Seeds And Nuts Provide Magnesium And Fiber
Magnesium deficiency is one of the most common nutritional causes of persistent or cluster headaches, says Sarah Thomsen Ferreira, RD, MPH, a registered dietitian with Cleveland Clinics Center for Functional Medicine in Ohio.
Prioritizing ample amounts of magnesium-rich foods daily is one of the best ways to keep these headaches at bay, Ferreira says.
Flaxseeds, sprouted pumpkin seeds, and chia seeds are all good , says Ferreira. Pumpkin seeds are also high in fiber, preventing the constipation that sometimes comes with migraine. Cashews are high in magnesium, too, she says.
A Juicy Slice Of Watermelon Can Head Off Dehydration Which Is Often A Factor In Headaches And Migraine Attacks
If youre living with migraine, you probably know that certain foods and drinks can trigger an attack. But even though its important to know what to avoid, focusing on the foods to add to your diet matters, too: It may help reduce the number or severity of migraine attacks or other types of headaches.
Food really is the first medicine, says Wynne Brown, MD, the medical director of integrative medicine at Wake Forest Baptist Health in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. When youre trying to manage migraine, what you eat and when you eat can make all the difference, she says.
Being open to change in your diet is a good start, says Dr. Brown. Often, we can get in a rut and eat the same things over and over. By adding different fresh fruits and vegetables to our diet, we can reap benefits in terms of water content as well as vitamins and minerals, she says.
A diet with a variety of good foods will make a big difference both in migraine management and overall health and may improve imbalances that contribute to headaches, says Brown.
If youre looking for ways to change your diet to better manage your migraine, here are some expert tips on the foods and drinks to help you on your journey.
Now You Know What Drinks Help Headaches
The best headache management strategies differ for everyone and typically include a mix of treatment options and lifestyle decisions. Water is the clear winner among drinks to help prevent and alleviate headaches. But give the other recommended beverages a try you may discover one or two that bring fast headache relief or lower your number of headaches overall. Next up, learn how green light therapy helps with headaches.
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Using Caffeine As A Treatment
When youre having a caffeine withdrawal headache, the easiest thing to do might just be to give your body the caffeine that it wants. Here are a few ways you can try it:
Have a cup of coffee or another caffeinated beverage
If youre positive this is a withdrawal headache, try having a dose of caffeine as soon as you realize whats going on. Your usual caffeinated beverage is fine to drink. Dont overdo it to make up for what you missed.
However, if you think your headache is from a caffeine overdose, dont consume more caffeine it could lead to serious health problems! Contact your healthcare provider instead.
Take an OTC medication that includes caffeine
Some pain relievers are made with caffeine, including Excedrin. Caffeine can help your body absorb the medicine faster and can make them up to 40 percent more effective, which is promising.
Try drinking a caffeinated beverage and taking Advil or Tylenol. A 2017 study found that people with migraine experienced faster relief when they took acetaminophen or ibuprofen with caffeine.
Caffeines Influence On Health
Coffee consumption is associated with a number of health benefits in men and women. In an umbrella review, Grosso et al. demonstrated that caffeine was associated with a decreased risk of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and mortality, and Parkinsons disease but an increased risk of pregnancy loss . On the other hand, coffee was linked with a rise in serum lipids and blood pressure. Overall, they concluded that coffee can be part of a healthful diet . A number of epidemiological studies confirmed a link between higher coffee consumption and better performance on cognitive tests in older adults, and an inverse relationship exists between coffee consumption and the risk of developing Parkinsons or Alzheimers disease and a lower risk of stroke. Interestingly, regular coffee consumption does not affect patients with epilepsy . It is reported that caffeine can enhance awareness, attention, and reaction time by stimulating wakefulness, increasing concentration, and decreasing the sensation of fatigue, but also may disturb sleep quality . Moreover, caffeine in low doses can improve mood states and decreases the risk of depression and suicide .
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Skip The Caffeine Headaches
Caffeine withdrawal is exactly what it sounds like withdrawal from a substance.
Caffeine is very addictive, so your body is literally going through withdrawal symptoms, as if you were coming off of any other substance, Czerwony says. Because it affects the central nervous system, youre going to get shaky, irritable and headachey.
To avoid these undesirable side effects, including the agonizing headaches associated with withdrawal, go slowly and dont expect to give up your caffeine habit overnight.
In fact, quitting caffeine cold turkey can actually further your reliance on it.
Caffeine is a vasodilator, which can help relieve headache pain, making it an ingredient in many over-the-counter pain relievers. Taking a caffeine-laden painkiller for your caffeine withdrawal headache, then, will help your pain but will only continue your caffeine dependence.
Youre not really helping yourself youre just feeding your addiction in a different way, Czerwony says. Instead, you want to start weaning yourself down.
