Food Migraine Triggers

Identifying foods that triggers migraine headaches

It has been a well-known fact that migraines can be triggered by dietary influences and this fact has always been readily accepted by the public. Many migraine sufferers have one or more foods that they need to avoid or eliminate from their diet.

However it is a really complex job in having to specifically identify a chemical trigger in food migraine. It is important to note that triggers are facilitatory mechanisms that can cause a full-blown migraine attack, only if various unknown other preconditions are met. A very good example is a case whereby a long-awaited deadline may come and go without triggering a migraine attack in a lady whose menstrual cycle did not coincide with this particular deadline.

A similar case is of a migraine sufferer consuming large amounts of red wine or large quantities of foods containing nitrites with relative impunity unless the other factors that are involved in the migraine-triggering process are also at work. Since the response to a migraine trigger differs even in a specific person, it is not easy to research and formulate conclusions about this subject.

Furthermore, if a migraine sufferer strongly believes that a certain type of food is a migraine trigger, this is very likely to happen as a self-fulfilling prophecy. Very often, if this same migraine sufferer is given the same food without being aware, the migrainous response will not happen as predictably. Moreover, there may be a dose response for the triggering mechanism. Small amounts of the offending agents may be ingested without triggering a migraine attack. Another even more mystifying fact is that the consumption of the agent that triggers migraine may be associated with a migraine attack already in progress, as is suggested with chocolate.

Although a lot of the data presented on the topic of food and migraine is rather anecdotal and based on questionable scientific rigor, still the conclusion is that there are potent triggers in the dietary sphere. It is still believed that if the search for a migraine trigger is more open-minded and systematic, the chances of the migraine sufferer in succeeding to identify and to eliminate migraine-triggering factors are a lot higher.