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December 2007

Migraine study

Can migraine study give you a migraine? Perhaps, if something about it had you upset, causing your blood vessel to constrict, raising your blood pressure and lowering your brain blood supply; if you happened to be, say, low on magnesium, that could trigger cerebral vascular spasms and - voila! - there you have it: if it looks, walks and talks like migraine headache, it's got to be a migraine headache...

Now, that would make it a real "migraine study", wouldn't it?

A recent French study, using novel technique - positron emission topography - has found that a common form of migraine is likely associated with activation of hypothalamus - a lower middle part of the brain functionally connecting body's nervous and endocrine (hormonal) systems. The conclusion is that "the hypothalamus may play a role in the start of the migraine attack".

And what if it does? Study conclusion stops short of stating that possible treatment for migraine could be drugging a specific area of hypothalamus to oblivion. But whether such intention is in the cards or not, it appears to be a "logical" direction. The good old allopathic cliché at work. Blame the body for malfunction, and solve the problem by blocking the signal of malfunctioning. Keep killing the messenger, instead of simply asking:

what is it that causes body to malfunction in the first place?

When will this kind of medical mentality give up? Is it wonder that hypothalamus, whose many functions include control of the reaction to stress, and whose proper functioning is directly dependant on the level of endorphins (body's mood-elevating and pain-relieving compounds), gets involved in the chain of reactions related to a neurological symptom such as migraine? It is known that endorphins are lowered by stress, and that are generally low in those lacking physical activity.

The two combined - prolonged stress and little or no physical activity - can and

will affect much more than just hypothalamus function itself

(one out of many possible consequences is estrogen-to-progesterone imbalance, leading to PMS).

Are these facts of life too plain-looking for hi-tech doctors to bother with? Are they expecting from hi-tech toys like positron emission topography to be Deus ex machina we waited for so long to give us all the answers? No technology can replace or override the reality - a simple (or not so simple) cause-effect relationship.

Beside magnesium deficiency (or magnesium-calcium imbalance), stress and low endorphins, there is a number of other possible factors that, alone or, most often, combined, can cause migraine headache. They include volatile organic compounds (VOC), like phenols, tuolene and other hydrocarbons, that are literally everywhere, heavy metals like cadmium, food sensitivities and allergies (often accompanied with leaky gut, which only makes it worse), and so on.

You may suffer persistent migraine from consuming bio-active amine like tyramine, a vaso(blood vessel)-constrictor highest in some cheeses, chocolate, yeast concentrates, sausage and pickled herring, because your body lacks MAO (monoamine oxidase) enzyme needed to metabolize it. Or because your MAO enzyme was blocked by MAO-inhibitor drug, like some anti-depressants, that you are taking.

Just a few out of many possibilities.

With so many toxic chemicals in and around us, it is very important how efficient is your detox system. There are two main reasons why it can be inefficient: genetic deficiency in detox enzymes, and nutritional deficiencies. It's been found out that

individual detox capabilities for specific toxic substances
can vary up to 500 times,

probably even more. If you are on the sensitive side for a particular agent you're exposed to, you'll feel the consequences in some form, one of many possible being migraine headache. And, of course, even those with everything functioning satisfactorily have their limit as to how large toxic load they can handle.

As anything else, action of the hypothalamus could be a part of the problem in some migraine cases but, if it is, it is only a symptom of some underlying internal deficiency, likely aggravated by specific external factors. We need a migraine study that will systemically

track down these underlying deficiencies,
and those aggravating external factors,

not play around with hi-tech gadgets to blame some body part for its participation in producing a symptom. Anyone pretending to be a doctor these days should know better than that.