Food Tips for Preventing a Migraine Headache

Preventing a Migraine Headache

Food Avoiding Tips to Help You Prevent Your Next Migraine

As a migraine sufferer you know pain, you know migraine pain, and I’m pretty certain that you would try just about anything to prevent that pain from reoccurring – right?

Taking steps to change what we eat, control our anxiety level and our environment are the first steps in helping to prevent the frequency of migraine headaches.

Migraine prevention is a full time job it takes a conscious, focused effort to protect one’s self from the onset of repeat migraines. Migraines are a formidable foe, they seem to attack no matter what you do but they should not dissuade you, some people may not be able to stop them entirely but you can certainly take measures to reduce their frequency and severity.

Remember good intentioned family and friends don’t always understand what you are going through when you experience migraine pain so you need to be in charge of you. You need to be mindful of migraine food triggers and do your best to avoid them.

Watch the Foods You Eat

These foods are enemies to migraine sufferers print this list and post in your kitchen as a constant reminder.

1 – Foods high in Tyramine (Amino acid) are migraine triggers. Tyramine is found naturally in many foods and is formed as food ages or ferments. It does not affect everyone adversely but because it creates a surge of blood as it causes dilation of the brain nerves it can trigger a migraine attack.

These are Tyramine foods to avoid:

• Aged Cheeses – Cheddar, Swiss, Bleu, Brie, Gouda, Gruyere, Parmesan, etc. (Safe cheeses include American, Cream Cheese, and Ricotta)

• Cured, Processed, or Smoked Meats – Hot Dogs, Sausages, Salami, Peperoni, Bacon, Ham, Lunch meats, Jerky, Pickled Herring, and Smoked Fish.

• Other Cured or Processed Foods – Sauerkraut, Pickles, Green Olives, Capers, and occasionally Sun-dried Tomatoes

• Broad Beans – Fava Beans, Soy Beans, Snow Peas, Tofu, Pickled Beans, etc. (This includes products made from the beans like Humus, Bean Pastes, Soy Sauce, and Miso)

• Yeast

• Beer, Ale, Wine (especially Red Wine)

• Bananas, Oranges, and any Over-ripe Fruit

• Eggs, Spinach, and Tomatoes

• Coffee and possibly all Caffeine products. (interestingly some find small doses of caffeine beneficial but when reducing your caffeine intake do so cautiously to avoid withdrawal or rebound headaches)

2 – Nitrates pack a potent punch. Used as a food preservative and an ingredient in medications nitrates are common migraine triggers.

These are Nitrate foods to avoid:

• Processed Meats – again Hot Dogs, Sausages, Salami, Peperoni, Bacon, Ham, and Lunch meats

• Beets, Spinach, Celery, Broccoli, and Cauliflower

3 – Other Foods to avoid –

• Nuts and Nut Products

• Additives such as MSG

• Table Salt and High Sodium Foods – Chips, Popcorn, Salted Peanuts

• Chocolate

I would suggest keeping a diary of the foods you eat when a migraine occurs so you can pinpoint your real food triggers. All items in this list are known migraine triggers but each person reacts differently.

Personally I found that crab brought on an instant migraine for me but have found no one else to experience the same and even my doctor was surprised. So find your triggers and best of luck in preventing your migraines!

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