Top 2 Treatments for Migraine Headaches that Vary with the Monthly Cycle
from John Lee, MD and Eckhart, MD
1. Avoid xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens (Environmental Estrogens). Environmental Estrogens cause Migraine Headaches. Anything on the skin topically is 10 times in potency that what you take orally. Anything on the skin goes directly into the body. Anything taken orally is 90% prefiltered by the liver. Laundry detergent is surprisingly very important. Even health food stores have laundry detergents that have estrogenic herbs and chemicals in them. Our modern toiletries will contribute to your migraines! Changing your toiletries is essential for migraine relief.
2. Take a good natural progesterone cream / oil on the skin building up to a larger dose on the expected day of the migraine headache. You may rub the progesterone cream / oil on the temples and some patients like to take the oil under the tongue. Again if you do NOT avoid environmental estrogens, the migraines may actually worsen temporarily. To make sure the migraines don't get worse, cut out environmental estrogens. Get the Progesterone Oil here. You get a FREE list of what to avoid if you buy from this company!
If the migraine headache does NOT vary with the monthly cycle, then avoiding Environmental Estrogens and taking progesterone cream will NOT help. There is no hormonal component in this case. So use the next 5 natural supplements for your migraine.
Top 5 Natural Treatments and Cures for Relief from Migraine Headaches
from Neurologist Alexander Mauskop, MD, director of the New York Headache Center,
These are the most effective and scientifically validated supplements for fighting a migraine. They work for all migraines irregardless of monthly cycles.
1. Riboflavin known as vitamin B2. 200 mg of Vitamin B2 or riboflavin twice per day has been shown to help a significant number of patients with migraines, say neurologist Richard Lipton, MD of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. The key to success is taking the vitamin every day whether or not you have headaches. Vitamin B2 is water soluble, so any excess just goes out in the urine. There is no fear of overdose of Vitamin B2.
2. Butterbur, is a root extract of the plant Petasites hybridus. Researchers compared butterbur with a placebo in 245 patients with migraine headache. Over the course of 4 months, migraine attack frequency was reduced by 68 percent for those receiving 75 mg of butterbur twice per day.
3. Magnesium is critical for the relaxation of muscles. Most importantly the muscular sheath around the arteries in the brain. Magnesium deficiency is common among Americans. Magnesium deficiency is caused by environmental estrogens in the home. Magnesium deficiency means a chocolate craving just before your period since chocolate is high in magnesium. When a patient is magnesium deficient, migraine headaches may be the result. Patients in numerous studies taking magnesium supplements have significantly fewer migraine headache attacks, lose fewer days to pain, and can greatly reduce the amount of medication they take for a migraine. Neurologist Alexander Mauskop, MD, director of the New York Headache Center, recommends daily doses of up to 600 mg. Alexander Mauskop, MD prefers a chelated magnesium for better absorption. A chelated magnesium has an absorption rate of 40%. In contrast, magnesium oxide may only have an absorption rate of 4%.
4. Coenzyme Q10 (ubiquiNONE). European researchers compared migraine sufferers treated with this antioxidant with a placebo group. After 3 months of this natural treatment, half of the migraine patients had fewer attacks and less nausea than the control group. The recommended dose is 300 mg, three times per day. Absorption of CoQ10 (ubiquiNONE-fat soluble) is difficult and dependent greatly on the formulation of the tablet. It is extremely important to get the correct formulation to be easily absorbed. Recently in 2006, a new type of water soluble COQ10 (ubiquiNOL) was introduced to the market. It has a potency as high as 8 times the fat soluble CoQ10 (Ubiquinone). I would recommend getting the water soluble CoQ10 (UbiquiNOL) for its effective absorption than and achieving therapeutic serum levels quickly. Ubiquinol has a 60% greater absorption than ubiquinone. CoQ10 blood levels are 3.75 times higher in rats after 8 hours of administration for ubiquiNOL as compared to ubiquiNONE.
5. Feverfew, made from the plant Tanacetum parthenium, has long been used for headaches. the active ingredient, parthenolide, prevents blood vessel constriction, a leading cause of headaches. At the same time, parthenolide inhibits two headache triggers implicated in the inflammatory process: arachidonic acid and prostaglandins. Mauskop, MD recommends a dose of 100 mg taken up to 4 times daily.
