- Migraines involve excitable neurons that become inflamed and lead to pain
- Serotonin plays a vital role in helping to calm these neurons helping reduce and eliminate migraines
- When the gut is functioning adequately, it produces serotonin at optimal levels
- Food sensitivities wreak havoc on your digestive health, your energy, your sleep, migraines, and your overall health
- Identifying food sensitivities is imperative to correct these issues
- Healing the gut takes a systematic approach to ensure proper healing without major setbacks
Migraines are one of the most debilitating health issues to affect people today. An estimated 26 million Americans suffer from migraines and roughly 80% of them are women. Approximately 1 in 5 women get migraines while only 1 in 16 men get them, according to migraines.org. Nearly 60 percent of the women who are affected have menstrual-related migraines, meaning their migraines are prone to coincide with their menstrual cycle. Migraines cause extreme throbbing, pulsing, shooting pain that can shoot to the back of the eyes. They are often accompanied by other issues such as severe sensitivity to lights and sounds, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and confusion. Migraines can last from a few hours to a few days causing interference with daily activities such as dinner, family time, work, and play.
Common treatments for migraines are different abortive medications like- triptans and ditans, preventative medications like- antidepressants such as amitriptyline, and nortriptyline, and antiseizure medications- like gabapentin, and topiramate. Some migraine sufferers may even resort to self-administering shots when a migraine is present to try and reduce the severity of it. However, these forms of controlling migraines only try to keep them at bay or in check. They do not address their true cause.
The gut, the brain, serotonin, and migraines is there a link?
New research is finding that our enteric nervous system (the nervous system linked to our digestive tract) functions cohesively with our nervous system (brain and spinal cord) to control many processes within our body. One of the responsibilities of the digestive system is to produce neurotransmitters (messages that are relayed from cell to cell throughout the body). One key neurotransmitter the gut is responsible for releasing is serotonin, which happens to play a vital role in migraine sufferers. This is why many people who are plagued by migraines are put on antidepressants that work on serotonin, but, wouldn’t it be ideal to help the body process its own serotonin naturally without the use of drugs?
Food allergies, sensitivities, and more.
Most people are aware of what food allergies are. If someone is allergic to peanuts and they eat or come in contact with peanuts they can go into anaphylactic shock which can be life-threatening. But how many of us are aware of and can recognize food sensitivities? Food sensitivities can be due to things like sugars, grains, cheese, milk, or various fruits and vegetables. The way our bodies react to food sensitivities are on a smaller scale than allergies but can wind up being just as bad. They cause repetitive stress to our bodies and over time that accumulation of stress can lead to breaking down. That breaking down can be of gut linings, the motility of our gut, the capability of our gut to absorb nutrients, and more. This can lead to things like “leaky gut” or an overgrowth of bacteria such as small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). We like to compare this to a stress fracture. Stress fractures occur from things we do every day such as walking or running. What happens is that over time the repetitive nature of those actions takes a toll on our body and leads to them becoming weakened and eventually breaking down. Food sensitivities can be tricky to spot, but a few questions to help identify them are:
- Do you have any bloating, gas, acid reflux, belching, or any kind of digestive problems?
- Do you have chronic constipation or diarrhea?
- Do you have a stuffy nose, especially after eating?
- Do you have low energy or feel drained or drowsy after eating?
If you answer yes to any of these, then we need to dig deeper to find the cause and correct the issue at hand.
The skinny on healing the gut.
“Great, now I know that my digestive and metabolic health may be playing a role in my migraines, now what?” Well, healing the gut takes time, effort, and a systematic approach. It is not as easy as putting a cast on it or icing it and allowing it to heal. Healing the gut is done in 3 phases.
PHASE 1: First we must extinguish and seal the gut. To allow the gut to begin healing we must first rid it of the things that were causing the damage in the first place. An analogy we like to use is this- if your house was on fire, you wouldn’t call the carpenters first. First, you would call the fire department to put out the fire that is damaging your home.
Phase 2: From there we need to help the gut and body begin to detoxify from all of the toxins that have built up over the years. This is comparable to cleaning up the aftermath of the fire that damaged your home. We need to get in and clean up all of the debris before we can begin rebuilding
Phase 3: Finally we can begin rebuilding the gut and call in the carpenters to restore and improve the situation.
All of these phases are carried out with immense detail, tracking, and specificity to ensure high-quality care and excellent results. The entire metabolic reset process is individualized and physician-supervised to make sure we help improve your digestive health and migraines. Our team is ready to help you with your migraines and digestive health goals. Contact us to see if we can help you. https://www.abundantlifechiropractor.com/metabolic/