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Headaches

Migraine Headaches

Probably the most common medical complaint in the Western world, just about everyone suffers from headaches at some point in their lives. Most believe their choices for curing themselves of this painful malady are limited to aspirin and non­aspirin pain relievers. But you have many alternatives in treating and preventing headaches that do not require traditional medicine.

Migraine headaches are particularly disruptive. They are characterized by a slow­growing throb in the head that often produces nausea and localized vision loss. Often the nausea and vision loss appear before the headache actually become acute. They can last for days.

Super Foods To Treat Headaches

What Causes Headaches?

Headaches have a variety of causes, including food allergies, environmental toxins, stress, eye strain, and sinus congestion. Premenstrual headaches are often related to hormonal imbalances. Each of these has its own entry in this guide, so be sure to check these cross­references for additional information.

Headache Treatments

Keep in mind that most non­aspirin pain relievers are immunosuppressant. That is, they weaken the immune system. Taking them once in a while may be okay, but prolonged and repeated use is definitely costly to your health. For a natural alternative, try white willow bark extract, the plant from which aspirin was originally discovered and made. Allergy expert Dr. James Braly believes that 90% of all migraines are caused by either food allergies or allergic reactions to food additives. But it’s possible that any headache can be traced back to a food or substance allergy. Allergenic substances include food preservatives and colorings, caffeine, and chocolate. Try removing foods and drinks containing these products from your diet, one by one, for three to four weeks at a time, and notice if your migraine attacks lessen or disappear completely during that time. This process can take time, but is likely to produce results. Start with the typical offenders:

  • Coffee, soda and caffeinated beverages
  • Wine, beer, and alcohol products
  • Cheese and dairy products
  • Wheat and refined wheat products with gluten
  • Other fermented products, including vinegar and any pickled products
  • Sugar and high fructose corn syrup
  • Food additives, dyes, and preservatives (particularly those in processed and dried meat), MSG, and sulfites
  • Peanut butter and peanuts
  • Soy products
  • Shell fish

Super Foods To Treat Headaches

 The other 10% of headaches are probably caused by a variety of things, but you can bet that environmental toxins are among the most likely culprit. Check your home and work environment for chemical out­gassing from carpets and wall coverings. Consider sleeping with a device that oxygenates the air in your room.

If you suffer from migraine headaches, products containing the artificial sweetener aspartame may be to blame. Aspartame triggers migraines in many sufferers.

Many headaches are caused by dehydration, and dehydration is as prevalent in winter as in summer. Drinking two large glasses of pure water will relieve the pain of these headaches almost immediately, without the unpleasant side effects caused by traditional pain relievers.

Other Considerations

Massage under the two ridges on either side of the back of the skull until you can feel the contracted muscles relax. The two nerves there can be pressured by tight muscles in the region, causing headaches, including migraines. Once the headache subsides with this therapy, use your thumbs to stroke gently in opposite directions across the brow with lavender essential oil. This will put you or the person you’re massaging in a relaxed state.

Lavender has been used since the time of Cleopatra for stress reduction, headache relief, lessening of scars, and faster healing of burns. Some herbalists believe that quinine bark, feverfew, butterbur and magnesium are also an effective headache remedies. Other natural herbs that help control blood pressure and relax the vascular system include pure cocoa, olive leaf extract, mint extract, chamomile, passion fruit extract, bay leaves, chamomile, coriander, skullcap, turmeric, valerian root, and wild yam.

Finally, acupuncture and different forms of bodywork can be effective cures for headaches. Acupuncture may be able to move or change the energies in the body that are accumulating to cause headaches, and bodywork such as massage may be able to release the stress that causes some headaches.

Super Foods To Treat Headaches

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