Many people with migraines are unaware of how certain nutrients have been shown to be effective in significantly reducing migraine frequency. For example, vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) has been shown to reduce the frequency of migraines in children and adults.
One interesting study on the topic was published in the mainstream journal Pediatric Neurology. The study’s design was retrospective and observational, involving 42 children and adolescents aged six to eighteen. Patients had to be diagnosed by a pediatric headache specialist according to the International Classification of Headache Disorders. Those involved were patients at the Dell Children’s Medical Center in Austin, Texas. A standardized questionnaire included 200 questions that were procured from each new patient. In addition, 50 questions were obtained from follow-up patients.
To be included in the study, patients had to have migraine with aura, migraine without aura, new persistent daily headaches, headaches from traumatic head injuries, and had started riboflavin as a prevention therapy. In addition, patients were not eligible if they had less than four migraine headache days per month, had been receiving another preventative treatment, or had a greater occipital nerve block in the past three months. Moreover, if patients did not take riboflavin at least 80% of the time, they were excluded.
The dose of riboflavin was 100 mg twice daily for patients weighing 20 to 40 kg and 200 mg twice daily for those weighing more than 40 kg. The patients kept a headache diary and reported average headache days per week at doctor visits. If participants did not keep a headache diary, they were asked to recall how many headaches they had on average in a week.
Findings: 61.9% of patients had a minimum 50% reduction in headache frequency. The remaining 21.4% reported no benefit, and 16.7% had mild to moderate benefit. None of the patients had any adverse effects from riboflavin supplementation.
In addition to diet improvements, stress coping mechanisms, and structural alignment analysis and treatment (chiropractic and osteopathic), the use of vitamin B2 offers a non-toxic way to reduce migraines significantly. The mechanism of benefit may include the fact that B2 helps the brain with energy production, which prevents the cascade of biochemical changes that lead to headaches.
Dr. Mark Stengler NMD, MS, is a bestselling author in private practice in Encinitas, California, at the Stengler Center for Integrative Medicine. His newsletter, Dr. Stengler’s Health Breakthroughs, is available at www.americasnaturaldoctor.com His clinic website is www.markstengler.com
Das, R., & Qubty, W. (2021). Retrospective Observational Study on Riboflavin Prophylaxis in Child and Adolescent Migraine. Pediatric Neurology, 114, 5–8. https://doi-org.uws.idm.oclc.org/10.1016/j.pediatrneurol.2020.09.009.