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Best and Worst Foods for Migraines

Did you know that food can play an important part in triggering or preventing a migraine headache? Even though there are far more foods on the triggering side, don’t give up hope.  These foods can definitely help:

Ginger – a powerful anti-inflammatory that can ease chronic migraines, alleviate nerve pain and boost the immune system. It can be added to smoothies, juices, soups, salads, or used in baked dishes.

Water – essential to the proper functioning of the body. Dehydration is a common migraine trigger.

Riboflavin – also known as vitamin B2, this has been tied to the reduction in frequency of migraines. Can be found in lean beef, mushrooms, spinach, and broccoli.

Healthy fats – omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats can help reduce inflammation linked with migraine pain. One great source of Omega-3 is fatty fish, such as wild-caught salmon. Olive oil is a wonderful choice for monounsaturated fats. It has been shown in studies to decrease the duration, severity of pain, and frequency of migraine headaches.

Magnesium – linked by many studies with the natural prevention of migraines, particularly menstrual-related. Top food sources are quinoa, white potatoes, sweet potatoes, spinach, fresh amaranth, Swiss chard, brown rice, and whole grains.

Worst foods for migraineurs:

Tyramine or phenylethylamine – amino acids found in a variety of foods, like chocolate, aged cheeses, processed meats, fermented foods, citrus fruits, beans, avocados, vinegar, and soy foods.

Additives – MSG, nitrites, sulfites, artificial colors, and artificial flavors are all known to be possible migraine triggers. The reason is that they can increase the flow of blood to the head in many people.

Ice-cream/cold foods – cold foods can definitely cause headache pain. For migraine sufferers, the short-lived “brain freeze” can be just the start of a full-blown migraine. To be safe, avoid any extremely cold foods.

Alcohol – can cause dehydration, which is a trigger of headaches. If you choose to drink any kind of alcohol, it’s a good idea to alternate with glasses of water in order to replenish lost fluids. Also, keep in mind that fermented drinks like beer and wine contain tyramine.

Caffeine – can be a major migraine trigger especially if you drink more than one cup a day. Interestingly, once a migraine starts, caffeine can sometimes stop it in its tracks. Common sources:  coffee, tea, soft drinks, and energy drinks.

(for the full article from The Alternative Daily, click here)

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