Headaches & Migraines

March 11, 2024

Whether you or someone you love is having occasional nuisance headaches or debilitating migraines, those of us who experience these know how life disrupting they can be. As dietitians, our job is to help do the digging to figure out the root cause your symptoms are actually stemming from. In today’s show, we’ll cover possible causes for headaches and migraines, common food triggers you may want to avoid, solutions for if you feel a headache or migraine coming on, and what a brain-supporting diet might look like for those who want to be headache and migraine free.

Listen below, or subscribe to our podcasts through Apple Podcast or Spotify.

Join our Dishing Up Nutrition Facebook Community!

This private group moderated by Nutritional Weight & Wellness nutritionists and nutrition educators provides our Dishing Up Nutrition podcast and radio show listeners with a safe, supportive community to ask questions, share ideas, get inspired, and access special Dishing Up Nutrition bonus content.

Podcast Powered by Podbean

Similar Podcast Episodes:

Print Transcript


MELANIE: Welcome to Dishing Up Nutrition brought to you by Nutritional Weight and Wellness. I'm Melanie Beasley and I'm a Registered and Licensed Dietitian. If you're listening to this podcast episode, it might be because you or a loved one suffers from headaches or migraines, and you're looking for solutions. Whether it be an occasional nuisance headache or the debilitating migraine, those of us who experience these know how life disrupting they can be.

And especially for us women who statistically experience more frequent and more severe migraines than men. Lucky us. If this resonates with you, we invite you to stay tuned because we have some information that could be life changing. I'm here today with my cohost Brandy Buro, who is also a Registered and Licensed Dietitian . Thanks for joining me today, Brandy.

BRANDY: Well, thanks for having me, Mel. I'm really happy to be here with you today. I'm excited about this topic.

MELANIE: Have you had migraines?

BRANDY: You know, occasionally, but I would not say that I'm prone to them. You know, I'll get headaches occasionally, but I usually know what it's from. So I feel very blessed in that regard for sure. But so many of my clients suffer from severe headaches and migraines that I know it's a really pervasive problem. So I'm excited to be doing this episode so that hopefully we can help people find relief today.


BRANDY: And as dietitians, it's our job to help you do the digging to figure out what your symptoms are actually stemming from. So we really want to understand the underlying root cause versus just treating that symptom, because headaches are going to be a symptom of a larger problem.

And this whole process takes a little bit of time and dedication, but it is necessary to help people get relief from their headache sustainably, something that's going to last.

MELANIE: And then they love us.

What can cause headaches or migraines?

BRANDY: And then they love us. They love us forever. And being able to go about your day pain free is really our ultimate goal. So first I just wanted to go over some ideas of what might cause a headache or a migraine. So let's take a minute to think about what you've been taught causes headaches and migraines. I think genetics are sometimes part of the conversation or maybe hormone balance. Sometimes maybe a side effect of a medication; stress I think is a big one, dehydration, and I think, yes, all of these things could play a part.

But today I want to talk more about food choices. What role does your diet play in headaches and migraines? So I don't think that's something people think about a lot. This might be a new idea for some of you. But we want you to make that connection to food because that can be life changing if you understand what some of the food triggers could be.

MELANIE: It puts the control in your lane instead of feeling like, oh, here's another migraine. I don't know what's causing it. So that's our goal. And if you experience those regular headaches or migraines, you have to ask yourself, what am I doing to manage it? And maybe you take a short nap. Or you drink some water and that helps.

It's also common to have an over the counter pain reliever. You have to be careful because you have rebound headaches if you're chronically taking those. I know many times when I start working with clients who suffer from headaches, they tell me they have a bottle of Advil or Tylenol in multiple rooms of their house, their workplace, their car, even their gym bag because they're so reliant on them to manage their headaches and try to get through the day.

If this sounds like you, think of what a relief it would be to not have to worry about always having one of those bottles within arm's reach. When can you find the root cause of your headache and the trigger to prevent that reliance on those over the counter meds? Because they come with some side effects.

