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Can Your Diet Be Causing Your Headache?

Updated on September 12, 2018
No matter what type of headache it is, it still hurts.
No matter what type of headache it is, it still hurts. | Source

Headaches

Did you know there is a diet to help prevent headaches? There is. It turns out that certain foods will make you more susceptible to headaches and migraines.

Not only are there foods that will promote headaches but there are foods that will help make them go away. Who knew?

There's nothing as annoying as a headache. You're unable to concentrate or think clearly when your head is pounding and your eyes feel like they want to fall out of your head.

Maybe it's time to try changing your diet instead of reaching for that bottle of pain relief next time you have a headache.

The good news is that headaches are rarely caused by a serious ailment. It doesn't make your head hurt less but it's good to know.

It hurts to have a headache
It hurts to have a headache | Source

Foods That Can Trigger A Major Headache

Cheese is one of the foods that can trigger a major headache for those with a sensitivity to tyramine.

The cheeses you need to avoid are:

  • Blue Cheeses
  • Brie
  • Cheddar
  • Feta
  • Gorganzola
  • Mozzarella
  • Muenster
  • Parmesan
  • Processed cheese
  • Stilton
  • Swiss

Certain foods can be the culprit for your severe headaches. Foods that contain nitrates, tyramine, monosodium glutamate can lead to migraine. Chinese foods contain more MSG that cause severe headaches, hot dogs, French fries, burgers are some deadly foods for your irritating migraine.

More Foods That Can Trigger A Headache

Wait, these are not the only foods that should be avoided by tyramine sensitive people.

  • artificial sweetener
  • avocados
  • bananas
  • beans (some types)
  • beer
  • buttermilk
  • canned soups
  • chocolate
  • citrus fruit
  • dried fruit
  • kiwi
  • MSG
  • nuts
  • organ meats such as chicken livers
  • papaya
  • peanut butter
  • pickles
  • pineapple
  • pizza
  • potato chip products
  • processed meats
  • olives
  • onions
  • raspberries
  • red wine
  • sauerkraut
  • smoked or dried fish
  • sourcream
  • fresh baked yeast goods
  • yogurt

When I get a headache
When I get a headache | Source

Some Other Causes of Headaches

Believe it or not being overweight, or mildly obese (body mass index of 30), increases your chance of having headaches by 35%. If your body mass index is 40 or above your chance of having a headache increases by 80%.

If you are a rigid, obsessive person, this too can increase headache susceptibility. You need to relax a little.

Certain odors can trigger a headache, such as paint or a strong perfume.

Dehydration is also one of those causes of headaches. So grab a bottle of water and sip it throughout the day.

Skipping a meal can often cause headaches, I know it does for me. Keep a protein bar or healthy snack close by just in case,

Too much caffeine as well as trying to stop intake of caffeine can cause terrible headaches. One of the worst headaches I ever had (beside migraines) was when I stopped drinking caffeinated coffee.

Not getting enough sleep can make your head pound a bit. Try to get your 7 to 8 hours a night.


Foods to Help Your Headache

Fortunately there are foods out there that can help with headache pain. They help dull it or take the edge off. Some of these foods even help banish your headache.

To help your headache try eating;

white beans

baked potato

cucumbers

sunflower seeds

oat bran

tofu

pumpkin seeds

tomatoes

salmon

sardines

spinach

fish oil

barley

watermelon

Foods that help fight headaches
Foods that help fight headaches | Source

Foods that fight headaches

Foods high in potassium, such as a baked potato.

Foods high in a potassium and magnesium combination such as bananas.

Foods that help you re-hydrate quickly such as watermelon or cucumber.

Foods containing the natural enzyme bromelain, a natural pain reliever, such as pineapple

coffee can help get rid of headaches by helping reduce the size of blood vessel, but be careful too much coffee can make it worse.

cherries have a compound called quercetin, which has strong anti-oxidant, anti-allergy, and anti-inflammatory properties. This compound helps block pain

salmon is full of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to reduce the frequency, duration and severity of headaches.

Spicy foods such as salsa and hot peppers can help ease the pain of a sinus headache. The spiciness helps clear your sinuses.

Magnesium rich food such as cashews, avocados, bananas help relax tense blood vessels


Taking too much of headache drugs and medications can also give you bad headaches which is called rebound headache. It won’t stop until the person stops taking the medications and drugs completely.

