Migraine and food connection

Migraine and food connection

Did you know over 1 billion people worldwide suffer from migraine headaches? If you’ve ever experienced a throbbing headache on one side of the head, and all you need is a dark, silent room to sleep it off, chances are you’ve experienced a migraine. Although there are various theories as to why they occur, not everyone gets complete relief with prescription medication and they can keep recurring for years. This is why it’s a common concern we see in naturopathic practice. The truth is, there are many effective preventative and treatment options for migraines that your naturopath is trained to advise you on. However, the first place to start is to know your trigger foods.

The reality is, migraines can often be triggered or worsened by certain foods. Ask any migraine sufferer you know, they can often feel their symptoms worsening shortly after eating or drinking something they know they shouldn’t have. An important point to make note of: the food doesn’t have to be an allergy to be a migraine trigger. You may have a food sensitivity to a group of foods or just a particular item, either way, consuming them leaves you feeling awful.

Migraine triggers are different for everyone. Even the most common trigger foods can be well tolerated for one person, like cheese, while a rare trigger, such as a certain spice, can be a real issue for another. However, in general, the common triggers fall into certain categories of foods. They tend to contain the same ‘active ingredient’ or molecule that can lead to migraine symptoms. Here’s a quick list of the more common triggers (or commonly eaten food) that you can test for yourself:

  • Caffeine
  • Cheese
  • Wine
  • Vinegar
  • Citrus
  • Nuts

Not sure if foods are triggers your migraines? Keep a food diary for 2 weeks. Record everything you eat and note when you experience a migraine. Want to test for food sensitivities and get a better understanding on which hidden triggers you never knew about? Book an appointment today and see the results for yourself!

Dr. Belus

Dr. Laura Belus

ND / Naturopathic Doctor

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