Mausekop, MD notes that not every supplement will work for every migraine patient. He recommends mixing these preventives for the best effect. The formula varies for each patient. However, Mauskop, MD's favorite cocktail is 50 mg of feverfew, 200 mg of riboflavin, 150 mg of COQ10 ubiquinone, and 200 mg of magnesium taken twice daily with food.
This list is from "Experience Life" and Mauskop, MD.
What a relief to not be in near daily agony!
I would like to tell you that Progestelle is like a magic potion, and the "Brief but Important List" was an eye opener. I am doing much better now that I am following its recommendations and using the progesterone. I pass along the information about Progestelle every chance I get.
I suffered from frequent (almost daily) migraine headaches until I started using Progestelle and following the brief list. What a relief to not be in near daily agony!
Jennie F, Jan 12, 2008
Top 10 Dietary Triggers of Migraine Headache Relief
by Neurologist David Buchholz, MD of John Hopkins University found in food:
1. Caffeine. Caffeine found in coffee, tea, cola and certain other sodas exacerbates migraines. Going off of caffeine suddenly can also trigger headaches. 5 or 6 cups of coffee per day will increase estradiol levels by 70%. This increased estradiol makes a migraine worse.
2. Chocolate. Anything with Cocoa including cosmetics with Cocoa butter. Chocolate contain phenylethylamine. Phenylethylamine may cause blood vessels to expand and contract. Chocolate also contains phytoestrogens. Chocolate, Cocoa and Cocoa Butter also increases estradiol worsening migraines.
3. Monosodium Glutamate. Famously found in Chinese food, but also in seasoned salt, salty snacks, prepared soups, many low fat and low cal foods, and even veggie burgers. Steer clear of hydrolyzed vegetable, soy or plant proteins. They may contain similar compounds.
4. Nuts. From Almonds to Pistachios, they can all be culprits including nut butters increasing migraine frequency and severity.
5. Deli Meats and Fish. If it has been aged, canned, cured, fermented, marinated, smoked or tenderized, it may trigger headaches, says Buchholz. Preservation with nitrites or nitrates is not good for headaches. Avoid beef livers and chicken livers as well to fight migraines.
6. Dairy Products especially cheese. This includes all kinds of hard cheeses and foods prepared with cheese. The more aged the cheese, the worse the trigger for migraines. White cheeses like cottage cheese, ricotta and cream cheese, have NOT been implicated with the exception of yogurt.
7. Red Wine. Too much red wine or any dark alcohol can trigger migraine headache. Of all alcohols, vodka seems the least offensive to headaches. Avoid vinegar. Balsamic causes the most migraines, but white vinegar is usually fine.
8. Certain Fruits and Vegetables. In Buchholz, MD's book "Heal Your Headache", Buchholz lists the fruits and vegetables that frequently trigger headaches. Problem fruits include citrus fruits, and fruit juices, bananas, raisins, and other dried fruits with sulfites, raspberries, red plums, papayas, passion fruit, figs, dates, and avocados. Vegetable culprits include sauerkraut, pea pods, and beans (from fava to navy to lentils). The worst vegetable may be onions, but baby onions are fine.
9. Freshly Baked Breads risen with yeast. The real villain is Sourdough bread. Beware of bagels, doughnuts, pizza dough and soft pretzels less than 24 hours out of the oven.
10. Aspartame (Nutrisweet). Found in many diet soft drinks and artificial sweeteners, aspartame contains excitotoxins known to affect nerve cells. Aspartame is found in nutrisweet.
Reference from "Experience Life" magazine and Mauskop MD.
Buchholz, MD approach is to eliminate all potential culprits on his long list of potential triggers. Then after the patient is headache free for 4 months, the patient may add them back one by one and see if it triggers a migraine.
Food triggers can be obvious. A glass of red wine can immediately trigger a massive migraine headache.
Some food triggers are tricky and can cause headaches several days later. Caffeine appears to relieve headaches, but sets the stage for a migraine rebound later on.
If you add back an item, and it causes a headache, stay away from it.
Buy Bucholz's MD book here. Over 200 very highly rated reviews on amazon.com.
Russ Jaffe, MD PhD offers an allergy ELISA blood test to test for "hidden allergies" see his website here.
