The research is clear, food intolerance, allergies, and hypersensitivities are key triggers of headaches and migraines. Although each migraine sufferer may react to a different food or group of foods, there are a few which seem to pop up as frequent offenders: dairy (including milk, cheeses, and yogurt), wheat, eggs, soy, corn, citrus, chocolate, coffee, beef, yeast, red wine, and processed foods with additives and preservatives.
In the pursuit to identify these top offenders, scientists and physicians have enlisted the oligoantigenic diet. This is a hypoallergenic “elimination” diet, consisting of a selection of foods that are presumably well tolerated. During their studies, patients are told to eat only the “safe” foods outlined on their version of the oligonantigenic diet in an effort to eliminate any symptoms. Once the symptoms have gone into remission, the “high risk” foods are re-introduced into the diet one at a time to assess their potential trigger effect on symptoms. This type of diet should be undertaken with the assistance of a physician, in order to ensure adequate nutritional intake. In each of the 3 case studies listed below, some form of an oligoantigenic diet was used:
So why do so many people suffer from migraines and other headaches when they consume these foods? The medical community is getting closer to an answer. Researchers in Germany have discovered a genetic mutation responsible for the “faulty wiring” and the subsequent pain. Although clinical scientists have known for a while that migraines are hereditary, the exact “defect” being passed on was previously unknown.
Regardless of the actual cause, the best way to find relief from headaches and migraines is to identify your triggers, and eliminate them. If you suffer from severe headaches, you may be one of the millions succumbing to milk sensitivities. Sign up now for our FREE Diet and Health Journal not only to track your reactions to dairy, but also to see if any other foods may spark headaches, migraines, or other unwanted symptoms.