Some people who suffer from migraine headaches know precisely what causes their attacks. So they rarely have them anymore because they avoid those triggers.
The rest of us? Well, it’s not so straightforward.
We know there’s a trigger, of course. We can often sense when a migraine is about to happen. And we might even have the feeling the headaches are linked to what we eat.
But that’s where things can get really frustrating. Because spotting a consistent pattern seems impossible no matter how hard you’ve tried.
If you’re prone to migraine attacks and can’t figure out your own triggers, new research has revealed a massive clue. And this finding could be a game-changer.
It may even help you finally learn how to avoid migraine headaches for good.
HIDDEN migraine trigger revealed
Remember the “Chinese food headache?” It’s just what it sounded like. It was a headache (often a migraine in those prone to them) that some folks would get after eating Chinese takeout.
The culprit, in most cases, was determined to be the flavor-enhancer monosodium glutamate (MSG) that a lot of Chinese restaurants used in their dishes.
Most of those restaurants did the responsible thing and have done away with MSG. So the “Chinese food headache” is, for the most part, a thing of the past.
But the rest of the food industry has quietly doubled down on this potential migraine trigger. And it gets worse. It’s not only in more foods than ever before but it’s also HIDDEN under other names.
I’ll tell you how to spot it in a moment. And if you battle migraines with an unknown trigger, you’re definitely going to want to know this.
Because animal studies appear to confirm what people have been saying about MSG and migraine headaches all along. Experiments on mice found that glutamate, the “G” in MSG, can slip inside the brain.
Now, that alone isn’t too unusual. After all, glutamate is a natural neurotransmitter. That means that the neurons that are part of the switchboard” for your brain’s internal communications network use glutamate to pass along messages or impulses.
But the trouble appears to be that when large amounts of glutamate from MSG flood your brain, you can end up with far too much of it, basically causing a system overload. That leads to one what one report on the new study described as a “tsunami” of glutamate activity in the brain… or “plumes” of the stuff erupting in the space between neurons.
And that, in turn, could trigger those painful and debilitating migraine headaches, especially if you’re sensitive to MSG.
How to spot headache-linked MSG
Obviously, your best bet is to avoid MSG to see if you have fewer migraines. But, as I mentioned earlier, the stuff is hard to spot.
MSG has such a bad rap that food manufacturers would rather you not know it’s in their products. So many literally hide it under a bunch of different names.
In addition to searching the ingredients panel for “monosodium glutamate” or MSG, look for these other potential MSG pseudonyms…
- hydrolyzed protein
- hydrolyzed corn
- textured protein
- autolyzed yeast
- yeast nutrient
- yeast extract
They’re all basically codenames for MSG. And those aren’t the only ones. Plug the search term “other names for monosodium glutamate” into your favorite search engine for a more complete list.
Better yet, cut back as much as you possibly can on processed foods. Because the truth is whether they have MSG or not, they’re pretty bad for you and can contain other migraine triggers.
(Check out my earlier report Ultra-processed foods fast forward aging for just one of the many things they’ve been linked to.)
Besides, if you stick to the outer aisles of the grocery store… buying fresh produce, meats, and dairy… it’ll make shopping a whole lot easier on your eyes since you won’t have to squint at all those labels.
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