Migraines can be debilitating and patients are often too eager to get rid of the terrible pain that characterizes this condition.
Many migraine sufferers do not realize the effects that certain foods and chemicals can have on their systems, which contributes to the development of migraines or their resolution.
The good news is that changes in diet, herbs and supplements can work to provide natural relief to some migraine patients.
1. Avoid artificial food additives and sweeteners
It is known that artificial sweeteners, preservatives and flavor enhancers, such as monosodium glutamate (MSG), create severe reactions in some people, which triggers migraine headaches.
Despite the numerous side effects and symptoms of aspartame toxicity, the FDA has allowed the product to return to the market where it continues to cause numerous problems for consumers.
Sweeteners such as aspartame, saccharin and Splenda can be replaced with stevia, a naturally sweet herb with no known side effects and no calories.
2. Avoid foods that trigger migraines
Chocolate, alcohol, caffeinated beverages, soft drinks, refined sugars, genetically modified foods, gluten-containing cereals, cured cheeses and peanuts are some of the culprits of the most common foods that can cause migraines.
Reintroduce foods with potential problems one at a time over a period of weeks to discover which one is causing the problem. Removing these foods from your diet may seem like a sacrifice; However, if your headaches are eliminated or greatly reduced, then it may be worth it.
3. Add tryptophan to your diet
Tryptophan, one of the 10 essential amino acids, stimulates the production of the brain transmitter dopamine, which in turn contributes to the release of serotonin. The relief of migraine often results from the flow of serotonin, which elevates moods, relieves anxiety and tension, and relaxes the small muscles around the capillaries in the scalp.
Add tryptophan to your diet, either as a supplement or eating foods such as turkey, red meat, legumes, nuts and seeds.
4. Lavender – the natural analgesic
Lavender is used by herbalists to calm jangling nerves and has an analgesic effect in migraine patients. Lavender reduces the inflammation that occurs in the blood vessels during a migraine and relieves spasms in the muscles of the neck, around the eyes and on the scalp.
Place dried lavender flowers in envelopes or packages of hot herbs to use when headaches start. Alternatively, prepare a tea by placing a teaspoon of dried flowers in a cup of boiling water for 15 minutes. Drink slowly during the day and sweeten if you wish.
5. Ginger, mint and cayenne: natural herbs that relieve pain
Use common house herbs such as ginger, mint and cayenne pepper to treat a migraine. Ginger or mint may also be useful in reducing the nausea that accompanies many migraines.
To make an herbal tea, mix the three herbs. Place a pinch of cayenne pepper, an inch of fresh ginger and a teaspoon of dried mint in two cups of boiling water and let stand for 15 minutes. Remove the herbs and sweeten with honey to taste.
The natural painkillers in each of these herbs can help relieve your migraine headache.
6. Butterbur – a natural beta-blocker
It was discovered that Butterbur, an herb native to Europe and northern Asia, reduces the intensity of migraine headaches by decreasing inflammation and stabilizing blood flow to the brain. It acts as a beta blocker, helping to control blood pressure and preventing spasms in the capillaries.
Use only the butterbur that has the PA-Free label, making sure that any harmful toxins have been completely removed from the supplement, which makes the herb safe for use. Butterbur is also known to relieve many allergies, especially those that can contribute to causing headaches.
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