The Gluten Syndrome and Migraine

There’s a battle raging, and gluten and migraine are a part of it.  The question at the heart of the battle: Is gluten harming people – people that don’t have celiac disease (coeliac disease)?

Gluten Syndrome and Migraine

Some just aren’t convinced by the evidence.  But a growing number are convinced, and some of those people are migraineurs.

Many of us as migraine patients have been asked if we’ve tried giving up gluten – found in wheat, rye and barley.  Some of us have tried it.  And the surprising thing is – for some people, it worked.

But why?  These weren’t people with wheat allergies, or with celiac disease.  Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder, and the most common treatment is the gluten-free diet.

But a growing number are arguing that there is a wider problem – gluten syndrome – or gluten insensitivity or intolerance – that the common tests aren’t recognizing.  Some of the common questions and arguments can be found at GlutenSensitivity.net if you’re interested in going into more detail.

One of the advocates of this point of view is Dr Rodney Ford, a paediatrician who has focused his career on food allergies and intolerance.

Last month Dr. Ford wrote this helpful summary:

… The crucial point, however, is that gluten-sensitivity can also be associated with neurological symptoms in patients who do not have any mucosal gut damage (that is, without celiac disease).  Gluten can cause neurological harm through a combination of cross reacting antibodies, immune complex disease and direct toxicity.  These nervous system affects include: dysregulation of the autonomic nervous system, cerebella ataxia, hypotonia, developmental delay, learning disorders, depression, migraine, and headache …

In other words, you might have a problem with gluten which is not technically celiac disease.

Have you tried a gluten free diet?  For how long?  Did it help with your headache or migraine symptoms?

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92 comments… add one

  • Heather May 27, 2009

    Excellent timing…I spoke with @GFillustrator on Twitter recently and she said her migraines stopped when she cut gluten. So last Friday I went to the doc to get a blood test for Celiac disease, and I haven’t received my results, but I’ve decided to try a gluten-free diet either way. For those who have tried it, how long did it take before your headaches/migraines improved?

    • Jenn Jul 20, 2011

      I’ve been prone to getting headaches my whole life, and migraines as a child and again for the past 5 years. For other reasons, I suspected I was gluten allergic or intolerant for a LONG time now, and my docor tested me for celiac last month. I tested negative, BUT in the meantime, I started a gluten-free diet bc I knew a negative celiac test didn’t mean I wasn’t gluten sensitive/intolerant. For the first 2 weeks on the diet, I never had a single headache! The next weekend, I was totally unprepared while being out of town, so I ate gluten all weekend. I had headaches the whole following week! Back on gluten free. Maybe it’s been a coincidence but for me it was within the first few days of going on the diet. I understand though, that it can take much longer. Stick with it bc it may be worth it.

  • TheDailyHerb May 27, 2009

    Trying a gluten-free diet has been suggested to me by a number of people. I’ve been tested for celiac disease and do not have it. Maybe this article is just the impetus I needed to try a gluten-free lifestyle. I’m most interested in hearing from other migraineurs who have tried this. Any tips or suggestions? Wheat seems to be in everything! — Thanks for posting, James.

    • ryan solete Dec 14, 2010

      Hi- i’ve been on a gluten free diet for a while, and since i lived on pasta and breads, i thought it was going to be difficult. it is WAY easier than you think. if you crave pastas, buy gluten free pasta. when you crave bread, buy glutenfree bread. outside of that, just watch the condiments and even vitamins. but all meat, fish, veggies, fruit, nuts are ok, which is better since that is what we are meant to eat. oh and rice and potatoes are ok.

      • george Oct 21, 2011

        Incorrect. Not ALL meats are GF, not by a long shot.

        • Jay Oct 22, 2011

          Processed meats could have gluten in them, and meats with seasonings might not be gluten free, however fresh meat is gluten free…unless someone knows something I don’t. If so please share.

    • Alley Apr 12, 2012

      This just a note, Celiacs blood test is not accurate. My daughter had it, and came back negitive. 4 months later she had a biopsy and was told she has celiacs, so negitive blood doesn’t mean anything. Biospy of the small intestine is sometimes the only way to know.

  • Helen Smith May 27, 2009

    And why do you suppose that my headache specialist neuro has not discussed this with me?

    • ryan solete Dec 14, 2010

      haha. I laugh at the irony here. in a nutshell, nobody makes money to tell you to stop eating wheat. they make money by telling you that you have an incurable disease like crohn’s or IBS, and then medicating you until you either die or go broke.

      • Sharon Stephens Feb 21, 2012

        Thank You for your answer to why no one (doctors) don’t tell you to stop eating something (wheat-for migraines) it is both factual and hilariously true–i love the way you put it.

  • TheDailyHerb May 27, 2009

    The reason your neuro doc doesn’t discuss diet and migraine is because most neuro docs take the traditional allopathic or “Western” approach to medicine. They prescribe pills. Whatever’s “hot” in the market or that their friend from Merck is currently pushing. Sadly, most don’t have time to keep up with the available research.

    It took me three tries, but I finally found a very competent neuro doc who practices traditional medicine, but who, as a migraineur himself, recognizes the efficacy of non-traditional or alternative methods for prevention and treatment. He believes that acupuncture and massage help migraineurs. He knowns that some herbs and supplements work well in migraine prevention and he’s not afraid to prescribe them. (Yes, get them as prescriptions. Many supplements can be filled at your pharmacy and are covered by your insurance. CoQ10 is pricey — $200/month at the health food stores or online.)

    You can and should “shop” around for your doctors — it literally saved my life. My former neuro had me on a toxic combination of medications (antidepressants with triptans) that caused Serotonin Syndrome (aka serotonin toxicity or poisoning). I got a referral from my GP (who I trust) for a new neuro when I was diagnosed with this. My new neuro doc works at a teaching facility (DHMC at Dartmouth College). They do cutting-edge research studies. This allows him to be more open-minded when it comes to exploring treatment options and keeps him up-to-date on research. Because they are part of a research facility, they have a higher level of knowledge than I could find locally or even in my entire state. I drive 4 hours round trip to see him. He is always on time and comes out to personally greet me. There’s even a grand piano player in the main entrance hall of the hospital. I waited 5 months to get my first appointment, and thought I had died and gone to heaven.

