What are your migraine triggers?

Page 1 of 2 1, 2  Next

View previous topic View next topic Go down

What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:26 pm

If you know what they are, please post them here. If you do not know, you should try to figure it out. Triggers seem to be a critical aspect in understanding your migraines, and how to help avoid them (if only partly).

In my case it is mainly from eating certain amino acids in food, particularly tyramine. Tyramine is commonly found in aged and fermented foods and is usually high in aged cheese and cured meats, fermented and pickled foods and spirits, some nuts and some fresh foods (particularly liver, organ and game meats). In order for me to cut down on migraines, I have to avoid these foods: tofu, chocolate, pickles, Champagne, ripe bananas and almonds. Pork seems to be a trigger as well, but it varies. Canadian bacon and ham seem to cause them, but pork chops do not.

Other triggers that seem to be common amung a wide variety of people are: food addatives, MSG, bright light (summer sunlight), loud noises, high levels of stress, hormonal cahnges in women, fasting, and dehydration. Paint fumes tend to give me migraines as well. Then there are MAOIs that seem to cause people that do not ordinarilly get mograines to get them, and certain vasco-dialators like nitroglycerin also give people migraines. SSRIs like Prozac seem to also trigger migraines, as well as mild SSRI supplaments like St John's Wort. Seratonin plays a key role in migraines, thought no one seems to know exactly how.


Last edited by ZomigMan on Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:16 pm; edited 2 times in total
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  BabySeal on Tue Jun 19, 2012 6:25 pm

I haven't been able to find my diet triggers (if any) as of yet because I am so scatterbrained I am lucky to remember to eat/drink enough let alone remember write it down to track my diet. Suspect

Maybe ham... I have gotten a M the last 2 times I ate ham and payed attention. Couldn't tell ya the ADD kicks in and I am done eating before I realize what the heck I am eating hahaha.

I have many you listed:

Dehydration
Low blood sugar
Barometric Pressure Changes
Estrogen level changes (both increasing and dropping off I believe)
Certain loud noise frequencies (Not sure which, but certain loud noises make my skin crawl and trigger a M)
High levels of stress
Crying (probably linked to stress)
Muscle tension (Currently trying a muscle relaxer)
The sun. A big pet peeve of mine- I loathe the sun in my face and I cannot afford contact lenses to be able to wear my sunglasses! My eyes cringe even on non migraine days while out driving and outside.


BabySeal

Posts : 111
Join date : 2011-12-07
Age : 28
Location : Ohio

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:26 pm

Ham is a trigger for me as well.... and ADD, yes. I have that as well. Though I have the ADHD/hyperactive version.

I have the same problem with the sun, especially when I was living in Southern California. sunny I had a special pair of super dark prescription glasses made to go outside in. After I got contact lenses I was able to get a pair of super dark climbing sunglasses with leather shields on the sides. They are designed to cut down on side glare from hiking on glaciers. They helped a lot, as San Diego has endless clear sunny and hot weather. After I turned 40 I got LASIK surgery and dispensed with the contacts, and I wear reading glasses and dark glasses all the time now. Sometimes both at the same time, and they make me look like I have been in the 'beer garden' too long drunken .
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Migrainegirl on Tue Jun 19, 2012 11:16 pm

Airplane travel
Cycle
Crying
Poor sleep
I am beginning to suspect lemons, limes

Loud noises are a problem for me too. Especially anything through a speaker which tends to have a lot of high frequencies.

Baby seal, You should definitely invest in prescription sunglasses, if driving without is a problem for you. I just ordered some at LensCrafters and got half off due to a special there.

avatar
Migrainegirl

Posts : 999
Join date : 2010-07-19

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Jul on Wed Jun 20, 2012 4:12 am

seems we have a lot of the same triggers!

mine are...

muscle tension (neck especially)
alcohol
nuts
citrus fruit
chocolate
any cured meat, ham, salami ect
crying
loud noises (crowded rooms ect)
sunlight is a killer for me....dark glasses at all times is essential I've even just ordered a pair of computer glasses as the glare from the pc is a major trigger for me too.
irregular sleep pattern

