Chronic Migraines and Soylent


#1

Hi everyone this is my first post on Soylent and I also just ordered some.

Before my monologue, I’d like to ask if anyone else has chronic migraines and if so how has Soylent affected them?

I’m trying Soylent because I have chronic migraine syndrome. Long story short, I’ve had it for nearly 15 years and at this point I get a migraine everyday. Triptans are the only type of drug invented for migraines, and not coincidentally they are the only drug that has any positive effect on my migraines, aside from very large doses of NSAIDs. Preventatives don’t help me, along with most other chronic migraine sufferers. I’ve been to countless doctors and tried countless ineffective drugs and supplements. Doctors know basically nothing about this disease, and my coworkers and acquaintances are only a small step down when they usually ask me if I’ve tried drinking more water.

So anyways, I’ve only just discovered that dietary changes can possibly be made to help migraines. None of the doctors I’ve been to ever suggested this, aside from asking me if I’ve tried cutting out wine, chocolate, and cheese. On a stroke of luck, fate, or freak accident, I found out that artificial food colorings are responsible for about 90% of the pain during my migraines. This means red #40, blue #1, color added, artifical color, etc. on food labels in the US. After cutting these out completely last fall, I still get a migraine everyday but no longer suffer for 6 hours as a recluse in my dark room. Now I feel the pain, take my pill, and am better in about 2 hours.

After acquiring information online from a lot of other migraine sufferers, I found that many of them have countless dietary triggers that resulted in extremely limited diets. Considering that I get migraines every single day, this may be my path as well. I am hoping that Soylent can help me discover if and what other foods may be causing my migraines. One of the possibilities include tannins, which are in A LOT of foods such as most bread products (malted barley extract), a lot of fruits and juices, beer, wine, chocolate, and some natural food colorings such as annato in cheeses. Another thing I’ve seen mentioned but not heard of people actually trying for migraines is a ketogenic diet, which Soylent seems like it would not help me with.

Thoughts/comments/experiences?


#2

Thought:

With the ordered Soylent sadly you have no flexibility on what’s in it, what the carb source is, where the potassium comes from, such things.

If you really want to find out what exactly in your diet is causing/worsening your migranes and have a bit of money to do it, I would recommend you read yourself into the matter a bit (via these forums mostly) and try your own DIY-Soylent, swapping out different ingredients for alternatives all the time (that is where the money part comes in, having to buy 5 different protein sources etc).

With some luck of course the ordered Soylent might just completely resolve your issues and you are happy with that…who knows. :smiley:


#3

[quote=“CuriousBen, post:2, topic:4035”]
With some luck of course the ordered Soylent might just completely resolve your issues and you are happy with that…who knows. :D[/quote]

That’s what I’m hoping for of course!

Unfortunately I have no money; I just moved across the country last week to switch jobs - I’m a zookeeper, and I made minimum wage at my last job and only a little better at this new job. I also don’t want to commit the time, effort, and focus into making it myself. Last year I would’ve been literally incapable of doing that due to constant pain. Now I’m better, but not all better. Many people who have the condition as severe as I do can’t even work. I guess what I’m saying is, all my energy goes to having a job and leaving my room/house sometimes. :smile:

I did try a DIY elimination diet but found that I lost weight too quickly and felt too terrible to continue for long enough to find out any results. I was very happy to discover Soylent, which would effectively do this for me. It looks like the ingredients don’t have any tannins, as far as I can tell, so it could at least answer that question.


#4

I wouldn’t be so sure about that:

As far as I can tell, peas, like most pulses, do contain tannins. Not sure if they would make it into whatever pea protein product they would be using though.


#5

Hmm that’s true. Here’s hoping that their tannin content is low, or that it doesn’t make it into the protein product.


#6

I would like to encourage further discussion into this topic. I’m excited to see what health benefits Soylent has as an after-the-fact, for sufferers of different conditions / diseases, etc; if we have positive results with something like Soylent, that’s a big win.

