Reviewers from The New York Headache Center concluded, “The identification of food triggers, with the help of food diaries, is an inexpensive way to reduce migraine headaches.”

Here’s their list of triggers and treatments.

First, the details.

  • A literature search for studies on food triggers, vitamins, supplements, and migraine headaches was conducted.

And, the results.

  • A detailed nutritional history helps identifying food triggers, although data on the role of certain foods and substances as triggers is controversial.
  • However, certain patients may be sensitive to the following substances.
    • Phenylethylamine
    • Tramine
    • Aspartame
    • Monosodium glutamate
    • Nitrates
    • Nitrites
    • Alcohol
    • Caffeine
  • Based on the evidence, certain vitamins and supplements in decreasing order of preference may help prevent migraines.
    • Magnesium
    • Petasites hybridus
    • Feverfew
    • Coenzyme Q10
    • Riboflavin
    • Alpha lipoic acid

The bottom line?
In 2008, reviewers from the University of Duisburg-Essen included riboflavin, feverfew, butterbur, or coenzyme Q10 in their list of supplements with supporting scientific studies.

5/21/09 17:13 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.