Question about MAV food triggers

I’m relatively new to the MAV diagnosis and I have been trying to pay a little more attention to potential food triggers. My question is this - for those of you who have food triggers - how quickly after eating them do you notice symptoms coming on? How long do the symptoms typically last? And - does there seem to be a correlation between the quantity and the response??

I’ve avoided every possible trigger and then some (a lot) for a long time now, except for one thing: I tried some nutritional drinks a few months ago. I took the first one late, about 20 minutes before bed, and woke up with a bad migraine.
Next up was another nutritional drink (completely different one, of course) somewhere in between breakfast and lunch: had to take painkillers within the hour and had a bad day.
I’m pretty sure that it’s the protein (that is made in such a way that it contains MSG) that makes them triggers for me, by the way.

Back in the day when I ate everything, but still kept a diary, I had short vertigo spells (very short - a few seconds) between 25 minutes and about a day after eating a trigger. Not sure when the headaches showed up, if they did.

Maybe if one avoids msg a lot, even though it makes one feel better, one becomes more sensitive to it than priorly. Its always a “poison”, just a poison the body is used to…

Are you implying that if we take in more MSG we might eventually become less sensitive?
I’m not sure it would work that way. There’s the story of the guy who was allergic to poison ivy … he ate it in an attempt to force his body to become immune. Ended up in the hospital. (Not sure if that’s a true story or an Urban Legend, but just thought I’d mention it.)

In my opinion, something tells me we’d have to take in large amounts of MSG over a really long period of time if we wanted to become immune. And even then it might not work.

For me, I react to food triggers two ways. Most of the triggers will let me know that I ate a no-no in less than 30 minutes. When it is that fast, I can flush my system with lots of water and be mostly OK in about an hour. The other type of trigger is harder to identify as it will take a few hours to about a half day. When this happens, I’m out for several hours, and I spend the time trying to make a note of what I ate so that I won’t do it again.

Brian

I’m similar too Brian…most food triggers i feel in less than 30 minutes…but others may start to react the next day. Chocolate is one food that i react very quickly to or alcohol.

Joe

Joy, I only meant that while msg always is bad for us, it gives even more of a reaction for us once we start avoiding it for a while. Im not sure the body ever can adjust to it for us, but it becomes even more sensitive to it given that its never taken.
Im not sure Im really sensitive to msg tbh.

— Begin quote from "MikaelHS"

Joy, I only meant that while msg always is bad for us, it gives even more of a reaction for us once we start avoiding it for a while. Im not sure the body ever can adjust to it for us, but it becomes even more sensitive to it given that its never taken…

— End quote

Yeah, that could be true … it’s sorta like caffeine for me. When I first started drinking coffee, I got a real rush from just one cup, but towards the “end” I was drinking pots of Espresso with very little noticable affect.

Hi Everyone,

I just took a look at all the food triggers for MAV, and it’s really depressing. I’m a vegan and are already limited to what I eat.
Most of the foods they say for you to avoid I eat everyday, like soy products, coffee, bananas, advocado, leeks, lentils, tomatoes and wheat etc.
I’m currently been taking Effexor for 6 days now. If the meds work do I still have to worry about the food triggers?

Best,

Emma :?

— Begin quote from "emmasaga"

Hi Everyone,

I just took a look at all the food triggers for MAV, and it’s really depressing. I’m a vegan and are already limited to what I eat.
Most of the foods they say for you to avoid I eat everyday, like soy products, coffee, bananas, advocado, leeks, lentils, tomatoes and wheat etc.
I’m currently been taking Effexor for 6 days now. If the meds work do I still have to worry about the food triggers?

Best,

Emma :?

— End quote

Some people have been able to reintroduce them or some of them back into their diet once they have lowered their threshold with lifestyle changes and medication.

I was so sick and am so much better off the trigger foods it is not worth the risk to me , but that is just me everyone is different and everyone may not react the same .

