Headaches are often associated with stress or lack of body rest. Though headaches can also be triggered by intake of food or drinks consumed.
However, the sensitivity of each person to certain types of food or drinks will vary. Headaches due to food are also difficult to recognize because these effects occur around 30 minutes to 72 hours after consuming certain foods.
Influence of Diet
The risk of headaches can be influenced by eating patterns in two ways.
- Certain foods are considered as triggers for headaches.
- Poor eating habits, such as late eating or lack of fluid intake can also affect the risk of headaches.
Especially for women, premenstrual periods can make you more sensitive to foods that cause headaches. One type of food may not cause headaches when consumed after menstruation, compared to one week before.
Headaches sometimes appear unexpectedly. Starting from the pain that feels for a moment, until the pain throbs for hours. It could be that it started from your consumption some time before. The following are the types of foods and drinks that you need to be aware of.
- Limit your daily intake of caffeine to reduce the headaches you feel. It is recommended to consume only twice as much serving caffeine or a total of less than 200 mg per day.
- Cheese that contains a lot of thyamine can trigger headaches. The longer the age of the cheese, the greater the content of tyramine. Other foods that are high in thyamine, such as processed meat, pickles, onions, olive oil, some types of grains, raisins, avocados, nuts.
- Headaches can also be triggered by food additives, such as food coloring and nitrates. Like tyramine, these substances can increase blood flow to the head and cause headaches in some people.
- Some people feel dizzy after consuming alcohol. The reaction is mostly from red wine, compared to white wine. Generally, those who are sensitive to red wine, also have the same tendency towards chocolate.
- If you often feel headaches after consuming ice cream or cold drinks, don’t blame the food or drink. Actually what you feel is the body’s reaction to cold. Generally headaches only last about 30-60 seconds.
The first step that must be taken in regulating nutrition to prevent headaches is to adopt a balanced and healthy diet. It is important to get used to eating three meals a day plus one snack at night. Or divided into six small meals a day. Also note adequate sources of protein and avoid excessively high sugar foods.
Some foods that can help with headaches include:
- Meat, mushrooms, spinach, broccoli, soybeans, almonds, whole grains, wheat, eggs, yogurt, low-fat milk, high in riboflavin or vitamin B2. This type of food and drink is thought to reduce migraine headaches. But research still needs to continue to be sure.
- Foods that contain magnesium can also help relieve migraine headaches. As for foods that contain high magnesium levels are green vegetables, pumpkin, almonds, tuna, tuna, low-fat or kefir yogurt, black beans, lentils, avocados, figs, bananas, dark chocolate, spinach, tofu, edamame, whole wheat bread .
- Potatoes, watermelons, tomato sauce, beets, salmon, cereals, nuts, milk, vegetables and dried fruits that contain lots of potassium are referred to as one of the minerals that can help relieve headaches. But research still needs to be continued to ensure the effectiveness of potassium in treating headaches.
- If you have felt pressing pain in your head, chances are you have a headache that is triggered by stress. Eating foods high in magnesium or coenzyme q10 can be an option.
If the headaches caused by eating patterns are often disturbing, you can keep a diary that specifically records the time, type of food and the amount, as well as the symptoms of the headache that is felt. This will help identify foods that should be avoided. If you find that your headaches are not unbearable after consuming certain foods or drinks, see your doctor immediately to get further treatment.