Aged cheese and other tyramine-containing foods: Tyramine is a substance found naturally in some foods. It is formed from the breakdown of protein as foods age. Generally, the longer a high-protein food ages, the greater the tyramine content. The amount of tyramine in cheeses differs. Some cheeses high in tyramine: Blue cheeses, Brie, Cheddar, Feta, Gorgonzola, Mozzarella, Parmesan, Swiss, Processed cheese
Alcohol: Blood flow to your brain increases when you drink alcohol. Some scientists blame the headache on impurities in alcohol or by-products produced as your body metabolizes alcohol. Red wine, beer, whiskey, and champagne are the most commonly identified headache triggers.
Food additives: Preservatives (or additives) contained in certain foods can trigger headaches. The additives, such as nitrates, dilate blood vessels, causing headaches in some people.
Cold foods: Cold foods can cause headaches in some people. It's more likely to occur if you are over-heated from exercise or hot temperatures. More than 90% of migraine sufferers report sensitivity to ice cream and cold substances.
Other foods high in tyramine are: aged, canned, cured or processed meats, certain beans (fava, broad, garbanzo, lima, pinto), onions, olives, pickles, avocados, raisins, canned soups, and nuts.
What Are the Symptoms of Food Additive-Induced Headaches?
Most headache symptoms begin within 20-25 minutes after consuming these products. They include
- Pressure in the chest
- Tightening and pressure in the face
- Burning sensation in the chest, neck, or shoulders
- Facial flushing
- Headache pain across the front or sides of the head
- Abdominal discomfort