BRANDY: Exactly.

MELANIE: So what a relief that would be in your day to day life.

BRANDY: Yeah, definitely. And I'm glad you mentioned that because it would be in your best interest to try to, you know, unhinge yourself from relying on those over the counter medications because they do come with side effects. They can actually be really tough on your gut health, and that kind of leads me into a topic I really wanted to talk about today.

Gut health & autoimmune connection to migraines & headaches

When I was gathering information on migraines and headaches, I found it was really interesting to explore the connection with gut health. As dietitians, we always like to try to make that connection between gut health and whatever ails you, because your gut health has a lot to do with a lot of different systems in your body.

There's a lot riding on your gut health. And this connection might be a little more obvious when you think about other symptoms you might experience when you have a migraine or a headache. You know, I personally know a lot of people that will get very nauseous when they have a migraine or they might even experience irregularities in their bowel movements, vomiting even.

It can get that bad; right. So yeah, that gut health connection. I mean, those symptoms, there's an obvious connection there. But I think maybe less of an obvious connection to gut health and headaches is that headaches could be a symptom of an autoimmune condition like celiac disease.

So, we know that gut health issues often flare up symptoms of autoimmune diseases, so that's kind of the connection there. So, again, thinking about when you get headaches or a migraine, do you also experience some gastrointestinal upset, maybe stomach aches, gas, bloating, reflux, vomiting, like you said, or maybe you also have an autoimmune condition. And possibly that's when the migraine started, or that's when the headaches started to become more frequent. Does that correlate in the timeline?

MELANIE: Finding that connection is important. And we see it all the time when working with clients. When we work on fixing the gastrointestinal health piece, everything else begins improving, and you just feel so much better overall, not just with the migraine. This same theory works with headaches and migraines. We know that improving digestive health is an ever evolving process, but it takes long term commitment.

I always tell my clients, it's very much like when we start working on gastrointestinal health, it's like we are turning a cruise ship and not a sports car. So it takes time. It takes commitment. And I usually start with some common food triggers that might provide maybe some immediate relief from their headaches.

Common food triggers to migraines & headaches

BRANDY: Mm hmm. And like we always say here, we start with food first, and from my experience as a dietitian, there are a few common food triggers that I see when working with clients trying to get rid of headaches. And oftentimes, clients will feel a lot of relief by eliminating these common trigger foods, even after a few days or a week. You know, it doesn't have to take, like, weeks or months to see improvement. And I don't think it's much of a surprise to learn that a lot of those common food triggers are often found in heavily processed foods. Or those factory made food additives.

MSG: common food trigger

So the big one that I want to start with today is MSG. So you're going to find this on a food label commonly labeled as monosodium glutamate. So this is a flavor enhancer. So you're going to find it in those processed foods like frozen dinners or canned soups. But it will also be in things like gravies and sauces.

MELANIE: The flavored chips.

BRANDY: Flavored chips, even; right. And then, like, thinking fast food. And, like, take out food. You know, that's another source of MSG. So, in general, we don't really recommend these foods. But if you're somebody that is experiencing a lot of headaches or migraines, we need to be super careful about avoiding MSG in the foods that you're choosing on a consistent basis.

So you need to be kind of a detective because MSG is, they're not going to spell it out for you clearly on a food label. What did you say there's about 26 different names for MSG?

MELANIE: Yeah, so get in the weeds when you do a Google on names for MSG.

BRANDY: Right. So, I mean, they come, comes by a lot of different names, but a couple of like the top names that you're going to see in a food label is hydrolyzed or textured vegetable protein or yeast extract; sounds pretty innocent, right? But that is just another name for MSG. So please, if you find yourself choosing something that's in a package, scan the ingredients list to watch out for those ingredients.

MELANIE: Again, you’re avoiding MSG anyway if you’re eating real food.

BRANDY: Exactly. It's not food. It's not real food. And I guess if you want to learn more about MSG, I just want to give it a quick shout out that Britni did a whole “Ask a Nutritionist” episode about MSG. So that aired September 7th, 2023.

