(Closed) Migraines, headaches, etc… wellness, gluten free..? Sorry so long!

posted 7 years ago in Wellness
Post # 3
47 posts
  • Wedding: May 2014

I have horrible migraines too (since high school), but not to scare you this sounds like something more serious. Definitely meet with the neurologist and see if you can get the MRI with contrast approved to rule out a brain tumor (again not trying to scare you) because often the first signs are headaches and vision problems.

If it just migraines, which I honestly hope it is, then the neurologist can prescribe medications. I used to get 4 to 5 migraines a week and was put on a preventative medication (beta-blocker actually) and I have only had 1 in the last 2 months.

Post # 4
2401 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

… So, where did the gluten idea come in? 

I’m sorry to say this because I am pretty opinionated on it, but I feel that most gluten free diets are a fad and have no health benefits for the majority of people. I used to be a dietician at a hospital and when I started, about 1 out of 1000 meals we issued via doctor’s orders were gluten free. These people had serious digestive issues and we catagorized this as an extreme diet for only patients that were evaluated thoroughly by doctors. 

About four years later, the amount of people requesting glutten free has taken off like crazy. A friend of mine who still works as a dietician in that same hospital has told me that it is now 1 in 50 people get these diets and more than 3/4ths of those patients request it. A lot of the patients say it is because they have a strange illness they cannot explain. Others think they can lose weight from it. None of that group has backing from their doctors or nurses. 

I’m not trying to stop you from eating gluten free or make a big fuss over someone wanting to try it. I am more of saying that gluten free will probably not fix your eye and head issues. Even though it may take some time and can be frustrating, I would say the best thing you could do would be to trust your doctor’s assesments and to keep pushing for a cure. Radical diets may just hurt the process. 

Post # 5
2401 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

Oh, and if you do suspect that it may be food related, how about trying to keep a food diary every day. And then, mark when you get the headaches or eye issues. That way, you can see if there is a trigger food or ingredient that you may be missing. 

Post # 6
5147 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

My sister and I both suffer from migraines. She gets them more frequently and severe than me (she was getting them every week, and bad enough that she’s had to go to the ER on occasion, had an MRI, etc.).

I haven’t had any migraines since I switched to a mostly Primal diet. I used to get them about every other month.

My sister switched to mostly Primal a few months ago after reading one of my books about it, and her migraines have drastically decreased (like 2 migraines in several months, rather than 2 a week).

This is the book: The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson

Post # 7
242 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I’ve been in the migraine camp since I was 10. When you went to the eye doctor did you need glasses or a change to a current perscription? That was my initating cause of my migraines, I needed glasses and I was getting a severe migraine once a month, when I got my glasses the frequency went down dramaticly.

I agree with ohmybears, keep a food diary, this is the easiest way to rule out it’s caused by food, and look for patterns outside of gulten, a lot of people have triggars from Milk, Nuts, chocolate and even aspertame.

Also, have you been feeling more stressed lately? I find a major sourse of my headaches to be from tension which can lead to tension headaches and migraines for me. I would recommend looking in meassage or even possibly a chiroprator. My grandma swears one chiroprator visit cured her of her migraines, I find mine helps with less frequent and severe headaches, but he does a lot of muscle work because I slouch very badly at work which in turn causes tension in my shoulders, neck and scalp (did you know people can hold tenision in your scalp? I didn’t until my masage therapist told me)

Good luck and I hope you get everything sorted out.

Post # 9
3367 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

My mom, sister, and I all have chronic migraines.  Dehydration and light seem to trigger mine most.  It did seem to get better with juicing, but I think that was mainly due to being better hydrated.  I am so sorry you’re dealing with this and I wish I had better info for you… just wanted to send some support!

eta Accupuncture really lessened the frequency and severity of my headaches.

Post # 12
583 posts
Busy bee

MAGNESIUM SUPPLEMENTS!!!  Seriously ladies, I had the *worst* migraines that almost made me fail a college course once because I had a migraine the night before and was up all night throwing up.

Through extensive research, we stumbled upon taking magnesium supplements as a cure.  I have not had a migraine since November 2011, about 3 weeks after beginning the supplements and increasing magnesium-rich foods in my diet (they take a while to build up in your system if you have a severe deficiency which I must have had).  I used to have migraines at least bi-weekly and now it’s been 9 months since my last.  

I also saw this in a Migraine Magazine at my dr.’s office, and basically every article began with “if you magnesium supplements didn’t work for you…”  Supplements and eating more almonds, spinach, and soy beans – at least try it, it’s not expensive and really can’t hurt.

