Reversing and Preventing Migraine Headaches
Studies have shown that plant-based diets can provide relief for migraine headache sufferers, in particular a low-fat plant-based diet. In fact foods trump supplements in providing relief. At the same time, foods can greatly contribute to migraine headaches. Animal products such as meat and cheese are known migraine trigger foods. If you suffer from reoccurring headaches or migraines, this article by Dr. Joel Fuhrman will be very helpful for you. He discusses the different types of headaches, possible trigger foods, and how nutritional excellence can help you make a permanent recovery from pain. Be aware that there are some plant-based foods that may also trigger migraines.
Some of the most addicting food substances are, not surprisingly, migraine headache triggers. There is an addiction and withdrawal response. Some of these triggers include (sorry to be the bearer of bad news) Alchohol, Caffeine, and Chocolate.
Alcohol is undeniably a trigger for migraine headaches. Some people cannot drink any alchohol without getting a migraine. In these case these headaches might actually be a blessing in disguise. Avoiding alcohol consumption can mean avoiding migraine headaches. There are many other health problems related to alcohol.
Caffeine is tricky because it is sometimes used in low doses for the relief of migraines. However, caffeine in higher doses, such as as little as two cups a day can cause an addictive response bringing about withdrawals symptoms. Some advise to drink the same amount of coffee every day in order to avoid caffeine withdrawal induced migraine headaches. I see the wisdom to that advice with a modification added: The best amount of coffee to consume daily in order to avoid caffeine withdrawal headaches is NONE. Don't drink it and don't go through withdrawals.
Cheese is generally the first food that I ask patients to give up when migraine headaches are their chief complaint. Cheese is very addicting and this suggestion often is met with decided resistance. Those that do give up the cheese also often give up the migraines. It is a very good trade. Cheese is not the only dairy products known to trigger migraines. The 'cultured' dairy products are also sometimes triggers. These include yogurt, buttermilk and sour cream. Predigestion and the fermentation process can have their problems.
Nitrates and Nitrites used to preserve processed meats are also known triggers. They can sometimes expand blood vessels in the brain. It amazes me how anybody can think that eating processed meats is good. But, then, these products are also addicting and so again we might be seeing the withdrawal cycle at work in triggering migraines.
Tyramine, which occurs "naturally" in some foods such as aged cheese, smoked fish, cured meats and some beers has also been identified as a migraine headache trigger. There are also some other plant-based tyramine rich foods such as sauerkraut and soy sauce. Foods that are high in protein (think meat) may contain the most tyramine. This is particularly true when these foods are not fresh.
Stay away from the trigger foods and eat From Sun to Plant to Plate for best relief from migraine headaches.
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