MELANIE: So that's great. I’m glad you mentioned that.

BRANDY: Yeah. So if you want to learn more about MSG, look that episode up. 

MELANIE: Just go to our website at weightandwellness.com. Again, you can search it in the search engine.

BRANDY: Yep, exactly. Pretty easy to find. But the point is, it's in a lot of processed foods. And even if you think that you are making a healthy choice, if you're choosing something that looks like it's marketed as a health food, like, for example, those plant-based burgers, which are everywhere now, a very common additive is yeast extract or that hydrolyzed vegetable protein. So watch for that.

MELANIE: So many chemicals in those products.

BRANDY: Yeah, heavily processed. So again, all of these just mean MSG. One last tip to avoid MSG: You know, if you're going to go out to eat, you could go the extra mile and call that restaurant and just ask them, is MSG something that you use in your cooking?

MELANIE: And you also have to be careful because I'm sensitive to MSG. And so I know that even though they say they don't add it, some of their cartoned soups or broths soon come with it already in it.

BRANDY: Sure. You can never be too careful, I suppose.

MELANIE: You have to find out the hard way sometimes, but okay, listeners, are you wondering why MSG is so problematic if it's added to our food? Can it be that bad? Well, glutamate is an amino acid found naturally occurring in many foods, but it is an extra high concentration in MSG, which higher concentrations than our body is meant to metabolize.

So glutamate is an excitotoxin, which in high concentrations can damage our brain cells. So think about if you're consuming these foods high in MSG over and over, how problematic it might be for your brain. To add to the problem, MSG's purpose as a food additive is to enhance flavor. So when you think of food as being delicious with MSG in there, it's, it's kind of tricking you.

And, the purpose is to trick you into believing that the food is more delicious. It's a flavor enhancer and that gets you eating more of that food. We are in turn you're getting more MSG. Well foods with MSG tend to be eaten in higher volume and higher frequency than foods without MSG. Well, could this be triggering your headaches? If you eat out all the time, maybe take a break from it.

Aspartame: another leading headache trigger

BRANDY: Yeah, that's a, that's a great strategy. You can eliminate a lot of MSG just by eating out less, I would say. And while we're on this topic, I want to bring up another excitotoxin that is a leading headache trigger: aspartame.

MELANIE: Oh, yeah.

BRANDY: So I think, maybe some of you recognize aspartame as an artificial sweetener. So this is going to be found in a lot of sugar free foods and especially in a lot of diet sodas. So, this is one of the hardest things to quit. If you are a diet soda drinker, I know that it is a very difficult habit to break. But when I can get a client to gradually scale back on the diet soda, they do start to notice at least less frequent headaches, and the severity usually dies down with less diet soda.

So, I do want to warn everybody, if you are trying to break the diet soda habit, one side effect when you start quitting diet soda is that if you've been drinking it for a long time, pretty habitually, you may experience withdrawal headaches.

MELANIE: Yeah. That's a really good point, especially if they were caffeinated diet drinks.

BRANDY: Yeah. So part of that could be from, you know, withdrawal from caffeine. I think some of it might be withdrawal from all the other additives.

MELANIE: I bet it is. Yeah. That's a really good point. So don't hate us in the process.

BRANDY: Yeah. Yeah. Stick with us, please. But that's usually why I try to do more of like a gradual tapering off of diet soda. So it's kind of like weaning off diet soda instead of going cold turkey. That seems a little more realistic for most people. But something interesting that I have experienced when working with clients is that when they successfully cut diet soda out for a while, maybe a few weeks, maybe even a few months, and then they have a taste of it again;

You know, maybe they decide to treat themselves when they go out to eat or something. They usually experience a headache pretty quickly after that, usually. Yep, same day or next day. And then that connection between diet soda being a trigger for them is very obvious. And then from that point forward, it's pretty easy for them to give it up. You know, they don't look back because they made that connection. And they don't want to go back to that life.

