People who suffer from migraines will attest to how debilitating this condition is. The unpredictability of crises is particularly problematic. Fortunately, according to a growing number of scientific studies, one solution could come from a vitamin produced thanks to the sun.
Migraines generally describe a moderate or severe headache that appears as a throbbing pain on one side of the head. Headaches are usually accompanied by a number of typical symptoms, for example sensitivity to light or sound, vomiting, etc.
Although there is no cure for migraines, there are a number of ways to help reduce symptoms. This is according to a study published in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences(1)Or natural nutritional supplements, or sunbathing, can reduce the frequency of migraines.
This reinforces a series of previous studies linking vitamin D deficiency to an increased risk of chronic migraines.
Among these studies, one analyzed blood vitamin D levels and migraine frequency in approximately 2,600 men aged 42 to 60 years, from 1984 to 1989.(2).
In 68% of men, the blood vitamin D level was less than 50 nmol/L, which is considered the threshold for vitamin D deficiency.
Chronic migraines occurring at least once a week were reported by 250 men whose blood tests revealed they had lower vitamin D levels than others.
When study participants were divided into four groups based on their blood levels of vitamin D, the group with the lowest levels had twice the risk of developing migraines than the group with the highest levels.
Chronic migraines were also more common during the less sunny months, between September and June.
Thanks to the sun's ultraviolet rays, blood levels of vitamin D are higher on average during the summer months.
According to researchers, 10 micrograms (= 400 IU) of vitamin D per day is enough for most people.
Be careful, for those who tend to overuse supplements, excess can lead to health risks, such as excessive accumulation of calcium outside the bones (hypercalcemia), especially in the vessels. It must be remembered that vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and can accumulate in fat and liver.
Another useful vitamin for migraines?
In fact, some studies suggest that taking vitamin B2 as a supplement can also prevent migraines. This is the case in a study published in the International Journal of Vitamin and Nutrition Research(3) Which concludes that riboflavin (vitamin B2) can play a positive role in reducing the frequency and duration of migraine attacks, without side effects.
Please note: Unlike vitamin D, vitamin B2 deficiency is rare, as it is so prevalent in the diet. However, deficiency can be observed in alcoholics, pregnant women, the elderly, or those with an unbalanced diet.
Final tip to reduce migraines: relax and exercise! This is the conclusion of a Swedish study conducted at the University of Gothenburg(4).
So, to best reduce migraines naturally, engage in regular physical activity and, if possible, in direct sunlight to replenish your vitamin D stores.
On the same topic
Is Vitamin D the best supplement for treating migraines?