Migraines affect about 38 million women, men, and children every year in the United States alone.
But, even though migraines are the 3rd most prevalent health problem worldwide, experts are still examining the underlying cause of migraine headaches.
According to the World Health Organization, this health problem is the 19th most common culprit of disability in the world.
What Are Migraines?
The most common symptoms of migraine include a debilitating and severe headache. The symptoms are more serious than those of a terrible headache.
In addition, migraine headaches are a common neurological disorder, which is characterized by recurring headaches. They often occur on one side of the head. They typically last from 2-3 hours to a few days. Physical activity usually makes them worse.
Other migraine symptoms include dizziness, visual disturbances, nausea, numbness in the face or extremities, and sensitivity to touch, smell, light, and sound.
There are many types of migraines, including:
- Without Aura
- With Aura
- Status Migrainous
- Basilar Type
Migraine Headaches Have Been Linked to Nutrient Deficiencies
Researchers at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center have found a correlation between vitamin deficiencies and migraine headaches.
The group of researchers, led by Dr. Suzanne Hagler, followed about 7,400 migraine patients.
Furthermore, researchers examined the levels of coenzyme Q10, folate, vitamin D, and riboflavin in migraine patients. A large percentage of the young adults, children, and teens experienced mild vitamin D, riboflavin, and CoQ10 deficiencies.
They concluded that young boys were at a higher risk of developing vitamin D deficiency, whereas young girls were at a higher risk of developing CoQ10 deficiency.
Moreover, they also found a correlation in women between cardiovascular disease, mortality, and migraines. Those who experienced chronic migraines at regular intervals were at a higher likelihood of riboflavin and CoQ10 deficiency than those who experienced episodic migraines at infrequent intervals.
Some participants were prescribed preventative medication, whereas others received supplements for the researchers to find out if the supplements alone were enough to protect against migraine headaches.
Researchers concluded that up to 51% of patients had below average vitamin levels depending on the vitamin tested.
Magnesium Deficiency Has Also Been Associated with Migraines
Researchers also found a connection between many different bodily processes and magnesium. Unluckily, only about 2% of magnesium can be measured because most of this mineral is found in the bones and cells, not in the blood.
Magnesium deficiency could lead to many different illnesses, such as platelet aggression, depression, etc. It can also interfere with the use and production of neurotransmitters.
Experts claim that migraine patients could develop this mineral deficiency due to multiple reasons, such as low magnesium intake, renal wasting, poor absorption, or elevated excretion because of stress.
Since magnesium administration is safe and available, and since testing for this mineral deficiency isn’t easily accomplished, they suggest that all migraine patients should take an oral magnesium supplement.
It has been scientifically proven that the long term use of medication could result in kidney and liver damage. So, prevention and treatment of many illnesses should start with a nutrient-dense diet or nutritional supplementation.
According to the Association of Migraine Disorders, migraine patients should take a high-quality magnesium supplement for 3 months to notice improvements. They should also supplement with CoQ10 and riboflavin for maximum benefits.
In the video above, Suzy Cohen discusses the nutritional aspect of migraines.
According to the lead author of the study, Hagler, migraine patients are at a higher risk of developing vitamin and mineral deficiencies compared to the general population.
Many other studies have proven that those suffering from migraines were at a higher likelihood of developing CoQ10, vitamin D and riboflavin deficiencies.
Furthermore, a study that included migraine patients who took a vitamin D supplement showed a great decrease in headache frequency and C-reactive protein.
Of course, further research is needed to determine the effects of vitamin supplementation on migraine headaches in general.
The Exposure to Pure Green Light Has Been Found to Result in a Significant Decrease in Photosensitivity and Pain:
In case you are a migraine sufferer, then you probably know that the pain can be aggravated by light exposure. You can also become photosensitive whenever you experience a migraine attack.
But, Harvard Medical School’s study showed that even blind migraine patients that had melanopsin receptors experienced sensitivity to light.
A number of digital devices emit blue light. Blue light has been proven to aggravate migraine pain and activate the trigeminal nerve related to migraine pain.
Specifically, the journal Brain from Harvard Medical School published a study that showed that the exposure to pure green light could lead to a significant decrease in photosensitivity and pain in migraine patients.
Although there aren’t any inexpensive sunglasses or lightbulbs that can elevate your pure wavelength green light exposure, there are certain sunglasses that can block blue light related to elevating migraine pain.
How to Alleviate Your Migraine Headaches Naturally:
The best way to reverse any nutrient deficiency is to adopt a diet rich in nutrients. Or you can take a high-quality supplement to reverse any nutrient deficiency and alleviate your migraine headache.
You should not only incorporate these foods in your diet, but you should also opt for pastured and organic products in order to decrease your exposure to toxic chemicals.
– CoQ10-Rich Foods
◦ Sesame seeds
◦ Rainbow trout
◦ Organic pastured chicken
◦ Grass-fed beef
– Magnesium-Rich Foods
◦ Seeds and nuts
◦ Dark leafy green vegetables
◦ Wild Alaskan salmon
◦ Yogurt made from grass-fed and/or organic milk without any added sugars
– Riboflavin-Rich Foods
◦ Crimini mushrooms
◦ Beet greens
– How to Maintain Optimal Vitamin D Levels
You can optimize your vitamin D levels by getting adequate sun exposure.
- Cohen, Jay. ”15 Natural Remedies for Migraine Headaches: Using Natural Supplements, Nutrition & Alternative Therapies to Better Manage Migraine Pain”;
- Leroux, Elizabeth. ”Migraines: More than a Headache”;