I had a migraine and put a dropper
under tongue. Headache went away.
Doing great on Progestelle. I had a migrane and put a dropper under tongue. Headache went away. I am working very much to avoid the things on the list in booklet to avoid migraines. Doing much better with decreased migraines!
April 13, 2009
More about Migraine Headaches that vary with the cycle.
If the migraine headaches varies with the cycle, then there is a hormonal component. "Over the Counter" Natural progesterone cream is relief for these patients. If the migraine does NOT vary with the cycle, then the headaches will not be helped by progesterone.
Topical bioidentical progesterone cream may be taken several days before the migraine headache is known to occur. Many women slowly increases the dose of progesterone so as to have the maximum dose on the day that the headaches is supposed to happen. You can start at 20 mg/day and work you way up to 60-200 mg/day. Much of the time 60 mg/day of topical progesterone cream is more than enough to avert the migraine. Some women use progesterone dissolved in vegetable oil under the tongue on the day that the migraine is to occur. They also use topical natural progesterone cream or oil on their temples to prevent the headache.
In building up the dose, progesterone cream or oil may be put on to the body in any location. You need to rotate areas. So one day, the cream goes on the right arm. One day the cream goes on the left arm. The next day the cream goes on the right leg. Then the oil is applied to the chest. If you just do right arm, right arm, and right arm for 3 consecutive days then the subcutaneous fat saturates and you cannot absorb any more progesterone for those days. So it is important to rotate areas for proper absorption.
It is extremely important to get rid of xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens in your environment. Some women need to get rid of these chemical estrogens and herbs that mimic estrogen at least 1-3 months before they take progesterone cream. About 30-40% of women that take progesterone hoping to make their migraine headache better will make their headache worse temporarily if they do not get rid of xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens. If you take progesterone cream and your migraines gets worse, stop the progesterone cream. Cut out all xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens in your environment. Then try the progesterone cream again 1-3 months later. After you stop the progesterone cream, the headache should only be worse for about 1-3 days, then the headache will revert to its normal pattern. The migraine only gets worse temporarily, after you stop the progesterone, the migraines will return to normal.
Why is it so important to stop xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens? What is going on? What are xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens?
Xenoestrogen is the same as chemical estrogen or environmental estrogen. "Xeno" means foreign. "Estrogen" is estrogen. "Xenoestrogen" means foreign estrogen. These chemicals do NOT raise or lower your own estrogen or estradiol. They do not affect the level of your own estradiol. Xenoestrogens are chemicals that mimic estrogen and look kind of the same to your body as estrogen. Your body makes estradiol. But a xenoestrogen could be a paraben. Parabens are chemicals with low toxicity and low carcinogincity, but look like estrogen to your body. Parabens are commonly used as preservatives in cosmetics, lotions and shampoos. However, a paraben and estradiol are very different in chemical structure to each other. But your body recognizes a paraben as a kind of weak estrogen. If you take a blood or saliva test for estradiol, parabens will NOT show up on the blood or saliva test. The lab test chemically measures estradiol and NOT parabens, but your body recognizes parabens as a kind of estrogens. This is why I am not a fan of hormone tests. The hormone tests do NOT measure xenoestrogens. The hormone tests do not measure phytoestrogens. In my clinical experience, the hormone tests will not help your migraine.
Xenoestrogens are also called environmental estrogens because it is an estrogen mimicking chemical that comes from the environment into your body. The EPA was given a mandate by Congress to craft a test to test for xenoestrogens. However, this is a very difficult problem. Environmental estrogens are everywhere in our modern life, and are active at parts per billion. Parts per billion is another word for miniscule amounts. It the same concentration of spit after you spit in an Olympic sized swimming pool. Devising a test is difficult. Not only do you have to test for the chemical at miniscule amounts. You must also test the original chemical and also its breakdown products. In one case of spermicide, nonylphenol only became a xenoestrogen after it was broken down on the skin by bacteria on the skin. The EPA is still working on the problem. If you have migraines that vary with your cycle it is important to avoid these environemental estrogens. Go Here and buy topical progesterone oil with a FREE list of avoiding environmental estrogen to help fight your migraine.