That said, the big difference between what you’re doing now and what you’ll be doing with Soylent is simply a more complete diet. If you find, however, that you still have migraines after switching and staying on Soylent for some time (and I in specific recommend as @CuriousBen did to go with your own blend for the purposes of allowing configuration) - you can then much more easily start the process of elimination, such as halving a specific ingredient, one at a time, one week at a time, to see how each change affects your pain.

This way you’re tinkering with a 100% formula and will be able to produce very accurate results.

My two cents. :slight_smile:


#7

I disagree - that won’t be the difference, at least not the one I’m focusing on. The difference will be to cut out ingredients that appear in everyday food, but aren’t necessary for our survival. Aside from tannins, which it might not completely cut out but will certainly lower, I’m assuming there will be no sodium nitrate, metabisulfating agents, MSG (yeast extract, etc. on food labels), or many other food proteins such as gluten which are all possibly triggering migraines for me. Or, who knows, it could be some other food ingredient, or nothing related to food at all, since this is all speculation.

At least… I don’t think it has these ingredients. I missed the tannin one the first time around so correct me if I’m wrong.

Anyways, I doubt that my migraines are occuring through a lack of a complete diet. Not that I eat the perfect amount of everything all the time, but the sheer frequency of my migraines points to me being exposed to the trigger(s) constantly. The only time I don’t get a migraine is when I take massive amounts of NSAIDs as a preventative, which means inflammation plays a somehow huge role in this, or when I consume large quantities of caffeine, which mimics the effects of the triptans.

I have heard of vitamin C being a trigger for some people. Hopefully, the amount in Soylent is not an issue for me.

My current plan is to drink only Soylent for the first two weeks, or less if I notice an immediate change. Then I will introduce one “real” food at a time and see what the effects are.


#8

It sounds to me like the obvious solution is to experiment. Go buy a shitload of organic veg, preferably only one kind (less variables to consider). Sweet potatoes are probably a good bet as they are pretty healthy, have lots of energy in, and are tasty enough to eat on their own (microwave or in the oven) for a few days without getting too bored.

Now you have a diet with (sort of) just one ingredient in, without having to invest in soylent. If migraines continue then it’s either not diet-related, or is related to something found in potatoes (or whatever you use). Repeat if necessary.

In fact it would be even easiers to just fast for a few days. Why overthink this?

Good luck!

Edit: I just re-read your post. Coincidentally, sweet potatoes are highly anti-inflammatory! Check on nutritiondata.self.com and try cutting from your diet any ingredient with a negative inflammation factor and see how that works.


#9

This is a very late reply to an old thread, but I wanted to offer some hope to migraine sufferers interested in Soylent. I just completed a two-week Soylent diet, which took place during Thanksgiving and a few social events so it also included regular food on some days. I also fasted a few days in order to perform some blood-glucose checks.

Long story short, consuming Soylent stopped my migraines. Before I started I had 10 days of straight migraines. After two days on Soylent, they disappeared. I had one headache the entire time, which I believe was due to stopping the prophylactic medication I was on cold turkey.

My doctor believes this is due to a radical dietary change and is not something I need to continue consuming on a regular basis. I probably will for the health benefits I’ve seen so far, but I’ve been pushing the boundaries of what normally causes migraine triggers and they have not been an issue. I fasted for 24 hours with no migraine. I cut my sleep in half and had no migraine. I drank two glasses of wine fairly quickly (by my standards) and had no migraine. Lack of food, lack of sleep, and drinking any alcohol were surefire triggers in the past. Now they do nothing.

I’ve had migraines for a long, long time. They only became horrible this year and I’ve been through so many drugs with so many horrible side effects. While this dietary change may not work for every migraine sufferer, it was like a miracle to me. It’s more than worth trying. Even if it doesn’t work, you nothing to lose—only a healthy, balanced diet to gain.