Lifestyle and, nutrition, in particular, can have a significant impact on migraine attacks. Here are some scientific facts about the relation between nutrition and migraine.
Can some foods trigger a migraine attack?
Some people may have migraine attacks triggered by foods. To ‘common’ pro-migraine foods belong caffeine, monosodium glutamate, artificial sweeteners (f.e. aspartame), nitrites (used commonly as preservatives for meats), gluten, and biogenic amines (egg, histamine, tyramine, and phenyl ethylamine). But, not all ‘common’ pro-migraine foods will trigger a headache attack in everyone with migraine if they are not the trigger of your attack in the first place. So, don’t be surprized if eliminating the pro-migraine foods from your diet will not lead to desired results.
Can migraine be a symptom of food allergy?
At this moment there is lack of studies to state that food allergy alone could be a cause of migraine. Both food allergy and migraine are two common health issues that can coexist at the same time in a person.
Can ketogenic diet be a rescue from migraine?
The ketogenic diet offers encouraging results in adults, although there is no scientific prove of its effectiveness for children yet. The diet can help especially overweight people with migraine, who need a low calorie diet for weight loss. This is because the ketogenic diet has an influence on spreading depression and reducing excitability of neurons in the brain, which are involved in the development of migraine. It is worth mentioning that a decrease in body weight doesn’t always lead to a reduction of migraine severity.
Can functional/natural foods (nutraceuticals) reduce the migraine attacks?
Functional foods are generally save therapies. They include using a.o. antioxidants, dietary supplements, vitamins, minerals, and herbals. To be more specific, magnesium, riboflavin, coenzyme Q10, palmitoylethanolamide and polyunsaturated fatty acids are often recommended to reduce the severity of migraine. Nevertheless there are few controlled studies on the effective treatment of migraine with functional foods. They say that the researchers advise to use functional foods for a specific group of people, such as very young children, to avoid them suffering from the side effects of traditional drugs against migraine attacks.
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