Some people may not know, but there is a pretty interesting piece of folk wisdom out there that suggests drinking a little bit of coffee can reduce or eliminate a migraine. Yes, there is another potential pro or con for the great coffee health debate. Coffee and its signature compound, caffeine seem to continuously be in an undecided state. Some researchers claim consuming caffeine is actually good for you and still others claim it is a bad habit that should be dropped as soon as possible. Like the case with caffeine, the answer as to if caffeine can improve your headache or not is complicated.
The Logic Behind the Folk Remedy
Before we can determine if coffee is good or bad for your migraine, it’s necessary to understand the logic behind the claim. Basically, caffeine is thought to combat migraine pain for two reasons:
- Caffeine is used in many pain management medications, especially over the counter ones.
- Migraines are partially caused by blood vessels in the head and face becoming dilated due to neurochemical reactions in the brainstem. This causes the blood vessels to become inflamed and disturbs the nerves surrounding them. Caffeine reverses the inflammation by restricting the blood vessels.
This logic is actually pretty solid if you’re not a regular caffeine consumer. Caffeine is in quite a few different foods that people consume on a regular basis – it’s even in dark chocolate. If you regularly drink coffee it can cause a rebound effect if you miss your regular dose. Basically, it can cause your body to go into withdrawal and suffer its symptoms as a consequence. One of those symptoms can be a migraine, which is the exact opposite of what you want. Basically, coffee may or may not help your migraine, it really depends on how much caffeine you drink on a regular basis.