Hello Elite crew! We’re back this month to share health tips for headaches and migraines. Because who doesn’t get headaches? And who isn’t frustrated by the awful pain and side effects of migraines? If you don’t know what we are talking about, you’re lucky! We’ll go over causes, food options, and of course beneficial supplements for headaches and/or migraines.
Headaches Vs. Migraines
A headache is a dull throbbing pain generally felt along the forehead. There are many reasons that we get them– from head traumas, stress, lack of sleep or food and shifts in hormones. They can usually be remedied by a over the counter pain medicine (NSAIDs- Ibuprofen, Aspirin, Tylenol, etc.) and tend to go away within a couple hours or even a day. Either way, they can be short term.
Migraines on the other hand aren’t as simple. In fact, scientists and doctors have yet to identify the distinct cause for migraines because they vary from person to person. The severity and symptoms also vary. They tend to be felt on only one side of the head at a time. They can become extremely painful and cause extreme sensitivity of light and sound. The first go to to remedy for a migraine is find a dark and silent room and relax. Some over the counter medicines work, some don’t and pharmaceuticals can be helpful but not a cure.
Foods and Migraines
The elimination of certain foods can help lessen pain and frequency of chronic headaches or migraines. Eliminate one, three, all of them, or whatever amount you feel is reasonable and achievable. Avoid these foods for at least four weeks and then slowly reincorporate the food back into your diet to see if you react neutral or badly to the food. Consider eliminating the following foods:
Monosodium Glutamate (MSG/food additive)
Processed Meats and Fish
Cheese and Other Dairy Products- Aged cheeses, yogurt, sour cream, and buttermilk
Nuts- Avoid all nuts, eat seed instead
Certain Fruits and Juices- Citrus fruits, bananas, avocados
Certain Vegetables- Onions, all nightshade vegetables like tomatoes, eggplants, all peppers, etc.
This elimination diet has been shown to be one of the most effective methods for treating migraines. There are two possible root causes for chronic migraines that we know of: genetic disposition/mutation or toxins that are hard to detect in the body by modern medical tests (think mycotoxins/mold, heightened amounts of heavy metals, stealth pathogens- bacteria, viruses, fungus/yeast).
The foods listed above contain common organic chemicals that can throw the body off just enough to be the straw that breaks the camels back. Hormones can have the ability to surpass your bodies toxic threshold as well. Limiting these foods during hormone cycles (like before and after menstruations) or during periods of stress can help as well!
Supplements for Headaches and Migraines
Deficiencies in Magnesium, Riboflavin (Vitamin B-2), and Vitamin D3 have all been linked to migraine suffers. We like Magnesium Glycinate and Magnesium Threonate for headaches and migraines specifically. You can take it daily as well as with the onset of a headache/migraine to help relive the severity. Taking a Riboflavin, Vitamin D3 and CoQ10 supplement daily is said to help decrease severity and frequency.
Butterbur and feverfew has also been said to help relieve pain from migraines and headaches and is safer on your gut than NSAIDs. You never want to use NSAIDS for long-term treatment or frequently, as they can be detrimental to your gut health and can add insult to injury.
Supplements like turmeric and ginger can be helpful to reduce inflammation in general and could be helpful to reduce them as well. Ginger can be used to help with the nausea that is sometimes associated with headaches or migraines. A little bit of peppermint oil on the temples or simply smelling it can help relax the body, ease the pain, and help with feelings of nausea.
Other Things to Consider
Consider working with alternative health practitioners to help navigate a root cause specific to you and/or a migraine management plan. Most medicines available for migraine treatment only mask the symptoms and can cause rebound headaches/migraines.
Listening to Binaural Beats during a painful episode of a migraine might ease the pain, if sound is tolerable. Establishing a short, daily, soft to medium exercise routine can also be very helpful for management.
If you are geeks like us, check this intriguing video of what goes on in the brain during a migraine episode.
Thank you to all who joined us for this tip. We hope you are fairing well and wish you a happy St. Patty’s Day. Here’s an Irish Prayer from us to you:
May God grant you always…
A sunbeam to warm you
A moonbeam to charm you
A sheltering angel so nothing can harm you…☘☘
As always, do what you feel is best for YOUR body — if you aren’t sure, ask your doctor. We are health ENTHUSIASTS not licensed practitioners.