For the 38 million Americans suffering from the effects of debilitating, recurring migraines, it may come as a surprise that relief could be hiding in the pantry. Between 30-40 percent of migraine sufferers may actually be susceptible to food triggers, meaning keeping a food diary and making lifestyle changes could result in much-needed relief.
Stephanie Weaver, author of The Migraine Relief Plan, was suffering from daily headaches at the time of her diagnosis, and while medications helped she still was in pain.
A common culprit, she found, was eating processed foods that are often high in sodium, sugar and soy, which could trigger migraines. Weaver also discovered onions, citrus fruits, avocados, nuts, caffeine and vinegar were offenders when it came to pain.
In her book, Weaver tweaks some of her favorite recipes to swap out inflammatory ingredients to ensure pain-free eating. For instance, in her “Spicy Kale and Swiss Chard Sauté,” she uses green onions instead of regular because the younger variety doesn’t bring on a migraine. She also regularly swaps out vegetable oil in favor of coconut oil.
The problem with these oils is that they’re high in Omega 6 fatty acids, which can be much more inflammatory. And we don’t have a good balance in our diet between Omega 6 and 3. So coconut oil is a saturated fat, which a lot of people used to think was a bad thing, but now we know it can actually be very good for us.