Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine

Editor-in-Chief: Lui, Edmund

Ed. by Ko, Robert / Leung, Kelvin Sze-Yin / Saunders, Paul / Suntres, PH. D., Zacharias

CiteScore 2017: 1.41

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.472
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.564

See all formats and pricing
More options …

Effects of dietary supplementations and herbs on migraine – a systematic review

Tayyeba Rehman
  • Corresponding author
  • University College of Conventional Medicine, Faculty of Pharmacy and Alternative Medicine, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Bahawalpur, Pakistan
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Saeed Ahmad
  • Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy and Alternative Medicine, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Bahawalpur, Pakistan
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Qindeel Fatima
Published Online: 2019-01-19 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jcim-2018-0143



Migraine is a disabling disease and conventional treatment has many side effects. Dietary supplements and various herbs have reported valuable effects on migraine.


The present study systematically review the effects of these dietary supplements and herbs on migraine.


The literature search was done on electronic databases PubMed, Google Scholar and Science direct (2005–2015). The quality of articles was assessed through a criteria list of methodological quality assessment of randomized controlled trials (RCTs). The papers got C50 points considered to be of good quality methodology. The maximum score was 100.


Fourteen RCTs on migraine were included in this review. The range of quality score varied from 37 to 65 points.


Various RCTs suggested that dietary and vitamin supplementation and different herbs might be effective in treatment of migraine. Evaluated RCTs have various methodological shortcomings. So, a firm conclusion can’t be made for the efficacy of dietary supplementation and herbs in the treatment of migraine.

Keywords: dietary supplementation; herbs; migraine; systematic review


  • [1]

    Vos T, Flaxman AD, Naghavi M, Lozano R, Michaud C, Ezzati M, et al. Years lived with disability (YLDs) for 1160 sequelae of 289 diseases and injuries 1990–2010: a systematic analysis for the global burden of disease study 2010. Lancet 2013;380:2163–96.Web of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [2]

    Steiner TJ, Stovner LJ, Birbeck GL. Migraine: the seventh disabler. Headache 2013;53:227–9.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [3]

    Wöber-Bingöl Ç. Epidemiology of migraine and headache in children and adolescents. Curr Pain and Headache Rep 2013;17:1–11.Web of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [4]

    Arruda MA, Bigal ME. Behavioral and emotional symptoms and primary headaches in children: a population-based study. Cephalalgia 2012;32:1093–100.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [5]

    Schoenen J, Dodick DW, Sándor P. Comorbidity in migraine. United States: John Wiley & Sons, 2011.Google Scholar

  • [6]

    Mauskop A. Alternative therapies in headache: is there a role? . Med Clin North Am 2001;85:1077–84.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [7]

    Kelman L, Von Seggern RL. Using patient-centered endpoints to determine the cost-effectiveness of triptans for acute migraine therapy. Am J Ther 2006;13:411–7.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [8]

    Wells RE, Bertisch SM, Buettner C, Phillips RS, McCarthy EP. Complementary and alternative medicine use among adults with migraines/severe headaches. Headache 2011;51:1087–97.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [9]

    Birdee GS, Yeh G. Complementary and alternative medicine therapies for diabetes: a clinical review. Clinic Diabet 2010;28:147–55.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [10]

    Montagna P, Cortelli P, Monari L, Pierangeli G, Parchi P, Lodi R, et al. 31P-magnetic resonance spectroscopy in migraine without aura. Neurology 1994;44:666–9.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [11]

    Yee AJ. Effectiveness of high-dose riboflavin in migraine prophylaxis. Neurology 1999;52:431–2.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [12]

    Fernández-de-Las-Peñas C, Alonso-Blanco C, San-Román J, Miangolarra-Page JC. Methodological quality of randomized controlled trials of spinal manipulation and mobilization in tension-type headache, migraine, and cervicogenic headache. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 2006;36:160–9.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [13]