Recently, the US Geological Survey went looking for intersex or hermaphrodite fish in US waterways. These are fish that are both male and female. There were no major water ways that were unaffected. Normally hermaphrodite fish are extremely rare. However, in the Potomac River, 42% of the male bass fish are producing eggs. In the Platte River, in Colorado above the sewage outfall the ratio between male and female white sucker fish is 1 to 1. There is one female to one male. However, below the sewage outfall, there are 9 female white sucker fish to 1 male white sucker fish with 10% hermaphrodites. Where is the sewage coming from? The sewage is coming from your house. What is going down the drain in your house? Laundry detergents, soaps, shampoos, birth control pills are all going down the drain in your house and ending up in the rivers lakes and streams. If you take an aquarium tank of baby trout and put some laundry detergent in it. The males grow up looking like females.
Ever gone to Middle School lately? The girls in middle school are much taller than the boys are beginning to mature sexually. Pediatricians are now labeling this as precocious puberty. Back the Oct 30, 2000 issue of Time magazine xenoestrogens were partly fingered in creating the precocious puberty epidemic. In 2000, 15% of girls aged 8 were sprouting breast buds and pubic hair. 5% of girls aged 5 were sprouting breast buds and pubic hair. Xenoestrogens are likely causing precocious puberty.
What does precocious puberty have to do with your migraine headache? Well, the same chemical estrogens that are causing precocious puberty are causing your migraine that varies with the cycle. They are an added estrogen to your body. So you have to cut them out. Chemical estrogens are in part causing your migraine headaches.
This was the first month that I had absolutely NO migraines, before,
during, or after my period.
Hi Dr. Eckhart,
Can you please send me 6 more bottles of Progestelle? This was the first month that I had absolutely NO migraines, before, during, or after my period. Thank you SO much for everything.
I'm telling everyone with migraine symptoms about you.
June 7, 2009
Phytoestrogens are plant estrogens. There are many herbs found in "organic" and "health food store" cosmetics that mimic estrogen as well. Again these herbs do not raise or lower your own estradiol. The herbs themselves act like an estrogen. Just because something is natural does NOT mean it is good for you. Mushrooms grow on your lawn after a big rain. Do you eat those mushrooms? No, you don't eat those mushrooms, but they are natural. Unfortunately, not all things that are natural are good for your migraine.
Similarly, many of the herbs in the health food store are natural and organic but may have hormone disruptive effects. For instance, aloe if taken in sufficient quantity during the first trimester is used to create a miscarriage. Progesterone is the hormone of pregnancy. You need enough progesterone to maintain a pregnancy. If you do not have enough progesterone during a pregnancy then you will have a miscarriage. 15% of all recognized pregnancies will end in miscarriage, and 80% of these is during the 1st trimester. Most of the time, a 1st trimester miscarriage is due to a lack of progesterone or a progesterone blocker is blocking progesterone from the progesterone receptor. These miscarriages are easily fixed by taking progesterone. Thus, aloe in sufficient quantities will cause a miscarriage in the first trimester. Thus, aloe is likely a progesterone blocker. Unfortunately, some progesterone creams have aloe in them. I don't understand. You need progesterone to balance out the estradiol to decrease the migraine. Why would you block progesterone with aloe?
There are over 300 European herbal folk medicines to increase the size of breasts. 200 of these are topical preparations. What hormone increases the size of breasts? The hormone that increases the breast size is estradiol. So what hormone do you think these herbs mimic? These herbs mimic estradiol. But they are not estradiol. Too much estrogen means increased migraines in severity and frequency.
For instance, Bloch, MD a pediatric endocrinologist found 5 young boys with gynecomastia (male breasts). He found that their parents were giving them lavender and tea tree oil. He took away their lavender and tea tree oil and the gynecomastia (male breasts) went away. He took the lavender and tea tree oil and put it into breast cancer cells in the test tube. The lavender and tea tree oil stimulated the breast cancer cells to grow. The conclusion was that tea tree oil and lavender is an estrogen mimic.
So many of the herbs found in the health food store cosmetics will act like estrogen. These phytoestrogens will make your migraine headache worse.
Thus, phytoestrogens and xenoestrogens will make your migraine headaches worse.
Progesterone is supposed to make my headaches better. Why is it worse? (30-40% of women)
Progesterone made your migraine headaches worse because you did not cut out xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens. You have to cut out xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens and wait for 1-3 months for them to wash out of the body. Then you may try to take the progesterone cream again.