© 2013 Susan Hazelton

Comments

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    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Eddy, it really does help headaches to watch the type of foods you eat.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 

      5 years ago from Wales

      So useful KK G and thank you for sharing.

      Enjoy your day.

      Eddy.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Twin, my headaches have been help by the diet. Believe me, it's worth it to give up certain foods to banish the type of headaches I was having.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      rose, I find that just about anything that you really really like is pretty much thought of as bad for you.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Kathryn, I had an interesting time with the research. I found that many of the things that cause headaches were things I was already slowly giving up.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      aviannovice, thanks. I wonder also if they had ever thought of diet as a cause. I'm sure they must by now.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      DDE, thanks for your comment. I guess the answer to most of our health problems to healthy eating.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Masison22, you'd be surprised by how the food you eat effects your body.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Audrey, it's great knowing you can limit headaches by watching what you eat.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      RTalloni, thanks for the pinning. I adjusted my diet because of headaches. It works for me.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Hi Twin, lucky you, no headaches. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 

      5 years ago from Minnesota

      I too am so glad you added foods that you can eat to help the headache sufferer. Excellent, Useful information KGal and much appreciated. Hope your not suffering from headaches these days. Have a great week my friend.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      ChitrangadaSharan, I'm glad you don't get the headaches, they're a pain. Thanks for sharing.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      always exploring, maybe you don't have headaches because you already follow the headache diet. ;-)

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile imageAUTHOR

      Susan Hazelton 

      5 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Peggy W, I had to include foods you can eat. As I was writing this I was beginning to wonder myself if there was anything left that I could eat.

    • rose-the planner profile image

      rose-the planner 

      5 years ago from Toronto, Ontario-Canada

      Yikes........all the good foods give you headaches, lol! This was a great article with some very interesting information. Thank you for sharing. (Voted Up) -Rose

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 

      5 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      This is an awesome post! I like that you provided a list of foods that may help cause headaches for some people, as well as other causes for headaches, and foods that help a headache go away. This is very handy, and I am bookmarking to come back to when I really need it. It's a good reference!

      I hope you have a wonderful week.

      Voted up and sharing.

      ~ Kathryn

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Great work. I have known many people over the years with severe migraines, and sometimes even expensive, prescription meds would do no good. I wonder if they ever challenged diet? This was well done, and from personal experience, you certainly know what works.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Great hub, with such awesome foods and so well explained. An interesting outlook on foods to be eaten so by eating correctly headaches can be a thing of the past so helpful information

    • Madison22 profile image

      Madison 

      5 years ago from NYC

      An amazingly informative hub. I did not know of all the foods associated with headaches. Thanks!

      Madison :-)

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      5 years ago from California

      What a great hub! I used to get more migraines--now they are infrequent--but still, I get them! So this is very helpful!

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 

      5 years ago from the short journey

      Such helpful info on several counts. Thanks for highlighting how our diet can cause headaches as well as for the good reminder about how what we eat influences our overall health and wellbeing. I'm glad I love, love, love watermelon! :) Pinning to Solve It: Health and Safety Tips/Recipes.

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 

      5 years ago from Minnesota

      Hi KKGal~What a wonderful, informative hub on headaches. I've never been one to get headaches, but I know from friends that it can be so miserable to have them. Your article is very useful and people will get a lot out of this, especially the food lists on what helps ease headaches and what can cause them. Voted up and hit many buttons.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      5 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Very useful and informative hub!

      Normally I do not have headaches, but some of my relatives do have this recurring problem of headaches. I am going to share this hub with them.

      Many thanks for sharing this useful information!

      Voted up!

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 

      5 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Thank goodness i rarely have a headache. I notice that i like and eat the foods that fights headaches. Thank you for sharing..

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      5 years ago from Houston, Texas

      This is interesting to know. As I was reading this hub about all of the headache triggering foods, I was thinking to myself...what is left to eat? Fortunately you gave us that list as well. Going to drink more water now and get a bite of lunch! Up, useful and pinning to my "Do you know this? board.

    • livingsta profile image

      livingsta 

      5 years ago from United Kingdom

      Exactly what I wanted, as I suffer from headaches quite a lot. Sad to see many of my favourite foods on the list of foods to avoid. Thank you for sharing this with us. Very useful. Voted up and sharing.

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