MELANIE: That is great. Well, one tool I use when getting clients off of diet soda is our Nutrikey Crave Control. And this supplement was designed to control cravings for diet soda. So it's a great tool to have in your toolbox during that initial phase of weaning off the soda if you've been craving. It's really a problem.

Again, aspartame in diet soda is an excitotoxin like MSG, which damages our brain cells. There's also that you have to be careful because you will not only in diet sodas, but now we're having all these low carb products that are out there. There's a lot of aspartame in some of those products. So just read a label. Knowing that what it does will make you think twice about your diet soda habit or just getting an aspartame in any product. And we do help our clients with this all the time and we do see improvements all the time; not just in headache, but in their overall sense of wellness, how they feel.

Lack of hydration can contribute to headaches

BRANDY: Yeah, lots of other benefits, side effects to that. That diet soda habit makes me think of another headache trigger. And this one is usually at the top of my list where I'm asking clients questions to try to understand what could be causing their headaches. So I ask them, how much water are you drinking?

Trying to assess out, are they dehydrated? And if they say, oh, I drink plenty of water. I need them to tell me, how much water are you drinking? Because I think many people are under drinking water.

MELANIE: Well and if they carry a water bottle around, they think they're drinking water.


MELANIE: But it's how many times you have to fill that water I'm sure.

BRANDY: Yeah. So what we're aiming for, for proper hydration is about half your body weight in ounces. So if it's, you know, if you're sticking to maybe eight glasses of water, that probably is not enough for most people. So dehydration could be something that's contributing to your headache. And this is why: so when you're dehydrated, it actually causes the brain to shrink. So less blood volume when you're dehydrated means that your brain is getting less of that blood. It's getting less of the oxygen in your blood and less of the nutrients in your blood. So, if you find that drinking a glass of water actually helps relieve your headache, it's time to prioritize hydration every single day.

MELANIE: And we're talking pure water.

BRANDY: Yep, pure filtered water is best. If you are somebody that's trying to transition out of a diet soda habit, maybe you could do some sparkling water. You know, if you want that effervescence. A little squeeze of lemon or lime goes a long way. Maybe even a little sprig of mint to add some flavor.

But that can be a nice tool just to kind of transition into regular water. And one other tip I like to tell clients is that in order to stay ahead of your hydration, start your day with water. You know, before you even look at the coffee pot, have a full glass of water, maybe even keep it on your nightstand or something.

MELANIE: It can even be a cup of warm water with some lemon in the morning.

BRANDY: Absolutely. Absolutely. That's a great tip.

MELANIE: Well, you are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition brought to you by Nutritional Weight and Wellness. Today we're just scratching the surface of what might be causing your headaches and migraines. If you're looking to get relieved from headaches and migraines naturally, we encourage you to set up an appointment to meet with a dietitian here at Nutritional Weight and Wellness, and we will come up with an individualized plan that works just for you. You don't need to live your life suffering in pain. Call our office at 651-699-3438 or go to weightandwellness.com.

Schedule Nutrition Counseling

BRANDY: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. We are continuing our discussion about the diet approach to preventing headaches and migraines. And we were just talking about how diet soda and aspartame can be one of those triggers, but also dehydration. So that's kind of where we left off before break.

Histamines & tyramines: another possible headache trigger

MELANIE: Yeah. And another really common trigger that I'm seeing more and more in clinic is histamines and tyramines. And maybe these are new words to some of you, so let me explain. Histamines are naturally occurring compounds found in everyday food, but some people are unable to metabolize them well and detoxify them through the body, and that generally stems from, again, that digestive health.

So too much buildup leads to an inflammatory response with symptoms like headaches and migraines, just to name a few. And this is why some headache and migraine sufferers find relief from a low histamine or a low tyramine diet, which is a complex undertaking.

BRANDY: Yes, it is.

MELANIE: It needs a dietitian to sort of help you navigate. So what foods should you avoid on this type of a diet? And again, we recommend if you feel like this is ringing true with you, that you would get some assistance from a dietitian or a nutritionist because histamines and tyramines are substances found in aged and fermented foods.

