Dietary Considerations in Migraine Management: Does a Consistent Diet Improve Migraine?

  • Alan G. FinkelEmail author
  • Juanita A. Yerry
  • J. Douglas Mann
Migraine (R Cowan, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Migraine


The clinical expression of migraine is significantly impacted by dietary and gastrointestinal issues. This includes gut dysfunction during and between attacks, food triggers, increase in migraine with obesity, comorbid GI and systemic inflammation influenced by diet, and specific food allergies such as dairy and gluten. Practitioners often encourage migraineurs to seek consistency in their lifestyle behaviors, and environmental exposures, as a way of avoiding sudden changes that may precipitate attacks. However, rigorous evidence linking consistency of diet with improvement in migraine is very limited and is, at best, indirect, being based mainly on the consistency of avoiding suspected food triggers. A review of current data surrounding the issue of dietary consistency is presented from the perspective of migraine as an illness (vulnerable state), as a disease (symptom expression traits), and with a view toward the role of local and systemic inflammation in its genesis. Firm recommendations await further investigation.


Migraine Diet Inflammation Lifestyle Orexin Inflammatory Bowel Disease Obesity Triggers Umami 


Compliance with Ethics Guidelines

Conflict of Interest

Dr. Alan G. Finkel, Juanita A. Yerry PA-C, and Dr. J. Douglas Mann reported no potential conflicts of interest relevant to this article.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alan G. Finkel
    • 1
    Email author
  • Juanita A. Yerry
    • 2
  • J. Douglas Mann
    • 3
  1. 1.Carolina Headache InstituteChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.Carolina Headache FoundationChapel HillUSA
  3. 3.Department of NeurologyUniversity of North Carolina School of MedicineChapel HillUSA

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