Natural Remedies for Headaches
Headaches often get brushed aside as nothing more than a common complaint, a quit-your-whining-and-start-working type of thing…if only. While many people suffer them at one point or another, rarity is not the best way to judge just how nasty something can be. The pain of a headache can make day-to-day life a miserable challenge, and forces us to head straight for the aspirin. This is a sticky situation, because ultimately that will only perpetuate the problem. A headache is a good indicator that your body is missing something – maybe you need to take a breather, drink some water or change the way you eat. You may have a vitamin or nutrient deficiency or a food sensitivity that is causing this built-up tension. Headaches can be triggered by stress, fatigue, allergies, eyestrain, poor posture, alcohol or drugs, low blood sugar, hormones, constipation and nutritional deficiencies. Your body is telling you that something needs to change, so begin to heed those signals and use some of these headache remedies, which include herbs, vitamins, posture correction, diet changes and more, to overcome headaches in a natural and healthy way.
Not only does lavender smell great it’s also a useful home remedy for headaches and migraine pain. Lavender oil can be either inhaled or applied topically. Two to four drops for every two to three cups of boiling water are recommended when inhaling lavender-oil vapors as a headache treatment. Unlike many medicinal oils, this home remedy can also be safely applied externally without the need to dilute it. Lavender oil should never be taken orally.
Magnesium is one of the most successful headache remedies, first of all, because it’s much safer than taking a painkiller. People who suffer from serious headaches, like migraines, often have low levels of magnesium, and several studies suggest that magnesium may reduce the frequency of migraine attacks in people with low levels. To increase your daily magnesium intake, eat more fiber. Dietary sources of magnesium include beans, whole grains, seeds, nuts and vegetables like broccoli, squash and leafy greens. Dairy products, meats, chocolate and coffee also include decent levels of magnesium.
Peppermint is a soothing home remedy that has been shown to benefit tension headaches. This fresh-smelling oil has vasoconstriction and vasodilating properties, which help control blood flow in the body. Headaches and migraine pain are often due to poor blood flow, and peppermint oil helps to open and close the vessels that promote flow. Peppermint home remedies also open up the sinuses so that more oxygen can get into the bloodstream.
One of the most useful home remedies for reducing headaches and migraine pain involves making changes to your diet. Certain foods have been shown to affect the frequency and severity of headaches and migraine pain, including dairy; chocolate; peanut butter; certain fruits, such as avocado, banana, and citrus; onions; meats with nitrates, such as bacon and hot dogs; foods containing monosodium glutamate (MSG); foods containing tyramine, an amino acid found in red wine; and foods that are fermented or pickled. Keep track of these trigger foods and your reaction to them with a food diary.
One of the best things about chiropractic care is that it’s a drug-free and surgery-free path to healing naturally. The chiropractor can reduce oxidative stress in the body, just like an antioxidant. Oxidative stress is the damage that occurs when free radicals outnumber the body’s antioxidants. Oxidative stress damages all body cell components: proteins, lipids and DNA. Several clinical trials indicate that spinal manipulation therapy may help treat headaches. In one such study, 22 % of those who received chiropractic manipulation reported more than a 90 % reduction of headaches; meanwhile, 49 percent reported that the headache intensity was significantly reduced after receiving chiropractic treatment. Chiropractic adjustments or spinal manipulation helps to alleviate the stress of your system. Studies suggest that chiropractic manipulation reduces tension and migraine headaches. The Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College conducted a study involving 729 subjects, of whom 613 received chiropractic care and their outcomes ranged from good to excellent, indicating that it’s a positive and beneficial headache remedy.