(NaturalNews) Headaches are a problem for many Americans. Over 45 million people struggle with migraines, or headaches caused by physical tension or stress. For some, it presents a barrier to normal functioning. Many regularly find themselves in enough pain to warrant missed work, and even days of isolation. Common effects of the problem include visual disturbances, pain, nausea, and sensitivity to sound. The American Academy of Neurology
and the American Headache Society
have joined forces in an attempt to address this growing problem. They specifically focused on the mediation of migraine headaches
45 million sufferers, and no clear cause
Migraines are unique among headaches. While understanding of how body responses ultimately end up resulting in a migraine is still unclear, there have been many speculated causes and a wide range of preceding events that are suspected triggers. In some schools of thought, engorged blood vessels in the brain cause the nerves that surround them to flood the brain with pain signals. However, the dilation is typically offset from the migraine pain itself by over an hour, casting doubt on the idea that this mechanism is working alone. Many people who suffer from migraines experience no vascular changes.
Hormonal changes present themselves as a prominent possible trigger, but other suspects on the list include diet or problems with environmental pathogens, such as allergens. The possibility of dietary causes doesn't exclude the influence of hormones. Animal proteins, like meat, eggs and dairy, are often saturated with elevated hormone levels, which the animals are fed to speed up their growth. Other food sources that people may not be aware of can cause significant hormonal impacts as well. Consumption of soy, for example, greatly impacts the hormonal functioning of many people. The plant produces isoflavones that the human body has difficulty discerning from its own estrogens.
Sir, there's a neurologist in my garden
Top on the list of recommended complimentary therapies, these headache authorities are suggesting the use of the butterbur plant. The herb, also known as sweet coltsfoot, has been used for hundreds of years as a remedy for both headaches and inflammation. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, the plant has also been used as an antihistamine, against environmental allergens like those that cause hay fever.
In clinical trials, the extract of the plant has been demonstrated to impact the duration and the intensity of headaches. Its effectiveness competes easily with the top prescription drugs relied on for migraine
relief. The plant, in its raw form; however, contains alkaloids that can be toxic to the liver and kidneys, and care should be taken to remove these threats during preparation.Sources for this article include:
http://www.sacbee.comhttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18502781http://jcem.endojournals.org/content/84/10/3479.full.pdfAbout the author:
Raw Michelle is a natural health blogger and researcher, sharing her passions with others, using the Internet as her medium. She discusses topics in a straight forward way in hopes to help people from all walks of life achieve optimal health and well-being. She has authored and published hundreds of articles on topics such as the raw food diet and green living in general. In 2010, Michelle created RawFoodHealthWatch.com
, to share with people her approach to the raw food diet and detoxification.
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