Diet And Lifestyle In Management Of Migraine


In the present era of sedentary lifestyle with increasing workload pressure and lack of physical activities the problem like migraine has been raised to a greater extent. This increased stress is the trigger for almost 70% cases of migraine. In this article we will study about the diet and lifestyle measures that can be used in management of Migraine.


As mentioned in Ayurveda, we can correlate Migraine with अर्धावभेदक (Ardhavbhedak) in which patient suffers from sharp throbbing like pain in one side of head the attack of pain comes after regular interval of time and in severe cases sensory warning symptoms such as flashes of light, and tingling sensation in arms and leg.


In Ayurveda this disease is mentioned under शिरोगत विकार in which dushti of ‘मनोवह स्रोतस’ Manovaha srotas  dushti occur

रुक्ष अत्यअध्यशन पूर्ववात अवश्यायमैथुने

वेगसंधारणआयास  व्यायामे कुपितानिला

केवल सकफो वार्धयम गृहीता शिरस्त

मन्या भृकुटि शंख कर्ण अक्षिललाट अर्धेअतिवेदनम

शाश्त्रारनिभम कुर्यात्तिवरम स्वर्धावभेदक

नयनं  वाथवा श्रोत्रमतिवृद्धं विनश्यते&rdquo

  • The elevation of  pitta dosha (one of the main energies present in our body) blocks  the Vata dosha’s presence in the brain leading to throbbing aches like pain in the one side of the brain or in the whole brain.
  • It can also occur due to daily day to day stress either work stress, study stress, emotional or physical stress.
  • The surrounding atmosphere has been packed with various pollutants whether its air pollution, noise pollution, all these kinds of external triggering agents leading to Mental distress and then to ‘Migraine


General causes

  • Intake of spicy food.
  • Over exposure of direct sunlight.
  • Living in highly noise polluted areas.
  • Exposure to high pitch sounds.
  • The ones who always stay angry and irritated.
  • Hereditary causes: Heredity plays a very important role in giving rise to migraine as seen through various surveys it is concluded that there is 15% chance of transmission of migraine from parents to their children.

FEW CAUSES Mentioned in Ayurveda

  • Intake of रुक्ष,तीक्ष्ण,उष्ण, कटु आहार. (excessive dry, spicey, hot or pungent food articles)
  • Overeating before the digestion of previously eaten food.
  •  Prolonged sitting in high wind volume.
  • Pertaining urine and stool in the body for a longer duration.
  • Over indulging yourself in physical activities.

What Actually Happens in Migraine

Migraine is believed to be due to a mixture of environmental and genetic factors. It is a neurological or neurovascular disorder and there is disruption in blood channels and transmission of neurotransmitters in the nerve cells (neurons). Primarily, the functioning of the trigeminal nerve (5th cranial nerve) is hampered in this leading to panic attacks.


Due to above mentioned causes VATA Dosha & increases individually or along with KAPHA dosha leading to

Throbbing and sharp pain in

मन्या, भृकुटि ,शंखप्रदेश , कर्ण,  नेत्र  ,ललाट के अर्ध भाग में  शस्त्र से  काटने के सामान वेदना होना  (Severe cutting pain in temples, eyebrows, ears, eyes and forehead)

If the condition gets increased to a larger extent it can damage eye and ear functioning as well.


As much as treatment plays an important role in curing the disease equally as that your diet plays a crucial role in maintaining one’s health. Like as mentioned in Ayurveda before giving importance to the treatment part we take care of a person’s healthy well being like as  said ‘स्वस्थस्य स्वस्थ रक्षणं. Migraine is a kind of disorder if treated properly with proper diet and lifestyle modification, can be prevented from going to a deteriorating phase.

Ideal Diet Plan for a Migraine Patient

A healthy diet with adequate micro and macronutrients, proteins and carbohydrates along with healthy fats consisting of fresh fruits and green leafy vegetables , pulses and whole grains can reduce the frequency of the disease.

Below are the lists of healthy food items to be consumed by a migraine patient:

  1.  Drink healthy herbal tea or fruit juice in the early morning.
  2.  One can take coconut water and ginger tea.
  3. Add vegetable soup and chamomile tea in your diet.
  4. Whole grains such as oats, cereals, barley and wheat are also a good choice.
  5. Avoid whole refined flour, white rice, white bread and bakery products.
  6. All kinds of pulses like moong dal, chana dal are effective.
  7. Try to avoid soybean, dried and frozen pulses.

1. Vegetables

To be consumed

  • Pumpkin, ginger, bottle gourd, cucumber, radish,carrot ,bitter gourd.

To be avoided

  • Cauliflower, mushroom, sweet potatoes, red and green chili, cheese products.

2. Fruits

To be consumed

  • Apple, papaya, watermelon, muskmelon, pomegranate.

To be avoided

Citrus fruits, bananas, plum, pineapple, grapes.

  •  Try to avoid whole milk and full fat cream, full fat yoghurt and soya milk.
  •  Skipping meals should be avoided, especially breakfast.
  •  Water intake should be increased to drink 8-10 glasses of water per day.

By considering the above mentioned diet plan we can combat the occurrence of migraine only one needs to strictly follow the diet plan.


According to Ayurveda if a person properly follows the दिनचर्या विधि (daily regimen) as mentioned in classical text he/she can attain a healthy lifestyle without having any kind of disease.

Few Listed Things to be Used are

  1. Do प्राणायाम (breathing exercise) for 30-45 minutes in a day.
  2. Perform कपालभाती (Kapalbhati -a type of pranayam) for 15 minutes per day at least.
  3. Add nasal drops of lukewarm ‘anu tailam’ in each nostril twice a day. It is called नस्य कर्म (nasya karma – a Panchakarma procedure that includes nasal drops installation with medicinal oils). In Ayurveda, the nose is considered as the best route for the brain. Thus administration of these nasal drops daily will strengthen the brain cell and nerve cells, which in turn reduce the severity of attacks of migraine.
  4. Use of घृत तैल वसा मज्जा (चतुः स्नेह)  (four types of internal oleation therapy) in any form in your lifestyle.
  5. Make use of नाड़ी स्वेद where fumigation of body is done with herbally made kwath to relax the blood chamnels inthe body.
  6. Practice उपनाह स्वेद by yourself through placing a cloth bandage over your head for sometime to avoid direct air contact to the face area.
  7.  Proper counseling of patients needs to be done to guide them about do’s and don’ts.
  8. Try to avoid crowded areas where the level of noise pollution is larger.
  9. In migraine due to pain attacks, the patient’s sleep cycle has got disturbed, so encouraging patients to listen to their favorite music or ted talks can be proven helpful in this regard.
  10. Walk for at least 30-45 minutes after a meal is recommended.


We can conclude that if proper diet and lifestyle measures are taken into consideration we can easily save ourselves from migraine. As we all know “HEALTH IS WEALTH”. So by consuming a proper diet and maintaining ideal lifestyle measures we all can save our HEALTH. This diet and lifestyle will help in relieving the mind from extra stress and thus resulting in the gradual decrease in frequency and duration of migraine episodes.