So think cured meats, smoked fish, aged cheese, dried fruits, bone broth, even some nuts; fermented vegetables like the fermented pickles which are great for digestive health but if you're not metabolizing the histamine and the tyramine, it can be a world of hurt for you. So these are more rare situations that need, again, a dietitian’s help to navigate those waters because it can feel very, very overwhelming,

BRANDY: But yeah, that's one of the more challenging dietary approaches. I think, but I think people do find a lot of relief when they kind of dial that in a little bit.

MELANIE: And really that's the goal is to find the relief even until you can find the root cause on the solution.

Nitrates & nitrites: another possible trigger to migraines & headaches

BRANDY: Yep, definitely. That's what we're doing. So, kind of along that same line of thought is another food additive that can be found in similar foods that are also high in histamines and tyramines. So those are nitrates and nitrites. It could be linked to a migraine. So nitrates increase nitric oxide in the blood. So that's a type of gas that when in the blood it can actually expand your blood vessels all over the body, but also in the brain.

And that can cause inflammation in the brain. And thanks to our skull, there's not a lot of room to expand in the brain, so that's where you might actually feel a headache. So, nitrates are most commonly used as a preservative in meats. So, think those cured meats, deli meats, hot dogs, bacon, ham, sausage.

So, if you are shopping for these kinds of foods at the grocery store, you don't have to completely eliminate it from your diet. But you do want to look for the label that says that it's not made with nitrates or nitrites.

MELANIE: That's a good point. And with people eating a lot more beef sticks, turkey sticks out there, that's another place that you can find those, those hidden nitrates, nitrites.


MELANIE: So sometimes just roll it over, read the ingredients.

BRANDY: Yep. Read the ingredients. And now, actually, they're making it a little easier to identify because food companies are realizing that's what consumers want now. So they're oftentimes even putting it on the front of the package. They just want to read for no nitrates or nitrates added.

MELANIE: Yeah. Thankfully it's becoming a little bit easier because the more we stomp our feet in the food industry, the demand is out there, so they know that it's going to be a moneymaker.  

BRANDY: Exactly.

Gluten can be a migraine/headache trigger

MELANIE: All right listeners, stomp your feet and make noise that this is what you're looking for. So let's talk about a big, often underlying dietary trigger for headaches and migraines. And this may not be surprising because it's something we have talked about on our past podcast and it is gluten. Gluten may be a migraine trigger for those who are gluten sensitive, and many times don't even know it. I would say 90 percent of my clients are gluten sensitive and they get relief going gluten free, not just from migraines.

BRANDY: I would agree. Oh, definitely. Definitely.

MELANIE: Well, you may not have digestive symptoms, so you think gluten isn't a problem for you and that's what we're all aware of, right? And you don't get diarrhea; don't get gas, bloating. Nope, then I'm safe. Well, when we see clients battling migraines, we like to prescribe a gluten free diet for a few weeks just to see if it helps. Always, always my clients feel better eating gluten free. And it can't be something you dabble in. A little nibble and a bit of bread or cracker here is not the trial. You want to remove it 100%.

BRANDY: Yep. There's definitely a difference between gluten free and limiting gluten.


BRANDY: Yep. So if you're going to do it, just go for it. Yep. Do the experiment. So I do want to explain a little bit more about the connection or the mechanism behind why gluten can cause migraines. So on the most basic level, consuming gluten can lead to inflammation in the brain, which again can cause that headache or that migraine. So remember earlier we talked about that gut brain connection.

So I'm just going to try to explain this with a little more detail. For those that have a compromised or a damaged gut lining, what this does is it creates an intestinal lining that is leaky. Leaky gut might be a term that you're familiar with. So when that happens, those gluten proteins can actually flip between the cracks between those intestinal cells, entering the bloodstream, which is going to trigger your immune system.

