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Do caffeinated drinks increase the risk of migraines?
Is there a connection between the consumption of caffeinated drinks and the development of migraines? Researchers have now found that consuming three cups of tea or coffee a day can actually increase your risk of migraines.
In the current investigation by Harvard T.H. The Chan School of Public Health found that drinking three cups of tea or coffee a day increases the risk of migraines. The results of the study were published in the American Journal of Medicine.
What is migraine?
Migraines affect around 1.04 billion adult people around the world. Migraines are not only a painful condition, but they also result in significant direct and indirect costs from taking medication and losing productivity. Migraines are characterized by moderate to severe headaches, which are sometimes accompanied by nausea, sensitivity to light and noise. Known risk factors for migraines include alcohol consumption, stress, medication, hormonal changes such as menstruation and certain foods and drinks. In addition to caffeine intake, the current study also took many of the above factors into account.
Various caffeinated drinks were examined
If participants in the study had more than two drinks containing caffeine within 24 hours, they suffered from headaches more often, the researchers report. For some people, however, one or two cups a day increases the likelihood of developing migraines. The study examined coffee, tea, caffeinated soft drinks and energy drinks, with a focus on the number of caffeinated drinks consumed. Two thirds of the people affected by migraines drank one or two caffeinated drinks a day and all participants drank at least one cup a day.
More research is needed
While some potential triggers for migraines (e.g. lack of sleep) may only increase the risk of migraines, the role of caffeine is particularly complex because it can trigger migraine attacks but also helps control symptoms, the researchers report. However, the study was too small to allow definitive statements to be made. It included only 98 adults affected by migraines. The amount of caffeine used in each drink varied between 25 and 150 milligrams depending on the drink and method of preparation. More research is now needed to understand the full effects of caffeine on migraine sufferers. (as)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- Elizabeth Mostofsky, Elizabeth Mostofsky, Elizabeth Mostofsky, Murray A. Mittleman, Catherine Buettner, Wenyuan Li, Suzanne M. Bertisch: Prospective Cohort Study of Caffeinated Beverage Intake as a Potential Trigger of Headaches among Migraineurs, in American Journal of Medicine (query: 09.08 .2019), American Journal of Medicine