Doctors couldn’t help, it took a self packed lunch to figure it!

I had bad headaches all through high school. So it did not surprise me when I developed migraines in college. What did surprise me was the aura that appeared and blinded me 25 – 30 minutes before the pain hit! Eventually I learned I had those minutes to get and take Maxalt 10 to keep the pain away.

Several years later I began developing migraines without aura that would not go away except for a brief period here and there. The migraine would last day and night for weeks. Then months. I wanted to lay down, but then the pain was worse. Doctors did all kinds of tests, but couldn’t find anything wrong. I was walking around with my eyes practically closed, simple indoor light was so bright to me I had to run my finger along the wall so I knew where I was. During this time I was (trying) attending college courses again. I was monitoring studies back to back, so I often packed my lunch. One morning ( a rare headache free day) I finished a study group and had a quick lunch before the next group came in. As the students walked in I experienced a thunderclap headache snap on and as painful as ever. It was all I could do to get everyone started on their study so I could leave the room.

During this time our family was not drinking milk products due to my son’s dietary issues. We were substituting all dairy with soy milk, soy ice cream, margarine, etc. When the lunch headache hit me, I finally had a clue. I began looking at all the food I was eating. Especially what I was packing for lunches for myself. It was the soy products! But not just the dairy substitutes, it also included mayonnaise, margarine,Miracle whip, vegetable oil, salad dressings, Prepackaged food, fast food, marinades, tuna packed in oil, and the list went on. Soy is actually in almost everything. Since it seemed a tiny amount wouldn’t immediately set off a headache I decided I wouldn’t worry about soy lethithin which is in even more food.When I stopped eating stuff w soy in it I was finally pain free for several days. It took awhile to get used to this, soy was in everything I liked.

Then 2 years later it happened again – this time I knew what to do. I looked at what I was eating. The culprit turned out to be Canola oil. For some reason these oils can cross the Blood Brain Barrier. Somehow their ability to get into my brain caused the migraines. It’s been many years now and I’ve been doing pretty good.
One problem is that manufacturers are listing several oils that may or may not be in the products. I’m glad they list everything now. But when they list several possibles, and only one possibility may be soy or canola, I cannot buy the product. I understand that mixing or buying whatever is cheapest is cost effective in the long run. But I wonder how many do not buy products due to this.

Also this really limits what I can eat. I cannot buy Jenny Craig, or other frozen meals. I also have food allergies such as corn so I’m really limited. I read every package I pick up. Once I was working in the kitchen for a camp. I made the food but somewhere I forgot I didn’t prepare the food. I was In bed for four days! Great grilled cheese for lunch and marinated chicken for supper. I learned to never let my guard down again!!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Migraine.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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