A Migraine Protocol That Actually Works
Migraines will no longer rule my life.
Finally a solution that was doable.
Anyone who knows me knows I have struggled with migraines for years. As early as I can remember I have had migraines. I could just say that it was meant to be, this is my body so I will learn to live with the pain. Except I can’t. The pain of migraines was stealing not only days but weeks of my life I couldn’t get back. Hours pacing the floor because the pressure was too much if I laid down, time spent hovering over the toilet while my kids looked on asking if I was ok. Who wants to live like that?
Doctor’s, God bless them, were no help at all. Try this prescription, try that drug, is all they could say. Except for a brain scan to rule out any tumors, if that scan came back clear you were good to go. Except you weren’t good to go, the pain was still there.
Then there are the home remedies. I actually love home remedies and find most of them very helpful….except for the migraine/headache ones. Those suck. I’m sorry but putting my feet in hot water and ice on my head makes me feel good for approximately 2 seconds. Don’t try to give me new home remedies, I have most likely tried them all. You home remedy people mean well I know. It’s just the pain of a migraine is no laughing matter. People actually commit suicide over migraines, they cause emotional breakdowns and they are very hard on family members as well.
My search for a fix for my migraines was relentless. I was determined to keep searching and trying to find a solution until I found one….even if I was 80 years old. I have spent hours and hours researching migraine and hormones, vascular disorders, food allergies, brain inflammation. Finally, I can say I have found something to help. I can prevent most if not all of my headaches now and I want to share that information with you so you can live free and happy again.
“All disease begins in the gut” Hippocrates
I think old Hippocrates was really on to something here. The more I study and research everything seems to be tied to the gut. As I went on a journey to end headaches forever I also noticed other annoying symptoms began to disappear such as neck pain, sores on my feet, anxiety problems, brain fog, and my acne disappeared. Seriously, I had adult acne until I fixed my gut…but on with the headache information.
I’m not selling a pill that will fix you, sorry. I am going to talk to you about food, inflammation and histamines. Think about an empty bucket. Everything we eat either fills the bucket a little higher or lower with inflammation and histamines. You eat inflammatory foods…bucket gets a little higher. Have some high histamine drinks…bucket gets even higher and may start to overflow.
Histamine is a wonderful thing. It’s a neurotransmitter with important roles in the body. It triggers the immune system and purposely causes inflammation when it is needed. The problem arises when we have too much histamine for whatever reason, such as the gut is in bad health and can’t break down the histamine we are eating or producing. Histamine causes the blood vessels in your body to dilate. Ever notice you get a congested face or a runny nose before or during a migraine? You can thank histamine for that.
So what is the solution to this problem? Things can get very technical very quickly so I’m going to give you an overview to help you get started. We need to reduce overall inflammation and histamine overload in the body to start seeing results. There are quite a few reasons we have too much histamine but it can almost always be reduced by taking care of issues in the gut such as bacteria overgrowth and candida.
Aside from the root causes of histamine overload, getting started on a low histamine diet will give you some relief while you work on healing your gut. This is a general list of high histamine foods to avoid. These lists don’t take into account individual food allergies so you must listen to your body and compensate for reactions to the foods listed below. Making your own food lists would be most effective.
High Histamine Foods
Most Citrus Fruits
Dairy and Yogurt
Low Histamine Foods
Freshly Cooked Meats
Most Leafy Greens (except spinach)
Fresh to Frozen Foods
A note on leftover food. Eating leftovers such as leftover chicken always gives me a reaction, including headaches, digestive issues and mood problems. When food sits in the fridge it accumulates histamine. Some of my worst migraines came from eating leftovers.
While eliminating histamine foods will bring most immediate relief, we don’t want to eliminate these foods forever. The point is to repair the body, reduce inflammation and histamine so we can feel good again, not live on a restricted tiny list of foods all our lives.
SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth) and candida in the gut are one of the primary reasons we are feeling crappy, to begin with. Our goal is to reduce the bad gut bacteria and yeast which reduces inflammation, helps us absorb our foods better and relieves a large number of symptoms aside from headache relief.
I have an entire article on SIBO here but I will recap because repairing your gut is vital to eliminating migraines. You have to reduce the bad bacteria and yeast in the gut. They are nasty little buggers that steal your food, brain power and happiness. Taking an anti-bacterial/viral herb and eating a low fodmap diet will greatly reduce these buggers. Here are some great natural bugger killers.
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Oil of Oregano in capsule form is a very strong antibiotic but is only recommended for a short amount of time. It has the power to truly wipe out all gut bacteria which isn’t what we are going for. Use with caution.
Olive Leaf is a great choice for an antibiotic and it also kills candida. It has some benefits also such as lowered blood pressure and cholesterol. It’s one of my favorite choices!
Caprylic Acid has many antibiotic and anti-fungal properties and is great for brain health. It’s naturally found in coconut oil in small amounts.
Cat’s Claw or Una de Gato is another great antibiotic and also helps get rid of parasites. It has strong anti-inflammatory properties and many people testify it helps with arthritis as well.
Along with eliminating those high histamine foods, eating a low fodmap diet is recommended. This will help to starve out the remaining bad bacteria and yeasts in the bowels.
So repairing your gut lining and lowering your bodies inflammation response is the goal. Here are additional tips I have used to help repair the gut. Do not underestimate these suggestions just because it’s not a pill to take. Anything that greatly reduces stress and anxiety will lower inflammation in the body.
- Deep breathing exercises (don’t laugh, this actually helps turn off that fight or flight stress response in the body)
- Loving who you are and not worrying about other’s opinions
I added in a few supplements to aid in the gut repair after a month or 2 of the antiviral/antibiotics.
Quercetin- This is a great anti-inflammatory and reduces the amount of histamine made by the mast cells.
L-Glutamine is an essential amino acid that aids in intestinal repair and mucus regulation.
Probiotics are essential for rebalancing the gut bacteria. If you have histamine issues you need to be selective on which probiotics you use. Many can create histamine’s in the system or be a trigger for a reaction. I have found that Prescript Assist is a histamine friendly probiotic.
So let’s recap:
Eliminate high histamine and high fodmap foods from your meals. Watch for foods your allergic too, keeping a food diary will really help you track your symptoms after you eat certain foods such dairy which can be a trigger for some people.
Work on repairing the gut by adding in anti-bacterial and anti-viral supplements. Add some friendly gut supporting supplements. I also recommend a liquid vitamin B complex. Most people with digestive/bowel issues are low in B12. Magnesium is also essential for nerve and muscle function.
Add in some stress reducing lifestyle habits such as yoga and deep breathing.
I started this process one step at a time, first by eliminating high histamine foods. I have had great success in reducing my migraines that were debilitating. Everyone’s body is a little different so you may need to tweak a food here or there. This is about listening to your body and what it needs. Our bodies have a way of communicating with us, telling us something is wrong and a headache is definitely a warning sign something is off.
I would love to hear your comments about what has worked for you in eliminating migraines!