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JAM | Jun 12, 2023

5 foods to eat if you suffer from migraine headaches

Vanassa McKenzie

Vanassa McKenzie / Our Today

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Reading Time: 3 minutes

Do you suffer from severe headaches? Do you experience intense pain in one section of your head? If your answer is yes, then you may suffer from migraine headaches.

Migraine is a type of recurring headache that is commonly associated with throbbing or pounding pain in the head, neck and face.

Anyone can suffer from migraine headaches, however, it is most common among young adults between the ages of 18 and 44. The condition is also more prevalent among women than men due to fluctuating hormones.

Some of the most common triggers for migraine are stress, lack of sleep, menstruation, hunger and certain foods. The food that we consume can serve as a potential trigger or remedy for the condition.

With the right information at your fingertips, you can say goodbye to painful migraine headaches.

Vegetables

Elena Rodriguez cuts vegetables in the soup kitchen where she works in Pamplona Alta, a low-income neighbourhood on the outskirts of the Peruvian capital where soaring food prices are placing animal proteins out of reach for the most vulnerable residents, in Lima, Peru April 11, 2022. (Photo: REUTERS/Daniel Becerril)

Green leafy vegetables such as lettuce, cabbage, pok choy, callaloo, and spinach are rich in magnesium, vitamins and fibre that offer great relief from migraine headaches.

Fruits

One of the main triggers for migraine headaches is dehydration. Therefore consuming fruits that have a high water content such as watermelon, pineapples, strawberries, cantaloupe and peaches can help to keep the body hydrated.


There are however some fruits that are considered potential triggers that can cause a histamine release to trigger a migraine such as bananas, grapes, oranges, grapefruit, lemon, raspberries, papayas and plums.

Food low in sodium

FILE PHOTO: Manager Michael Upton adds salt to a customer’s fish and chips at Mr Fish restaurant in north London May 22, 2012. REUTERS/Eddie Keogh

Studies have shown that monosodium glutamate (msg) is a trigger for migraine headaches therefore reducing your intake of foods that are high in sodium can help prevent migraines. This means saying no to canned foods, soups and processed foods that generally contain msg.


Instead eat fresh fruits and vegetables, frozen produce without additives and whole grains and unprocessed meat.

Nuts

Some nuts are rich in magnesium content such as cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and chia seeds which help to relieve migraine headaches.

Herbal teas

Herbal teas such as peppermint, ginger, turmeric and chamomile are widely known for their soothing and medicinal properties.


One of the easiest ways to treat migraine headaches at home is to make a cup of ginger or peppermint tea to achieve quick relief.

Foods to avoid

  • Chocolate
  • Cheese
  • Alcohol
  • Coffee
  • Foods that contain MSG

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