In addition to adjustments, there are also some natural, safe, affordable and easy to implement options in preventing the occurrence of migraines.
Multiple studies have shown a magnesium deficiency in 50 percent of patients that have a migraine attack. An infusion of magnesium at the onset of the migraine provides almost instant relief for these patients. Furthermore, patients who supplement daily with magnesium were found to have fewer attacks and, when one did occur, the intensity was far less severe.
A magnesium deficiency can allow the neurotransmitter serotonin to flow unchecked throughout the body. Extremely high or low levels of serotonin can cause a number of biochemical problems.
Decreased serotonin levels lead to vascular spasms, which can block blood flow and lead to migraine headaches. Low levels of serotonin result in an excess production of pain-producing chemicals including certain prostaglandins and the neuropeptide substance P.
Caffeine and some types of medications like those used to treat asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, diuretics, heart disease, and blood pressure can deplete magnesium. Stimulants like alcohol and nicotine can also deplete magnesium levels by preventing absorption. Diet changes can help restore some magnesium levels, but the patients who are on magnesium-depleting types of medications also need a magnesium supplement.
Start with foods rich in magnesium such as nuts, legumes, whole grains, unpolished rice, and leafy green vegetables like spinach. Decrease processed foods and sugars.
Eating lean meats only and adding fresh fruits and vegetables to your diet can help. About 50 to 75 percent of migraine patients will find that changing their diet and supplementing daily with magnesium will significantly reduce the intensity and number of their migraine attacks. You might start taking approximately 500-750 mg of magnesium daily.
by Brenda Slovin, DC

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