Natural Migraine Relief

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Several natural remedies are useful for the treatment of migraine headaches.  Two important treatments for the relief of migraines are magnesium and feverfew.

In 2003 the World Health Organization estimated that three hundred and three million people suffered from migraines worldwide.  Of these twenty five percent of all migraine sufferers are women and eight percent are men.  Many people who suffer from migraines do not know that they have migraines and believe they are other types of headaches.  Fifty percent of all people with migraines suffer from anxiety and one in five suffer from depression.

Migraine Symptoms 

There are a number of symptoms that migraine sufferers experience.  Not all symptoms occur for all people.  Some of the most common symptoms are:

  • Aura – wavy lines, bright light like a flashbulb, flashing lights, zig zags of light
  • Pain – on one side of the head
  • Nausea – usually at the beginning or end of the headache
  • Sensitivity – to smell, light, loud noise
  • Mental and behavioural changes – confusion, irritability, restlessness

Other symptoms may include euphoria, stomach cramps, diarrhoea or constipation.  Migraines can generally last anywhere from a few hours to three days.

Feverfew
One of the best known herbal remedies for migraine is feverfew.  Feverfew is used as a preventative for migraines.  This is achieved by taking a small dose of feverfew daily.  One positive study of the effects of feverfew on migraine showed that two thirds of those taking feverfew regularly experienced a reduction in frequency.
Feverfew is thought to act by preventing the release of serotonin and other chemicals which cause blood vessels in your head to spasm.

If you are allergic to chamomile do not take feverfew.  Some side effects are sore mouth and rashes.  Feverfew also acts as a blood thinner so if you are taking medication for thinning the blood do not take feverfew without consulting your doctor.

Magnesium and Migraines  

With eighty percent of the population magnesium deficient it is not surprising that this mineral is related to migraines.  Several studies have been conducted to investigate the efficiency of magnesium on the prevention of migraines.  One study showed that after nine weeks people taking six hundred milligrams per day experienced a forty one point six percent reduction in the frequency of their migraines.

Magnesium has many important uses for preventing migraines.  Some of them are:

  • Maintaining and improving blood vessel health
  • Reducing sleep disorders
  • Maintaining nerve and muscle function
  • Decreasing blood coagulation and reducing blood pressure
  • Normalizing heart rhythm

 There are supplements on the market that combine magnesium and feverfew.  They combine the best properties of both remedies for effective prevention of migraine.   Not all magnesium is the same however, so do some research before deciding which is best for you.  Consult your doctor if you are unsure.

Magnesium levels may also be increased by eating magnesium rich foods which include:

  • Cacao
  • Green Leafy Vegetables
  • Soy Products
  • Legumes
  • Whole Grains
  • Avocados
  • Shrimp

 Migraines are painful debilitating headaches which interfere with day to day life.  Although there are many treatments for migraine, prevention is sure to be the most beneficial.

THIS BLOG IS NOT INTENDED TO REPLACE THE ADVICE OF YOUR DOCTOR

Related Articles

Magnesium Deficiency Your Heart and Your Brain – http://nutrition.suite101.com/article.cfm/magnesium-deficiency-your-heart-and-your-brain – a look at Magnesium deficiency and its effects on your body and mind

References:

Prescription for Herbal Healing Phyllis A Balch, CNC .Avery a member of Penguin Books 375 Hudson St New York

Bartrams Encyclopedia of Herbal Medicine Thomas Bartram Marlowe and Company New York

http://www.relieve-migraine-headache.com/migraine-statistics.html 

http://altmedicine.about.com/cs/headachemigraine/a/Migraine.htm