Over the years, migraine painkillers become less effective, causing rebound headaches instead. That’s when you know it’s time for a migraine detox diet. By eliminating migraine toxins like food migraine triggers and medications, and introducing natural ingredients, you effectively improve your body’s natural response to inflammation.
Important! Before considering a detox diet for migraines, please notify your doctor or other headache specialist. Never stop taking any prescription migraine medications or recommended over-the-counter (OTC) migraine treatments without first consulting your primary physician.
How does the migraine detox diet work?
If you’ve been keeping a migraine diary to no effect, then you might benefit by going on a complete migraine detox. Instead of painstakingly trying to identify your personal migraine food triggers one by one, the detox diet requires you to cut out all “red light” foods at once. By going cold turkey, you rid your body of all toxins and start anew, slowly introducing new foods into your diet while carefully monitoring your body’s reaction.
What are migraine toxins?
Before starting a detox program for migraines, it’s important to understand exactly what we mean by “toxin” for migraines.
Specifically, migraine toxins are all ingredients that enter your body and trigger a migraine attack, yet have no effect on people who don’t suffer migraines. In the detox diet, all medications, including painkillers for migraines, whether over-the-counter (OTC) or prescribed, are considered toxic.
Again, it is crucial to obtain your doctor’s permission before undergoing any detox program for migraines or ending any migraine medication.
List of migraine toxins
Migraine toxins may include:
- Over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers
- Hormone pills
- Vasodilators (hypertension medications, nitrates)
- Preservatives (nitrates, nitrites, tannins)
- Monosodium glutamate (MSG, Important: Read Where’s the MSG? Hidden MSG Lurks Everywhere)
- Food coloring
- Artificial sweeteners
- Citrus fruits and juices
- Overripe fruits (avocadoes, bananas, red plums)
- Dried fruits (raisins, figs, prunes)
- Legumes (most beans, peas in pod)
- Nightshade vegetables (tomatoes, peppers, onions)
- Fermented condiments (pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi )
- Aged cheese
- Yogurt, sour cream
- Cured, smoked, or processed meats and fish
- Yeasted breads or pastries
- Tree nuts and peanuts
Migraine nutrients promote detox
In addition to cutting out migraine toxins, you should begin taking natural ingredients for migraines that are healthy and support neurological functioning.
The following nutrients are supported by scientific evidence:
- Magnesium: Magnesium reduces stress, soothes tension, supports neurological functioning, and promotes a healthy circulatory system, making it a healthful nutrient for migraine patients. Also, magnesium naturally regulates calcium channels. This placebo-controlled study on migraines and magnesium found impressive results with patients who received 600 mg of magnesium each day for 12 weeks.
- Coenzyme Q-10 (CoQ-10): CoQ10 is a vitamin-like nutrient that has been featured in numerous controlled studies, such as this study published by the National Library of Medicine, in which 150 mg of coenzyme Q10 per day greatly benefited more than 60% of the test subjects involved.
- Riboflavin (Vitamin B2): Riboflavin is an essential B vitamin that is also beneficial with migraines. In this study, 59% of patients who received 400 mg of riboflavin each day for three months experienced dramatic health benefits.
Migraine detox side effects
During the first few weeks of migraine detox, you will likely experience unpleasant side effects, as toxins are released into your bloodstream. Side effects of migraine detox may include migraine headaches or non-migraine headaches, such as rebound headaches.
Other migraine detox symptoms may include:
- Heart palpitations
- Muscle pains
- Stomach pain
- Bad breath
- Cold symptoms
Please tell us…
- Have you completed a migraine detox program?
- If so, was it as a hospital inpatient, or on an outpatient basis?
- If you haven’t attempted detox, what is the one thing that is holding you back more than anything else…withdrawal symptoms or fear that it won’t work?
- Please share your comments, suggestions, and questions with us!
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Read more about natural migraine treatments:
Weight Loss Headaches- Why they happen, How to avoid them
The Migraine-Prevention “Detox” Plan
Open label trial of coenzyme Q10 as a migraine preventive- PubMed, NCBI
Prophylaxis of migraine with oral magnesium: results from a prospective, multi-center, placebo-controlled and double-blind randomized study- PubMed, NCBI
Effectiveness of high-dose riboflavin in migraine prophylaxis. A randomized controlled trial- PubMed, NCBI