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I know this week’s prompt is asking about our average eating habits, but mine shift throughout the month. I’ll begin with what’s typical during the colder months of the year when I don’t have a migraine.
As I mentioned in the morning routine prompt last November, I normally have almond milk and oatmeal with fruit, nut butter, and chia seeds for breakfast.
Lunch is my biggest meal of the day. It’s common for me to eat dishes like pasta, rice and beans with various seasonings and vegetables added in, stir-fry of various sorts, tacos, fajitas, or chilli. I batch cook a couple of days a week, so these are often leftovers from previous meals. During heat waves, I switch to cold options like sandwiches, hummus and pita, large salads that include a source of protein, etc.
Typical dinner foods include options like smoothies, baked beans, big plates of raw and/or cooked vegetables, fruit, some leftover meat or other high-protein foods, eggs prepared in various ways, or other light and healthy meals. This remains pretty consistent throughout the year. I can get heartburn if I eat spicy food or too close to bedtime, so I try to eat just enough of something mild (ish) to keep me full until morning.
We do order takeout occasionally as well, but I try to cook at home as much as possible.
Sounds pretty healthy, right?
If I’m at any point in the migraine cycle, things change. Strong cravings, generally for sugar and salt, are one of the early signs that I’m going to have a migraine within the next few days, and it’s really hard for me to resist junk food on those days.
The closer I get to needing to take my migraine medication, the more painful it is for me to chew hard foods like, say, carrot sticks or apple slices. If you’ve ever had a toothache, it’s similar to that but in multiple teeth on one half of my face.
I experience nausea that makes my body finicky about the texture, smell, and taste of the food that it will allow to remain in my stomach. My sensitivity to noise as the migraine looms closer also makes it impossible for me to use something like a blender then.
So my diet shrinks down to soft foods that have mild scents and do not require noisy preparations until my medication kicks in and I’ve slept off the worst of the rest of it. Sometimes we’ll order in pizza on those nights instead of me trying to cook something.
I will often roast some sweet potatoes and hard boil some eggs a day or two in advance to give myself some healthy options, and I’m always on the lookout for other dairy-free foods to add to my rotation when I can’t chow down on raw, crunchy stuff.
Luckily, I’ve been able to reduce my number of migraines by figuring out my triggers for them, avoiding triggers as much as I possibly can, and following a strict sleep and meal schedule. I can’t avoid every migraine, though, and so that’s how they influence my diet.