    He weaned me off of the meds (except for triptans and Zofran for vomiting. yeah, I get the really bad kind of migraines.) I have been seeing good results with Butterbur/Petadolex (150 mg/day), CoQ10 (200 mg/day), Magnesium Citrate 600 mg/day, Vitamin D (cuz everybody needs it up North) 1,000 mg/day, Cal/Mag 1,000 mg/day, Omega-3 1,000 mg/day, aspirin 81 mg/day (we’re at a 400% higher risk for stroke or heart attack because of migraine). This combination has got me up out of my bed for the first time in many years.

    Anyway, best advice on neuro docs is to get a word-of-mouth referral (from another migraineur or another trusted health-care practitioner)and be willing to drive a bit. If that’s not possible, make appointments with several different doctors (you may have to pay out-of-pocket for this). Go in and meet each one with a list of questions you have prepare ahead of time. Bring your migraine diary with you if you have one (if you don’t ask the doctor for one — another good test — does she have a migraine diary form?). Keeping a migraine diary will save loads of time with your neuro doc. In once glace she can see what’s going on.

    And, really just interview them as much as they do you. Find out about their treatment approach and if they, too, have migraine. You’ll get a sense for how the neuro docs communicate with you and whether or not you can work with them. Be sure to meet their team at the same time.

    Remember, you are in charge of your health not any doctor you might hire. Be prepared to do your own research too — like you are doing right now by reading this blog. :-) Good job!

    • Kathy Jun 12, 2011

      Just reading this gives me some hope, I’m in pain as I type. I have had migraines since 3 yrs old and I’m 46…the sad part is I have a six year old son and he only knows his mommy to have a headache its not fair for him (breaks my heart). Waiting for an appt in Danville to see a specialist he only deals with headaches..I’ve had it with medication and I’ve tried everything I do not want to feel medicated I want to feel normal not drugged. I will take this info with me to the neuro doc….thank for the info!! Kathy

      • Beth Jul 26, 2011

        I’d be interested to know what they said at Danville because I’m in the vicinity too. I feel your pain! I just assume all drs will look at natural treatments and discount them. I hope you get the help you need and if you do, boy, would I like the name of the dr!!!

        • Jay Jul 27, 2011

          If one hasn’t tried going gluten free, and you want to get rid of the pain and life controlling migraines, at least try eliminating just wheat from your diet. Try it for a month. You have nothing to lose buy the pain and a new life. I wish I would have found out sooner. Going totally gluten free is not as hard as it was in the past. More and more restaurants have gluten free items on their menus – or just ask in advance. Or better yet save money and cook at home.

  • Nikki May 28, 2009

    I went gluten free August 2008 and shortly after that tested neg for Celiac. I’ll admit I was desperate – I can’t tolerate ANY of the meds that were prescribed to me, especially triptans. I fall often into the category of “…if these side effects persist, contact your health care provider and discontinue use of this medication…”

    We documented the reduction of migraine to 50% and it also cut down on some digestive stuff too.

    It’s not easy to do but it can be done – many restaurants will provide a GF menu and there is a growing understanding on the part of wait staff. Saying that, you still need to be vigilant. For example, did you know that Twizzlers have wheat flour in them? After a GF Thanksgiving dinner they were my downfall!!!

    It’s a little tricky to see if gluten is a problem. My symptoms are not immediate, they take several hours to start – sometimes as many as 12. By then, I’ve totally forgotten what I’ve eaten.

    Here’s a great blog by an author who’s book helped a ton….shauna james ahern’s gluten free girl – http://glutenfreegirl.blogspot.com/ she’s celiac but helps to get a handle on gluten

    The symptoms can take awhile to appear but the effects seem to linger for a long time too. I feel as if all my nutrient absorbing gears get gummed up for at least a week. I can swallow tons of supplements, raw food, etc. and I don’t feel like I’m getting any nutrients.
    Anyone else have that feeling?

    • anne tatgenhorst Mar 25, 2011

      Exactly how I feel. I’m gluten free now and for the first time in my life I’m regular and have no digestive pains, no constipation…I know within a few hours if I’ve eaten something with gluten: I suddenly get super sleepy (thought I had chronic fatigue) and bloated and constipated. Also feel weak, as though I’m not absorbing nutrients. Sometimes it takes a few days to get back on track. My husband will join in the GF diet to see if it helps stop his migranes.

  • Carol May 28, 2009

    I have head migraines for more than 10 years. I was recently diagnosed with Celiac. I have been gluten free for 6 months now- just had the antibody test which showed a tremendous improvement. Unfortunately, I continue to have migraines. I have not seen any change in the last 6 months.

    • Jay Jun 14, 2011

      Carol – I’ve read others posts on various Yahoo groups. Several have mentioned other causes of their migraines – garlic was one that was mentioned the most.
      Many that have tested positive for Celiac Disease (BTW you have to be eating gluten to test positive w/blood tests. Also many have false negatives, pays to be tested more than once) are also “allergic” to dairy products. I remember going w/o dairy as a kid to try to abate my migraines. Maybe that’s why chocolate is an issue, if it contains dairy.

  • Stacy May 29, 2009

    I finally got off propranolol after about 3 years of eating gluten free and was 80% migraine free.. I also found that I have a hormone component to my migraines as well. With some bio identical hormones and the gf diet I am 99% migraine free.

    • sarah Aug 8, 2010

      what is bio identical horomone?

  • amy May 29, 2009

    I’ve suffered from Migraines with Aura for years. Prior to being diagnosed with Celiac Disease, I was getting anywhere from 0-5 migraines a month. After going gluten free, I get 3 or 4 a year.

  • Amy May 29, 2009

    It took about nine months gluten-free for me to see significant improvement, but now I only get a migraine if I eat chocolate! Stick it out… your health is worth it!

  • Norma May 30, 2009

    I am a gluten free migraineur and chef and I can’t honesly say that I had a reduction in headache frequency when I started eaing clean. My celiac diagnosis was 21/2 years ago and I have been as strict as knowingly possible with the help of the internet and new consumer friendly labelling. The transition seems hard, but really isn’t if you don’t think about what you cannot eat and do think about all the healthy natural foods you can incorporate into your diet.
    I was hoping for major headache relief, especially when I was casein free for a year, but sadly no relationship to my chemistry.

  • James Jun 3, 2009

    Thanks for all these fantastic comments! I had a feeling this was going to be a hot topic. I know we’re going to need to talk about it again.

    It of course should come as no surprise that the gluten-free diet helps some migraineurs and not others. The interesting thing is that it does help so many.

    Thanks so much for sharing your experiences – we need more comments on this, and we will try to revisit this topic again in the future.

