9 Foods That May Help Your Migraines

by Lindsay E. Mack

If you've never had a true migraine headache, then you may have another reason to feel #blessed. Migraines are worse than regular headaches by an order of magnitude. Although these headaches can be debilitating, you may be able to help manage them by making some lifestyle changes. For instance, there are some foods that may help your migraines feel less terrible. Because once you've had a migraine, you'd probably eat a bag of rocks to avoid experiencing another one. Yes. they can be that bad.

Before getting into the food dynamic, it helps to understand the underlying causes behind migraines. Although the exact causes are still being studied, according to the Mayo Clinic the environmental triggers of migraines may include hormonal changes, stress, strong smells, certain foods, and skipping meals. Whatever the cause, these headaches can produce throbbing pain, blurry vision, sensitivity to light and sound, and even fainting, as further noted by the Mayo Clinic.

Fortunately, there may be some relief in the form of food as medicine. Or, at the very least, these foods are not typically prone to triggering migraines, so you can eat them with a peace of mind. Read on to find out how you can create a migraine-busting meal plan.


Brown Rice

What's more wholesome than a big bowl of rice? As noted by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, brown rice appears to be a "safe" food that will not trigger migraines. You can enjoy that rice pilaf without fear.


Fatty Fish

If you're a big fan of tuna or salmon, then you're in for some good news. As noted by Good Housekeeping, fatty fish that's rich in B vitamins and folic acid may help reduce your prevalence of headaches. So go ahead and order that salmon roll at the sushi bar without reservation.



If dehydration is worsening your headaches, then you can try to consume more liquids and even foods that are full of water. Watermelon is one such fruit, and it also contains magnesium, which may help ward off headaches, as noted in Woman's Day. Bonus: it's refreshing and super-sweet.


Unflavored Popcorn

If you've never tried air-popped popcorn, then you may be in for a treat. It's a tasty snack that you can top with anything you like. And, according to the Association of Migraine Disorders, it's a better choice than some brands or flavored or microwave popcorn, which may trigger headaches. But seriously: the kind you pop in a pot or air popper is pretty delicious.



No list of healthy foods is complete with a mention of leafy green veggies. As explained in the Huffington Post, spinach also contains riboflavin, which may help prevent migraines. That spinach salad for lunch may start to look even better.



So far the foods listed have been known to help prevent (or at least not trigger) migraines. But what happens when you're in the midst of a headache attack? According to Reader's Digest, downing a cup of coffee when the migraine hits may help relieve some of the pain, as the caffeine may shrink blood vessels in the brain. Try reaching for a cup the next time a migraine troubles you.



Are almonds the perfect snack? Sometimes that seems to be the case. According to ABC News, almonds contain magnesium, which may help ease headaches due to its ability to regulate blood pressure. Basically, almonds are the best.


Hot Peppers

OK, so this idea may not be for everyone. But if you like spicy foods, consider a tip from Everyday Roots and try a pepper or other food that contains capsaicin, which may help dull your body's pain perception. Cayenne pepper or powder is one such option.



Do you like to snack on flax? According to MSN Lifestyle, flaxseeds contain omega-3s, which have been known to reduce migraine pain. Put a scoop of flax in your cereal or smoothie and see if this does the trick.