In a world of too many medical mysteries like the unexplained IBS or the chronic migraine patients and doctors alike rack their brains for the most innovative and least invasive cures. While medications can be and are often the most effective course of treatment, sometimes simpler is better. I’m not talking about homeopathy or Eastern medicine (also quite effective). Even simpler. Down to the foods we put in our bodies. Just as when we’re lactose intolerant (like myself) we don’t eat any dairy (there, problem solved) or gluten intolerant – no wheat/gluten, other problems, like headaches can be triggered by certain foods that contain the chemical tyramine. And while many headaches can be caused by stress, fatigue, etc. if you can eliminate at least one of the causes then the others can be tackled more efficiently.
My husband has had headaches all his life. He’s a “sensitive soul”. Too much light, he gets a headache. If he doesn’t eat regularly, he gets hypoglycemic and HEADACHE. These problems can be solved with hats, sunglasses, food in my purse. But the other headaches, the mystery headaches, those are the ones that drive me nuts! They are so disruptive to his life, to our life and there’s often nothing I can do. But there is.
After lots of internet (albeit internet) research I found something called the “cheese headache”. People get headaches when they eat aged cheese. This is because the aged cheese is jammed packed with tyramine. People on certain prescription drugs for diseases like parkinson’s can’t eat any tyramine and when they do they get horrible headaches. Several sources recommend a “Low Tyramine Diet” to prevent headaches. They also suggest exercise and stress reduction. I can’t make my husband’s lazy tush take a jog or the stock market less crazy but I can definitely cook for him.
So far it works. When he doesn’t sneak a piece of chocolate or watch tv (yes, another headache trigger), it works. So here goes, recipes that work for him and me and our wee one (did I mention I have a 16 month old?). Now, if only I can figure out how to lose all the baby weight 😉