The best vestibular migraine supplement

In this article we talk about vestibular migraine, its relationship with Meniere’s disease and Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo, and the best supplement that is recommended for this medical condition.

Before talking about the supplement that is mostly recommended for those patients suffering from vestibular migraine, you need to be sure that you are indeed affected by this disorder.

Which are main symptoms for vestibular migraine?

Vestibular migraine is considered a type of migraine. It is also known as migrainous vertigo, migraine-related vestibulopathy, and migraine-related dizziness. Some people who suffer from migraines may also have a feeling of intermittent dizziness or faintness. It is important to note that not everybody has headaches (up to 30% of vestibular migraine sufferers do not have headaches), but nausea and vomiting, sensitivity to sound, sensitivity to bright lights, and spatial disorientation are common. Other symptoms may also include hearing loss or tinnitus. Tinnitus is a medical term for those patients who have a ringing or some other strange noise in the ear.

In summary, balance problems and disorientation are the main symptoms. Vertigo problems often appear years after suffering from other common migraine symptoms. These vertigo problems may develop at any phase of a migraine attack with a fluctuating duration.

How can I know that I am affected by vestibular migraine?

We have already given you some hints of which are the most common symptoms. Still, diagnosing vestibular migraine can be a bit tricky. The first advice is obviously to consult your doctor to conduct a proper diagnosis. Neurotologists and neurologists are particularly recommended in vestibular migraine. Sometimes it is best an interprofessional team.

In reality there are no proper tests for vestibular migraine and your doctor will most probably follow certain criteria to diagnose whether you are affected by vestibular migraine. A previous or present history of migraine will be the first indicator. You have to take into account that vertigo and headaches do not necessarily happen at the same time, and thus having both symptoms at different times at least may lead to suspicion.

According to the International Headache Society (IHS), you should have at least five episodes of vestibular symptoms (balance and dizziness) of moderate or severe intensity that may last between 5 minutes and 72 hours; and at least half of episodes must be associated with at least one of the following signs: headache, sensitivity to light and sounds, and / or visual aura (glistening or irregular lights in your sight). Headache should have at least two of the following traits: one-sided headache, throbbing headache, moderate to stern headache, or headache worsening with physical exercise. For more information related to IHS criteria click on this link.

Discarding Meniere’s disease is often a real challenge, particularly in the first years suffering from common symptoms. Examination of the inner ear is particularly relevant for doctors. It is also common to detect uncontrolled repetitive movements of the eyes (known with the medical term nystagmus) during vestibular migraine attacks. In any case, half of patients present normal vestibular function tests, that is tests conducted to see the normal function of balance.

An MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) may also be run. It seems that white matter hyperintensities are more frequent in migraineurs, but in the case of vestibular migraine there is a need for more research. That means that results may be inconclusive.

In case you have lack of feeling, flimsiness, speaking difficulty, and other stroke symptoms, you should immediately go to the emergency services.

Is vestibular migraine associated with Meniere’s disease?

This is not as simple to answer as it could look like. Only 0.05% of the population seems to have Meniere’s disease. Approximately 30% of people suffering from Meniere’s disease could also suffer from vestibular migraine and on top of that 30% more could also have similar migraine symptoms.

Between 13% and 18% of vestibular migraine patients develop bilateral, low-frequency sensorineural hearing loss within 9 years. Also 7% to 11% develop cochlear symptoms that could be classified as bilateral Meniere’s disease.

Some authors suggest that a patient may actually suffer from both diseases at the same time.

Vestibular testing and neurotological exams may help to diagnose Meniere’s disease. Neurotology is a specialty of otolaryngology.

Is vestibular migraine associated with Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)?

As it happens with Meniere’s disease, the relationship between benign paroxysmal positional vertigo and vestibular migraine is rather difficult to discern.

Vestibular testing and neurotological exams may also help to diagnose BPPV.

What triggers a vestibular migraine?