I have tons more but those are my main ones

Jul

Posts : 49
Join date : 2011-11-19

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:58 am

Alcohol is defiantely a common trigger for migraines. For me its more from drinking certain types, particulary: port, sherry, Champagne, white wine and ale. Lager beers do not affect me as much. Lager is brewed with a different yeast and finished differently. I can drink a few w/o getting a migraine. White wines give me far more migraines than red wines (this is supported in studies done in France and Italy). I am uncertain what it is in wine that causes them, as there are only tiny amounts of tyramine in wine. Distilled alchohol does not give me migraines nearly as often, especially clear vodka, rum and tequilla. The more additives and processing spirits have the more apt they are to be a problem. I have cut way down on drinking though. One or two now and then, not one or two every day like I used to. Getting through the holidays is a tough battle, mainly from all the highly processed and complex foods that people put out to be eaten, especially at work. No

santa The holiday appatizer nightmares for me: Pate = mirgaine. Champagne = migraine. Chocolate = migraine. Cheese platter = migraine.
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Jewishmother on Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:03 pm

my migraine triggers are environmental not food related (though msg is a problem - which I don't label as food!): bright lights, flashing lights, busy patterns (and I want to know why the rugs in hospitals are always have swirled patterns!), and vibrations............
avatar
Jewishmother

Posts : 296
Join date : 2009-12-09
Location : United States

Back to top Go down

Well...

Post  spaide on Wed Jun 20, 2012 4:16 pm

I've had migraines for 9 years now, and they have steadily gotten worse (with a random easy one here and there). And I have yet to identify a trigger. 95% of my migraines happen upon waking up. I usually go to bed feeling fine, sometimes with minor neck pain/irritation, and then in the morning I am in agony. I've switched pillows, matresses, and now I'm to the point where I have to sleep with a pillow on my chest so that I can tuck it under my chin and stablize my neck.
Everyone seems to have so many triggers, yet all I know is that according to my chiropractor (I have been going to chiropractors for 5yrs now) I have an unstable neck. Could this be my only cause? It seems so strange that I haven't pinpointed and other trigger. And believe me, I've tried to.
Any thoughts?
avatar
spaide

Posts : 9
Join date : 2012-06-20

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Migrainegirl on Wed Jun 20, 2012 4:32 pm

Hi Spaide,

For years I thought my headaches were caused by my neck because they started right after a bulging disk episode in my neck, and because I had so much neck and shoulder pain. Any extreme movement if my neck ( looking at the ceiling or turning my head would trigger a migraine ). I tried just about everything including cortisone injections, Chiro, accupuncture, massage, all to no avail.

After bad results with a whole list of prevenatives, which only gave me weird side effects but no relief, I decided as a last resort to try supplements. My frequency of headaches immediately decreased from about 80% to 20%. Oddly enough I realized after about a month that all the neck and shoukder pain was gone too. So while I thought the neck was causing the headaches it turned out that the neck and shoulder pain was really a part of the migraine problem all along! The supplements I take are 400 mg magnesium, 5000 mg vitamin D, 12.5 mg iodide, and 200 mg bio-identical progesterone. It has done alot more for me than all the meds I tried.
avatar
Migrainegirl

Posts : 999
Join date : 2010-07-19

Back to top Go down

leslie and spaide.....

Post  dcook60 on Wed Jun 20, 2012 7:57 pm

leslie, you are so right, MSG isn't food. it is, as michael pollan reminds us in his wonderful dietary-choices books, a "food-like substance".

spaide, your picture is gorgeous. welcome to our forum. this is how i found out about the multitudes of "food-like substances" i can't eat anymore. i wondered why i kept getting migraines from plain ol' canned tuna, which i've been eating all my (long) life.

i did some experimentation, after reading about the deceptive names the food manufacturers use to hide MSG, and sho' nuff, it was the "hydrolyzed vegetable protein", aka "vegetable broth" in the tuna. sounds so innocuous, right? nope, it's just another MSG thing.

i found some real tuna at a health food store. i can eat that just fine, as long as the ingredients are just tuna, water, and salt. nothing else is needed!

from that point, i figured out all the other ubiquitous chemicals in many things i was eating, and i'm much better. my neck is also bad, and i've had surgery on two vertebrae, 'cuz the disc was gone, so now i have a piece of cadaver bone in there, held in by screws and plates. (yikes!) all is well, as long as i don't twist my neck or look up at ceilings very much!!

dianne
avatar
dcook60

Posts : 501
Join date : 2009-12-03
Location : spokane, WA

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:05 am

spaide wrote:I've had migraines for 9 years now, and they have steadily gotten worse (with a random easy one here and there). And I have yet to identify a trigger. 95% of my migraines happen upon waking up. I usually go to bed feeling fine, sometimes with minor neck pain/irritation, and then in the morning I am in agony. I've switched pillows, matresses, and now I'm to the point where I have to sleep with a pillow on my chest so that I can tuck it under my chin and stablize my neck.
Everyone seems to have so many triggers, yet all I know is that according to my chiropractor (I have been going to chiropractors for 5yrs now) I have an unstable neck. Could this be my only cause? It seems so strange that I haven't pinpointed and other trigger. And believe me, I've tried to.
Any thoughts?

