Migraine Triggers and Causes – Food List and Cure

Suffering yet again from a bad bout of Migraine headache? Read on to know about Migraine Triggers and learn how you can keep Migraine headaches at bay.

What is Migraine?

Migraine Headache Pain
Picture 1 – Migraine Pain
Source – witness

If you are having migraine for quiet sometime, you probably know what it is? Even if you are not having migraine, you must have heard the term repeated by those who suffer from it. Migraine is actually a health condition that is characterized by severe headaches.

The condition usually affects only one side of the head. It is mainly characterized by acute pain in the head.  Accompanying Migraine symptoms include nausea, vomiting and disturbances in vision.

Migraine is also known as “megrim”. It is more common in women than men. It typically affects people aged between 15 and 55.

Migraine Triggers

A variety of factors can work as migraine causes. These factors that give rise to migraine are known as Migraine Triggers. Migraine Triggers can vary from person to person. What triggers migraines headaches in one person may not give rise to similar symptoms in the other. In general however, some factors and circumstances have been seen to trigger migraine in many persons.

Go through this Migraine Triggers list and know about some of the common Migraine Triggers:


Weather change is a very common cause of migraine. Sudden changes in humidity and temperature are often seen as a prime reason behind migraine headaches in many people. Rapid rise or fall of barometric pressure is also attributed to the appearance of this syndrome.


Stress is one of the main factors behind migraine headaches. Migraine Triggers commonly arise in people who lead a stressful life. Stress gives rise to a physical reaction resulting in release of nerve-stimulant substances into the bloodstream.

Migraine Triggers – Diet

Dietary habits can also be a factor behind migraine headaches. People who do not eat regularly or have an erratic dietary routine are commonly seen to suffer from migraines.


People who stay awake for long hours without sleep or do not sleep well enough are also found to have migraine headaches. Sleeping for longer periods can also result in migraine attacks.

Migraine Triggers – Red Wine

Red wine is found to be a frequent cause of migraine headache. In some cases, even 20 ml of Red wine has been found to give rise to the condition.

Migraine Triggers – Alcohol

Alcohol consumption is one of the most common factors for migraine. This is the reason why many alcoholics are often seen to suffer from this syndrome.


Aged cheese and hard cheese are found to be a major cause for migraine headaches. Many people have found a direct correlation between cheese intake and migraine attacks.

Bright Light

Sensitivity to bright lights also works as a significant factor. People who have a lower tolerance level for light spectrums above normal threshold are a common sufferer. In some people, television light, flash lights and bright sunlight are also seen to give rise to migraine attacks. Bright light is one of the common Ocular Migraine Triggers or Optical Migraine Triggers.

Migraine Triggers – Caffeine

Caffeine intake in high doses can lead to migraine apart from anxiety, irritability, insomnia and other problems. Caffeine is not only present in coffee but also in other beverages like tea and cola. Higher consumption of all these products can result in this syndrome.

Migraine Triggers – Chocolate

Chocolate is a rich source of caffeine. While eating chocolate in low doses can boost your mood, increased intake of the food can give you migraine headaches. Chocolate consumption is one of the main reasons for Migraine Triggers in children.


Dehydration can give rise to migraine in different ways. Lack of enough water in the body can result in chemical reactions in the body that may affect the nerve functions. Low water level can also cause concentration of blood stream with toxins. This can also cause an irritation of the nerves and lead to migraine attacks.


Nuts contain a component called tannin acid which can give rise to migraine attacks in many patients. Cashews, Pecans and walnuts are rich sources of tannic acid which makes many people suffer from this syndrome.

Migraine Triggers – Food

Sensitivity to certain foods can also trigger migraine headaches in many people. Excitotoxin, an additive component in foods, is commonly held responsible for migraine attacks.

Migraine Triggers Food List

Here is a list of some of the major foods that trigger migraines in people. It contains edible items other than the ones mentioned above :

  • Avocados
  • Dried and processed meats
  • Chicken Livers
  • Sourdough breads
  • Ripe bananas
  • Anchovies
  • Fresh yeast bread
  • Sauerkraut
  • Sugar substitutes
  • Vegetables, such as beans
  • Chilli peppers
  • Olives
  • Pickles
  • Beer
  • Champagne
  • Vermouth
  • Pickled herrings
  • Canned soups or any other processed food
  • Foods rich in soy products
  • Citrus fruits
  • Aspartame

Migraine headaches normally arise within two days after consumption of these foods. However, it must always be remembered that Migraine Triggers differs from person to person. A food that causes the syndrome in one person cannot be expected to give rise to it in another individual. So a person must properly identify the Migraine Food Triggers and avoid them instead of staying away from all the aforementioned foods.

Migraine Triggers Cure

While factors like weather changes cannot be avoided, lifestyle modifications can go a long way in curing migraine.

Migraine triggers like stress and sleep can be avoided by making certain lifestyle changes. Yoga, meditation, exercise and soothing music act as great stress busters.

Individuals who suffer from migraine attacks due to sleep or diet irregularities should follow proper sleep and diet schedules.

Increasing water intake on a regular basic can also let a person avoid migraine attacks due to dehydration. If any food is identified as a migraine trigger the sufferer must eliminate it from his or her diet.

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