  • Amy Jun 4, 2009

    The following links may be helpful. The first is a list of all of the research published to date on the subject. The second is from the blog of a prominent neurologist.

    http://jccglutenfree.googlepages.com/migraineheadache

    http://www.renegadeneurologist.com/category/ailments/migraines-
    headaches/

  • Alison Jun 10, 2009

    I’ve been GF for nine months, six of those very strictly (I had to learn to speak up in restaurants and at friendly acquaintance’s houses). My migraines have decreased in frequency and severity (the biggest change).

    I would love to get the name of the neurologist at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center that “The Daily Herb” sees and praises. I live about two hours away from that medical center and know the area well (it’s my childhood hometown and my family still lives there). I’d like to go see that neurologist — he sounds wonderful!

    As for tips on going GF, I’ve discovered that there are *lots* of different kinds of rice in stores — more than just white and brown — and they are all fun to explore. Also, Trader Joe’s makes an excellent rice pasta that holds its shape and isn’t as chewy as some other GF pastas (I like the spirals and penne the best).

    Someone else mentioned Shauna James Ahern’s website, glutenfreegirl.com. I found this website to be very helpful starting out because Shauna loves great-tasting food and cooking, and appreciates that food is about more than sustenance — it’s also about communal joy with friends and family.

  • TheDailyHerb Jun 11, 2009

    Alison — Maybe you live near me? In Vermont? Either way a 2-hour drive to go see Dr. Morris Levin at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center is well worth the drive. You may need to have your GP give you a referral (mine did, so I don’t know if Dr. Levin takes new clients without a referral, so best to maybe get one.) I took 5 months before I could get in to see him, so don’t be discourage. Do start or keep your Migraine Diary going. It will help in your discussions with him (or any other doc). Dr. Levin can be reached at the Neurology Dept. phone # at 603.650.7916. Hope this helps. — Gyan

  • Alison Jun 14, 2009

    Thanks, Gyan!! I have an appointment with my GP on Tuesday and will ask her for a referral. The one sticky point is whether my health insurance company will pay for the visit. I have BCBS of Massachusetts, and I’ve already run into their refusal to pay for a physical therapist in CT who had specialized expertise. I think I’ll make the appointment with Dr. Levin anyway since it will likely take several months to see him, and then research the payment part of it during the wait.

    I live in western Massachusetts, btw, about two hours South of Hanover/Lebanon. Thanks, again!!

  • TheDailyHerb Jun 14, 2009

    You are so very welcome, Alison. Dr. Levin is the THIRD neuro doc I’ve been to. I know how hard it is to find a neuro doc who is up-to-date on the latest treatments, open to alternative treatments, nonjudgmental, suffers migraines too, and spends as much time with the patient as is needed (no rushing).

    Your plan sounds good. I can relate to the trouble of working around medical insurance rules. Ug! But the 5-month wait to get an appt will give you ample time to start a letter-writing campaign. When you go into your GP’s office for the referral, you might want to print out any info about DHMC’s Neurology Dept./Dr. Levin. Impress your GP and he’ll help advocate with your insurance carrier.

    Good luck!

    P.S. Are you in Athol? My son lives in Bolton.

  • TheDailyHerb Jun 14, 2009

    James, so sorry we are waaaaay off-topic here. Promise to be more well-behaved in the future.

    Alison, if you have any questions you can twitter me @TheDailyHerb.

  • R. O'Quinn Jun 17, 2009

    Going gluten-free hasn’t made a difference in my migraines, but has made a HUGE difference for my younger brother. When he is actively gluten-free, he gets 0 migraines. We both have celiac disease.

    The thing that has made the biggest difference for me, in 40 years of trying to treat migraine, is the 50 mg daily nortriptyline. It cut my migraine frequency down to about a quarter of what I had before. Triptans work for me, with varying success…so far Maxalt + Compro has the highest success rate – it kills about 75% of the migraines I do get, and of course, the Compro usually helps prevent vomiting as well.

  • gardengirl Jun 17, 2009

    Most people don’t consider hidden sources of gluten when they “go gluten free”, so they think it doesn’t work. MOST rice is sprayed with wheat starch, and wheat starch is a common packaging ingredient-its also used as an anti caking agent in salt, and is the glue on envelopes, stamps, and other things you might “lick” to moisten. People tend to give up, thinking that because they avoided the obvious forms of gluten, that the diet doesn’t work-it DOES work, IF you eliminate all sources of it. Wheat starch is also a common binding ingredient in supplements, vitamins, and medications. so even some of the medications being prescribed for migraines can cause a bounceback type reaction. Do your homework, and learn about hidden sources in shampoos, toothpaste, cleansers, etc. I have been totally migraine free for over 8 years, where as before going gluten free, I suffered weekly with them. Its WORTH the effort. The only migraines I have had in 8 years has been after accidental exposure to gluten. I did not go gluten free for migrains-I was dx with celiac, but the migraines were the first symptom to totally resolve-MANY other chronic ailments totally resolved as well, as long as I am vigilant about what I put in, on, or around my body.

  • Alison Jun 18, 2009

    GardenGirl — Very good advice! Do you have any suggestions on how to research gluten in topical products such as shampoos, cleansers, sunscreens etc.? I’m having less luck doing this research than research on food. Thanks in advance!

  • James Jun 23, 2009

    Thanks for all your ideas and tips! This is certainly a topic we’re going to have to come back to in depth. Keep the comments coming, and that will give us a better idea what direction to take. There’s no doubt we’re on to something big.

  • kymski01 Aug 8, 2009

    This is awesome information. I’m so glad I stumbled upon it. I’ve had this migraine for a month and a half. My neuro and I are trying to find solution. I didn’t realize food had such an impact or rather I thought I knew what my food triggers were. I think they are way beyond what I ever imagined.

  • Buttercup Feb 1, 2010

    I have suffered from sporadic migraines for 20 years. I have been gluten free for 3 months now. The impetus to go gluten free was stomach related-always feeling bloated and uncomfortable. I noticed a direct correlation between my stomach trouble and gluten (I was really hoping to see no connection because who doesn’t love bread!). Surprisingly, after a month, it occurred to me that I hadn’t had a migraine since quiting gluten. I began to research this phenomenom on the internet and was surprised to discover a connection. In short, I haven’t had a single migraine since quiting gluten 3 months ago (a span of time never acheiveable in the past) and will never go back to eating it gluten.

  • Madeline Feb 17, 2010

    It’s great to hear all the people who have had relieve with a gluten free diet.

    I suffered for 2 year with at least 2 migraines a week, I had all the test/scans with no results. I decided to start eliminating different foods, gluten was the second thing and to my relief I didn’t get any more migraines. After 10 years of a very strict gluten free diet, the only time I get one is after accidental exposure to gluten.

