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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 January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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