Not all headaches are created equal. So it's not surprising that different treatments work for different types of headaches.
Cluster headaches, tension headaches, sinus headaches and migraines. The National Headache Foundation has a great breakdown of different types of headaches here.
Recent research from Italy suggests that a low carb, ketogenic diet may help treat migraines but maybe not cluster or tension headaches.
The Huffington post recently published a lovely interview with the lead researcher. You can read the full research paper here.
What are ketones?
Ketones are produced in your liver as a source of energy when carbohydrates are in short supply. Ketones are used by the brain and heard in a different way to carbohydrate.
What is a ketogenic diet?
A ketogenic diet is a very low carbohydrate diet. Usually carbs are limited to under 20-40g a day. This forces the body to produce and use ketones for energy.
Why use a ketogenic diet?
Changing energy source to use ketones rather than glucose (from carbohydrate) is one reason why a ketogenic diet may help treat epilepsy. Now it looks like a ketogenic diet may play a part in treating migraines too.
Ketones and Diabetes
If you have diabetes you might have heard of ketones - as bad. Ketones that the body makes because your blood sugars are too high are bad. But ketones made by the body when blood sugars are in normal range do not cause the same damage to your body.
If you have diabetes and are thinking about trying a ketogenic diet, it is important to talk to your diabetes team and dietitian first. Ketogenic diets have been researched safely in people with type 2 diabetes and type 1 diabetes.
What do I need to know before starting a ketogenic diet?
Talk to us about the nutritional causes of headaches or ketogenic diets.
There are many different nutritional causes of headaches, as well as environmental triggers. Other causes include:
Katrina Pace, Dietitian
Gut bugs fascinate me. Diet and gut bugs intrigue me. Cooking is essential. Add them all together and you get a fairly interesting opinion on life! In my humble opinion.