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Three everyday things that can trigger a migraine headache

by , 11 December 2017
Three everyday things that can trigger a migraine headache
Do you often get migraine headaches? Then you'll be interested to know that factors that can set off an attack vary from person to person...

While certain foods and strong perfumes may trigger a migraine in one person, flickering lights and weather changes may trigger one in another. This can make migraine triggers very frustrating to hunt down.

However, there's general agreement about the most common triggers. Keep reading for three of them.

How to spot the three most common migraine triggers

#1: Stress
Stress is hands-down the most common migraine trigger. That’s because migraine sufferers tend to be highly responsive emotionally. Feelings of anxiety, worry, shock and sadness all release certain brain chemicals that can lead to a painful migraine. Funnily enough, the sense of relief after a stressful period can also lead to migraines, which could be the cause of weekend headaches.
 
#2: Food
While what triggers a migraine is different for everybody, the most common food culprits contain tyramine or phenylethylamine, two amino acids found in foods like chocolate, aged or fermented cheese (think cheddar, brie, blue cheese and all hard cheeses), citrus fruits, soy foods, nuts and vinegar (both red and balsamic).
 
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Other foods that can trigger a migraine, according to the National Headache Foundation, include foods that contain nitrites or nitrates (bacon and hot dogs) or MSG (soy sauce, meat tenderisers and seasoned salt), sour cream, sourdough bread, broad beans, lima beans, fava beans, snow peas, figs, raisins, papayas, avocados, red plums, excessive amounts of caffeinated drinks like tea or coffee, and alcohol (including red wine and beer).
 
#3: Environment
Strong perfume is an immediate migraine trigger for some, making the beauty aisle as well as common spaces like offices and churches a challenge. For others, it can be flickering lights – even sunshine flashing through the trees while driving or a movie screen in a darkened theatre.
 
By keeping track of your migraine patterns over time, you’ll be able to make changes that will help you cope without having to sacrifice unnecessarily.

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