    I don’t know about other sufferers, but I have found the long I have been on GF diet the more severe and quicker the migraines happen. It only takes trace amounts and less the half an hour to start, these days.

    So I have become great at spreading the word to friends/family and co-works all about gluten. I have also notice in the last couple of years the dramatic increase of information/labelling and restaurant with gluten free (with in Australia at least). Which makes live so much easier, I don’t get as mean blank looks when I ask if it gluten free.

  • gigi Feb 25, 2010

    am very interested in the GF diet and migraines. Any info is appreciated!

  • Greg May 23, 2010

    For about 12 years of my adult life, I had to endure the classic migraine (aura, naseau, intense pain and vomiting) at least once a month. After my wife was diagnosed with celiac disease, I too went on a gluten free diet. Amazingly, my migraines ceased with the exception of one during the first three months of going gluten free. Coincidence? Well, one could argue this, but the timing and the abrupt way the migraines stopped lead me to believe gluten was a major factor in causing my headaches. In the last year, I have accidentally consumed some gluten (mother-in-law bought a cake in the gluten free freezer area that wasn’t gluten free…) on three different occassion and experienced a migraine within 24 hours. Another coincidence? This time, I am convinced my migraines are connected to gluten consumption. While going gluten free may not be the solution for all or even half of migraine sufferers, I would encourage any migraine sufferer to give the diet three months. There are plenty of great recipies for breads and cakes that you won’t have to miss out on delicious baked goods. Give a try.

  • georgia girl Jul 1, 2010

    My daughter would experience sporadic vomiting episodes from early infancy. As she got older we realized it was vomiting in conjunction with migraine headaches. My mom, grandmother, and brother all had a history with migraines. As her permanent teeth came in, I noticed they all had white spots (dental enamel hypoplasia)

    I was diagnosed with celiac last year and decided to try my daughter on a gluten free diet. She only had about 1 migraine a month, but that was enough for me. She has been gluten free 1 year and has had zero migraines.

    I agree with poster above. Many people go on a wheat free diet and avoid obvious forms of gluten. We are bombarded with so many hidden forms of gluten that a true gluten free diet takes a lot of work and research in the early stages. However, I believe it is worth the effort and with time and planning it becomes a lot easier. Research shows that gluten can remain in our system for 6 and even up to 9 months….so don’t give up too soon. I would cleanse for a full year before deciding.

  • Candis Jul 7, 2010

    Yes! So glad to see that others have expeienced the same effect. Through trial and error I finally eliminated gluten as yet one more thing to try to get rid of my migranes and it worked. This is no small thing! If I even have a small tiny amount of gluten now – I wake up the next day with a migrane – usually the more gluten I have been exposed to, the worse the migrane. As a happy side effect – I seemed to have shed about 10 pounds of ugly bloat that I always carried around as well.

  • Auburner Aug 3, 2010

    I’ve had migraines my whole life–ever since I could remember. I would feel toxic. My head would throb and heat up, my eyes would get really hard and bulge out of my head. I would moan and usually always vomit. Only after vomiting would I be able to fall asleep with a cold wash cloth over my head. It seemed to usually happen at special events like baseball games, birthday partys, Christmas, Thanksgiving or any time I would exert myself in any way. The problem seemed to worsen as I got into my 30’s till the point where I was getting a migraine every week. But then after a suggestion from a friend to get tested by enterolab (I’m not affiliated with them in any way), and after a positive result, I have been gluten free for 9 months now. And guess how many migraines? ZERO! I laugh in the direction of people who feel sorry for me for my gluten free diet. I’m so liberated now to be free of migraines. I would eat bugs. Happily. If that’s what it took to finally eliminate what was causing my migraines. If you have migraines and think it may be stomach related, then it probably is gluten. I am so glad to be gluten free…but it is super hard.

  • mel Aug 31, 2010

    It took a month and a half. Went from 10 a month to 0. Minimal occurrences since then.

  • Kristi Sep 4, 2010

    I just learned about the connection between gluten and migraines. I have had migraines on and off for 40 years. I have tried everything to get to the root cause and eliminate the triggers. I am going to try this! Thank you.

  • Ama Oct 2, 2010

    I am blown away….my daughter having stomache troubles for years, has stopped gluten intake…she is visiting with me from the opposite coast….says she needs to stay gluten free…I’m researching foods she can eat while I will be needing to have food around for her….Me having had continuous migraines for over 18 years…no job…no life….no friends to speak of….LOST MY LIFE to these horrible things….so many MDs and Specialists that NEVER once said a thing about gluten intolerence……..I am apauled….this day is very like others…I sit in bed with sunglasses x2 and just pray no one travels past my house with the boom box on….lest I vomit from the pain…I need to try this…I pray it works….thank you for posting this information…God bless you all

  • Christie Oct 3, 2010

    I went gluten and casein free along with my son who is autistic. To my surprise, my migraines went away almost completely, almost immediately. With the few that I did get I was able to figure out that soy was also a problem. Since cutting out soy as well I have not had a single migraine. Such a huge relief and all the motivation I need to stick with the diet. I do still have persistent migraine aura, so I am looking into how I might be able to even get rid of that through diet/supplements.

  • Candis Oct 6, 2010

    Christie – while the worst of my symptoms were relieved almost immediately, it took more than a few months for me to start to lose the aura and a number of other smaller issues. It’s been almost 2 years and I still ocassionally get the aura. But it is less and less all the time. It may just take a bit longer for your body to completely rid itself of the effects of a lifetime of gluten. Hang in there fellow traveler and good luck!

  • Kathy Oct 21, 2010

    I was excited to see this site and know that I was not alone. I have had migraines for at least the past 10 years and they were ruining my life! About a year ago my friends chiroprator told her if she wanted to lose weight and feel better she should try gluten free. Another friend has celiac. These 2 things made me look at the connection between gluten and migraines and sure enough there was a huge connection. So after doing a ton of research I decided to try gluten free or at least as close as I could get. I feel soooo much better!! Its only been 3 weeks and there is a noticable difference just in how I feel in general not to mention after having migraines weekly I have not had one in 3 weeks!! I am celebrating with some peanut butter and jelly on gluten free rice cakes!! I also am paying it forward and sharing the info with those that are interested. Very exciting stuff!

