Sunday, February 17, 2019

The Migraine Relief Plan: An 8-Week Transition to Better Eating, Fewer Headaches, and Optimal Health by Stephanie Weaver

The Migraine Relief Plan: An 8-Week Transition to Better Eating, Fewer Headaches, and Optimal Health
In The Migraine Relief Plan, certified health and wellness coach Stephanie Weaver outlines a new, step-by-step lifestyle approach to reducing migraine frequency and severity.

Using the latest research, her own migraine diagnosis, and extensive testing, Weaver has designed an accessible plan to help those living with migraine, headaches, or Meniere’s disease. Over the course of eight weeks, the plan gradually transitions readers into a healthier lifestyle, including key behaviors such as regular sleep, trigger-free eating, gentle exercise, and relaxation techniques. The book also collects resources—shopping lists, meal plans, symptom tracking charts, and kitchen-tested recipes for breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner—to provide readers with the tools they need to be successful.

The Migraine Relief Plan encourages readers to eat within the guidelines while still helping them follow personal dietary choices, like vegan or Paleo, and navigate challenges, such as parties, work, and travel. A must-have resource for anyone who lives with head pain, this book will inspire you to rethink your attitude toward health and wellness.

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Dana's Story

I recently celebrated turning 50. I am a mother of 2 grown sons, grandmother of one handsome grandson (who has a sister on the way) and have a loving caring husband of 31 years. I live in the suburbs of Louisville, Kentucky (home of Kentucky Derby). I have been an oncology nurse for the past 15 years. I am a migraine sufferer since my teenage years.
My migraines seemed to be somewhat predictable in my twenties as I would get Aura and migraine three days prior to my menstrual cycle and they usually ended when my cycle did. Things seem to change in 2014 when I began getting migraine randomly during the month. My migraines became relentless. I would often have attacks wake me out of sound sleep with aura and nausea. My primary care physician thought it might be related to peri-menopause (funny how this did not change after my hysterectomy in the fall of 2017) and or childhood trauma.
 In 2015, I attended “headache school” a class targeted to people affected by headaches. The class provided education and explanation of migraine. The class lead me to the care of a neurologist January 2016. The neurologist sent me to a neuropsychologist for evaluation which diagnosed me with depression.  I have chronic migraine with more than fourteen migraines per month that can be triggered by stress, weather, smells, fatigue, food and for no good reason at all I think depression was a given.
My neurologist tried me on multiple medications, some with terrible side effects. I was getting injections in my forehead, face and neck monthly. These injections were so very painful and I have lingering problems related to them such as forehead pain and vision changes. My current therapy is monthly immunotherapy injections that I give myself, rescue meds and daily over the counter pain meds. My next step is to see a psychiatrist for the depression.
I miss 1-2 days of work per month.  But typically, I go to work with migraine, my neurologist calls this presenteeism which is present at work when I should be absent. Medications were not helping and I needed to try something else. I do not remember what I was watching on Television but I heard someone talking about a book that looked at diet as it related to Migraines.
 I was given a tyramine free food list when I started my journey with the neurologist but that was because it interfered with some of the medications. I had never thought about food being related to migraine or causing them. The book they were speaking of The Migraine Relief Plan by Stephanie Weaver. I looked on Amazon for the book and read the review. The book intrigued me because the author was a migraine sufferer too. I bought the book May 2017
The book started the process slowly, week by week making changes. Even though I wanted to jump in feet first and find relief, I knew this was a lifestyle change and in order for success I must trust the process. I learned so much about what I was putting in my body as well as what a trigger was.
I found out some of my favorite things were perpetuating migraine such as: pineapple, chocolate, processed foods, MSG, nitrates, diet sodas, sour cream and some grains.  Knowing that food can impact how gave me some power over the hopelessness I had over migraines. I have more energy and use fewer rescue medications now. I enjoy cooking and trying new recipes that are healthy for me.

No one’s journey is identical but we can help each other along the way. Stephanie has helped me by teaching me to be aware of what goes in my body and how that will affect my migraines. She has done her research through her own journey and for the sake of others. I feel that she truly enjoys food and her recipes are delicious the pizza and frittata recipes are my favorite. I am thankful to have The Migraine Relief Plan as a resource for living with migraine.

Much more than a book of recipes, this lifestyle guide focuses on clean eating and small, gradual changes to prevent pain and optimize healthier choices.  Self care, including mindfulness, meditation, massage and bodywork, even ergonomics and sleep patterns are all part of this plan to improve life experience.
Designed as an 8 week transition, followed by six months of further assignments and deeper changes, to change behaviors, taste preferences, habits, etc had me taking copious notes and posting reminders in my kitchen. This is a book I will refer back to frequently. There will also be a follow up cookbook.

Although this author had symptoms her entire life, she was not diagnosed until her fifties. This book has abundant resources and is well researched, supported with scientific data.
I found fascinating and inspiring insights in a section regarding belly fat'
Giving yourself a break, after all we are only hhuman, does not mean to take yourself totally off the hook of responsibility.
I give this book at least 5 stars!

Author Bio 

Stephanie Weaver, MPH, CWHC, is an author, blogger, and certified wellness and health coach. Her recipes have been featured in Cosmopolitan, Bon Appetit, Cooking Light, Parade, and more. She lives in San Diego, CA. 
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