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Foods to cut down on to prevent migraines

Foods to cut down on to prevent migraines

Caffeine is one of the known causes that induces migraines

While there is no known cause for a migraine, according to Dr Saurabh Jain, physician at Mumbai’s Cumballa Hill Hospital, he believes that our diet plays an important role in controlling the frequency of this condition. At the onset of a headache, which could blow up into a nightmare of a migraine, Dr Jain suggests you stay away from certain types of foods and keep yourself well hydrated. Here are some of the triggers for migraines:

chocolate by longitudelatitudePhotograph by Longitudelatitude/Flickr


“Avoid anything that includes caffeine including chocolates, carbonated drinks, coffee and tea, of course, as soon as you get an aura of a headache and are prone to migraines,” says Dr Jain.


Stay away from foods that include monosodium glutamate (MSG), commonly used in preparing Chinese dishes.

cheeses_selectionCheese contains tyramine, an amino acid that can cause migraines


Tyramine is an amino acid commonly found in cheese and onions and is also known to trigger migraines

Sodium Nitrate

“This is found in preservatives. Usually sodium nitrate is used to preserve meat and fish. So stay away from foods such as hot dogs.”


“This is found in sodas and is absorbed into the blood rapidly. It also causes a rush of too much blood to the head, which can cause migraines.”

Spinach - Logan IngallsSpinach could help prevent migraines. Photograph by Longann Ingalls/Flickr

However, there are also several foods that can be included in your daily diet, which can prevent the frequency of migraines. Says Dr Jain, “Green leafy vegetables, especially spinach, contain antioxidants. Spinach is also alkaline in nature and prevents acidity, which is one of the causes for a migraine. Also include broccoli, dates, almonds, figs, flax seeds and chia seeds into your diet. Almonds especially have a high level of Omega 3 Fatty Acids, which can cut down on migraines and headaches. Berries are anti-inflammatory and carrots and beetroot, which contain Vitamin A are also good to prevent migraines.”