Headaches from a night out on the sauce are one thing. Headaches that pop out of know where and make you retire to your bat cave, well, these are something different all together. Not only do you have to deal with the pain, but the worry they leave behind in that head of yours. Why the worry? Because pretty much every major disease on the planet had headaches as a side effect. Look them up and the internet will tell you that you better kiss your loved ones because your death is impending. Sadly, you probably feel like they’re right. Fortunately, you can probably lessen your chances of getting them if you eat a ketogenic diet. This is not that same kind of advice where you’re told to drink more water if mention a headache. Instead, the ketogenic diet and headaches mitigation go together like beer and bad decisions. Understanding why this relationship exists is the first step in putting a pillow between the symbols banging in your head.


Ketones Are Not Ibuprofen

Ketones are released when you eat a ketogenic diet, and your body starts to burn fat for fuel. These ketones work a little differently in your body to the stock standard glucose that the rest of the world’s cells are running on. In fact, they react in your body at a cellular level. This is where the headache and migraine solution may come into effect. During a migraine your cells become insulin resistant, for a period anyway. This means glucose can be metabolized differently in your body during or before a serious migraine. Different pathways are being activated and this can reduce the severity of one of these attacks. This is all good in theory but what does the research say?


Hard Evidence

Anecdotal evidence might spark a little curiosity, but cold hard science will bring it home. A paper in the European Journal of Neurology got overweight women with regular migraines to follow either a low calories ketogenic diet for a month or just a low-calorie eating plan. They did this for six months and found that the ketogenic diet was the best at lowering symptoms associated with migraines. When they stopped the ketogenic diet the migraines came back with vengeance, which probably made them come straight back to the ketogenic way. Even though this way of eating may at times be difficult, it’s far more difficult being immobilized by the agony of a throbbing skull.


The Alternative

Headaches and migraines have been hurting the world for centuries. Almost 7,000 years ago people would resort to drilling a small hole in their heads. It’s desperation you can probably identify with if you suffer. You don’t have to go that far but should know many experts suggest reducing your carbs to reduce the headaches symptoms. Even a low glycemic diet can reduce the pain. It should come as no shock that improving your diet and lifestyle is likely to make you feel any kind of hurt across your entire body. It’s self-explanatory. That said, trying the ketogenic diet, by upgrading parts of your eating plan is an easy win. Start small, perhaps by using American Metabolix’s Keto Meal Replacements. This way you don’t need to think about how to hit the right ratios for every meal. If it puts a pin in your headache and give you back a day that you’d normally lose to the pain, then you’re already ahead.






Photo by Jonathan Rados on Unsplash.