  • Jenn Nov 16, 2010

    I am 24 years old and have been suffering from daily headaches and weekly migraines since I was 8. I have been on every combination of medications, herbal regimens, had every test, and gone to massage therapists and chiropractors, all of which have somewhat helped but not relieved my symptoms. My mother is also a migraine sufferer and was diagnosed with celiac’s disease a few years ago. She began eating a gluten free diet and has had great relief of both her migraines and her celiac symptoms. I thought nothing of it until August when I was in the Dominican and, for a week, ate nothing but fresh fish and fruits. I was amazed at the reduction in my headaches! Upon returning home I decided to try eating less gluten and I have noticed a profound reduction in my daily headaches. If I eat a bagel, sure enough I will have a headache a few hours later.
    I definately believe in the connection between gluten and migraines. I still continue my daily medication and do continue to have occasional headaches and migraines, but cutting gluten from my diet has allowed me to live my life the way a 24 year old should. I can plan my days around my life, not my headaches.

  • Katie Dec 10, 2010

    I had suffered with migraines since age 6. Half the doctors didn’t even believe my description of the pain because I was just a little kid. But, the extruciating pain was too much to bare…I wouldn’t have wished it on anyone. I used to get migraines up to 3 times a week and nothing would relieve the pain. Because I was getting them so frequently, we couldn’t even pinpoint a trigger. Several neurologists, numerous medications, and 20 years later, I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. When I switched to a gluten free diet, there were no migraines anymore. I had my life back! Results were almost immediate. I just wish someone would have diagnosed me years ago because I missed out on an entire childhood. But, I’m happy that I can at least go forward and not have to worry about these horrific, debilitating headaches.

  • Aurora Jan 25, 2011

    After reading this post, I started going gluten-free on the first of August last year (not so strict about it because I couldn’t resist a little bite of pancake or dough nut once a week). I was averaging 18 migraine days per month. But in November, I noticed that I only had 2 72-hour-attacks. I had more attacks in December, but hey, I was functional and the attacks were milder. These days, I can walk my dog almost every day even with an attack.

  • Jay Apr 13, 2011

    I’ve had migraines since since I was 10 yrs. old, I’nm now 55.
    about 5 years ago after seeing a naturalpathic for 6 months she put me on an anti-inflammatory diet. Diet included eliminating wheat. After 9 months I found an article about Gluten-Free restaurants which eventual lead me to the Celiac Disease Foundation site, where I was able to check off almost every symptom associated with CD.
    Then I realized I hadn’t had a migraine in the last 9 months I’d been on the diet. After discussing CD with my naturalpathic I went GF. It’s now been almost 4 years. It’s not hard. Many great tasting GF products out there.
    Since going GF my headaches are gone along with a host of other health issues that were always explained by my (former) doctors as “some people are just like that”.

  • Alexis May 5, 2011

    I am so glad to have found this blog. I am a daily migraine person. I have been doing the traditional stuff, Imitrex and amitryptaline worked for a while, but now its not working. For three days I have cut the gluten out of my diet. For three days I have had NO migrains. I am really happy about this! Like many who posted before me, Migrains have turned my life to shambles. I am hopeful this is the answer. I want to improve my quality of life!

  • Jay May 6, 2011

    Alexis – I’m so glad you did find this blog.
    Search Gluten Free foods for hidden gluten ingredients. There are several GF Yahoo groups you may want to check out.

    Watch out for maltodextrin and modified food starch, sometimes these are made from wheat. OK if it labels says corn maltodextrin, etc. MSG if OK, unless you have problems with MSG. Just read processed foods labels carefully. NOTE: Items labeled “Wheat Free” does not mean they are gluten free. And the U.S. FDA says manufacturers can label their products “gluten free”, however they can still have “acceptable” (according to the FDA) amounts of Gluten in them.

    As for any alcoholic beverages – I only drink potato vodka, wine, and good quality tequila.

  • Peta Jul 28, 2011

    If you are going to get tested for Celiacs Disease don’t stop eating gluten as the test (the blood test isn’t the full test you have to get a biopsy of your small intestine) can come back negative and you could be doing more damage if you continue to eat gluten. But if you dont want to find out go for it, I only find it hard when dinning out or travelling. The web is fantastic for researching where your going for gluten free eating and shopping.

  • Wendy Aug 17, 2011

    How I wish I’d seen this post when it was first written!

    I’ve had frequent migraines for 40+ years – and the last 15 years they’ve been almost daily. I’ve been on every possible medication and cut out all sorts of things (I tried wheat-free without success).

    I’ve been gluten free for about 6 weeks with not a single migraine in that time – I don’t think I’ve been migraine free for that length of time *ever*. The results were almost instant.

    Sticking to a gluten free diet is so easy compared to trying to cope with migraines!

  • Anne Aug 19, 2011

    I have had migraines since puberty, and they became almost chronic in my 40’s, especially after starting triptans to treat them. There were many months where I would sweat out whether I would have enough pills to treat my migraine (9 Treximet per month). Since I ran across an article linking gluten and migraines 8 months ago, I am SO much better on a (mostly) gluten-free diet. I am down to taking maybe one Treximet per one or two months. And I can usually trace back to some gluten in a food that I wasn’t thinking about (gravy, candy etc.) Bonus, my sinuses are much clearer day to day (no colds in 6 mos). Had my check up today, and the news seemed to surprise my doctor, but he didn’t discourage me. He said he had never heard of gluten as a trigger, and he did add a celiac test to the blood panel he took…so we’ll see. I’m fully expecting it to be negative…especially since I know you need to eat gluten for a while to get a positive result…he thought since I’m not super strict it might still show up, if I have it. Anyway, much as I thought I’d miss my beloved pancakes, doughnuts, cookies and cake (no, I’ve never had a weight problem!)…compared to a migraine, thay are so not worth it. Plus it forces me to reach for healthier things like fruit and veggies (imagine!) when I’m hungry.
    Consider trying it…it is so much better than having to turn to the anti-seizure meds and anti-depressants my neurologist was trying to get me to take.

    • Jay Aug 24, 2011

      This is so wonderful to hear Anne. I made the connection between gluten and migraines soon after going gluten free. If you don’t have a weight problem (under or over) there are some old standby products that are now gluten free. Bisquick for one. More expensive, however watch for coupons and then stock up. Pancakes, biscuits, umh. Watch it though there seems to be lots of sugar in the mix. And who really needs donuts? – too much processed white sugar and white flour. Best wishes to you becoming totally headache free.

