Thursday, September 1, 2016

Chocolate and Migraines: Good News


For those of you who suffer with migraines or know someone who does, there's good news! Researchers from Missouri State University say an animal study shows that dietary supplements of cocoa might repress inflammatory responses in the brain linked to migraines.

I'm not surprised by this. Chocolate and red wine seem to be too food items that people think trigger migraines. However, whenever I get a migraine, I eat chocolate or drink red wine (if it's afternoon.. I still can't get past that) or drink a coke. It works for me.

This study on the benefits of chocolate and migraines was presented at the International Headache Society's 14th Congress in Philadelphia several years ago. Basically the result shows that consuming a diet enriched with 10 percent cocoa increased levels of anti-inflammatory compounds in the brain, as well as repressing levels of pro-inflammatory processes.

Considering that 36 million Americans have migraines, this is definitely good news.
Read more here.

So throw off the myth that chocolate causes migraines. It might be more about what's in the chocolate: how much sugar, milk, or additives. A different study showed that chocolate contains tyramine and phenylethylamine, and although that can trigger migraines, they are found in such low concentrations that it's very rare that chocolate alone can bring on a migraine.

Here's a list of Food Triggers according to Health.com. Before you blame the chocolate, check to see if you didn't have some cheese or raisins or bacon at the same meal.

Food triggers
Here's a partial list of major food triggers, according to the National Headache Foundation.

* Ripened cheeses (such as cheddar, Emmentaler, Stilton, Brie, and Camembert)
* Chocolate
* Marinated, pickled, or fermented food
* Foods that contain nitrites or nitrates (bacon, hot dogs) or MSG (soy sauce, meat tenderizers, seasoned salt)
* Sour cream
* Nuts, peanut butter
* Sourdough bread
* Broad beans, lima beans, fava beans, snow peas
* Figs, raisins, papayas, avocados, red plums
* Citrus fruits
* Excessive amounts (more than 2 cups total) of caffeinated beverages such as tea, coffee, or cola
* Alcohol (including red wine and beer)

My migraine cures are listed as migraine causes. So wrong--at least for me!

Chocolate is so good for you in so many ways!

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