Lack of sleep and stress certainly can trigger a migraine for me. The biggest triggers I have found over the years involve the foods that I eat. Caffeine is a big one – sometimes too much, sometimes not enough. I try to stay away from coffee and caffeine so that it doesn’t effect me, but it often sneaks up on me. Before too long, lack of caffeine will trigger a migraine.
Certain foods also cause migraine issues for me as well. Gluten is a big one, too much sugar, and one that took me years to figure out – onions.
Every person that suffers from migraines knows not only how debilitating they can be, but also that there are different triggers for each person.
I have been getting migraines for over 20 years and have tried A LOT of different things to prevent them and deal with them when they appear. I tried daily meds, and meds and remedies for when they come up. The best thing I have done is find the root of the problem rather than just a band-aid for when they happen. Preventing them is way better than just dealing with them. It took a bit of time and patience and work though.
It took a long time and a lot of trial and error. And it started by tracking and journaling my sleep, my exercise, my stress, and my food intake. I certainly didn’t think these things would have such an effect on me, but once I tracked it and took a look at it, patterns started to appear. The only way we can ever figure these things out is by tracking them. And then making small changes to see what work for our body.
I started by eating Paleo – no grains, dairy, sugar, legumes, caffeine, or processed foods. I stripped every thing from my diet and let me body reset. (Which coincidentally caused a lot of migraines – too many changes at one.) But after a month of that, I started feeling great. I had no migraines at all! So, then I started to slowly add foods back in. Legumes (peanut butter) was first. I felt good after a week of that, so then I added in some dairy. Guess what? That didn’t make me feel so great. So took that out and felt better again. Then I added some other things and repeated that whole process for awhile. That’s how I discovered onions were a trigger – something I would have never thought!
If we don’t keep track of things, we can’t find patterns and we can’t make changes as needed. We need to be our own guinea pigs sometimes to find out what works best for us and our bodies. (And really this doesn’t apply solely to nutrition, does it?)
Anyone that suffers from migraines know they are zero fun at all. It may be worth the time and effort to take a look at nutrition and see if making some changes can help alleviate some migraines for you!