In light of Headache Awareness Week (9 - 13 March), we are sharing some insights into the connection between gut health and all other aspects of our wellbeing.
For those who suffer from frequent headaches or migraines, you’ll know just how debilitating they can be. From throbbing head pains and persistent aches, to impaired vision, sensitivity to light and sound and/or sleep disturbances, there’s an endless list of reasons why you should nip them in the bud.
While there are a number of factors that contribute to headaches (which we will touch on in this article), the topic we are focusing on is how probiotics and gut healing drinks such as kombucha, can actually assist in headache prevention. How? It all comes down to gut.
Link between Gut Flora and Headaches
The much quoted Greek physician, frequently referred to as the ‘father of medicine’, Hippocrates, once said that “all disease begins in the gut”. It seems that science and modern technology are bringing evidence to this wise insight (made a whopping 2000+ years ago!) with more and more research demonstrating correlation between gut and a myriad of health conditions. That is, everything from skin conditions and weight, to immunity and brain health. Headaches fit within the category of brain health, and increasingly studies are linking healthy gut flora with a reduction of headaches.
A recent literature review published in the Pain Physician, explored the relationship between microbiota and migraines. Whilst further studies were deemed to be necessary, the review concluded that there is an association between increased gut permeability (sometimes referred to as “leaky gut”) and migraine headaches. The review also concluded that improving intestinal flora was correlated with a reduction in inflammation and overall gut and brain health.
Taking probiotics is a fantastic way to begin to repair and support your gut health. Probiotics are live bacteria and yeast that your digestive system rely upon in order to function optimally. In saying that, it is important to note that not all probiotics were made equal. It is crucial that you are choose high quality probiotic supplements to ensure you will actually reap the benefits. Our probiotic Nexba beverages (flavoured probiotix water and kombucha) use a unique strain of robust probiotics that actually survive the journey from your mouth to your gut. In fact research shows that 85% will reach your intestines intact.
Other ways to prevent headaches
Whilst it is important to see your health care practitioner if you have frequent or persistent headaches, here are some common culprits and preventative measures:
Mixed Berry and Coconut Kombucha
Here we have featured a refreshing (and delicious) Nexba Mixed Berry and Coconut Kombucha mocktail to heal your gut. We’ve used a blend of our mixed berry kombucha for its natural sweet flavour and hit of probiotics, and coconut water for its thirst quenching ability and abundance of essential vitamins and minerals.
2 cups kombucha berry ice cubes*
1 L Nexba Mixed Berry Kombucha
1 L coconut water
1 cup fresh berries (we used a mix of raspberries, strawberries and blueberries)
*To make the kombucha berry ice cubes simply place fresh berries (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and/or raspberries) in an ice tray and pour over Nexba mixed berry kombucha. Place in the freezer overnight to set.