Migraines and headaches are painful and anyone who's suffered through them knows how debilitating they can be.
Did you know that 23 million Americans suffer from migraine headaches?
Migraines can lead to days off work, time away from the kids - you miss out on life because of the pain you experience. It can be frustrating when headaches take so much away from you.
What is a Migraine?
A migraine is classified as throbbing, intense pain that usually occurs on one side of the head. It can be extremely painful and can leave the sufferer debilitated for hours, days or even weeks.
Migraines are often categorized as common or classic. The “classic,” more intense than the “common,” is accompanied by an “aura.” With this “aura,” one experiences neurological disturbances such as blind spots, flashing lights and tingling or numbness in the limbs.
It may be surprising to learn that 75 percent of migraine sufferers are women. Often a hormonal issue, migraines are associated with menstruation in 60 percent of women.
The Hormone Connection
In migraine sufferers, the body's regulation of many hormones is abnormal and each imbalance may contribute to the pathology of migraines. Research has shown that the pineal gland in migraine sufferers is depressed, which leads to reduced levels of both serotonin and melatonin during migraine headaches.
People with migraines are generally low on progesterone and their thyroid and adrenals are fatigued. Mineral deficiencies are also very common among those who suffer from migraines.
The drop in levels of serotonin is responsible for the widening of blood vessels that causes the throbbing headache.
Let’s look at some other factors that cause headaches and migraines:
- MSG (monosodium glutamate) and processed foods
- Food allergies - for example, wheat or gluten
- Poor eating and sleeping patterns can disturb your blood sugar and cause hormonal changes that can trigger a migraine
- Certain forms of birth control
- Hormone changes during perimenopause, or cyclical changes
- Stress and physical or emotional distress
- Drug use (both medicinal and hallucinogenic) - this depletes minerals and stimulates certain organs, causing a release of hormones and elevation of blood sugar
Natural Healing from Hormonal Imbalance, Headaches & Migraines
Luckily, there’s good news to this story! Some basic principles CAN help you overcome your headaches and migraines.
Use these tips to help prevent migraines in the long-run:
1. Eliminate sugar - Sugar depletes nutrients and puts a strain on the endocrine system and neurotransmitter balance. Instead, try natural sugar substitutes like Stevia and Lakanto.
2. Eat grain-like seeds - Eating grain-like seeds, such as millet, quinoa, amaranth and buckwheat, can give you healthy carbohydrates to boost serotonin.
3. Emphasize fermented foods and drinks - Rich in beneficial microflora, fermented foods and drinks are incredible for balancing your body. They help heal your digestion and help correct mineral deficiencies, while nourishing your thyroid and adrenals.
4. Incorporate ocean vegetables, such as kelp, dulse and arame - They are mineral rich and can contribute to correcting mineral deficiencies. Plus, ocean vegetables have a medicinal and regulating effect on your thyroid (thyroid problems can contribute to headaches).
Already feeling the awful symptoms that accompany a migraine? Try these natural, holistic remedies to ease the pain and overcome your migraine.
- Apply progesterone cream on your skin daily, starting at least three to four days before your period is due. This can abort a migraine because of progesterone’s ability to calm neurons.
- Take magnesium, it help’s prevent migraines due to its calming effect on your nerves.
- Keep your blood sugar stable by not letting too many hours pass between meals and by eating adequate protein.
- Correct sleep disturbances.
- Use lavender oil, which is known for treating headaches and migraines.
Coming Back to Yourself
Migraines and headaches often arise in times of stress and overwork. One of the best ways to prevent them is to practice self-care.
Often billed as “selfish,” our busy lives tend to preclude quiet time to ourselves and taking care of our physical and emotional health.
Did you know that people who suffer migraines often consider themselves to be perfectionists who take on too much at one time and often find it difficult to relax?
Learn to say no to known stressors in your life and YES to yourself! And if there are some stressors you can’t avoid, see if you can change the way you view them.You deserve to feel GOOD. And once you start making these diet and lifestyle changes, you will regain vitality, your body will feel lighter and your head will feel clearer. And clearing up headaches and migraines is a good reason to say yes to yourself!