Certain types of foods may trigger migraine symptoms in some individuals, and it is the same for vestibular migraine. It is advisable to keep a food diary in order to discard those foods that you suspect provoke your migraine attacks. Some experts believe that a proper diet and a healthy lifestyle could help up to 80% of migraine sufferers. Avoiding caffeine often helps some patients suffering from vestibular migraine.

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Other triggers that could be prevented may include stress and nervousness, bad sleep conditions or sleep deprivation, dehydration and malnutrition, smoke, or hormonal changes. Still, we also must consider external triggers that often are difficult to avoid such as weather changes, or strong smells.

It is estimated that 1% of the population suffers from vestibular migraine, but some specialists say the percentage is undervalued. Women are the ones mostly affected and it is more frequent when people are about 40 years old. Though less frequently, some children may also suffer from vestibular migraine.

Can vestibular migraine be cured?

There is currently no cure for this disease. Surgical operations are not recommended either. The way to treat vestibular migraine is basically the same as migraine.

Antiemetics and antivertigo drugs are commonly used.

Approximately 75% of patients respond well to treatment with nortriptyline or topiramate and a change in lifestyle. Valproic acid and other antidepressants may also do the trick to prevent vestibular migraine for some patients. These are generally prescription drugs, and you should consult your doctor before attempting to take them.

What is the supplement that is most often used for vestibular migraine?

Apart from vitamins, the answer is usually butterbur (also known as Petasites).

Butterbur is a type of plant that is commonly found in some parts of Europe and Asia. Its leaves were used to wrap butter in mild weather. Butterbur extract contains anti-inflammatory substances.

Butterbur leaves
Butterbur leaves

It has been recommended by the American Headache Society for episodic migraine. Though there is not enough data to say that it is always effective in vestibular migraine, it may be worth a try for some patients.

Butterbur extract has been used for headaches, allergic rhinitis (hay fever), asthma, skin wounds, and other illnesses since the Middle Ages. Nowadays there is doubt about its effectiveness in some of those illnesses, but it seems to work for some patients.

Butterbur flowers
Butterbur flowers

It is important to note that taking butterbur extract conveys a risk of liver toxicity, for which you are strongly advised to consult your doctor before taking this supplement. Some butterbur products may contain pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) which may cause problems in lungs and blood circulation too.

You should also take into account that in some countries, butterbur products are forbidden.

Please explore for more butterbur products within their website. CRLifeSc forms part of an affiliate marketing program.

You can also have a look at this article about vitamins and minerals in the treatment of migraine.

For health professionals CRLifeSc recommends the purchase of this herbal formulary for neurology.

Herbal Formularies for Health Professionals, Volume 4

Is vestibular migraine hereditary?

It may happen that some members of the same family have all migraine symptoms while others have only a few of them. It may also happen that some members suffer from vestibular migraine while other members only have migraine without dizziness symptoms within the same family. This seems to be related to phenotypic heterogeneity or in other words, different results from the interaction of genes and the environment; or maybe just some common genes as migraine seems determined by a polygenic inheritance, apart from the case of familial hemiplegic migraine, which is another type. This means several genes may be involved, and these genes may or may not be shared by all members within a family.  

Scientists have identified common genetic variants at several loci associated to migraine predisposition. There are particularly three relevant markers that have shown up in studies in relation to migraine sufferers. As an example, migraine in Europe, China and Northern India has been associated with the PRDM16 gene but there is a need for more research.

Generally, scientists believe that migraine could be caused by several different mutations that could affect ion channels mainly implicated in the stable equilibrium of glutamate (known in biological terms as glutamate homeostasis).

In vestibular migraine, a chromosome region on 11q has been found in most affected females, which could indicate a high predisposition in women. On the other hand, a study showed that 10 members within a family suffering from vestibular migraine shared a variant located in chromosome 5q35. Gene locus 22q12 has also been suggested in other studies.

