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Wanted: Migraine Triggers

After much research in the personal lab of pint-sized me, I started to identify the migraine troublemakers. It was time to kick them to the curb.

What were my migraine triggers and where had they been hiding? Here are some biggies that really made a difference to me.

  1. Caffeine – aside from the obvious coffee, tea, cola drinks and energy drinks, it also can be hidden in:
    1. Decaffeinated coffee and tea (only herbal tea is truly decaffeinated)
    2. Hot chocolate
    3. Coffee ice cream
    4. Energy water
    5. Non-cola sodas (hello Mountain Dew!)
    6. Medications (both prescribed and over-the-counter)
  1. Nuts – nuts are pretty obvious when alone in a bowl, but their secret hiding spots include:
    1. Granola and cereal
    2. Bread
    3. Energy/meal replacement bars
    4. Thai and Asian dishes
    5. Pesto sauce
    6. Desserts (carrot cake, macaroons)
    7. Ice cream
  1. Artificial sweeteners – this one is tricky to escape, but here’s where I found this migraine culprit:
    1. Diet soda and juice
    2. Low fat yogurt
    3. Candy and even gum
  1. Chocolate – chocolate usually isn’t hidden, but I did discover hiding in this Mexican dish:
    1. Mole
  1. Preservatives – I enjoy colors, but not in my food when it comes in the form of red 20 yellow 5, etc. Watch out for the preservatives in the following foods:
    1. Brightly colored processed food
    2. Packaged baked goods
    3. Hot dogs, lunchmeat and bacon
    4. Chinese food (MSG)

So out these triggers came from my diet and in came some migraine-friendly alternatives.

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