Food Allergies the cause of Migraine?

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mother2
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 21
   Posted 12/17/2007 12:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi There,
Has anyone been tested, by blood, for food allergies that have been determined the cause of migraines? Or even daily persistent headaches? I've started a radical elimination diet, and my migraines have gone down probably 75%, but still have daily "background" headaches and sinus congestion. Am still considering these blood tests. Anyone had any luck?
Thanks mother2

tysmyboo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 921
   Posted 12/17/2007 6:30 PM (GMT -6)   
No, the best way to do this is keep a diary and find out when your headaches are cooresponding with something you are eating or doing. It is not easy but well worth it.

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sarahswan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 57
   Posted 12/19/2007 9:39 AM (GMT -6)   

mother2 - On another migraine forum I am on the topic of sinus congestion came up, and several people swore by a "neti pot" as a natural way to cure sinus congestion.  Apparently you  can find it at your local health food store, or buy one online.

I actually do know someone who had horrible headaches (though not migraines) that were actually a result of an intense wheat allergy.  Wheat and milk are the two most common allergies in the US.  Perhaps you could try restricting those from your diet as well, and see if that also helps the daily headaches.  How long have you been on the restrictive diet? Sometimes it can take a while for all of the toxins to clear from your system. Are you currently under a doctors care? What has your doctor said about the continuation of the daily headaches?

I know how frustrating a restrictive diet can be.  I have been on a very restrictive diet for about 2 years, and am finally getting good at putting together meals my entire family will eat! :-) If you would like to chat, or swap recipes let me know.

~Sarah


http://www.myspace.com/nomoremigraine


Redheadspeaks
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 12/19/2007 11:28 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi - I've had the blood tests for food allergies and after a lot of experimenting with eliminating things I've found that cow's milk congests me and leads to sinus infections. And then when I have a sinus infection, I am more prone to migraine (getting both at once is a doozy!). I've never heard from a medical source that the food allergy is a direct cause of migraine, though I have a client in my business who gets migraines when she eats/drinks dairy, and not at all otherwise. I wish it was that simple for me! But I think the more you know, the better off you are. As Sara, said, keeping a diary is really important and helps to narrow down what helps and what hurts - otherwise it's all so confusing!

- Megan

korbnep
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 327
   Posted 12/19/2007 11:56 AM (GMT -6)   
As a number of people have said, blood tests can only determine allergies. A mild-severe allergy may irritate the body enough to bring on a nasty headache or even a migraine. However, when we discuss food triggers that may cause migraine, these are not allergies. Allergies are categorized by an immune response whereas migraine triggers are categorized by, well, you know. The ingredients that most often are headache triggers are nitrates, tyramine, MSG, other preservatives and by-products of many fruits, vegetables and aged or smoked products, etc.

Here's a link to a story that explains Dr. David Buchholz's elimination diet: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5364970 . It goes quite a bit over the top, but certaintly covers just about all your bases in foods to eliminate. For a better list and more of his (very controversial) theories about the triggers of migraine see "Heal your Headache" by Dr. David Buchholz. I don't care for the book much but it's the most comprehensive work on dietary triggers that I've encountered.

Good luck,
Ben

EDIT: Oh, here's his list: http://www.npr.org/programs/morning/features/2006/apr/migraine/triggers2.pdf
DX: NDPH, Recovered CRPS
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mother2
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 21
   Posted 1/4/2008 9:02 AM (GMT -6)   
Megan, what blood tests have you gotten? And did they identify the dairy as an allergy? So it's really not nessesary? I have also noticed less congestion with the decrease of dairy.
 
Ben, if you don't mind me asking, why do you call the book "Heal Your Headache" controversial. I've read it twice and really thought it made a lot of sense. I'm just curious, cause I don't want to be nieve to all the information.
 
Thanks, Mother2

vivo
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 1/12/2008 9:26 AM (GMT -6)   
I find that these foods bring on migraines

Chocolate
MSG
AGed cheese-usually cheddar cheese
very vinegary sauces
preservatives put on certain fruits and veggies, that is why I always peel the skin off of apples
Red Wine

research_babe
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 2/7/2008 9:12 PM (GMT -6)   
While you are thinking of food allergies, don't forget to consider chemical allergies. I use to have headaches non-stop with periodic classical migraines and tremendous fatigue (never formally dx as CFS but never-the-less). This onset happened shortly after the company I worked for installed new carpeting. (It was in one of those high rise buildings with no way to open the windows to out gas anything.) Anyway, I found that a lot of the things I was using for cleaning and personal care products were adding to my difficulty. I quit using anything that had fragerance first, then I started looking at my cleaning supplies. I got rid of ammonia, bleach, candles, scented lotion, cologne, scented deoderant and a big one for me was my laundry products. At the time, it felt like I got rid of everything! Of course, I replaced it with more natural products.... At first, baking soda and vinegar for cleaning, then I went to the health food store. Years later, I eventually discovered Melaleuca products which helped ease the expense of the pricey health food store stuff. There are a lot of options out there. Seventh Generation is one I use to like and a good brand to consider if you're going the health food store route (and I'm sure someone could guide you to many other good brands for different needs.) Anyway, I also started using an air purifier with a carbon filter in my bedroofm. I tried to make my room my "haven" where there wouldn't be any offending smells. Molds can also be a big contributing factor. So... there are some things to consider and some easy changes that might not just help your son but help the whole family feel better and breathe easier.

Redheadspeaks
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 2/7/2008 9:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Mother2 - sorry I was off the forum for awhile and didn't see your question. I had a huge allergen profile done by a place called Great Smokies Lab - it identified a list of things I'm sensitive to - dairy was the biggest one. but I haven't seen a direct correlation with that list and migraines - maybe because I haven't done a one by one elimination. I just know my sinuses clear up off dairy, and that's one major migraine trigger eliminated for me.
- Megan
Free My Brain from Migraine Pain
www.meganoltmanfreemybrain.typepad.com


sarahswan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 57
   Posted 2/8/2008 11:36 PM (GMT -6)   

Many people have mentioned dairy as an allergy, though not a direct trigger for migraines. The top two food allergies for ppl in the US are dairy and wheat.  Allergic reactions can entail migraines. It is true allergies and migraine triggers are two separate things, but also true that both can cause migraines. Most doctors I have talked to suggest a restrictive diet, in which suspected triggers (or allergens) are removed from the diet and as the migraines substantially decrease (you have to be patient for this. the time it takes for your body to rid itself of all the toxins, and then take in the benefits of the new nutrition can be several months to a year...it is different for every person) one food at a time can be added back in to see if it is a migraine trigger.

Just a side note, I've found it interesting that the longer I"m on a restrictive diet, and the more my migraines clear up I find myself susceptible to things I wasn't before.  For instance, chemical smells didn't seem to be migraine triggers before, but now I use all natural cleaning supplies because the smell of chemical cleaning supplies gives me a migraine. My neurologist said this is normal, and may continue to happen.

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