    Cayir A, Turan MI, Tan H. Effect of vitamin D therapy in addition to amitriptyline on migraine attacks in pediatric patients. Braz J Med Biol Res 2014;47:349–54.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [14]

    Tarighat Esfanjani A, Mahdavi R, Ebrahimi Mameghani M, Talebi M, Nikniaz Z, Safaiyan A. The effects of magnesium, L-carnitine, and concurrent magnesium-L-carnitine supplementation in migraine prophylaxis. Biol Trace Elem Res 2012;150:42–8.PubMedWeb of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [15]

    Lea R, Colson N, Quinlan S, Macmillan J, Griffiths L. The effects of vitamin supplementation and MTHFR (C677T) genotype on homocysteine-lowering and migraine disability. Pharmacogenet Genomics 2009;19:422–8.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [16]

    Mitchell N, Hewitt CE, Jayakody S, Islam M, Adamson J, Watt I, et al. Randomised controlled trial of food elimination diet based on IgG antibodies for the prevention of migraine like headaches. Nutr J 2011;10:85.CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [17]

    Bunner AE, Agarwal U, Gonzales JF, Valente F, Barnard ND. Nutrition intervention for migraine: a randomized crossover trial. J Headache Pain 2014;15:69.Web of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [18]

    Slater SK, Nelson TD, Kabbouche MA, LeCates SL, Horn P, Segers A, et al. A randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, crossover, add-on study of CoEnzyme Q10 in the prevention of pediatric and adolescent migraine. Cephalalgia 2011;31:897–905.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [19]

    Gaul C, Diener HC, Danesch U. Improvement of migraine symptoms with a proprietary supplement containing riboflavin, magnesium and Q10: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, multicenter trial. J Headache Pain 2015;16:516.Web of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [20]

    Verrotti A, Agostinelli S, D’Egidio C, Di Fonzo A, Carotenuto M, Parisi P, et al. Impact of a weight loss program on migraine in obese adolescents. Eur J Neurol 2013;20:394–7.Web of ScienceCrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [21]

    Ferrara LA, Pacioni D, Di Fronzo V, Russo BF, Speranza E, Carlino V, et al. Low-lipid diet reduces frequency and severity of acute migraine attacks. Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis 2015;25:370–5.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [22]

    Oelkers-Ax R, Leins A, Parzer P, Hillecke T, Bolay HV, Fischer J, et al. Butterbur root extract and music therapy in the prevention of childhood migraine: an explorative study. Eur J Pain 2008;12:301–13.PubMedWeb of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [23]

    Ferro EC, Biagini AP, Da Silva IE, Silva ML, Silva JR. The combined effect of acupuncture and Tanacetum parthenium on quality of life in women with headache: randomised study. Acupunct Med 2012;30:252–7.PubMedCrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [24]

    Cady RK, Goldstein J, Nett R, Mitchell R, Beach ME, Browning R. A double-blind placebo-controlled pilot study of sublingual feverfew and ginger (LipiGesic M) in the treatment of migraine. Headache 2011;51:1078–86.Web of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [25]

    Sasannejad P, Saeedi M, Shoeibi A, Gorji A, Abbasi M, Foroughipour M. Lavender essential oil in the treatment of migraine headache: a placebo-controlled clinical trial. Eur Neurol 2012;67:288–91.Web of SciencePubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [26]

    Maghbooli M, Golipour F, Moghimi Esfandabadi A, Yousefi M. Comparison between the efficacy of ginger and sumatriptan in the ablative treatment of the common migraine. Phytother Res 2014;28:412–5.PubMedWeb of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

About the article

Received: 2018-08-20

Accepted: 2018-10-21

Published Online: 2019-01-19

Author contributions: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

Research funding: None declared.

Employment or leadership: None declared.

Honorarium: None declared.

Competing interests: The funding organization(s) played no role in the study design; in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; or in the decision to submit the report for publication.Authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Citation Information: Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine, 20180143, ISSN (Online) 1553-3840, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jcim-2018-0143.

Export Citation

© 2019 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston.Get Permission

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in