Hi Spaide... welcome to the forum! Sorry to hear about your migraines. Neck issues seem to be a trigger for several people with migraines. Another person just posted a thread on it on this forum. She gets them if she even looks up. I can say that in my case my neck and back issues do not cause my migraines. I have had degenerative spine disease as of age 30 (neck and lumbar). My migraines started long before my back issues though, when I was 12 or so.

You might try a neck collar at night? One of the foam ones with velcro and cloth over it to keep your head and neck straight. Other than that I really do not know what to suggest. I am mainly in the food intolerance/tyramine category of migraine triggers.
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:43 am

dcook60 wrote:leslie, you are so right, MSG isn't food. it is, as michael pollan reminds us in his wonderful dietary-choices books, a "food-like substance". (snipette)
dianne

I would go a lot farther than that and say that monosodium glutamate (MSG) is a neurotoxin. It is the sodium salt of the non-essential amino acid, glutamic acid (several amino acids are known migraine trigggers, particularly tyramine). MSG causes a lot of people a lot of problems, from discomfort to migraines to major digestive issues. There are many names for MSG poisoning: Chinese restaurant syndrome, glutamate-induced asthma, hot dog headache, MSG toxicity, MSG Symptom Complex. Every time they try to label it as a culprit the people that sell mountains of the stuff lobby to get it unlabeled. The FDA concluded that the long term effects for us that are sensitive to it are not harmful (like a migraine is not harmful???), and the general population is 'safe' using 'proper amounts'. MSG is in all kinds of things now, and growing. Many flavors of Doritos now have it, and almost all Ranch Dressing has it now. Read the labels... it is in a lot of foods. It is also called sodium glutamate, several other prefixes with 'glutamate', yeast extract, most things that are "hydrolized,"

Here is a blog on the powerful Glutamate industry:

http://www.truthinlabeling.org/VI.WhyIsn'tMSGlabeled.html

and one about alternate names for MSG:

http://www.truthinlabeling.org/SourcesBrochure.pdf
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Progress

Post  spaide on Thu Jun 21, 2012 1:52 pm

Migraine Girl,
Wow, that is terrible that you had to go through such a sensitive neck issue. My grandma has actually mentioned reading about a combination of magnesium and vitamin D helping. I guess I should heed the advice and try it out. How did you come up with the exact amounts?

dcook60,
Thank you for the nice complement! I actually had a chrio appointment today and I asked him about processed foods and such. He confirmed what I had been thinking/what y'all have been saying; that a diet without processed foods and artificial suagars would help reduce the frequency of my migraines. I have been so shocked when I actually read my food lables...it's so pathetic the quality of our foods. My husband and I have also been watching documenteries on netflix about the food industry and the terrible things they do to our food. It's no wonder we all have so many health issues.

ZomigMan,
Thanks for the welcome! I'm sorry to hear about your spine. I had bought a neck collar and wore it during the evening when I would read, but I found it impossible to sleep with it on. And now it's fallen by the wayside Embarassed . I am going to do what the chrio said and stay away from processed foods (although this sounds expensive). I already stay away from artificial sugars, but he stressed that they were VERY bad for migraines...so maybe that'll help someone else to know.
avatar
spaide

Posts : 9
Join date : 2012-06-20

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:14 pm

Thanks for your reply about my back. I have learned to live with it, and I wear a back brace and do stretches and exercise a lot and it does not bother me as much any more. Having to quit tennis at age 30 was really hard to do though (I was raised as a tennis brat).

Artificial sweeteners, particularly aspartame (sold as NutraSweet and Equal) are known migraine triggers. I an starting a thread on common migraine triggers here on this forum and trying to put the information into understandable English.
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

:)

Post  spaide on Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:29 pm

Zomigman,

That would be super helpful to have a list. There are so many minor triggers for some people. It would be good for some to see what else there could be causing it. I'll have to refer my fellow sufferers from here to the link when it's done. Very Happy
avatar
spaide

Posts : 9
Join date : 2012-06-20

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Thu Jun 21, 2012 5:38 pm

Well, the list is long for migraine triggers. I started another thread on this, but it is complicated and I do not want to make it too technical, nor do I want to make it too short and stupid. I have edited the first post several times now and I will likely redo it again. I started with the vaso-active amines, but they are complex biochemical components. I listed several of the typical migraine triggers in the first post in this thread, but to elaborate more on the main food triggers:

