What the Gut Can Teach Us About Migraine.

What the Gut Can Teach Us About Migraine.

Nice recent summary of what we know about interactions between the head-brain and the gut-brain in migraine. Touches on why dietary changes help some migraineurs.

Take home paragraph:

The physiological connection between the gut and the brain as well as the influence on brain function and behavior has been well established. Inflammation at the level of the trigeminovascular system is hypothesized to play a role in migraine pathophysiology and could be influenced by inflam- mation and immune modulation in the GI tract and systemi- cally as evidenced by recent studies [90, 91]. Likewise, there is evidence to suggest that the gut microbiota plays an impor- tant role in the brain-gut axis and aberrancies may be associ- ated with neurological disease like migraine

Some interesting details:

81 % of migraineurs reported dyspepsia compared to 38 % of healthy controls.

The ANS [Autonomic Nervous System] is implicated in the generation of migraine and GI dysfunction with evidence for overlapping symptoms in both domains such as nausea, vomiting, dyspepsia, IBS, and gastric stasis. The ANS may also be the link between alterations in brain function and behavior secondary to intestinal flora dysbiosis.

Gastric stasis has long been implicated in association with
migraine. Early experimental studies by Volans et al. reported a delay in effervescent aspirin absorption in 19 out of 42 migraineurs during an attack, but not during the headache- free period and not found replicated in patients with tension- type headache [53, 54]. More recent studies suggest delayed gastric emptying occurs during spontaneous migraine attacks, visually induced migraines, and during the headache-free interictal period