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4 Eating Habits That Help You Relieve Annoying Migraines

4 Eating Habits That Help You Relieve Annoying Migraines

Migraine can change your brain

Migraine suffers know what real agony is. Besides the excruciating, pounding headaches, victims must endure the nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light and sound that most often accompany these headaches. All productivity ceases. To make matters worse, a new study discovered that migraines—specifically ones with aura—can permanently alter the structure of your brain.

Researchers from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark found that those who had migraines with aura showed a 68% increased risk of white matter brain lesions, compared with those who did not have migraines. This terrifying figure prompts us to face the problem of migraine squarely.

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Only relying on migraine drugs may backfire

Taking drugs or painkillers is the usual way to deal with annoying migraines. However, most medications available in the market come with side effects, making the dilemma that much harder. In a recent study published by the journal Headache, two-third of the subjects reported symptoms like sleepiness, fatigue, racing heartbeat and difficulty thinking after taking prescribed medications. So is there a more effective way to relieve migraines than taking drugs? I am glad you asked.

The all-natural solution to preventing most migraines begins with your diet. Learning how to relieve and prevent migraines via your diet involves paying closer attention to what you consume and making a few simple lifestyle changes.

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1. Be careful with foods with hormones

Be careful when choosing meats–especially beef and dairy products that contain hormones. Try to choose organic, fresh cuts of meat and avoid phosphoproteins. A group of phosphoproteins in milk called “casein,” which comprises nearly 80 percent of all the protein in milk, is a major trigger of migraines and other types of headaches. Doctors often seek to eliminate all sources of casein in a migraine patient’s diet. It is commonly listed as “sodium caseinate”, “calcium caseinate” or “milk protein” on many food labels.

2. Avoid foods loaded with simple carbs and processed sugar

Reactive hyperglycemia or a spike in glucose in the bloodstream occurring after you eat has been deemed one of the most surprising causes of migraines according to CNN Health. Excessive amounts of simple carbohydrates such as white sugar and pasta, can cause migraines. When you eat simple carbs, your blood sugar rises and your body then produces extra insulin to break down the sugar. This causes your blood sugar levels to drop dramatically. That spike and plummet of blood sugar can lead to headaches.

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3. Stay hydrated but avoid stimulating drinks

It is common knowledge that dehydration can cause headaches and greatly exacerbates the condition in those who frequently experience migraines. Practitioners recommend that you drink plenty of hydrating fluids- especially water- and limit the amount of alcohol consumed. They also warn that you should avoid large amounts of tea, coffee, soda, and other beverages containing copious amounts of sugar and caffeine which can be triggers.

4. Consume cold food and beverages slowly

Ah yes…the dreaded brain freeze. We’ve all experienced it. It turns out that it is an actual medical condition. It’s called a “cold stimulus headache.” It is characterized by pain in the middle of the forehead or behind the eyes and nose lasting for less than five minutes after rapidly consuming cold food or drink. What’s even more surprising is that some researchers believe that this phenomenon can actually trigger a migraine, so try to take it slow or drink your beverages with less ice.

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Research is definitive; migraine sufferers are more likely to have changes in their brains than are people who didn’t have migraines. By making a few simple dietary changes and being cognizant of your eating habits, you can greatly reduce the number of migraines experienced and minimize changes to the brain.

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Denise Hill

Denise shares about psychology and communication tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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