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Natural Relief for Migraine Sufferers

  James Meschino DC, MS, ROHP

Recent clinical studies have shown that two natural agents can reduce the frequency of migraine attacks by up to 77% in migraine sufferers. More specifically, the correct dosages and standardized grades of the herbs butterbur and feverfew, have been shown to reduce migraine frequency by 50-77%, as reported in clinical studies published in peer-reviewed medical journals including Neurology, Headache, Lancet, British Medical Journal, International Journal of J Clinical and Pharmacological Therapies and others.

Butterbur is an herb that contains active constituents (pentasin and isopetasin) that block key steps in the production of migraine headaches by inhibiting the synthesis of inflammatory leukotrienes and prostaglandin E2, which can trigger migraines.  They also have an antispasmodic effect on vascular walls and appear to have an affinity for cerebral blood vessels. Butterbur extract also appears to act as a natural beta blocker, stabilizing normal flow of blood to the brain.

Feverfew has been used for centuries in European folk medicine as a remedy for headaches and some other conditions. The migraine-relieving activity of feverfew is believed to be due to parthenolide, an active compound that helps relieve smooth muscle spasms. In particular, it helps prevent the constriction of blood vessels in the brain (one of the leading causes of migraine headaches). Like butterbur, parthenolide also inhibits the production of prostaglandin hormones that cause inflammation of blood vessels. Feverfew has inhibits excessive aggregating of platelets, which also normalizes blood flow. This effect has also been attributed to the ability of feverfew to reduce migraine frequency and severity.

Natural Migraine Control

If you suffer from migraines I suggest taking a supplement each day that contains the doses of butterbur and feverfew that are proven to reduce the frequency of migraine headaches. Most migraine patients welcome this news, along with the fact that it can make them less dependent on conventional migraine medications, all of which can produce adverse side effects and/or create physical/psychological dependency. In conjunction with avoiding food triggers, and the use of massage therapy, chiropractic care and acupuncture,  a preventive supplement of this nature is the perfect adjunct to the natural management of troublesome migraine problems.

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