Do You Suffer From Migraines? These 6 Foods Might Be Triggering Them
Commonly blamed on internal factors such as stress, anxiety, or illness, migraines can bring on excruciating levels of throbbing pain and trying to get rid of this monster can be headache in itself. And while yes, dimming the lights, grabbing an ice pack, and taking headache relief medication like Excedrin Migraine can help keep your pain at bay, there is another, more long-lasting remedy: reducing or omitting migraine trigger foods from your diet.
"The migraine brain is undergoing a high level of cellular stress where inflammation is known to be heightened. Meaning, foods that cause worsening of this stress can very easily trigger a migraine," Cynthia Armand, MD, a board-certified neurologist and headache specialist in New York, told POPSUGAR. Food essentially does not cause a migraine; rather, it functions as a trigger, she explained. Furthermore, it's not so much particular foods that bring on a migraine, but the ingredients and preservatives in them. For example, hot dogs are notorious migraine triggers, but it's because of the abundance of salt and nitrates. These same properties are found in several other foods like processed and cured meats like bacon or sausage.
Dr. Armand stressed that while it's important to know about food ingredients and how they can affect the body, it's also important to understand that we all have different bodies, which react differently to different foods. "One person's migraine trigger may not be yours," she expressed. To help, Dr. Armand recommends keeping a migraine diary in order to learn about your body and potential triggers.
Keep reading to learn more about what particular foods and ingredients experts suggest you should avoid if you are prone to migraines.