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Foods That Can Cause Headaches

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

The headache is a common condition especially if you are in a stressful situation. Headaches or tension headaches not only occur in these areas, they can also spread to the scalp, neck and jaw. But we must bear in mind that stress is not the only factor that can cause this condition, we must pay attention to our diet, since there are certain factors that influence the appearance of headaches. At FastlyHealwe show you which are the foods that cause headaches .

Why is diet important?

There is no estimate of cases where diet is the cause of migraines , however it is related to the consumption of certain foods. Some compounds that produce food naturally are more difficult to metabolize by a person with headaches or migraines, they stay longer in the body and produce that throbbing effect on the head .

Some of these compounds are:

  • Tyramine : a compound found in foods such as avocados, red wine, aged cheeses, and other foods that have gone through a process of maturation or fermentation.
  • Phenylethylamine : works as a stimulant so it increases blood circulation, causing headaches. It is found in foods like chocolate, soybeans, meats, seafood, and dairy products.
  • Histamine : in addition to headaches, food intolerance is attributed to it. Loa foods high in this substance are sausages, legumes such as chickpeas, citrus fruits such as strawberry, plum and raspberry.
  • Glutamate – Found in dressings, sauces, condiments, and some packaged or pickled products.

Although this will not cure migraines, it can help you lead a healthier lifestyle, as well as avoid migraine attacks and decrease the intensity with which the pain occurs.

Types of headache

We must bear in mind that migraines are not a symptom of a serious health problem or brain tumors . There are several types of headaches and their intensity and ways of manifesting can vary.

In the case of tension headaches, the manifestations are the following:

  • They are caused by problems of stress, depression, anxiety or a head injury.
  • They usually occur on both sides of the head, can start at the back and spread forward.
  • It can cause tension in the shoulders, neck and jaw.

The migraine headaches are another type of headache and has the following characteristics:

  • The pain may be stabbing or throbbing.
  • It starts only on one side of the head.
  • They can be produced by “aura”, that is to say that a series of symptoms appear before the headache manifests itself.

Cluster headaches :

  • They tend to appear continuously and usually at the same time.
  • They are quite painful, it can appear for a long time and then disappear.

Sinus headache :

  • The pain is in the front of the head and face.
  • It is produced by inflammation of the paranasal sinuses.
  • They can occur due to flu processes or premenstrual syndrome.

Foods to avoid

Some of the foods that cause headaches are:

  • Cured cheeses : its high content of tyramine, an amino acid that is responsible for stimulating the blood vessels of the brain is responsible for causing headaches. Eat small portions eventually.
  • Chocolate : its fat content is responsible for causing headaches, as well as having a stimulating effect.
  • Alcoholic beverages : the dehydration they produce will cause a headache by inhibiting a hormone called vasopressin, which increases blood pressure. In addition, tyramine is present again, which decreases serotonin in the brain and favors the dilation of blood vessels. These substances are present mainly in red wine .
  • Caffeine : being a neurostimulator, its effects are negative on headaches.
  • Packaged soups and broths : in addition to not favoring our body, their high glutamate content causes effects on our brain. Opt for natural vegetable creams.
  • Sweeteners : such as saccharin or aspartame also work as an additive or stimulant. Avoid them in your diet to reduce headaches.

On the other hand, it must be remembered that prolonged fasts also cause headaches, this modifies the normal functioning of the body. Eat small meals 5 times a day.

Foods to reduce headaches

On the other hand, we give you some options to reduce headaches and control their intensity:

  • Foods high in magnesium : these will have a relaxing effect on the muscles of the head. Green leafy vegetables such as chard or spinach that contain a type of B vitamin that is associated with the prevention of migraines, brown rice, legumes such as lentils, wheat bran and nuts, except walnuts.
  • Blue fish : its omega 3 content, as well as phosphorous, help prevent headaches. Among the blue fish are salmon, sardines and tuna.
  • Foods rich in vitamin B2 and B6 : these will increase the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that will reduce pain. Find these vitamins in garlic, potatoes, asparagus, spinach, yogurt, sea bass, and monkfish.
  • Fruits : watermelon is the best ally due to its high water content, as it will allow you to hydrate yourself, if this is the cause of the headache.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Foods that cause headaches , we recommend that you enter our Brain and Nerves category .

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