It’s not your imagination: A new study confirms that for 50 percent of women, migraines become more frequent and more painful after age 40, and they continue to cause havoc right through menopause. If hormone changes are making your head ache, here are some simple ways to get relief.
Drink more water.
Drinking two extra glasses of water each morning could make your migraines less frequent and much shorter, giving you 10 additional pain-free hours every week, reports the European Journal of Neurology. “Morning dehydration is a surprisingly common, yet often overlooked, migraine trigger,” says study author Mark Spigt, MD.
Eating 1/2 cup of buckwheat daily could lower your risk of migraine flareups in as little as three weeks, Asian researchers say. Buckwheat is nature’s number-one source of rutin, a healthy compound that reduces pain-triggering irritation inside the brain. Other great sources of rutin include apples (as long as you eat the peels) and asparagus.
Wear rose-colored glasses.
If harsh fluorescent bulbs and strong sunlight sometimes make your head hurt, talk to your optometrist about trying a pair of glasses made with rose-colored tint FL-4L. A study in the journal Nature Neuroscience found that this coating was so effective at blocking migraine-triggering light that it cut headaches 74 percent.
Drink linden tea.
Consistently getting a sound night’s sleep can slash your migraine risk 50 percent, say Cleveland Clinic researchers. And linden tea can help! This herbal brew is rich in flavonoids — calming plant compounds that help you fall asleep faster, and sleep deeply within 72 hours of the first cup, reports the Journal of Ethnopharmacology. Drink one cup an hour before bed, advises Suzy Cohen, RPh, author of Thyroid Healthy: Lose Weight, Look Beautiful and Live the Life You Imagine ($18.85 [Originally $19.95], Amazon).
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This article originally appeared in our print magazine, Reverse Aging.