What is happening?
Constant environmental estrogen intake makes you less sensitive to estrogen. Then when you take progesterone, your estrogen sensitivity goes back up to normal. So it now seems like you are getting more estrogen than you were before. So now your headache is worse.
Let me shift to an analogy. If you go to a rock concert, in the beginning the sound is very loud. Then after about half an hour, the sound is not so loud any more. You think this is not so loud. Is the rock concert any softer? No, your ears have become less sensitive to the noise. The formal biological term for this is down regulation. It is the way you adapt to an environmental change. Then when you take the progesterone, your sensitivity goes back up to normal, and you say, this rock concert is loud again. This rock concert is loud! The noise is hurting my ears! The progesterone is making me sick and giving me migraines! The progesterone is making the rock concert loud! It is the progesterone's fault. I am never going to take progesterone again!
Similarly, you have a constant intake of estrogen. You become less sensitive to estrogen because of "down regulation". You take progesterone. You experience more Estrogen Dominant symptoms such as increased bloating and increased breast tenderness with increased number and severity of migraines temporarily.
The solution is to cut out environmental estrogens and phytoestrogens for 1-3 months, and THEN take progesterone cream.
Then, the migraine headaches will get better.
If you take progesterone and bloating and breast tenderness gets worse, or the headache gets worse, then you did NOT cut out all xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens.
It will depend on how severe your disease is as to how careful you must cut out xenoestrogens and phytoestrogens. The more sick you are with migraines the more careful about cutting out xenoestrogens you have to be.
You Are What You Think - How you think affects brain chemistry. Brain chemistry affects body chemistry. Abnormal body chemistry creates migraine headaches.
Imitrix, the most popular pill for migraine headaches in the USA, works by blocking histamine and enhancing Serotonin. Stress / fear / anxiety increases histamine. Guilt decreases serotonin. So feelings of fear and guilt may create migraine headaches in most women, but not all women. For instance, a woman may have an argument about money with her husband and she will have fear over the conflict. Then, later after the conflict, she feels guilty about the conflict. The fear and guilt increase histamine and decrease serotonin the results is a migraine.
I am in no way saying that your migraine headaches are psychological. What I am saying is that the way you think affects your brain chemistry. And your brain chemistry affects your body chemistry. Your body chemistry affects your health. Your body chemistry affects your migraine.
Let me explain this with the prototypical example. High blood pressure is known as idiopathic hypertension in doctor speak. Idiopathic simply means "self disease". In other words, main stream medicine isn't quite sure what causes high blood pressure. But doctors know that they must get the patient quiet and in a darkened room to get an accurate blood pressure for a borderline hypertensive patient.
Here is what can happen. A car cuts me off on the highway. I get mad and angry and start to curse out the driver in front of me. Epinephrine and Norepinephrine is released. the muscular portions of the arteries contract and make the arteries smaller. The afterload of the heart increases. Blood pressure goes up. Anger and rage will cause high blood pressure. If the high blood pressure is high enough for long enough, then my artery in my brain will spring a leak. This is a hemorrhagic stroke. Continual high intensity anger and rage will induce hemorrhagic stroke. The way you think will affect brain chemistry, and the brain chemistry will affect your body chemistry. If the body chemistry becomes chronically deranged, then this will make you sick.
What we are saying is that fear / stress / anxiety induces increased histamine and interleukin-6. Guilt decreases serotonin. The decreased serotonin constricts the arteries. Histamine causes swelling and inflammation in the arteries in the brain. If your migraine is helped by Imitrix, then you may have fear and guilt issues that are causing your migraine.
Patients that are able to get rid of guilt and fear are able to reduce or completely get rid of their headaches. The one week seminar at Pleasant Valley Church in Thomaston, Georgia is very good at getting rid of fear and guilt. www.pleasantvalleychurch.net The seminar tries to get rid of unforgiveness, bitterness, envy and jealousy, and fear. The seminar is now available on the web. On the east coast, this church is developing a reputation for helping women with severe migraines even among the medical profession.
Here is a new website that describes migraine headaches that vary with the menstrual cycle. The website proposes a cause of the migraine headache and cure.