If youre taking a prescription medication that includes caffeine, speak with your doctor about the possibility of alternatives but know that they may not be an option. If not, youll have to reduce your caffeine intake in other ways.
Where Is A Caffeine Withdrawal Headache Located
A caffeine withdrawal headache can present as a feeling of pain and pressure that pushes outwards from the brain. Starting behind the eyes, it can move up to the front of the head. Caffeine withdrawal headaches can also present with migraine-like symptoms and as a widespread feeling of throbbing pain.
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How Do I Overcome Caffeine Withdrawal
How Caffeine Consumption Affects Headaches
We metabolize caffeine at different rates so theres no hard and fast rule on how much caffeine one can consume before experiencing withdrawal symptoms. Your bodyweight also affects how much caffeine is safe the heavier a person is, the more caffeine they can consume without negative effects.
For most healthy adults, an intake of 300-400 mg of caffeine a day is found to be safe in general, which is equivalent to four cups of brewed coffee. However, for some people who are sensitive or allergic to caffeine, even just a small amount can trigger reactions such as headaches.
Be mindful about the various sources of caffeine, such as black tea, green tea, chocolate, some soda, and certain OTC medications, which can add to your daily caffeine and calorie intake.
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Berries May Relieve Sinus Pressure
Smaller fruits tend to have more exposure to pesticides, and so Brown recommends getting organic berries whenever possible.
So Is Caffeine Good Or Bad For Headaches
It can be either, neither, or both. Its really trial and error, Dr. Martin says. Some people do better with caffeine, and some people do much better without it.
Either way, he says, limiting your caffeine to around 200 mg a day, which is around 2 cups a day max, is smart if youre headache prone. Its also better, he says, to not slug it all at once, because having a big ol mug in the morning can sometimes lead to caffeine withdrawal headaches at night. Its best to spread it out throughout the day, but not after 5 or too close to bedtime, he adds.
Of course, whittling your caffeine intake down to 200 mg a day or weaning off of it altogether if you think its triggering headaches, can mean caffeine withdrawal in the short termand more headaches.
Thats why youll want to go slow, says Dr. Martin. If you drink four coffees a day, go down to three for a week, and then to two for a week, and see if your headaches lessen. If you want to try life without caffeine altogether, taper off to zero. But give it a fair shot, he says. It may take three to four weeks to see the full effects of no caffeine. Around 70% Dr. Martins patients see a big difference in headaches when they ditch the stimulant completely, he says.
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Caffeine Can Contribute To Medication
The International Headache Society defines medication-overuse headache as a headache occurring on 15 or more days per month in a person with a preexisting primary headache disorder, such as migraine, and developing as a consequence of regular overuse of acute or symptomatic headache medication for more than three months.
There are several medications linked with MOH, including combination pain relievers that contain aspirin and caffeine.
However, its not only medications with caffeine that are associated with this type of headache: Caffeine intake at levels of 100 to 200 mg per day is probably enough to contribute to medication overuse headache, says Stewart Tepper, MD, professor of neurology at the Dartmouth Geisel School of Medicine in Hanover, New Hampshire.
Drink Caffeinated Tea Or Coffee
Sipping on beverages that contain caffeine, such as tea or coffee, may provide relief when you are experiencing a headache.
Caffeine improves mood, increases alertness and constricts blood vessels, all of which can have a positive effect on headache symptoms .
It also helps increase the effectiveness of common medications used to treat headaches, such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen .
However, caffeine withdrawal has also been shown to cause headaches if a person regularly consumes large amounts of caffeine and suddenly stops.
Therefore, people who get frequent headaches should be mindful of their caffeine intake .
Certain herbs including feverfew and butterbur may reduce headache symptoms.
Feverfew is a flowering plant that has anti-inflammatory properties.
Some studies suggest that taking feverfew supplements in doses of 50150 mg per day may reduce headache frequency. However, other studies have failed to find a benefit .
Butterbur root comes from a perennial shrub native to Germany and, like feverfew, has anti-inflammatory effects.
Several studies have shown that taking butterbur extract in doses of 50150 mg reduces headache symptoms in both adults and children .
Feverfew is generally considered safe if taken in recommended amounts. However, butterbur should be treated with caution, as unpurified forms can cause liver damage, and the effects of its long-term use are unknown (
Foods containing them have been shown to trigger headaches in some people.
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How To Treat A Caffeine Withdrawal Headache:
The first thing is to try and figure out if your pounding cranium is, in fact, due to caffeine withdrawal. Especially if you had only coffee and havent eaten in awhile, your problem may not be too little caffeine, but that the caffeine you had is preventing your brain from getting energy. A lot of the time you can feel better if you just eat something, says Dr. Martin.