  • Elisa Aug 28, 2011

    I am s happy to have found this site. I suffer from at least 10 migraines per month, with mild headaches in between. I am 41 and this has been going on since I was a teen. I just tapered off Namenda which was prescribed by the “best” migraine specialist in my area (I have seen all of them). Namenda did nothing for me just as all the other drugs the specialists have had me take. I do take Treximent at least 9x’s per month. I just found out about the possible connection between gluten and migraine. It has only been 1 day, but so far, no migraine. I am keeping my figures crossed!

  • curt Aug 31, 2011

    In the hospital right now with my 16 year old son. He has been a migraine sufferer most of his life. He has always been active, wrestling, football bicycling, skateboarding. He gets migraines so bad he can not even walk to the car to go to the er for a morphine cocktail. Light sensitive, vomiting. At the on set of a migraine he takes ibprophen and benadrly then goes to bed for the rest of the day. My wife and I seem to think to much activity triggers them. Then he’ll usually suffer a couple days until its ran its course. He does like his donuts and peanutbutter sandwiches on wheat or white bread. Hate to see a kid like this so I think its time to try this glutin free thing. Now what products that teenagers love have glutin in them??? Need some help gettin started.

  • ldavis Sep 5, 2011

    It is amazing how many people are effected by gluten right now. It is completely true that it does not just affect those with celiacs and it has a huge range of symptoms when it does effect someone. I recently saw some info on other triggers on some show like fox news and The Journal with Joan Lunden, talking about weather and chemicals in foods as other causes.

  • alyson breathed Oct 8, 2011

    No more migraines after suffering 18-20 a month! I went on a well known packaged food diet that happens to be gluten free and for the first time in my adult life I was migraine free for 6 months. I lost the weight I’d intended and as I began eating a diet that included breads and red meat they came right back. Both the wheat products and the red meat have a particular protein, as I understand it, that sparks the migraines. I can eat a little red meat, but not a big steak or it’s slam dunk migraine inducer. I am back eating gluten free with without migraines!

  • Erik Dec 13, 2011

    Been on GF diet now for six weeks. Migraines keep coming. As I read in some comments, results can be instantaneous. So that kind of tells me its not working for me. But one person said to keep trying for a year. Hmm.

    • Amy Dec 13, 2011

      Stick with it, Erik. I saw a gradual decrease in the frequency and severity of my headaches over several months. I think it ultimately depends on your unique physiology, how much intestinal permeability you have, if you are accidentally consuming gluten, etc. Also, there are other migraine triggers… I pretty much always get a migraine if I eat chocolate or caffeine. Good luck!

      • alyson breathed Dec 13, 2011

        evidently triggers are unique to each person and it’s a matter of elimination and reintroduction. I went drastic and ate only medifast for 3 months and had almost NO migraines for the entire period… then introduced red meat and immediately got migraines, dairy went fine and then I added gluten and it became clear – that for me – it’s red meat and gluten …

  • Brenda Dec 13, 2011

    There is a good chance you aren’t as gluten free as you think. Many of the things promoted as gluten free are loaded with it, rice being a prime example. Many people go “gluten free” by simply eliminating wheat. ANY “enriched” product, such as rice, is sprayed with “vitamins” which are often derived from wheat, or use wheat as a starch to make them adhere to the rice. Bottled water labled as “purified or enhanced” contains wheat, as does the glue on envelopes and stamps, shampoos, cosmetics, clothing dyes, etc. In addition, if what you are eating in place of wheat is manufactured in a facility that processes wheat, it WILL contain gluten from cross contamination. As if that weren’t complicated enough, if you are eating ANY animal producs, such as meat, eggs, dairy, farmed fish, poultry, etc-you ARE getting gluten from there as well. Most animals are fed a high grain diet, and if they are eating gluten, so are you when you eat the by products. To go truly gluten free is quite complex and complicated, finding out about and eliminating the not so obvious sources, but once accomplished, the rewards are quiet asounding.

    Migraine free for 10 years, since learning the hidden sources, with only a couple of migraines during that time brought about my accidental exposure…

  • Becky Jan 21, 2012

    Wow! I have been toying with the idea that maybe gluten sensitivity could be linked to my migraines. I, too, have had them for years, usually not more than once or twice a month, but really awful lasting for days at a time when I have them, with nothing bringing relief. Tried lots of things…Seasonique to eliminate menstrual cycles did not help. Triptans help pretty well usually, but it sure would be better not to get the migraines in the first place, esp. since, like someone else said, you have to worry about rationing out those 9 little pills they give you. I ran out on New Year’s Eve & stupidly drank champagne & had to suffer for days before the Dr.’s office & pharmacy reopened. I am so glad to read all these comments from people with similar experiences. I am definitely going to try going gluten free and see if it helps. I have not suffered any stomach or intestinal problems that I’m aware of, but if it helps the migraines I will stick to it for life! Thank you everyone for sharing and helping others!

  • Renee D. Apr 22, 2012

    Interesting article.. I started gluten free diet to lose some weight a few weeks ago, but something interesting happened instead. I’ve been suffering with cluster migraine headaches forever it seems. It’s been the past 5 or 7 years that every morning I awake with a sharp stabbing pain behind my right eye, slicing thru my right side of my head, jaw and ear as well. The attacks would make it hard to see out of my eye, hearing on ride side would be garbled at best. And, concentrating on work would be difficult. Driving would be hard because of seeing blurry out of the right eye. And, they would last 2 days at least. I do not have celiac disease, or stomach problems. If I drank wine, I would be sure to get the migraine, or if I stayed away from coffee I would as well. But, 2 weeks ago I tried a totally gluten free diet. I went to Whole Foods and bought gluten free bread and pasta. I stuck to fresh meats, dairy eggs, nuts. About 1 or 2 days after I started this diet, the headaches stopped. I thought it was a fluke and I thought by the weekend for sure I would be hurting. But, I have been migraine free ever since even when I drink wine or forget to drink coffee. One night two nights ago, I went out to dinner with a friend. I had seafood crepes. I think the crepes had gluten. The next morning and for about 10 hours after waking, I had a migraine. That night I went back to the gluten free diet and the next morning was good, no migraine. I’ve never been to any doctors, I can’t take pills that well, I depend on natural remedies. I’m glad I found this new lifestyle to work for me. and, by the way, I’ve lost a couple of lbs too.

    • Alley Apr 24, 2012

      WOW i am so Happy to hear that!! Yes i was in shock to, didn’t plan or link it until 1 month later. I still sit and think, ohhh it’s comming back any day, if i had wine i would instantly get a migraine too!! not now. If it works for some migraine sufferers please get the word out, so easy to try, no side effects only the diet is hard. But if u do it, u will never go back the way u were.

