Does it sometimes feel as if you have tried everything to alleviate your migraine pain, and yet nothing seems to help? One thing that migraine sufferers may not be aware of, is the relationship between their headaches and nutrition.

Do you Frequently Partake of These Foods?

According to the American Nutrition Association, the list of migraine-inducing foods or food additives is long, and includes:

  • Aged or Strong Cheese
  • Cured Meats That Contain Nitrates (Think hot dogs, salami, bacon, ham)
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Fatty or fried foods
  • Chocolate
  • Some Varieties of Nuts
  • Monosodium Glutamate (MSG commonly food in ethnic foods)
  • Food Dyes, Additives
  • Pickled Herring
  • Chicken Livers
  • Ice Cream
  • Yogurt
  • Sour Cream
  • Meat and Vegetable Extracts
  • Pork
  • Seafood
  • Canned figs
  • Tomatoes
  • Caffeine-containing Drinks (Coffee, Tea, all “cola” soft drinks)
  • Caffeine Withdrawal
  • Alcoholic Drinks (red wine, beer)
  • Aspartame, Nitrites, Sulfites

While this list is not all inclusive, these foods and additives have been found to be major players in the causes of headaches. Many people who are sensitive to these foods will not test positive for food allergies, as it is more often likely the chemicals contained in these foods that act as triggers for the migraine.

Try This Before Reaching for the Pills

While some medications may be effective in treating the pain caused by migraines for short periods of time, they can also do more damage long term. If you are striving for a medication-free lifestyle and still find yourself suffering from debilitating migraines, here are a few suggestions to try:

  • The Food Journal. While often used by those on a diet, this type of journaling is also effective in the treatment of patients with migraines. Keeping track of what you are eating and when you are experiencing the headaches will allow you to zero in on the common nutritional causes and help you know what to avoid in the future.
  • Chiropractic Manipulation. Oftentimes adjusting the spinal alignment can help with migraine pain. Chiropractic care can improve the function of the sine and alleviate stress on the system.
  • Low-Impact Exercises. Taking time to go for a walk, stretch, or even pull out your yoga mat will help the muscles relax so that the migraine can abate sooner.
  • Increase Your Magnesium Intake.  Insufficient amounts of magnesium can be a headache trigger by affecting the dilation of blood vessels. Taking a supplement may be a way to decrease the frequency in which migraines occur.
  • Stay Hydrated. Dehydration is also a common cause of frequent migraines. Ensuring proper hydration will be key to eliminating pain associated with migraines, and should come from drinking water since caffeinated beverages are known to cause dehydration.

Though nutrition is not commonly thought of when  undergoing treatment for migraines, it can make significant impact. As a nutritional therapist, Dr. Knight is trained to provide nutritional advice that will help you in reducing the frequency that you experience migraines. To see how Dr. Knight’s chiropractic services combined with proper nutrition can help the migraine sufferer in your life, schedule your free screening today!