As for the scenario where youve stayed up all night swigging coffee and maybe not enough water, its hard to tell if dehydration and lack of sleepalso big headache triggers are causing your ouch. Replacing those fluids and grabbing a quick snooze might be what you need more than more caffeine.
But it is possible that youve had less caffeine than you normally do when the headache descends. Maybe youre drinking weak hotel coffee orhorrors!accidentally sucked down some decaf. The brain gets used to having a certain amount of caffeine, says Dr. Martin. Having your usual amount may take care of the headache. If it doesn’t help treat the acute attack then don’t keep doing it, says Dr. Martin.
Slowly Back Away From The Caffeine
These tips can help you incrementally stop your caffeine intake.
- Set a time limit: Set a time by which you stop your caffeine intake each day. Medical professionals recommend 2 p.m., so as not to interfere with your sleep.
- Substitute a lower caffeine drink: Start with small changes. If you usually drink light roast coffee, switch to a dark roast, to start. If you usually drink black tea, try green or white tea instead.
- Lean on decaf: If you typically drink espresso or dark-roast coffees, which have more caffeine than other caffeinated drinks, start by cutting it with half or even a quarter decaf coffee. Then, every few days, cut it down further, slowly reducing your intake over time.
And dont rush it. Slowing ramping down is the best way to go about it, Czerwony advises.
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Spinach Cucumber Ginger And Raspberry Smoothie
Combine in a blender:
- 1 cup packed baby spinach
- ½ cup chopped and peeled Persian cucumber
- 1 tsp to 1 tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
- ½ banana
- 1 cup frozen raspberries
- 1 cup almond milk
Blend on high until fully combined. Add more or less almond milk to control the thickness of your smoothie. Feel free to substitute any frozen berries or frozen chopped fruit you have in your freezer. And dont forget to note how you respond to the smoothie in your migraine diary!
How Do You Get Rid Of One
Unfortunately, theres no magical cure to get rid of a caffeine headache immediately. Treat these like you would another headache, says Patel. Give it time and drink plenty of water to rehydrate. Better yet, stay well-hydrated before and during caffeine consumption to try to prevent a headache in the first place. And though your impulse may be to take over-the-counter pain medicine to ease your discomfort, Egler recommends holding off. “Two wrongs definitely dont make a right,” he says. Taking pain medicine excessively to quell everyday headaches can lead to its own set of problems, much like caffeine. If you must take something for pain relief regularly, he recommends checking in with your doctor to find the best dose of anti-inflammatory substances like turmeric or magnesium instead.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure Egler says: Sometimes the best way to get rid of a caffeine headache is to limit your dosage or avoid it in the first place. If your headaches result from ingesting too much caffeine, he recommends limiting yourself to one or two cups of your caffeinated beverage of choice, preferably spread out over a few hours. And if youre sensitive to caffeine, take it easy on the coffee or give it up altogether to prevent pain, recommends Patel.
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Why Do I Wake Up With A Headache
And is there anything I can do to find relief?
Q: I often get headaches in the morning. They improve when I get up and have coffee, but I cant seem to figure out how to prevent them. I have tried various pillows and sleeping positions. What should I do?
Morning headaches have a number of causes. One of the common culprits is caffeine or a lack thereof. Sometimes, the reason for the morning headache is that youve slept in and youre late on your morning caffeine, said Dr. Kathleen Mullin, a neurologist and headache specialist at the New England Institute for Clinical Research. Its easy to tell if caffeine withdrawal is the cause of a headache, because putting caffeine back into your system quickly cures it.
People usually experience caffeine headaches only if they regularly drink more than 200 milligrams of caffeine per day, Dr. Mullin said, which is the equivalent of about two to three eight-ounce cups of brewed coffee. To reduce such headaches, slowly taper your caffeine consumption, ideally to less than 200 milligrams per day, she said.
Another common cause of morning headaches is sleep apnea, which is often associated with snoring and frequent waking in the night, Dr. Mullin said. Once sleep apnea is diagnosed and treated, often with a continuous positive airway pressure device or a special mouth guard, headaches usually go away, she said.
Melinda Wenner Moyer is a science journalist.
Coffee Can Stop A Headache Or Cause One
Coffee contains caffeine, which is added to some types of headache medications. But you can get too much of a good thing coffee may lead to caffeine rebound or a caffeine withdrawal headache, according to the National Headache Foundation.
A cup of coffee is a quick fix for this type of headache, says Brown. Its important to remember that caffeine can stay in your system for up to five hours, she says. For some people, this may lead to an afternoon headache once their morning cup of coffee wears off, she adds.
If your caffeine consumption is causing withdrawal headaches, you might try cutting down by drinking half caff or decaffeinated coffee, suggests Brown. Even decaf coffee has some caffeine in it, she adds.
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