      • Renee D. Apr 26, 2012

        Thanks. I’m very grateful for being migraine free. There’s a couple of added bonuses too. First of all, my mood has changed. I used to be kind of moody, I would have strange dreams that would upset me. my anxiety level would increase. I thought I needed prozac. But, lately my mood has been great. It’s like I feel on a cloud or high. I feel good all the time. My sleep is good and without nightmares like I had before. I’m able to handle life again. My depression has lifted. I’m sure it’s related to the diet as well.

  • alyson breathed Apr 24, 2012

    now that you have had this success, watch to see what happens when you have a meal with red meat… it has many of the same proteins that cause the gluten related migraines – it’s all about the inflammatory response.

    • Renee D. Apr 26, 2012

      Luckily, my cravings for red meat are no longer there, except one: Hamburgers. So far, I’m ok with turkey burgers. But, I understand about what you are saying and will be careful with food. It seems like you have to treat food like any drug nowadays. For me, getting rid of migraine is one less problem to worry about in my life.

    • Kari C. Aug 14, 2012

      I have never heard this about red meat… so if we find that GF diets work for us but still have migraines sometimes, it could be red meat that causes a similar reaction as gluten?

      • Ed Aug 17, 2012

        All red meat is not the same and not cooked the same. Most red meat animals are finished in confined areas implanted with drugs and fed a wide range of by products and corn. A lot of this meat is cooked over charcoal with the carcinogens going into the meat, then it is eaten with barbecue sauce or steak sauce and washed down with pop or an alcoholic beverage. Combining drugs and different food and drink that have an adverse effect on me increases my level of discomfort. It is like using aspertame and msg together seems to be 6 or 8 times worse than just using them separately.

  • Kari C. Aug 7, 2012

    Well I am a little late on the comments as the last one was in April but I was very hopeful after reading this article and all the comments from people who have tried and had success of GF diets. I have suffered from Migraines for about 15 years now and they have become much worse and more frequent over the last few years. I now have terrible migraines between 5 and 7 days a week with nausea, vision problems, fatigue, sensitivity to light and sound, you name it, I have had it, like many of the people who have commented here. I have been on so many meds : Topomax (which causes horrible side effects including increased pressure in my eyes, I was not on that one long), and currently: Fioricet, Maxalt, Flexeril, Stadol, Zonogran (anti-seizure that is used to treat migraines), and just added to the cocktail is Verapamil. I have had two Occipital Nerve Blocks only with a little relief for two weeks each time when it is supposed to last a couple of months. I am supposed to have Botox injections the first of September and I think I will try a GF diet in the meantime while I wait. I get a lot of referred pain with my migraines in my neck, shoulders, jaws, and ears so I hope if the GF diets helps the migraines, it will take care of the pain everywhere else. I have been doing some research and the only conflicting information I am getting is on beef, does anyone know what the deal is on beef? Thanks! I am encouraged by the success of the other people who commented and wish them the best too!

    • Ivana Aug 8, 2012

      Hello Kari
      I read your comment .I too suffer from very complex migraines last 20 years,like yours except that mine are complex hemiplegic .meaning when I get migraine ,which is 2-3 times a month, my right side gets paralyzed for about 20-30 minutes.and then it goes away. I was also on the most medications like you were. And they mostly caused more harm(very bad side effects) then it helped my migraines. Long story short, I started on GF diet two weeks ago ,and I feel so much better! No headaches,migraines,I am not tired anymore,and it seems that my memory is improving as well.I had really bad migraines after eating red meat. Reason could be the way how the animals are raised ,and what kind of chemicals were put in the meat to preserve it. I also cannot have orange juice,any citrus fruit,any antioxidants, pizza,pineapple.I a
      So heard of Botox ,but as I nurse I am kind of sceptic about it and it is not a long lasting.maybe it does help.let us know.

      • Kari C. Aug 14, 2012

        Thanks for your reply! It will be one week ago tomorrow that I started a GF diet and I have to say I have noticed a difference. They have not gone away completely and overnight but I have only had 3 migraines since I started it and I usually have one EVERY day! I still have slight headaches each day but not full blown migraines so I consider that an improvement for sure! I am still not sure about the Botox either. I still might look into having it done to hopefully completely wipe out the migraines for a while if the GF thing only lessens them but I am still on the fence. I go back to my Neuro in a few weeks. I will let you know :) So glad the GF diet is working well for you :)

    • Shawna Mar 26, 2013

      Sounds like we are in the same boat with migraines! I have been getting Botox now for almost 5 years. It helped then no relief. Now I’m getting my Botox from someone new and I seem to be getting some relief. The are going in the temple occipital nerves and corrogator muscles. Check out the Midwest migraine surgery center!

    • Robin Sep 5, 2013

      Hi Kari,

      I have had issues with neck/shoulders/jaw as well and started seeing a Activator Chiropractor who specializes in Cranio/Sacral work, as suggested by my Neurologist. Lots of massage and other gentle head/skull work. Might want to ask your Neurologist for a recommendation, and do some research on it and see if its something that might work for you. Make sure they are certified with the appropriate boards!! I used to get the migraines for 3 days at a time and now, usually, they are 1 day only. I’ve been on the GF diet for 5 days now and am hoping it will help me like it has others. Good luck.

  • Katie Aug 9, 2012

    To Kari C. :
    I posted a comment previously on this topic and, I just wanted to tell you…I feel your pain. I am so sorry that you have had to endure such pain for so long. I do hope you give the GF thing a try. Even if it doesn’t make the migraines completely go away, maybe it will provide you with some relief. I also took all sorts of medications to try and prevent my migraines…and then all the drugs I took when I actually got the migraines to try to ease the pain. I, too, experienced a lot of referred pain with the migraines I had. My back was so knotted up I had to go to physical therapy when I was in high school. I SO wish someone would have been there to understand the pain I was going through or suggest a GF diet or …something! When I was eventually diagnosed with Celiac, none of my doctors even alluded to the fact that my migraines could have been caused by Celiac all along. I’m not a doctor, but from the day I started the strict GF diet, my migraines slowly disappeared. I only get them now if I have a really bad reaction. So, maybe like once a year I will get one. And, when I do get one now, I can’t believe I lived through the 20 yrs of my life that I got migraines up to 5 times a week.

    Keep researching the beef thing. I can only say that I have NOT had a gluten reaction to beef in the 4.5 yrs I’ve been gluten free…and I’m one of those super-sensitive Celiacs. But, I can’t speak for everyone…nor do I claim to “know all” about the GF diet. I encourage you to keep doing your research though and learn as much as you can. I wish you the best of luck!!

