Beneficial habits for people with migraine

March 4th 2022

Based on extensive clinical experience, expert opinion is that non-drug therapy is a key component of migraine management.

People with migraine need to keep regular habits, as change can trigger attacks. Anecdotally, beneficial habits include:

  • Regular sleep schedules and good sleep practices
  • Minimal variation in blood glucose concentrations (eg eating regular meals, avoiding excess simple carbohydrates)
  • Adequate hydration (drinking 1.5 to 2 litres daily)
  • Limited caffeinated beverages (1 to 2 cups daily)
  • Regular exercise (aiming for 30 to 40 minutes, 3-4 times a week; walking is a good option, as exercise that involves jump-ing or running often provokes migraine in people who have them regularly)
  • Good workplace ergonomics (especially when using a computer) and regular short breaks (to stretch and to rest eyes)
  • Regular use of a relaxation technique (eg meditation, mindfulness, yoga, breathing techniques, progressive muscular relax-ation), especially if stress is a trigger (biofeedback and cognitive behavioural therapy may help)
  • Avoidance of patient’s known triggers (alcohol, MSG, citrus fruit, chocolate, preserved meats, perfume).