Post # 13
4474 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Sorry about all you’re going through.  I get headaches at the drop of a hat, so I understand the frustration and pain.  First off, it sounds like it could be a few things, but I’ll give you my impressions based on what you’ve written:


You said it started with a new computer.  That sounds like an eyestrain-related thing.  One monitor I work on sometimes has a tendency to “shimmer”, and that always leads to eyestrain-related headaches.  Just working on it a few hours every few weeks will screw my eyes up for the rest of the day.  When you work on the computer, make sure you take frequent breaks and focus on distant things, and stretch a bit.  A monitor that’s not working properly could be doing it.  Or it could be too small a screen, too bright a screen, etc.  Take a few measures to reduce eyestrain, and see if it helps.


Secondly, I don’t know what you eat, how much sleep you get, or how much exercise you do, but I do find that I always get more headaches when I’m not taking good care of myself.  I’m with ohmybears on the gluten-free thing being a fad, but nutrition is an important thing to consider.  Cutting back processed foods, eating more nutrient-rich foods like fruits and vegetables, exercising more, and getting enough sleep really help cut down my headaches a lot.  There’s something to what one bee said about magnesium, Americans in general don’t get enough magnesium in their diets.  Americans also don’t tend to eat a lot of leafy greens and whole grains, natural sources of magnesium (along with fiber, iron, and all sorts of other good stuff).  With proper nutrition, you might not even need to resort to supplements.

Post # 14
1152 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

You might “grow out of them.”  I used to get migraines that started just this way, and they were mostly hormonal, as I went through puberty and later came off birth control, they got worse and worse.  Eventually they went away.  I still get the eye thing, but take an excedrin the second it starts and have thus far been okay.

Post # 15
265 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

@ohmybears48:  You’re right that some of the increase is just a fad, a result of people thinking that a Girlfriend diet is better for your waistline or general health. Some of the increase, though, is due to increased awareness that a number of people seem to have some kind of sensitivity (both celiac and otherwise).

I could get into all of the nitty gritty details about how much of a difference its made for me, but I won’t unless you’re interested. It’s definitely more concrete than just some unexplainable illness, though. Long story short, my doctor suggested trying to go gluten-free after a decade+ of daily digestive problems and years of testing every other potentially problematic food, and within a month, my stomach problems were gone. I don’t jump on bandwagons, and I didn’t have improvement (psychosomatic or otherwise) with any of the other strategies I tried.

@dancingunderthestars: Hopefully you just have a weird sinus infection! I get migraines on the right side of my head, too, and they definitely cause light-sensitivity. Mine tend not to be around my eye, but it can feel like it when I’m subjecting myself to light. Have you mapped out how often or severely they’re happening compared to what point you’re at in your menstrual cycle? Mine are almost entirely correlated to hormone changes, especially when I’ve tried to be on birth control.

(By the way, the frequency of mine have definitely dropped since I stopped having gluten, but I don’t know if it’s a coincidence or not. Just cutting out gluten isn’t that extreme once you get into new food routines. It’s still easy to go to restaurants, etc., as you can still have rice, corn, dairy, etc.)

Post # 16
772 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

This is an old thread, but I just want to mention that all of my migranes (which I had for years) went away when I stopped eating processed food in college. I read Dr. Weil’s book and cut out canola oil, and stopped buying any food that didn’t have ingredients in it I would use to make that same food at home. 

This meant I could basically only buy meat, cheese, rice, vegetables, and fruit.  At first I read labels on crackers and such, but eventually I just stopped eating that kind of processed stuff (which your body doesn’t need anyway).  I shopped the perimeter of the grocery store, and I did find that there are a few brands of crackers  at Trader Joe’s and Grocery Stores that were ok (AkMak and Wasa Crackers). 

I am now primal/paleo for the most part like Abbyful. I realize that my earlier attempts also cut out a lot of the things that this diet does, and I really believe that the root cause for some people might be related to stabilizers and oxidized fats associated with processed foods, not just traditional food allergies like gluten, eggs, fish, nuts, dairy.  Though you should keep a food log.  

You need to go see a good neurologist.  You may be having what are called visual migraines. Before my migranes stopped and I started earting cleaner, my migranes shifted to visual migraines where I had no pain, but just narrowing visual field and darkening.  It’s like temporary blindness and it is so trippy and terrifying.  For me, one way to diagnose a migraine from another type of headache is the 1) inability to read.  If you look at a book you can see the text, but you can’t read it due to the affect on the eye’s and the inability to focus properly; 2) Pain that comes in contraction like waves that you can count.  The best way to ride out a migraine is to close your eyes and sleep in a dark room.  As the head aches get better, the length of the “waves” of pain get longer.  As you approach the worst they are super short.  

Also, if this started when you used the monitor, can you buy a monitor at a store with a good return policy and try using it? If it solves your problem it is cheaper than the medical costs and maybe work will pay for it.  If not, return it.  Another trigger for my migraines is being outside in the sun without sunglasses.  It causes me to squint and the facial tension sometimes will cause a migraine for me. 

I would say I get a migraine about once every year and a half or two years at this point.  At worst, I used to get them every few weeks, and once had one that lasted for three days. 

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