you take that prescription for your migraine headache, consider
this: There are now several natural treatment options.We'll discuss them further down, but first, let's look at what a
is a condition in which a person's blood vessels in the brain expand,
causing extreme pain.The National Headache Foundation says
that over 29.5 million Americans experience migraine attacks.Symptoms of these attacks are usually (but not always) medium to
extreme pain on one side of the head--or less commonly, both sides.This pain is usually described as throbbing or pulsating, and gets
worse with physical activity.Other symptoms include nausea
and sometimes vomiting, sensitivity to sound or light, and an "aura"
just before the migraine.This aura could bring light flashes,
blind spots or zig zags in your vision.They also sometimes
cause tingling in the arm or leg.
are a few natural remedies that some use for migraines:
- Feverfew.This is an herb which has been used for hundreds of years to treat
headaches (including migraines), arthritis, fever and pain--especially
in Europe.In the 1980s, its popularity as a treatment alternative
for migraines really exploded.There have been several studies
of feverfew, one of which examined 170 people, some who took the
herb and others who took placebo.Those who took the real
herb had a significant decrease in the number of migraines.However, one review of five separate studies that involved 343
people together concluded the evidence is not convincing that
feverfew is an effective treatment.Some of feverfew's side
effects include gas, abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, nervousness
and vomiting.Also, keep in mind that feverfew's safety
for pregnant or nursing women has not been determined.
(or 5-HTP).This is a compound produced inside a person's
body from tryptophan, an amino acid.The body uses it to
make serotonin and a hormone called melatonin.This compound
is available also as a supplement.It's made from the seeds
of the Griffonia simplicifolia, an African plant.Some studies
have suggested that 5-HTP is helpful in preventing migraines and
reducing their severity and frequency.however, no large,
controlled, randomized study has been conducted yet.
- Magnesium.This mineral is found in foods like nuts, green leafy vegetables,
whole grains, and seeds.Everybody needs magnesium to produce
300 biochemical reactions in their bodies.It also regulates
a person's blood-sugar level and is used for normal nerve and
muscle function, immune function, heart rhythm, bone health and
blood pressure.Several studies have shown that magnesium
might have significant effectiveness in treating migraines, possibly
lowering their frequency as much as 41.6 percent.Possible
side effects include digestive irritation and diarrhea.
- Butterbur.This herb's scientific name is "Petasites hybridus."
It's a shrub which grows in Europe, northern Asia and some areas
in North America.Medicines are usually made out of extracts
of the herb and have been used to treat stomach cramps, coughs,
asthma, allergies, and yes, migraines.There have been several
studies that show butterbur is effective as a migraine treatment.Side effects could include indigestion, fatigue vomiting, nausea,
constipation or diarrhea.Also, since butterbur is a member
of the ragwood family, those with certain allergies might experience
allergic reactions.Women who are pregnant or nursing or
those with liver or kidney disease should not take this herb.
more information about any of these treatment alternatives, consult