Migraines are different from headaches, as they are more painful and last longer. Normal pain medications my not work in lowering the discomfort. Sometimes migraines can also lead to other effects like nausea, vision changes, sensitivity to light and sound, etc.
There are many triggers for migraines, and it could be different for different people. Some common triggers include:
- Lack of sleep or poor quality of sleep
- Lack of hydration
- Not eating for long periods of time
There are also some common food triggers for migraines. These foods should be avoided in case you are sensitive to them:
- Cured meats that contain nitrates like hot dogs, etc.
- MSG or monosodium glutamate, frequently used in Chinese cuisine
- Artificial sweetners like aspartame and sucralose
- Fermented foods like cheese that contain tyramine
- Chocolate, nuts, vinegar, soy foods that contain phenylethylamine
- Dairy products
- Coffee in large amounts
- Artificial food colours and certain preservatives
Foods that can help in alleviating symptoms of migraine include:
- Foods containing magnesium: some research shows that having a diet ich in magnesium may help in bringing about relief from migraine. These include dark green leafy vegetables, avocado, tuna, seeds etc.
- Omega 3 fatty acids: research shows that there is a possibility of decreased migraine attacks if consuming omega 3 fatty acids. Foods that are rich sources include: walnuts, flax seeds, oily fish like salmon, mackerel, etc
- Water: it is a well known fact that people with migraines need to keep themselves well hydrated at all times to decrease the frequency of attacks.