But MSG, coffee, bananas are all real triggers for me. I loved my coffee more than anything and have not had a cup in over six months , I can live without it better than I could live with the pain I was going through.

It’s all varible for me. Some things hit within an hour while others hit the next day. If I really pile on the triggers (if I were to eat an entire chocolate bar following a Thai dinner with loads of sauces for example) I would probably go to bed with a dull heaviness in my head followed by pain all the next day in my neck and shoulders (with referred head pain).

Scott 8)

Emma,

The trick with the diet is that you have to take everything out of your diet, and then after a few weeks you start adding foods back in slowly. Doing this, you will know pretty quick when you have found a trigger food. When you are done, you will find that you are pretty much back to your normal diet with a few things missing instead of the entire lot. It does take a couple of months or longer, but you end up with most of the stuff on the list back in your diet.

Brian

I find it very difficult to identify food triggers because my symptoms are so chronic. I have had disequilibrium for 2 years. I have been on a very strict migraine diet for about 6 months with no improvements in dizziness. in the past, I have noticed that the big things - MSG, chocolate, alcohol brings on head pain, but as far as the dizziness I cannot identify anything b/c the symptoms are so constant.

Hi, I’m also one who finds it very difficult to pinpoint my food triggers. I feel car sick 24 hours a day and have no idea why. In addition I have had 6 or so spells of severe vertigo which seem unrelated to the car sick feeling and have no idea what causes these.

I am on low fat/cholesterol diet, anti-migraine diet, anti-mm diet, my salt intake is very low, rarely do I have chocolate. Haven’t had cheese for months or wine for years. I avoid just about everything that is listed in Heal Your Headache. What I eat every day is extremely boring and routine. I never eat in restaurants or other people’s houses. Never have I had a cup of coffee and I’ll have about one glass of soda (ginger ale) a year. I prepare all my food myself. I’m down to 108 lbs and feeling miserable and hungry and depressed. I was car sick 24 hours a day years and years before changing my eating habits and still am so I don’t know what I eat could possibly be causing it. The vertigo didn’t start until AFTER I went on the low cholesterol diet. Maybe I just need to start eating butter and cheesecake again. That would be good news to hear.

The only known triggers to my motion sick feeling are things such as head movement,flashing lights, perfumes. They make what is already bad feel much worse. I haven’t found any food triggers except years ago when I had a Bounty candy bar it made me feel sick right afterwards. As far as the vertigo, because I eat the same thing day after day, week after week, with very little variation I don’t know what food could have possible caused it the six or so times I’ve experienced it.

I kept a food diary for a while trying to find something hidden there but nothing so I stopped.

BW

This is one of the areas that for me, I have yet to figure out. Some here have the more classic migraine triggers - foods that trigger actual headaches, pains, etc. I am not one of these people. I have eaten some of the foods that are classic triggers and did not notice any difference in how I felt, but then again, my portions were small. I CAN say, however, that the one area that made me really feel worse was Doretos chips. Made me feel more woozy and out of it, kinda surreal “I’m here but not really here” feeling. Both Scott here on the board and my doc were not at all surprised; those chips have tons of additives, coloring, etc. I try to stay away from these types of foods (and it doesn’t have to be in junk food btw), as well as lots of artificial coloring, MSG, fake sugars, etc. I don’t use caffeine but do drink alcohol occasionally.

— Begin quote from "bcrelief"

This is one of the areas that for me, I have yet to figure out. Some here have the more classic migraine triggers - foods that trigger actual headaches, pains, etc. I am not one of these people. I have eaten some of the foods that are classic triggers and did not notice any difference in how I felt, but then again, my portions were small. I CAN say, however, that the one area that made me really feel worse was Doretos chips. Made me feel more woozy and out of it, kinda surreal “I’m here but not really here” feeling. Both Scott here on the board and my doc were not at all surprised; those chips have tons of additives, coloring, etc. I try to stay away from these types of foods (and it doesn’t have to be in junk food btw), as well as lots of artificial coloring, MSG, fake sugars, etc. I don’t use caffeine but do drink alcohol occasionally.

— End quote

For me the foods either trigger a dizzyspell or agrevate my symptoms reducing my functionality level. There are foods that I can get away with in infrequent small doses. Nuts for example I can eat a few handfuls spreadthrout the day and be fine the next as long as I don’t touch them for awhile, but if were to change the pattern to just a handful a day everyday, after about a week I would start to notice that I wasn’t as stable, and I might have some funky hearing issues. Artificial sweetners are also like that for me.

For the most part my “immediate triggers” are overly processed foods in general and specifically processed meats. I stay away from Kraft products in general and read most labels to see how low the articial stuff is on the list of ingredients. The higher the artificial ingrediants are on the list, the more problems it will cause me. I do try to eat fresh and frozen as much as possible. Be careful with frozen meats though, they may be labeled as “frozen fresh” but then when you look close at the label, there is a list of ingredients, all the preservative they put it the meat right before they freeze it. If you look, you can find meats that were frozen without, or reduced preservatives, but it isn’t easy.

Brian

Chocolate, Nutrasweet, wine and sulfites cause a headache within an hour. There may be other triggers but I have not figured them out yet. I follow the Heal your Headach diet. I really miss cheese and balsamic vinegar. Speaking of this, anyone know of a good salad dressing recipe that uses either white or cider vinegar? Hmm… maybe I will post this as a new topic.

Kritlyn,

I love balsamic vinegar, and used to have it everyday. I finally have been doing something that I enjoy:
I take fruit preserves (approx 1 tsp - I don’t measure) (I have used apricot, blackberry, and black cherry - all good) and combine it with a few splashes of vinegar. I use rice wine - hope it’s ok. and then I stream in olive oil. You can also add salt and pepper. It is a nice fruity vinegarette.

I notice that in some of the recipes that Dr. Buchholtz writes about he uses Dijon Mustard. I went to the grocery store and looked through all their dijon mustards and they all have white wine in it, even if it doesn’t say so on the bottle it has it as an ingredient. So, I don’t know if dijon mustard is good, because I can make vinegarette with mustard, as well as honey mustard

Just to clarify, those of you who have “triggers” - what exactly happens when you eat some thing that triggers you? Do you 1. get a migraine headache (or just a headache), 2. feel more dizzy or off balance, 3. feel more fatigued, 4. feel out of it or surreal, 5. or other symptoms? Please note here any or all of your symptoms. I am trying to gauge and compare what people mean and experience when they say they have MAV or migraine “triggers”. Thanks.

Hi bcrelief
When I drink a caffeinated cup of tea I’ll feel very spinny within a few minutes, which will get worse over the next 30-60 minutes and remain constant for several hours. I won’t be able to drive or do anything requiring average vestibular activity, eg sunlight will be very difficult. I’ll continue to feel dizzy although this will lessen over the next couple of days, and I’ll feel very tired, I’ll also look and feel very washed out and I won’t sleep well, feel drained and generally unwell - if I’m getting a cold or period eg the symptoms will worsen.

The same for chocolate, although if I eat a little chocolate it doesn’t affect me so much, but chocolate has a tendency to tip me over the edge more into actual vertigo (which the after effects affects me for several weeks). I think that’s because I have in the past eaten more chocolate in one go, before realising the effect on me. Other food triggers also affect me in the same way but the effect is lessened, so I won’t react so badly initially and the effect will be softened.

Other triggers will also be worsened too - so I sprayed some perfume on myself this morning and instantly felt more spinny and lightheaded, I’ve not had a reaction that marked to perfume before.

Sorry this is so detailed and goes on a bit, I had a cup of caffeinated tea yesterday and I’ve been suffering with the after effects ever since - I was thinking of posting to find out other people’s reactions to different foods!
Hope this helps - it’ll be interesting to compare with others.
Best wishes
Tess