The holidays are upon us, and while there’s more to do than hours in the day, we push ourselves to try and accomplish everything. That doesn’t necessarily bring about joy and good cheer; sometimes, it brings on a pounding headache.
Anyone who’s had a splitting headache or excruciating migraine can tell you how debilitating they can be. But, there are some things you can do to manage living and working with head pain. One way is to watch your diet.
For some people, foods containing tyramine might be the problem. Tyramine is a compound found in many foods that causes blood vessels to dilate, and for those like me with tryamine sensitivity, this could bring about your head pain.
So, how to you know if a food contains tyramine? It’s simple: the food is usually preserved or aged. It could be dried, fermented, salted, smoked or pickled. Some examples would be Brie, Cheddar, Mozzarella, Swiss and other processed cheese. If you can’t do without your cheese, cottage cheese, farmer’s cheese and cream cheese won’t have any negative side effects.
Pickles, olives, soy sauce, red wine, salami, yogurt and beans can also be trigger foods. But if that sounds like your grocery list, and you’re wondering what’s left to eat, think fresh. Avoid processed foods for a while, and see if that makes a difference.
You could also try boosting the magnesium in your diet. Researchers have been investigating the magnesium-migraine connection because of magnesium’s role in stabilizing blood vessel walls. Magnesium can be found in seafood, whole grains, leafy dark greens and milk.
These tips, combined with stress reduction, regular exercise and sometimes preventive therapy, can be just the formula to prevent headaches and migraines, allowing you to enjoy the festivities of the season.