The vast majority of headaches have their roots in food sensitivities or digestive or dietary imbalances. Find out how fixing your gut can relieve your headaches.
According to the World Health Organization two thirds of all men and more than 80 percent of women in developed countries around the globe suffer from migraine headaches.
If you suffer from headaches, you may have tried a number of different approaches to get relief from your headaches including over the counter or prescription drugs. You may have even experimented with alternatives such as chiropractic, massage and acupuncture, but find that your headaches return.
One highly effective approach for eliminating headaches, which you may not have considered, is to test for food intolerances and improve your digestion. There’s an important link that many people do not consider between headaches and digestion.
Many headaches develop a pattern that goes something like the following: The headache may start as tight muscles at the base of the skull and neck. The pain may then spread up the back of the head or around one side of the head. Sometimes the pain may wrap around the head behind or above the eyes like a hatband. Your pain level may vary and can be anything from a dull ache, to what many describe as a full-blown migraine headache. This type of headache is most often associated with fluctuations in blood sugar or mineral imbalances that occur when your digestion is compromised. Patients have even told us they have gas and headaches together. Once patients understand the connection between headaches and digestion they often report that they have a digestion migraine. The good news is that if you scientifically modify your diet versus guessing at which foods cause your headache, and improve your digestion, and reduce food sensitivities, you’ll be able to eliminate most of these headaches.
Some people experience headaches where there’s pain at the top of the skull. Often these headaches are the result of bowel toxicity and liver stress. You may have even experienced one of these “hangover” headaches after a night of excessive drinking or eating too many rich foods. Improving digestion, elimination, and nourishing the liver can help you prevent these types of headaches.
Some women may experience headaches around menses or mid cycle each month. What’s the connection to food you may ask? Hormonal production requires adequate digestion and utilization of both fats and proteins. During menses the body will also require increased amounts of selected nutrients. If your ability to digest and utilize food is compromised your body will not be able to deliver these nutrients, and headaches may result.
Certain foods may trigger your headache. Migraine triggers include aged cheeses, red wine, chocolate and cured or smoked meats. You may find that excessive amounts of coffee or sugar give you a headache. A recent study showed that a large percentage of subjects got headaches when they consumed wheat and gluten products. It makes sense since gluten and digestion problems occur together.
Determining which foods cause your headaches can be a frustrating process, because you may be intolerant to several different foods. Thus eating a small amount of a food that you are intolerant to may not produce any symptoms, but small amounts of several foods that you are intolerant to may produce symptoms. Hence finding which foods you are intolerant to may be like hunting for a needle in a haystack. Professional testing and treatment from the Digestion Relief Center can help live life without the pain of chronic headaches.
Addresing food and digestion related causes of your headaches might just be the best thing that you’ll ever do for your health.
Dr. Patrick Giammarise, DC, Internal Health Specialist, Founder of the Digestion Relief Center, specializes in effective, natural relief for IBS, food sensitivities and digestive problems. Learn more at www.digestionreliefcenter.com.
Published in the Chico Enterprise Record Healthbeat July 2006.
2006, © Dr. Patrick Giammarise, DC. All Rights Reserved.
To read a patient's headache success story, click here
The Link Between Food and Headaches - Wall Street Journal
Migraines - Wickipedia
Headaches - medicine.net