You can have a look at this article in relation to migraine gene therapy.

What is the origin of vestibular migraine?

The etiology or origin of this medical condition is not known, and scientists propose multiple theories that are often related to how nerve cells go wrong with one another in the trigeminovascular system (TVS). The trigeminovascular system is formed by neurons that constitute the trigeminal nerve. This trigeminal nerve is connected to blood vessels in the brain and seems to be implicated in some types of headaches.

Trigeminal nerve and its branches
Trigeminal nerve and its branches

The TVS is activated with the release of neuropeptides. These neuropeptides affect the diameter of blood vessels by the depolarization of the peripheral terminals of meningeal sensory receptors (known in biological terms as nociceptors). The meninges are three membranes that enclose the brain and the spinal cord. The most important identified neuropeptides that intervene in this process are substance P (SP), calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), and neurokinin A (NK-A). These neuropeptides cause the vasodilation of blood vessels increasing blood flow and ultimately causing the release of pro-inflammatory factors. These pro-inflammatory factors and the release of glutamate are the cause of the throbbing pain when the first-order neurons in the trigeminal ganglia are over-excited. Subsequently these peptides may also provoke abnormal pain triggered by otherwise innocuous stimuli (in medical terms known as allodynia) as second and third-order neurons of the trigemino-vascular system are also sensitized.

More specifically related to vestibular migraine, neuropeptides such as substance P and CGRP have also been identified in the vestibular nuclei and in trigeminal sensory fibers that connect the inner ear. The vestibular nuclei help you maintain your balance.

Equilibrium organ in the inner ear
Equilibrium organ in the inner ear

Recently other scientists have proposed that migraine could be the result of a pathological brain state. Several partially interrelated brain networks could take part, also involving the limbic system, making things even more complicated. The limbic system takes part in functions such as emotion, long-term memory, and the sense of smell.

Reversible contractions of the internal auditory artery or its branches could also explain dizziness or vertigo as well as hearing loss in some migraineurs.

In relation to nystagmus or uncontrolled movement of the eyes, some experts believe that it is due to an obstruction of blood supply in a cerebellar artery region.

Other scientists propose that vestibular symptoms could be explained in relation to how migraine aura evolves. The mechanism that explains migraine aura is often the Cortical Spread Depression (CSD). This mechanism consists of a temporary depolarization wave which starts in the occipital area, and in the case of vestibular migraine would reach the vestibular complex or even the brainstem vestibular nuclei. Still this hypothesis is weak because of other symptoms that often accompany migraine aura.

Vestibular Migraine and Related Syndromes
Vestibular Migraine and Related Syndromes. CRLifeSc forms part of an affiliate program.


The information provided in this article is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely upon the content provided in this article for specific medical advice. If you have any questions or concerns, please talk to your doctor.

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

For market research professionals please visit the Anti-migraine Market Strategic Analysis

Can vitamins and minerals really help you alleviate your migraine symptoms?

For brevity in this article, we are focusing on the most relevant vitamins and minerals in the treatment of migraine, but other non-prescription supplements can be helpful in migraine therapy too.

Migraine headaches

Migraine is a neurological disease whose symptoms may vary in type, frequency, and intensity depending on each person, but most migraine sufferers will agree that anybody suffering from a migraine attack will do almost anything to alleviate them. That is how hard this condition can be in certain cases. The most characteristic symptom of migraine is an almost unbearable headache. Other symptoms that may appear include nausea, vomiting, difficulty speaking, numbness or tingling, and sensitivity to light and sound.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for migraine and the only thing we can do is to either treat it once it is triggered or much better prevent it from taking action. Therefore, vitamins and minerals will not cure your migraine, but they may certainly help some migraineurs in some instances.