One of the major types of migraine food triggers are the vaso-active amines (protien building blocks). Particularly particularly tyramine, glutamate (MSG), and phenylethylamine. It is thought that people that get migraines from eating these are low in monoamines (MAO) that typically break these molecules down before they reach the bloodstream. Other food triggers are addatives like yellow dye #5, and red dye #40. Other addatives that are suspect are nitrates/nitrites, as well as sulphites/sulphates which are commonly found in aged meats, dried fruits and veggies, and wines. Other addatives like artificial sweeteners are known to cause migraines, particularly aspartame.

Red wine gets a bad wrap for causing migraines and many state that it is becasue of vaso-active amines, but they are only found in very small amounts in wine. So there is likely something else in there that causes them. Tannins are typically suspected, as are the alcohol and phenols and verious aromatics. However, several studies show that white wine is actually more likely to cause migraines. Wine is complex stuff... some wines give me migraines while others do not. Oxidised wines and spirits are very likely to give you a migraine. These include Port, sherry and vermouth. Chiante wine (called Sangiovese in the US) is also a common trigger. It may well be the sulphites that they add to wine to give it a longer shelf like that actually causes migraines. There are several wineries that produce sulphite-free wines, like Lolonis in California.

Caffeine is a common trigger, as well as caffeine withdrawl. Caffeine has a complex role in stimulating human physiology, and it has two close cousins that are found in foods: theophylline mainly found in tea, and theobromine found in chocolate. Many studies group these three alkaloids together and call them caffeine, though the three are different. They are commonly found together in various levels in coffee, tea and chocolate. They are all stimulants. Caffeine is also added to a lot of processed foods, expecially cola drinks and sodas, and all the new energy drinks out there. Note also that cola from the cola nut is also a common migraine trigger.

Outside of foods, environmental factors that may cause migraines are loud noise and bright light. Loss of sleep or too much sleep may also trigger them in some people. Stress is a common trigger. Hormonal inbalance and mense cycles may also trigger them in women. Quite a few drugs can trigger migraines, especially opiates and barbituates. Weight loss drugs and ADHD stimulants may also be a factor in elevating the number of migraines, working in tandem with the food related triggers. This is the same in MAOI drugs, where people become sensative to the vaso-active amines in foods when they are on MAOI (monoamine oxidase inhibitor) drugs. Consuming too much alcohol may also trigger them (though some consider it a food). Strong fumes can also trigger migraines, particularly substances like paint, gasoline, and pesticides. Neck pain and strain is also implicated in causing migraines. Missing meals and/or fasting may also cause them, as well as being dehydrated.

So that is a rather small sample, but in a nutshell, all of the above can and do cause migraine attacks.


avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Migrainegirl on Thu Jun 21, 2012 6:55 pm

Spaide,

I got the information on the supplements I take from Dr. Andrew Jones in Texas. See this link: http://www.migraine-headaches-information.com/

The booklet is a good read on the effects of hormones on women's migraines, and in particular the bad effects of artificial hormones (like in birth control pills and HRT). Also all the artificial hormones that are ending up in our food.

As a cross check, my nuero also recommended magnesium. My sister-in-law is a nurse and she has really been pushing everyone to take the vitamin D also. Apparently there are some really good studies on how low we are as a population now that most people work indoors all day. I've had my blood levels of D teststed for several years now and I am in the middle of the range, even with that much supplement, so it seems to be okay.

He also recommends omega-3, not for headaches, but because it's supposed to be good for you in general. I have discontinued that after some gallbladder issues.

I order my supplements online from www.omega-1000.com. They seem to be of a good quality.
avatar
Migrainegirl

Posts : 999
Join date : 2010-07-19

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Migrainegirl on Thu Jun 21, 2012 6:58 pm

Zomigman,

My personal theory on red wine is that it's the tannins. I say that because American wines are much higher in tannin than French wines. When in France I found red wine didn't bother me a bit. But I can't drink American red wine now without a major headache. Lately I've found I can't do white wine either. Such a drag!
avatar
Migrainegirl

Posts : 999
Join date : 2010-07-19

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Thu Jun 21, 2012 10:04 pm

Its the oak... cheaper American wines are made with American oak, whereas French wines and better American wines are made with French oak. French oak is softer and less tanic, for sure. A lot of American wine makers also dump oak chips in their wines. Though I have not noticed the tannins as being that big a deal for me. Then again, maybe it is the oak. I get headaches from drinking Scotch... which is basically vodka aged in oak. My mother gets headaches from the added sulphates in wine. Sulphate-free wine does not bother her much.
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Migrainegirl on Fri Jun 22, 2012 9:52 pm

