13 Foods That Are Giving You Migraines (Or Making Them Worse)

If you suffer from migraines, there's a good chance you're willing to do just about everything you can to figure what's causing them and how to make them stop. While there are plenty of things that can trigger migraines, there might be particular foods that are giving you migraines. Yes, sadly, your favorite foods could be behind all of those terrible headaches. Or, at the very least, making them worse.

This concept shouldn't come as a total surprise. According to the Physicians Committee, some people are more susceptible to food-related migraines than others. To see if your favorite treats is the cause of your chronic head pain, the site suggests cutting certain foods from your diet for two weeks to see if your headaches subside.

If you think a certain food may be triggering your migraines, or perhaps a combination of foods you're partaking in, take a look at the list of foods below to compare and contrast to your own experience with migraines. While the following foods by no means cover every possible food that may be giving you a migraine, the 13 foods that are giving you migraines listed below are a great place to start while trying to eliminate any possible migraine triggers that may be affecting you.



According to Healthline, all kinds of beans have been identified as possible migraine triggers. String beans, lima beans, navy peans, garbanzo beans, pinto beans, pole beans, and so on. The tannin found in beans is thought to be what causes migraines.



Not just the green guys. According to Health Central, anything that's been pickled can lead to migraines. This includes eggs, vegetables, peppers, and more.


Chili Peppers

Capsaicin can be a controversial subject when it comes to migraines, as many people believe foods like chili peppers (which contain capsaicin) to be triggers for the migraines. But in a recent study published by the National Institutes of Health, researchers are now using capsaicin to help combat migraines, in hopes of creating anti-migraine therapies. However, if chili peppers trigger your migraines, you should avoid them, and other possible sources of capsaicin.



According to the WebMD, olives can be a migraine trigger. The tyramine found in olives is believed to be the reason behind the headaches, and tyramine can cause your brain to release the chemical norepinephrine. Having higher levels of tyramine in your system, along with an unusual level of brain chemicals, can cause changes in the brain that lead to headaches.


Processed Meats

According to the Cleveland Clinic, processed meats contain tyramine and preservatives that have been linked to triggering migraines. Additives, nitrates and nitrites can be found in hot dogs, sausages, ham, lunch meats, pepperoni, and more.


Dried Fruits

Certain fruits like bananas and figs contain tyramine, like the aforementioned olives do. Paired with the fact that dried fruit contains sulfites, according to Health Central, this is reason enough for dried fruit to be the cause of your migraines.



Say it ain't so. According to the Cleveland Clinic, just like most processed meats, bacon contains tyramine and preservatives that could be causing those migraines you've been suffering from.



Avocados may be the hippest food on the block lately, but according to Health Central, they contain tyramine. So consuming too many avocados could be the reason you're struggling with migraines.



Bananas also contain tyramine, a suspected cause of migraines. According to Everyday Health, the banana peel contains up to ten times the amount of tyramine that the actual fruit does. Though most people aren't interested in the peel, eating an excess of bananas can affect your migraines, especially if you're sensitive to tyramine.



A naturally occurring chemical called coumarin in yeast is thought to be why foods with yeast are often associated with migraine triggers, according to Health Central. If you find that foods like bread, pizza, and pretzels are a trigger, you may want to try eliminating any yeast based foods from your diet.


Aged Cheese

Tyramine is found naturally in some foods, and according to the Cleveland Clinic, and aged cheese is one of those foods that can trigger migraines because of the tyramine levels. Generally, the longer a high-protein food ages, the greater the tyramine content becomes. Because processing, fermenting, and aging vary in different cheeses, the levels of tyramine are different. But according to the Clinic, blue cheese, brie, cheddar, English stilton, feta, gorgonzola, mozzarella, muenster, and parmesan have all been known to have high levels of tyramine, thus their ability to trigger migraines.


Whole Milk

According to Health Central, is why whole milk can trigger migraines due to the levels of choline and casein. Though these can be found in most dairy products, the levels are especially high in whole milk.


Red Wine

According to WedMD, one out of three people who suffer from migraines say that alcohol is a trigger. The tannins found in red wine are a specific trigger for some people, but Dr. Noah Rosen, director of the Headache Center at the Cushing Neuroscience Institute, told WebMD that any alcohol can be a trigger.