And that's going to cause inflammation in the entire body, but also the brain. So that inflammation in the brain can present itself as a headache and in more severe cases cause a migraine. And for some people, it even can cause, like, neurological symptoms.

MELANIE: I love the way you, you describe how it can slip in there. So when food is allowed to slip into the bloodstream, not broken down properly, the body can't digest it properly. It sets off alarm bells in your body that this is foreign. And that is a cascading effect of inflammation, that, like you said, can settle in the brain for a lot of people and cause those migraines.

And, Brandy, I think it's important to mention today, as we're discussing gluten sensitivity, but really this is relevant for all food sensitivities. You can feel reactions sometimes immediately, but sometimes days later and sometimes it's an accumulative effect. So maybe you had a little and you were fine and then you start playing a little harder and having more and more and suddenly now you're having a symptom. So it's not always obvious. or an immediate symptom, and these reactions can be more masked or delayed.

BRANDY: Yeah, yeah, and I think that's one of the main reasons it's really difficult to pinpoint food sensitivity or like a food trigger to headaches or migraines or other symptoms. I always recommend that clients give themselves at least a 48 hour window after consuming a food that we're suspicious about to try and understand how it's affecting them.

MELANIE: Great idea. You know, 48 hours. I know it's, I'm sensitive to many foods, but corn is one of them. It takes two days before I have joint pain.

BRANDY: Yep. One, I, similarly, it takes me a few days, like I am sensitive to gluten. And for me, it's like clockwork. It's three days after I consume it, I start breaking out.

MELANIE: Oh, for goodness sake.

BRANDY: Acne is kind of like one of the big signs. And unfortunately, there's a lot of things that go on too, but, yeah, it's not the next day, three days after. So maybe even giving it like three or four days, you know? I suggest that you keep a food journal in order to really track this, because it can be pretty difficult to remember what you had two, three, four days ago.

MELANIE: It's a helpful tool.

BRANDY: So helpful, you don't have to do it forever, you know, maybe a few weeks, just to kind of understand what the patterns are.

MELANIE: Maybe even take a picture of our food with your phone.


MELANIE: And then you can scroll through and say, what have I been eating?


MELANIE: Every bite.

BRANDY: That’s right.

MELANIE: Because that chewing gum might have aspartame.

BRANDY: That's true. That's true. Yeah. Picture’s a thousand words, that can be kind of an easy way to keep a food journal. But we do have to be our own detectives, so playing an active part in that, collecting some data is a great way to help pinpoint those triggers.

Solutions if you feel a migraine or headache coming on

MELANIE: Yeah. And now that we've gone over some dietary triggers, let's offer some solutions.


MELANIE: If you feel a headache or a migraine coming on, I like to suggest a combo of riboflavin, CoQ10, and magnesium; B2 is riboflavin. Another simple tip that helps is sipping on properly prepared feferfew tea throughout the day. And that's about just one cup that you sip on throughout the day if you feel like a headache is coming on.

When I say properly prepared, you don't want to boil the tea. Because that will break down the compound, the parthenolide that helps with that headache. So you want to boil your water, let it sit for a minute, put about four tablespoons of that tea in there, let it sit for 30 minutes and strain it, put it in your fridge. That way you're not damaging a component that is helpful in the tea.

BRANDY: Right.

MELANIE: But some people have gotten a lot of help. It's natural. I don't recommend running out and getting capsules. Because if you take too much and then stop, you can get a rebound headache.

BRANDY: Nobody wants that.

MELANIE: Nobody wants that. A little, a cup of natural organic tea sometimes can be really helpful.

BRANDY: So a little goes a long way with that.

MELANIE: And you've looked up feverfew, and what did you say the name was?

Food recommendations to be headache & migraine free

BRANDY: So another name for it is “medieval aspirin”. I thought that was so…

MELANIE: I love that. “Medieval aspirin”.

BRANDY: So I, I want to discuss now what a diet might look like for those that are wanting to support their brain, wanting to be headache and migraine free. So at this point, if you're feeling like, “You're taking away all my favorite foods, what am I supposed to eat here?” Well, it's actually pretty simple.