Zomigman,

That's good to know on what makes the difference. Here is an interesting article that reinforces the tannin theory. It found differences in migraine frequency that correlated with the tannin content in different wine types.

http://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/news/20120620/some-kinds-red-wine-may-not-trigger-migraines
avatar
Migrainegirl

Posts : 999
Join date : 2010-07-19

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  spaide on Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:09 am

Migraine Girl,

The website says it's "currently unavailable". But I will defintely check out the Magneseum and vitamins. Thanks!
avatar
spaide

Posts : 9
Join date : 2012-06-20

Back to top Go down

Elimination Diet

Post  mxgo on Sat Jun 23, 2012 4:21 pm

Here is Dr McDougell's Elimination diet: http://www.nealhendrickson.com/mcdougall/021200pudiet.htm

I've been thinking of trying it. Hopefully, it will also help with the high BP and I can eliminate or reduce BP med. dosages. I already eat a very low fat diet to lower my cholesterol and that has helped considerably, along with some supplements. It has also, has helped with my kidney function numbers (I have one kidney).

I will probably start with his regualr diet and see where that leads me. In reading these forum posts, I've given up tomatoes and lo and behold, my stomach is much better.

There is an article in Dr McDougell's website, about a migraineur eliminating her migraines and a host of other illinesses with the diet.

Martin
avatar
mxgo

Posts : 370
Join date : 2009-12-04
Location : CA USA

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  ZomigMan on Sat Jun 23, 2012 4:39 pm

Migrainegirl wrote:Zomigman,

That's good to know on what makes the difference. Here is an interesting article that reinforces the tannin theory. It found differences in migraine frequency that correlated with the tannin content in different wine types.

http://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/news/20120620/some-kinds-red-wine-may-not-trigger-migraines

Yah, I saw the results of that study on another site, but it is a very small group and very subjective. High tannin wines are called 'oak bombs' in wine tasting circles. I happen to like oak bombs... I was in a snobby wine tasting group for many years in the SF bay area. I also planted a half acre of pinot noir in central Oregon on my ex's ranch (when I was living with her).
avatar
ZomigMan

Posts : 83
Join date : 2012-05-24
Location : PNW

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Migrainegirl on Sat Jun 23, 2012 6:40 pm

Spaide,

I did some checking to find out why that site was gone. Apparently the state medical board in Texas took some sort of action against him due to dispensing medical advice over the Internet with out a proper patient-doctor relationship, and failing to disclose he owned the site that he recommended for the supplements, and overall over-promising on the cure. His site is down and his book on Amazon is out of stock, so I'm guessing he is out of business.

While there are lots of skeptical comments on the web about his book and recommendations, none I saw were from anyone who actually tried it. While I certainly understand skepticism, I didn't have much hope it would work either, I can only say it worked for me, after everything else did not. And all the doctors and nueros I saw had nothing better to offer, and in many cases made me ever worse off. So I'm kind of sad to hear about it.

Big Pharma is definitely the king in ths country. There is just too much money to be made. Natural solutions don't provide the big money that patented medicines do, and there is a lot of pressure to keep it that way. I would certainly have never said this 6 years ago before going through my ordeal with migraines, but I'm beginning to think there is some truth in that.

In any case, these supplements have been a Godsend to me. It's given me back at least most, if not all, of a semblance of life. Maybe someday there will be a cure for migraine. But until then, we have to go with the best aids we can to make life livable.
avatar
Migrainegirl

Posts : 999
Join date : 2010-07-19

Back to top Go down

What are your migraine triggers

Post  Cookie Monster on Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:42 pm

Hi everyone,

Figuring out my triggers has been really difficult because it wasn't until the migraines became really frequent that I started paying attention and by then, it was hard to tell what had triggered me on any given day.

I do know that the following are problems for me: disturbed sleep (especially not getting enough sleep), anxiety/stress, and airplane travel. Caffeine may be a problem but I only ever had coffee when I was tired so it is hard to tell. I now avoid caffeine, just in case. I have heard that cold may trigger migraines too but as I live in Canada this is pretty hard to avoid most of the year.

Cookie Monster

Cookie Monster

Posts : 52
Join date : 2012-06-05

Back to top Go down

Re: What are your migraine triggers?

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Page 1 of 2 1, 2  Next

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum