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Diet headache

Dieting fads have been around for many years, with the latest weight loss miracle being replaced by a new favourite almost every year. In the past 10 years, at least 70 per cent of women in the developed world have been on a diet to lose weight. This in itself has brought a new wave of headache sufferers.

When you don’t eat for a few hours, blood sugar levels drop – which is a common cause of headaches. When trying to lose weight, many women increase the amount of black coffee and diet drinks that they drink – both of which contain high levels of caffeine; another cause of headaches. Conversely, sudden withdrawal of caffeine can also cause headaches. The recent rise in detox diets has brought on a wave of headaches for women suddenly stopping a normal caffeine intake. Detox diets also cause headaches because the amount of toxins circulating around your body suddenly increases as your body tries to get rid of them. These toxins can also cause headaches.

Triggers:

     • Sudden drop in blood sugar levels

     • High levels of caffeine

     • Withdrawal of caffeine

     • Detox diets

Facts to note:

      • Are caused by changes in your diet

      • Will normally resolve themselves once normal dietary habits are resumed

Relieving a diet headache

Whatever your diet plans, it is essential that you keep up your blood sugar levels at all times. Starving yourself is not just bad for your head; it’s bad for the rest of your body too. It’s not wrong to snack when you are dieting, as long as the snack food you choose is low fat and contains lots of complex carbohydrates to keep your energy up. Headaches caused by detox diets can be combatted by drinking water – lots of it! Try to drink at least two litres of water a day when you are detoxing and any headaches you encounter should have minimal effect.