The answer is real, fresh, whole foods. So here are a few examples. It's actually not as bad as it sounds. So for protein, I really like a fatty fish like wild caught salmon. So salmon is particularly high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are very nourishing for the brain. And they're also just really useful in reducing inflammation in the whole body. So getting those omega-3s is a great strategy. You can also find omega-3s in grass fed beef. And eggs that come from pasture raised chickens. So both really good sources of…

MELANIE: If you're not a fish fan.

BRANDY: Yeah, if you're not a fish fan, which I know many of us aren’t, so you can still get your omega-3s from those sources. So next up for your carbohydrates, I recommend vegetables of all varieties, prepared however you like, raw or freshly cooked. And of course, we want to work in some natural beneficial fats because it is so crucial for brain health. So, we're talking butter, olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, because those healthy fats are so nourishing for the brain. We do want to incorporate those in every single meal and snack.

MELANIE: Any time that we can bring down inflammation by eating this way, you're going to start benefiting the entire body and then the brain is going to benefit as well. So, here's what a migraine free diet may look like for me. For breakfast, I typically start with some eggs and some sort of lightly stir fried vegetable.

I love to cook with bacon fat that's been from nitrate free bacon. I have nitrate free sausages. And then for my big morning snack, I do a protein shake with blueberries, coconut milk, and my protein powder. And then I like to throw in frozen riced cauliflower.

BRANDY: Oh yeah, a little veggie boost.

MELANIE: A little veggie boost, and that keeps my smoothie cold. And then for lunch, it's usually fresh chicken or pork or grass fed beef. When I say fresh, I mean the sell by date is pushed out very far, and then I bring it home, I cook it or freeze it immediately. And I love a big salad with lots of different vegetables. I can mix it up all the time.

Maybe a half a cup of cubed sweet potato, and then an olive oil with an apple cider vinegar. I don't use balsamic vinegar because balsamic is aged. I avoid that, but the apple cider vinegar is delicious. Mid morning snack, I might have sliced apples with sunflower butter. I don't tolerate a lot of nut butters, but the sunflower butter I do, and hard boiled eggs make a really quick easy protein for me for a snack.

BRANDY: Well, hey, I'd eat that.

MELANIE: But, it's a big deal if you can eat this way and just try it out. Dinner ideas: grass fed steak or roast. I use my instant pot to cook quite a bit. Because it cooks things quickly; vegetables, various kinds of asparagus, brussels sprouts tossed in avocado oil. And sometimes I do a half a cup of wild rice with that. And again, I do love a cubed sweet potato. And I'm always checking spices and seasonings because those are hidden areas of yeast extract, hidden array of dry balsamic, hidden areas of MSG.

BRANDY: Good point.

MELANIE: Yeah, you want to clean, you want clean seasonings for your vegetables and your meats. It's all real food and trust me, I'm not going hungry. I've lived my life migraine free and I prioritize drinking about 100 to 120 ounces of water a day. I had to cut out caffeine, but I drink water processed decaf coffee and herbal tea. And this is the plan that works for me. It takes some planning.


MELANIE: When you are pain free. It's worth it.

BRANDY: Absolutely. Yeah. Like you said, pain is a big motivator.

MELANIE: Pain is a big motivator. When you get that migraine, you're like, this is why I eat this way.

BRANDY: We all slip up; it's just our little reminder and why we do it all. So if you are struggling with headaches and migraines, please make a few appointments with us so we can help you not only do that detective work with you, figure out what your triggers are, but also help you develop a meal plan that works with you, your lifestyle and your family's lifestyle because when you get relief from pain and suffering, that is everything.

Schedule Nutrition Counseling

So I just want to thank you all for joining us today. This was really fun.

MELANIE: This was fun. Our goal at Nutritional Weight and Wellness is to help each and every person experience better health through eating real food. It's a simple yet powerful message. Eating real food is life changing. Thank you for joining us today.

Print Transcript

Back To Top