

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