Aerobic Exercise Reduces Migraines

migraines and exerciseMultiple studies over the last year have proven that aerobic exercise can significantly reduce the incidence and severity of migraine headaches.

One study, this by researchers from Germany’s University of Kiel, tested 16 migraine patients. Eight of them were subjected to a 10-week program of aerobic running for three days per week. The other group did not engage in physical training during the trial.

After the ten weeks, the exercise group had significantly fewer migraine days per month and significantly less intense migraine headaches. The exercise group also had significantly less stress levels.

A University of Gothenburg research group then studied 91 migraine patients. They were divided into three groups: One group exercised for 40 minutes per day for three days a week; another group took the migraine medication topiramate; and the third group received relaxation therapy.

After three months on the program, the groups were analyzed. The researchers found that all three groups had similar levels of migraine reduction. The researchers concluded that: “No significant difference was observed between the groups,” and that “exercise may be an option for the prophylactic treatment of migraine in patients who do not benefit from or do not want to take daily medication.”

Topiramate’s most prevalent adverse side effects include sudden loss of vision, pain around and behind the eyes, nausea, vomiting, urination increase, muscle pain, muscle weakness, fainting, seizures, convulsions, back pain, side pain, difficult urination, confusion, drowsiness, sweating, increased body temperatures, hot skin and others.

A new study has now been launched to compare relaxation with endurance training for migraine sufferers. The study will last twelve weeks and will compare Jacobson’s progressive muscle relaxation therapy with endurance training. Realnatural will keep you posted… subscribe below for news updates!

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Written by Case Adams


Totzeck A, Unverzagt S, Bak M, Augst P, Diener HC, Gaul C. Aerobic endurance training versus relaxation training in patients with migraine (ARMIG): study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials. 2012 Apr 27;13(1):46.

Varkey E, Cider A, Carlsson J, Linde M. Exercise as migraine prophylaxis: a randomized study using relaxation and topiramate as controls. Cephalalgia. 2011 Oct;31(14):1428-38.

Darabaneanu S, Overath CH, Rubin D, Lüthje S, Sye W, Niederberger U, Gerber WD, Weisser B. Aerobic exercise as a therapy option for migraine: a pilot study. Int J Sports Med. 2011 Jun;32(6):455-60.

Case Adams is a California Naturopath with a PhD in Natural Health Sciences, and Board Certified Alternative Medicine Practitioner. He has authored 26 books on natural healing strategies. “My journey into writing about alternative medicine began about 9:30 one evening after I finished with a patient at the clinic I practiced at over a decade ago. I had just spent the last two hours explaining how diet, sleep and other lifestyle choices create health problems and how changes in these, along with certain herbal medicines and other natural strategies can radically yet safely turn our health around. As I drove home that night, I realized this knowledge should be available to more people. So I began writing about health with a mission to reach those who desperately need this information. The strategies in my books and articles are backed by scientific evidence along with wisdom handed down through traditional medicines for thousands of years.” Case connects with nature by surfing, hiking, running, biking and according to Dad, being a total beach bum.

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