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Natural supplements for migraine

Natural supplements for migraine

Different nutraceuticals and supplements have been studied for migraine [1] prevention. These products are often perceived as safer and «more natural». Overall, supplements are active substances and should be managed exactly like medications. 

A few comments can be made on supplements. 

Table: Overview of nutraceuticals used for migraine prevention


Dose

(may be divided in separate doses)

MechanismSide effects [3]
Magnesium [2]
Citrate or glycinate
600 mg/day
Stabilizes neuronal membrane Plays a role in energy metabolismDiarrhea
Gastro-intestinal cramps
Vitamin B2
(riboflavin)
400 mg/day
Plays a role in energy metabolismMakes urine darker yellow 
Coenzyme Q10300 mg / dayPlays a role in energy metabolism
Antioxydant

Petasites Hybridus
Butterbur
150 mg/dayAction on TRPA1 channels, proteins that are receptive to oxidative stress [4]Stomach upset and burping  
Concerns of liver toxicity, not used anymore
Tanacetum Parthenium
Feverfew

Action on TRPA1 channels, proteins that are receptive to oxidative stressMay interact with medications like Coumadin

Some brands (Migravent, Migrelief, many others) propose combinations of supplements, sometimes with other products for which there is not much evidence. Any trial should be done the way you would test a medication, with a diary, so you can make a decision based on facts. 

REFERENCES

Rajapakse T, Pringsheim T. Nutraceuticals in Migraine [1]: A Summary of Existing Guidelines for Use. Headache. 2016;56(4):808-16.

Orr SL. Diet and nutraceutical [5] interventions for headache management: A review of the evidence. Cephalalgia. 2016;36(12):1112-33.

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