Looking for the best tea for headaches and migraines? Consider drinking matcha green tea for headaches!
A bad headache or migraine can quickly creep up on you and ruin your day, making it nearly impossible to focus on simple tasks at hand – let alone get out of bed.
While drinking matcha green tea may not be able to cure all of your migraine or headaches symptoms, studies have suggested that drinking green tea may help provide relief and comfort when head pain hits, potentially helping alleviate a range of different types of headaches and migraines.
Keep reading to find out exactly how matcha can help when your head hurts – from migraines to hangover headaches.
How common are migraines and headaches?
Migraines are all too common, with studies pointing to over 11% of adults world-wide suffering from migraines. There are also tension-type headaches, characterized by a mild to moderate headache – which are even more common, impacting at least 40% of adults around the globe.
Both conditions pose significant burdens on individuals and society at large, keeping people from being productive at work, school, and on the home-front.
The potential of antioxidants and other compounds in matcha green tea for migraine relief
Numerous studies over the past few years have given particular attention to antioxidants and their potential to not only help alleviate migraine and headaches symptoms but help prevent them.
Migraine patients in recent studies have reported that consuming diets high in antioxidants can help decrease the frequency of migraine episodes as well as shorten the duration a migraine lasts.
And though the pathophysiology of migraine is often unclear (ie what causes migraines), researchers have recently found a connection between frequent migraines and neuroinflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.
So how does this connect with matcha green tea? Matcha contains high amounts of substances with potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. With regular consumption, studies point to matcha not only helping ward off migraines but actually supporting your body's efforts to maintain optimum health and keep chronic neuroinflammatory diseases at bay.
Sleeping off a migraine with matcha
Caffeinated headache medications are often prescribed to migraine and headache suffers – either alone or in combination with other treatments. Though these medications don’t often come without their own unpleasant list of symptoms, such as dizziness, nausea, abdominal pain, and nerves – to name a few.
So what’s the ideal amount of caffeine someone should be having to help alleviate a bad migraine or headache? Studies have shown that ideally sufferers consume less than 100mg of caffeine for migraine sufferers and 130 mg of caffeine for those with tension headaches. This is because too much caffeine can have the opposite effect intended and actually worsen a headache.
If you have ever suffered from a migraine, you probably know one of the best things you can do is try and sleep it off – though of course, this can be hard to do when your head is pounding and you feel like someone is pushing your eye sockets to the back of your head.
Regular migraine sufferers are usually prescribed migraine medications to help them cope with the pain and symptoms, which often contain caffeine. Caffeine can be beneficial for migraines and headaches because it helps constrict blood vessels and increases the effectiveness of pain relievers – though I think you can probably guess having several iced coffees or shots of espresso don’t exactly help you get the rest you often need to ‘sleep’ a migraine off.
This is why matcha holds so much promise for migraine sufferers and those who regularly get hit with painful headaches. Not only does matcha provide caffeine which helps constrict blood vessels – but it also has l-theanine, which has a calming and relaxing effect on the brain that allows you to relax, sleep, and rest.
Drinking green tea for a hangover headache
Suffering from a bad hangover after three too many drinks that has your head pounding? A cup of matcha may help. Scientific evidence suggests matcha green tea may help reduce common hangover symptoms – including hangover headaches. Full of antioxidants, matcha green tea may also help protect your liver and stomach against the damage caused by excessive alcohol consumption.
Using matcha as a mixer to prevent a hangover headache and more?
Some researchers even suggest matcha green tea may be a viable dietary supplement for the alleviation of the harmful effects of excessive alcohol consumption, making it a much more appealing and head-savvy mixer than redbull or orange juice.
Drinking matcha to alleviate headaches triggered by jet lag & hard workouts
Do you often get headaches after long-haul flights and traveling? What about when you take too much of an artificial pre-workout supplement? Enter matcha!
Studies have shown that matcha may also be great at helping get rid of that lingering headache caused by jet lag as well as be beneficial as a pre-workout drink that won’t lead to an unpleasant head rush.
A natural pre-workout drink like matcha can be a big help to energizing and fuel a successful workout without any throbbing head pain or jacked up feeling from too much caffeine.
What about if you get headaches easily from caffeine?
Deciding whether or not to reach for that first or second cup of matcha green tea for your headaches can be complicated. Everyone has different triggers when it comes to headaches and migraines, which is why personalized treatment is so important when addressing chronic head pain.
For some people, matcha and other caffeinated teas may provide amazing relief when your head hurts. Packed with potent phytochemical compounds known as catechins, matcha green tea boasts remarkable health advantages. Its caffeine content is meticulously balanced, falling between that of white tea and black tea, and considerably less than coffee. Furthermore, matcha has a longer list of well-studied health benefits from coffee.
You may want to consider switching from coffee to matcha. Here are four tips on how to do it!
How to determine if caffeine triggers your headaches or migraines
Nevertheless, for certain individuals, caffeine may inadvertently trigger headaches. It is a well-known migraine catalyst and can lead to withdrawal-induced headaches. To discern how it will make you feel, try monitoring your dietary intake before migraine or headache occurrences, taking note of what you ate and drank.
If caffeine emerges as a potential culprit, consider avoiding green tea. Identifying the specific tea that offers headache relief tailored to your needs can ensure optimal alleviation. Instant black-aged ginger tea or chai tea can both be great choices!
The bottom line | If caffeine provides you with headaches and migraine relief, ask your practitioner about drinking matcha green tea
In comparison to coffee, matcha is incredibly versatile and can be prepared and consumed in so many different, dynamic, and delicious ways. Yes, high-quality matcha has high levels of caffeine and if you have too much matcha it may cause some adverse side effects like a headache – but for those who turn to caffeine when they suffer migraines and headaches, matcha is something you may want to consider asking your doctor about and trying.
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- Goschorska, M., Gutowska, I., Baranowska-Bosiacka, I., Barczak, K., & Chlubek, D. (2020). The Use of Antioxidants in the Treatment of Migraine. Antioxidants (Basel, Switzerland), 9(2), 116. https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox9020116
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