Advertising
Advertising

Your Migraine May Come From Vitamin Deficiency, Study Finds

Your Migraine May Come From Vitamin Deficiency, Study Finds

Only people who have had a migraine know how excruciating they can be. Having had migraines for many years, I can relate to fellow migraine sufferers! You try to monitor the weather, or what you eat, drink and smell to ward off any potential pain. You have tried every painkiller out there, and probably have only found that a couple of them work, some of the time. You know what it is like to have the slightest bit of light to cause you agony.

Migraines can appear in many forms; some people experience less pain and more light sensitivity, some get very dizzy and cannot see well, while others have intense pain and nausea, and usually throw up after they attempt to eat or drink anything, including migraine medication. Either way, migraines are not a pleasant experience, and people who get them are always on the lookout for new findings of potential causes and cures. Scientists have recently discovered that vitamin deficiency is one of the causes for migraines, which may alleviate chronic migraines for some people when catered to. Here is what you need to know:

Advertising

Vitamin Deficiencies that Cause Migraines

In the most recent study, scientists found that children, teenagers and young adults who suffered from migraines were all lacking in either vitamin D, riboflavin or coenzyme Q10. Vitamin deficiencies can cause a number of ailments, including nerve damage from a lack of vitamin B12, so it is no surprise that migraines could be caused by a lack of these vitamins. Many people don’t get enough vitamin D, and in this study, they reported that mostly boys and young men with migraines did not have enough of this vitamin. Girls and young women were mostly found lacking coenzyme Q10, a substance that produces energy and promotes cell growth. Since scientists and doctors do not have all the answers for the cause of migraines, there are still many questions about this, and other studies too, but it is always worth their while for migraine sufferers to find a potential “cure.”

Advertising

What To Do:

Before taking any supplements, it is important to talk to your doctor. Even though vitamins are natural, they can still cause reactions to other medication you may be taking, so make an appointment to talk about this study with your doctor. You can also request a blood test to look for these and other vitamin deficiencies. Once you get your test results, you can decide on how to proceed. Make sure you ask your doctor what the actual numbers are on the blood test because sometimes doctors will tell you that your numbers are normal, but normal can be a matter of opinion. If you are in the normal range, but on the low side, you can ask your doctor if taking these vitamin supplements for a while will hurt. If your doctor gives you the green light, try taking more of what you are deficient in and see if it results in lesser migraines.

Advertising

What To Do If It Doesn’t Work:

Since migraines can be caused by many different factors, it is wise to keep an eye on other potential causes of migraines. While the vitamin supplements can help, they may not completely take away your pain because your migraines can come from more than one source. They can be caused by:

  • Weather changes
  • Growth hormones in beef
  • Dairy products
  • Caffeine
  • MSG
  • Stress
  • Lack of sleep
  • Menstrual cycle
  • Alcohol
  • Nitrates
  • Scents and many more

When trying the vitamin supplements, keep a journal and track everything you eat and drink, weather changes, sleep patterns, stress levels, and anything else you think may be contributing to your migraines. Keep this for at least a month, and you can bring it to your doctor to discuss treatment options.

Advertising

More by this author

12 Quick And Safe Ways To Get Rid Of A Stye Science Unlocks The Secret To Why Introverts Prefer Alone Time To Socializing Mother And Daughter: A Long-Awaited Reunion After 82 Years 8 Habits Of People Who Look Younger Than Their Actual Age Why Women Suffer From Insomnia More Often Than Men (And Ways To Help!)

Trending in Health

1 The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight 2 Why Am I Exhausted? The Real Causes and How to Fix It Forever 3 How to Manage Stress (A Step-by-Step Guide to Turn Stress Into Success) 4 How to Stop Feeling Tired All the Time (And the Real Causes Explained) 5 Why Am I So Tired? 10 Reasons You’re Extremely Tired And How to Fix It

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on October 16, 2018

The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

It’s well past midnight and you’ve got to get up in less than six hours. You toss and turn all night. Before you know it, another hour passes by and you start panicking.

If I don’t get to sleep in the next 30 minutes, I’m going to be exhausted tomorrow!”

One thing is for sure, you’re not alone. Over 70M+ Americans have stated that they don’t get the proper sleep they need at night.[1] So what could possibly be causing this insomnia epidemic?

Throughout my entrepreneurial journey of building my language learning company, I have experimented and researched dozens of best sleep practices. Some have flopped but a few have dramatically improved the quality of my life and work.

In this article, I’ll look into the reason why you’re sleep deprived and how to sleep through the night tonight.

Why you can’t sleep through the night

The first step to improving anything is getting to the bottom of the root problem. Different studies have shown the reasons why most people cannot sleep well at night.[2] Here are the main ones that the average person faces:

Advertising

Stress

If you’ve ever stayed up at night worrying about something, know that it’s a major sleep inhibitor. When you’re feeling stress, your mind and body becomes more activated, making it incredibly difficult to fall asleep. Even when you do manage to sleep, it won’t be deep enough to help you feel rested the next day.

