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Nutrition Column

Headache sources

While headaches can be caused from many sources, from supplements to dehydration, the most common cause is stress.

Many dietary factors can constrict the small blood vessels in your head and skull causing head aches - common culprits are caffeine, sodium, and artificial sweeteners. In addition, anything which raises one's blood pressure including dietary nutrients can also lead to head ache pain.

Another possibility is that when one's colon (large intestine) is in spasm - even minor spasm - it can create head pain similar to and indistinguishable to a head ache. It is possible the increased dietary fiber has led to some spasm and cramping in your colon and hence some increased head ache pain.

It is possible that some of the personal stress you've been under could be a culprit. While there is no need to answer in public just think about if you feel more pressure or stress recently?

Working out can also create fatigue and stress in the neck and head muscles - leading to headaches. Possibly the increase in resistance training along with wearing a helmet on your outside rides has created more stress on the neck musculature which is leading to head ache pain.

Going through the list above should give you a clearer picture of the culprit in your case and once found you can begin to modify your diet or lifestyle to eliminate or limit the stressor involved.

Written by Dr. Sternlicht for on 2.17.06