Vitamins and minerals that may affect your migraine

In most cases there is scientific evidence, or at least a possible reliable scientific explanation, that certain supplements – not only vitamins and minerals – could help relieve migraine symptoms. In order to find an explanation of why these supplements may help we have to go to the etiology of the disease, that is its cause. Mitochondrial dysfunction – a mitochondria is an organelle in charge of supplying energy to the cell – is often offered as an explanation for migraine triggers. Inflammation in nerves and blood vessels is also suggested as a possible culprit. On the other hand, some authors suggest that antioxidants could help reduce levels of neuropathic pain which is due to oxidative stress. Scientists put forward other explanations for the possible origin of this condition which would make this article too broad. One single factor or a combination of all to a certain extent could explain the etiology (the origin) of migraine.

The good thing about migraine vitamins and supplements is that they are rarely dangerous for health and can be ideal for those people who want to avoid adverse effects caused by prescription drugs or by women with a baby on the way who would like to play safe. Still, consulting your doctor is always strongly recommended to find your appropriate therapy.

As it happens in most of the diseases, in the case of migraine more than ever you can say that no two patients are the same. For some patients, certain vitamins and minerals intake could be enough for migraine prevention, whilst for others, vitamins and minerals can be just an add-on to their usual medications. It is however important to note that some vitamins or minerals may not help you at all. What is even worse, those vitamins and minerals may even trigger or aggravate migraine symptoms.

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In a nutshell, some vitamins may help you relieve the frequency and harshness of your migraine symptoms but not always works. That is why it is so important that a migraine sufferer visits his or her doctor for a proper diagnosis and an adequate treatment.

Vitamin D as a migraine vitamin

10 to 30 minutes several times a week of sun exposure to bare skin is enough to create vitamin D in a natural way in our bodies, but people with darker skin may require longer periods, particularly in the northern hemisphere where ultraviolet rays (UV rays) are significantly weaker in winter. As a general rule, the farther you are from the equator the weaker UV rays are. Vitamin D is also present in food such as eggs, tuna, salmon, soy milk, orange juice, or beef liver.

It is estimated that between 30% and 80% of children and adults worldwide have vitamin D deficiency, and several studies have shown a strong relationship between serum vitamin D levels and headaches. Approximately 42% of patients suffering from chronic migraine have vitamin D deficiency – whether this is the cause, the consequence, or just a sheer chance remains to be seen.

Some authors suggest that vitamin D protects the body from inflammation and keeps nerves healthy. This vitamin could also be involved in the release of dopamine and serotonin, which are two important neurotransmitters. Vitamin D seems to have proven to be beneficial for some patients suffering from migraine, reducing frequency of headaches. Appropriate levels of vitamin D (60ng/mL-80 ng/mL) also help uplifting sleep which at the same time may help to alleviate migraine symptoms. Still scientists do not recommend vitamin D supplementation for all patients unless they suffer from vitamin D deficiency.

Vitamin D levels affect the levels of magnesium as this vitamin can control as many as 200 genes taking part in its intestinal absorption.

Regarding dosage it is generally recommended a dose not higher than 600-800 IU daily for adults, and despite some studies suggesting that higher doses do not seem to have any adverse effects, 1000 IU per day are considered too high and may carry some risks for your health. Vitamin D is fat-soluble and as such it may be stored in your organism. Please visit your healthcare provider as the appropriate dosage may vary depending on several factors to be considered, including your own metabolism.

Vitamin D3 is regarded as raising vitamin D levels in blood  more efficiently. You can also buy liquid vitamin D3 online.

Folic acid as a migraine vitamin

This is the synthetic version of the naturally occurring vitamin folate (vitamin B9). Foods that are rich in folate include vegetables, fruit and fruit juices, nuts, eggs, dairy products, and meat among so many others.

Folate takes part in the energy production process of cells degrading carbohydrates as well as in the process of producing red and white blood cells in bone marrow.

Migraines may be the consequence of folate deficiency anemia according to some scientists.

