10 Natural Headache Busters - Healthy, Delicious Foods that Relieve Headache

By Lisa Franchi on August 21, 2012

Headache doesn’t only give you pain, but also delays your work and make you less productive. Instead of lying on bed, popping a pill, and sleeping it out, you can actually eat your headache away. There are foods that contain essential vitamins and minerals that are sure to relieve your aching head.

Baked potato

Got hangover due to last night’s party blast? Then you may benefit from eating baked potato. Alcohol-related headache is usually caused not just be dehydration but also due to lack of electrolytes such as potassium, explains Erin Palinski, RD, a registered dietician in private practice in New Jersey. Banana is also a great option but potato (especially one with skin) has more potassium. They have 467mg and 721mg of potassium respectively.

Coffee

Do you drink coffee when you have hangover? If yes, that’s good. According to Palinski, caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, which helps soothe headache by reducing the size of blood vessels, resulting to improved blood flow. But keep your caffeine consumption low. Too much caffeine can prolong and intensify your headache. Remember, coffee is a diuretic drink so it may lead to dehydration – a major cause of headache. If you don’t drink coffee, a warm green tea is the best alternative.

Watermelon

What makes watermelon different from plain water is that it is packed with essential minerals like magnesium. It’s also very refreshing! Stella Metsovas, BS, CN, a nutritionist in private practice in Laguna Beach, gives a delicious, easy-to-prepare watermelon smoothie. In a blender, combine 2 cups of seeded watermelon, 1 cup of ice cubes, half a cup of plain yoghurt, ½ teaspoon of ginger, and a drizzle of honey.  She said the ginger can help soothe headache-induced nausea symptoms.

Cucumber

Instead of munching on some sugary cookies, have some cucumber. Just like watermelon, it is a rich source of nutrient-filled water. 95% of cucumber is water. You can add vinegar and chopped red onion, sprinkle it with pepper, add a bit of sugar and you have a refreshing, satisfying cucumber salad!

Pineapple

Pineapples don’t only keep your tummy at ease but also alleviate your headache. This fibre-rich fruit is high in bromelain – a substance that was used as a natural pain relief for centuries.

Almonds

Magnesium, which is found in almonds, helps relieve headache by relaxing the blood vessels, which in turn, improve blood circulation. Experts recommend migraine sufferers to consume magnesium-rich foods like almonds, dried apricots, cashews, legumes, brown rice, and so on.

Spinach

This nutritious vegetable lowers down blood pressure and prevents the onset of hangover, explains Palinksi. Instead of lettuce, she suggests using spinach for salad – combine 2 cups of spinach leaves, 3/4 cups cubed watermelon, ½ cup of chopped apricots (dried), 2tbps of chopped walnuts. Use raspberry vinaigrette as your dressing.

Plain Greek Yoghurt

People who lack calcium are more likely to suffer from headache. Consuming foods that are rich in calcium like plain Greek yoghurt will help. Other sources of this essential nutrient include cheese, soybeans, orange, milk and fortified cereals.

Sesame Seeds

According to Palinski, sesame seeds have high content of vitamin E. This nutrient is essential in stabilising oestrogen levels which prevent the onset of migraine during menstrual period. It also boosts blood circulation. Wait there’s more – sesame seeds also contain magnesium!

Spicy Salsa

Is your headache brought by your sinus infection? Well then, grab your low-calorie nachos and dip them in spicy salsa. Spicy foods help decongest and clear the nasal pathways. This in turn lowers the sinus pressure and alleviate headache.

 

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