    • Kari C. Aug 14, 2012

      Thanks for your reply! I am glad this is working so well for you and it encourages me to keep going. I posted a reply above to another person about my results so far but I have been on the GF diet for almost a week now and I have had fewer migraines. I still get them but not at often and when I do get one, the meds kick in much faster than they used to so I am pleased so far. :)

  • ABreathed Aug 9, 2012

    my neurologist is unwilling to consider that it might be this simple – he is determined to believe that he just gave me enough meds that in some combination, did something miraculous, tho, nothing supports his contention. I’d stopped taking meds for 3 months – continued to have migraines, then went on a GF diet and that was the key – no gluten and no beef. I’ve played around for the last year to find out what I can and can’t do. I can get away with a very little of either every now and then… but if I really indulge, it’s a guaranteed migraine in 8 hours.

  • Renee Aug 12, 2012

    Just an update to my April blog re: the gluten free diet I’m on and still no migraines. Yes, I’ve been migraine free since April. But, when I see a pastry and I eat 1/2, I can feel a slight migraine coming on the right side, but it never blows up totally. I know if I push it, and eat the whole thing then, I will most likely get a full blown migraine. But, I do miss pastries and I also miss real Pizza! I added to this diet, an all natural diet from the 17-day diet! I lost about 10 pounds so far. I have 30 to go, but I’m doing this because of health reasons. I guess we are also responsible for our actions, what we eat, ect.

  • Jeanie Nov 11, 2012

    I have had migraines my entire life. I am not celiac but have thyroid autoimmune disease (hypothyroidism). I read several months ago to avoid gluten because the gluten was triggering the autoimmune response which was also killing off my thyroid hormones. For the first time in my life I am almost migraines free. I really wish I could have known years ago what I know now. I have lost so much of my quality of life with the migraines. I am sure that all the years of taking perscriptions and over the counter meds were very healthy for me. Well, I know now and can begin living migraine free.

  • Joanna Backman Mar 27, 2013

    I have had migraines for years and years, am 56 now and been on a gluten free diet for 4 months, have seen a 85% reduction in migraines, suffering now from headaches with sinus trouble and what i think is bronchitis, but not real migraines. sometimes i slip and have pasta or a cookie and really pay for it later. so, i am gluten free for life now!

  • Diane Mar 27, 2013

    I have suffered from chronic migraine for over 10 years. I have tried every preventive you can name and I have tried hospitalization 4 times.I have tried every alternative treatment in the book. No help. About 6 months ago I read on a blog somewhere about GF diet helping migraine. I started the next day and I was headache free for 2 months. I thought I found the answer to my problems. It only lasted 2 months. I am still GF, but back to chronic migraine. Very disappointed.

    • Dilly Nov 22, 2013

      I am reading this because my partner is in hospital with what we think is his first hemiplegmic migraine. I have a gluten intolerance, and have been on a GF diet for yeras, I just wanted to let you know that I recently worked out I also have to avoid oats, which cause horrible brain fog. Oats is an obvious alternative to wheat, and in lots of ‘gluten free’ food, it seems like such a safe food – if you are eating it then may be try avoiding it, I am much better without it. Best wishes.

  • alyson Mar 29, 2013

    Inflammation seems to be what may tips many of us over into migraine. Getting rid of gluten was huge for me – followed by red meat. When I eat an anti-inflammatory diet I find that I have excellent results. Just google it and perhaps consider it.

  • Renee D Mar 31, 2013

    I originally put my comment here last April 2012. I was gluten free for almost a year. But a few months ago I slipped into weight watchers and healthy choice foods, both of which have gluten. My blood pressure skyrocketed, couldn’t keep it down. That was followed by heart palpultations, daily migraines ect. Then, went back to gluten free last week and I’m already feeling better. I noticed the comments about red meat. I too get the migraines when I eat most red meat. But, if I eat the grass fed steaks at trader joe’s, I don’t get migraines. Most importantly, I can’t make the mistake of eating foods with gluten.

  • Lauren Sep 13, 2013

    Hello,

    I did a Whole 30 and when I reintroduced Gluten the migraines and what I had always thought were seasonal allergies and asthma came back. I quickly realized I was gluten sensitive even without a formal diagnosis. If I decide to try something with gluten the first symptom that creeps back is a headache – then a few others follow.

  • Emma Oct 21, 2013

    Hi, after 3 years of suffering almost daily headaches accompanied by anywhere from one to five migraines a week I have been on a gluten free diet for about 3 weeks. I am still taking my preventative medication but after a 7 day stint of headaches and migraines recently I had to try something! I have been headache free since I started on the gluten free diet, apart from two days after eating sausages forgetting they contain gluten! I have started to reduce my preventative meds now and hope I remain headache free!

  • Jennings Dec 20, 2013

    About 1 1/2 years ago I got tested for celiac because I had iron deficiency anemia for no apparent reason. The blood test was positive, but the GI ruled it out after the endoscopic exam. Meanwhile, since Feb last year (diagnosed with IDA in Jan) I’ve had near daily migraines, after not having more than 1-2 a year previously. I’ve had a bunch of other weird, random things, most recently schleritis in my eye (usually caused by an underlying auto-immune condition (50% of the time), although it can happen randomly, too (20%) or be related to a viral/bacterial infection, which I didn’t have). I went to the neurologist the week after the schleritis, and both he and I had decided there had to be something underlying the daily migraines when you added in all the other stuff. When I told him I had tested positive for celiac and it had been “ruled out,” he was really angry. He said celiac presents with all kinds of neurological symptoms and doesn’t have to even show in the gut. (If you do a web seach for celiac, all you get are the gut symptoms usually, but if you add neurological symptoms, you find a whole slew of them!).

    I had more bloodwork done, and will find out 12/31. Meanwhile, I started a GF diet last weekend and haven’t had a migraine ALL WEEK! (I do have a sinus headache from congestion, but it’s definitely not a migraine!) I don’t eat a ton of grains anyway, although I am missing Goldfish and beer… So it’s been easy so far. Clearly, even if I’m not celiac, I have an intolerance. Either way, I’ll be staying GF!!

    PS Showed the symptoms list to my hubby, and he has several on there, too. He hasn’t gone full GF, but he’s certainly encouraged by my early results and may decide to. Meanwhile, my 17 yo old son and 21 yo daughter, who also have very low feritin (son has been anemic twice and has suffered from migraines since he was 7) are looking at it, too. My son has given up all grain carbs except sushi rice and is feeling good!

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