Exposure to blue light before sleep time

We’re exposed to harmful blue light on a daily basis through the use of our digital screens. If you’ve never heard of blue light, it’s part of the visible light spectrum that suppresses melatonin, our sleep hormones. Other harmful effects include digital eye strains and macular cellular damage.

While daytime exposure to blue light is not very harmful, night time exposure tricks our brain into thinking it’s daytime. By keeping your brain alert and suppressing melatonin, your mind is unable to shut down and relax before bedtime.

Eating close to bedtime

Eating too late can actually be an issue for many people, especially those who are older than 40. The reason is, eating before laying down increases the chances of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), in which stomach acid backflows into the esophagus.

Another reason not to eat too late is sleep quality. Even if you manage to sleep right after eating, it’s likely that you’ll wake up tired. Instead of letting your body rest during sleep, it has to digest the food that was entered before bedtime.

Rule of thumb: eat 3-4 hours before bedtime.

Advertising

Medical conditions

In some cases, it could be medical conditions that cause your sleep problems. If you can’t relate yourself to the above reasons or any of these common sleep problem causes, you should visit the doctor.

The vicious sleep cycle

The biggest danger to repeating the bad habits mentioned above is the negative cycle that it can take you through. A bad night’s sleep can affect not only your energy but your willpower and decision making skills.

Here’s an example of a bad sleep pattern:

You get a bad night’s sleep
–> You feel tired and stressful throughout the day.
–> You compensate it with unhealthy habits (for example junk food, skipping exercises, watching Netflix etc.)
–> You can’t sleep well (again) the next night.

    You can imagine what could happen if this cycle repeats over a longer period of time.

    Advertising

    How to sleep better (throughout the night)

    To help you break the vicious cycle and stop waking up in the middle of the night, I’ll explain to you a list of actionable steps to solve your trouble staying asleep.

    1. Take control over the last 90 minutes of your night

    What you do (or don’t do) before bedtime have significant impact on the quality of your sleep. Many times, it can be the difference between staying up until 4am and sleeping like a baby.

    Here are a few suggestions:

    • Go from light to dark – Darkness stimulates production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Turn off unused light around the house, and think about investing into warm light that you can use in the bedroom before bedtime.
    • Avoid screens (or wear blue light blocking glasses) – Keep the bedroom a technology-free zone as the light from electronic devices can disturb your sleep. If you need to work, wear blue light blocking glasses (also known as computer glasses) throughout or before you sleep to prevent sleep disruption.
    • Find an activity that helps you to wind down  This could be anything that calms you down, and reduces thinking (especially unnecessary stress). Fir example, listening to soothing/good feel music, taking a hot bath, reading or meditating.
    • Keep any electronics you have on the other side of the room or outside the room – One of the most harmful things that can disrupt your sleep is the notifications you get from your smartphones. The simplest way to avoid this is to keep it away from you.
    • Create a bedtime routine – A night routine is a couple of things you do prior to going to bed. By doing these things every night, you’ll have a more restful and high-quality sleep. Learn how to pick up a night routine here: The Ultimate Night Routine Guide to Sleep Better and Wake Up Productive

    2. Eat the right nutrients (and avoid the wrong ones)

    What you eat (not just when we eat) plays a critical role in your sleep quality. If you’re ever in doubt of what to eat to improve your sleep, take the following into consideration:

    • Kiwi – This green fruit may be the ultimate pre-bed snack. When volunteers ate two kiwis an hour before hitting the hay, they slept almost a full extra hour. Kiwis are full of vitamins C and E, serotonin and folate—all of which may help you snooze.
    • Soy foods – Foods made with soy such as tofu, miso and edamame, are rich in isoflavones. These compounds increase the production of serotonin, a brain chemical that influences the body’s sleep-wake cycle.
    • Fiber-rich foods – Eating more fiber could be key for better sleep. Eating fiber was associated with more restorative slow-wave sleep—the more you eat, the better you sleep—per a study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Fiber prevents blood sugar surges that may lower melatonin. Get a fiber boost from beans, artichokes, bran cereal and quinoa.
    • Salmon – Most fish, especially salmon, halibut and tuna boost vitamin B6, which is needed to make melatonin— a sleep-inducing hormone triggered by darkness.

    3. Adjust your sleep temperature

    Once you’ve gone through the first 2 recommendations, the last step to experiment with is temperature. According to Sleep.org, the ideal temperature for sleep is 60-67 Farenheit. This may be cooler than what most people are used to, but keep in mind that our body temperature changes once we fall asleep.

    Rule of thumb: sleeping in cooler temperature is better for sleep quality than warmer temperature.

    Advertising

    Find out how to maintain the optimal temperature to sleep better here: How to Sleep Faster with the Best Temperature

    Sleep better form now on

    Congrats on making it to the end of this guide on sleep. If you’re serious about taking the necessary steps in improving your sleep, remember to take it one step at a time.

    I recommend trying just one of the steps mentioned such as taking a hot bath, blocking out blue light at night, or sleeping in cooler temperature. From there, see how it impacts your sleep quality and you can keep doing what works, and throw away what doesn’t.

    As long as you follow these steps cautiously and diligently, I know you’ll see improved results in your sleep!

    Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

    Reference

    Read Next