You should always consult your doctor before taking this vitamin, particularly in those patients that suffer from kidney disease, have an infection, any type of anemia or are alcoholic. The usual dose recommended is 2 mg. Overdose symptoms often include numbness, mouth or tongue pain, weakness, confusion, and concentration difficulty.

You can buy optimized folate online.

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10 or ubiquinone) as a migraine vitamin

Most people obtain enough of this vitamin through a balanced diet (oily fish, liver, and whole grains, for example).

The relationship between coenzyme Q10 and migraine once again is questionable, but some authors suggest that coenzyme Q10 supplement could decrease the rate of headaches in migraine treatment according to some trials. Some studies suggest that women who suffer from coenzyme Q10 deficiency are more prone to have migraine headaches than men.

Coenzyme Q10 plays an important role in the management of energy in cells intervening in the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate) and it is an important antioxidant.

This vitamin could interact with anti-cholesterol drugs and may even cause insomnia, for which we strongly advise that you consult with your healthcare provider. The recommended dosage is up to 300 mg daily. You will hardly see the benefit of taking this vitamin before one month and often it may take at least three months to notice any improvement.

If you live in Europe we recommend this following site where you can buy Coenzyme Q10, also known as ubiquinone

Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) as a migraine vitamin

Riboflavin is present in food such as eggs, avocados, milk, organ meats or cereals to mention a few. This vitamin intermediates in the production of cells energy and plays a crucial role as an antioxidant, iron absorption and activation of vitamin B6. Riboflavin is stored in small amounts in the human organism and it is important to note that it is destroyed by constant exposure to light and alkalis such as baking soda, and that boiling foods may cause this vitamin to be lost.

The way vitamin B2 works – what is known as its mechanism of action – in the prevention of migraine is at the moment unknown apart from what is mentioned above.

Some experts suggest that riboflavin can certainly lower the duration and regularity of migraine attacks. The usual dose recommended is between 200 and 400 milligrams daily.

Vitamin B2 intake rarely causes serious side effects and due to its water-soluble properties excess is easily excreted by the human body. Still high doses may lead to diarrhea, itching, lack of feeling or numbness, burning sensations, and yellow discoloration of urine.

Sulfa-containing drugs (some diabetes medications or sulfonamide antibiotics among others), antimalarial drugs, estrogen and alcohol may affect riboflavin metabolism. Some tranquilizers and antidepressants may also inhibit riboflavin activation in the liver. So, it is recommended to consult your doctor.

You can buy BioActive Complete B-Complex from Life Extension Europe on line.

Magnesium as a migraine mineral

Magnesium is absorbed through your intestine with your diet. Vegetables, cereals, and other types of food as well as coffee and tea generally provide you with the necessary amount of this mineral in a balanced eating habit. Magnesium also helps in the absorption of calcium.

Magnesium seems to help particularly those people who suffer from migraine with aura and those women who endure migraines with their menstruation. Scientists suggest that magnesium may help to relieve visual disturbances, nausea, vomiting and other symptoms which are characteristic of migraine attacks. You will hardly notice any improvement in less than three months in migraine prophylaxis (migraine prevention).

Magnesium may affect the absorption of some antibiotics, might decrease your blood pressure, and increase adverse effects of muscle relaxants, for which we always recommend consulting your doctor. The usual dose of non-food magnesium recommended is between 400 and 500 milligrams daily depending on the person, with lower dosages frequently recommended for women. High doses of magnesium are not generally dangerous as your body gets rid of excessive amounts, but still high doses may cause diarrhea, vomiting and other side effects. For those people who tend to suffer from diarrhea vitamin B2 may help to prevent it too.

You can purchase Extend-Release Magnesium here if you live in Europe.

Please have a look at our article related to the best vestibular migraine supplement.


The information provided in this article is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely upon the content provided in this article for specific medical advice. If you have any questions or concerns, please talk to your doctor.

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

For market research professionals please visit the Anti-migraine Market Strategic Analysis

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