Friday, February 07, 2014

New way to stop migraines....

Today's Post:  Friday, 2-7-2014

Recently Medical News Today had the information that there is a totally new way to stop migraines that has been tested to work!

It’s a device and treatment instead of a drug or other method. 

The reason it’s of such great interest is that it both stopped or sharply reduced the pain from migraines AND it reduced how many people got.  It uses magnetic stimulation of the brain.

The story and link are below.

Because this research was done in the UK it may be a while until this is available in the United States.

But there are some things you can do now to stop or sharply reduce migraines and how much pain they cause that ARE available now and effective.  (We list two kinds below.)

Using your cell phone has that effect, so talking on it for 10 minutes or so and holding it on the side where you feel migraine pain most might produce this effect.  But if the device uses much stronger magnetic stimulation it might not.  (It certainly is worth trying!)

Here’s the link to the MNT story:

Portable magnetic stimulation device 'effective' against migraines
The UK's National Institute for Health Care and Excellence have recommended a
new transcranial magnetic stimulation device as a treatment option for patients
who suffer migraines.

There are two kinds of other methods you can use:

1.  One looks likely to reduce the level of pain; but might not reduce their frequency.

2.  The other is a set of things most of which have massive other health benefits that migraine sufferers are proven to need.  So regardless of using the device, we strongly recommend you consider doing all of those.  They are particularly effective for many people for stopping migraines from happening at all!

1.  One that is similar that IS FDA approved and available in the United States is called the Fisher-Wallace stimulator.  It’s been shown to sharply reduce insomnia and to effectively reduce pain.  It might also lower the number of migraines but that’s not yet been tested. They use electrical stimulation instead of magnetic.  But these are similar enough it might also work to cut down on migraines.

2.  Many good health practices effectively stop migraines or make them far less frequent AND having migraines is diagnostic that your health is at risk if you do NOT do most of them!

That’s why we strongly recommend you consider doing all of those.

The health risk is that migraines are caused by pain from your blood vessels in your brain.  This means that to have it, your blood vessels in your brain are inflamed or expanding and contracting in a way that suggests they are being irritated in some way.

But that means that to have migraines you likely have those vascular problems.  The bad news is that this is indicative of future strokes, heart attacks, and vascular dementia. (Women who have migraines are at higher risk for future strokes for example.)

The good news is that there is a large set of things that are effective to lower high chronic inflammation, reduce harm to the inner surface of your blood vessels, and prevent plaque from forming inside them.  

No surprise, many of them have been effective at cutting down or even eliminating migraines.

a)  The most effective is to do vigorous exercise most days of every week.  This has been shown to cut the number of migraines in half or more before you do or add anything else.

Other studies have shown that the more consecutive years you do this the better it works for heart protection.  So that may well also be true for stopping migraines. That may very well mean that the first year you do it, you have half as many.  The second year you have a fourth as many, and after that you no longer get them at all.

Even sessions of as little as 10 to 20 minutes of short bursts of high or higher paced cardio with rests or slowdowns in between and/or superslow repetition strength training in sets of 60 to 120 seconds works well.  And, it helps with fat loss, slows aging, and is strongly heart and brain protective.

(The bad news is that taking statins has been found by research to prevent or sharply lessen  these effects for people who exercise. 

Worse, the people who do the exercises most effectively can get permanent muscle damage or even die from the interaction with statins.

The worst news is that doctors have gotten a huge publicity barrage that statins are so protective of your heart, not true, that almost everyone should take them. Few yet know they have those effects or that only some people have the heredity to get much protection from them or that this is testable for about $150.

The much better news is that you can stop ingesting heart attack starters like hydrogenated oils, and high fructose corn syrup and refined grains and too much sugar.  You can do the regular vigorous  exercise most days of every week.  Just those alone are MUCH more protective than taking statin drugs because they remove the causes of heart disease.)

And the best news is that you can take modest amounts of niacin with meals if you have high LDL cholesterol or high triglycerides or high chronic inflammation and ALL of them are improved.

The really nice thing about that is that this proven reduction in inflammation from taking niacin is quite likely to help stop migraines and make them hurt less if you still get them.

b)  It’s extremely common for people who get migraines to be deficient in magnesium and B complex vitamins.  So when people who have migraines begin to eat foods high in them AND task supplements containing them, they often stop having migraines.

Raw, un-oiled and unsalted nuts, for those not allergic, and leafy greens are high in magnesium and those eating them regularly get many other health benefits.

And it also helps to supplement with 400 to 800 mg a day of magnesium though more than that plus taking Milk of Magnesia is a bit idea.  (This is essential for people taking acid reducing drugs to avoid being deficient by the way.)

The best 3 sources that are not grains for B Complex vitamins are egg yolks from pasture fed chickens, calves liver from those fed only grass and organic sprouts, and brewer’s yeast.

Solgar also makes a balanced B complex with C that is called their Stress Formula.  That has all the main B complex vitamins except niacin.  The niacinamide it does have has its own health benefits but does not have the heart health and inflammation protection in niacin.

Many people also need extra B12 and they can take sublingual methylcobalamin, the more expensive and effective natural version of B12.  People who are old enough to have low stomach acid or take acid reducing drugs or Metformin must take it to avoid deficiency.

c)  Dr David Perlmutter in his Grain Brain book has good studies that minimizing sugars and almost totally eliminating grains often stop or prevent migraines. 

This goes with and helps do the heart protection and inflammation reduction that other methods will also help such as not eating fats from animals fed grains or eating oils made from grains such as soy, corn, safflower, or canola – which are all high in pro-inflammatory omega 6 oils.

This is new information to me.  But it is consistent with improving your heart protection and reducing inflammation as ways to prevent migraines that also cuts your risk of heart disease.

d)  Also note that the combination of these methods, NOT ingesting heart attack starters; NOT eating grains and too much sugars; and DOING vigorous exercise most days of every week, ALSO helps prevent or even force remission in insulin resistance, high blood sugar, and type 2 diabetes.  Since high blood sugars harm the inner surface of your blood vessels and trigger inflammation.  That too means that doing this will both cut down on how many migraines you get and how much they hurt AND be strongly health protective.

e)  According to chiropractors, their work can stop migraines in some people.  Many have had this experience with their patients. 

Although, the placebo effect may cause this sometimes, if these other methods haven’t stopped all your migraines, there might actually be a nerve or blood vessel compression in your neck that chiropractic treatment can turn off. 

It’s an experimental question and worth trying if you can afford it.  And, chiropractic treatment does fix those issues.

f)  Are there other supplements that help turn off migraines?  Yes.  Butterbur seems to work.  (Feverfew might work; but when I tried it for my occasional stress headaches, they got worse.  So my suggestion is to try the butterbur and stop there.)

The good news is that taking butterbur has cut the number of migraines in half for many people.

So, there are two devices that can relieve migraine pain and the new one has tested as reducing how many you get.

And there are a large list of things that have massive health benefits of other kinds in addition to making migraines far less common.  Since having migraines means you likely need the stroke and heart attack protection they give you, we suggest strongly that you use them all if you have many migraines now!  

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