Last week, I told you the story of a coal miner’s secret remedy for migraines. I’ve heard plenty of stories through the years about the power of folk remedies. Some of them proved out. Some didn’t. The coal miner’s story caught my eye, though. Not just because I don’t usually see medical discoveries coming from a coal mine. But also because the story set off a chain of scientific studies that completely confirmed the story.
If you’ll remember, the story started when the wife of Britain's chief medical officer for the National Coal Board suffered chronic migraines. A coal miner heard of her condition and recommended feverfew. The folk remedy worked wonders. And the cure understandably caught the attention of the chief medical officer.
The chief medical officer told the story to Dr. E. Stewart Johnson of the City of London Migraine Clinic, who immediately began to study feverfew. In his first study, he gave feverfew leaves to 10 of his patients. All of the patients reported improvement — and three said it cured them!
Dr. Johnson’s next study was with 270 of his migraine patients. Many of these patients had tried standard medical treatment, but didn’t experience any relief. After taking feverfew, 70% said they had significant relief!
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The results were so dramatic, Dr. Johnson went on to conduct many more studies. Each one more rigorous than the previous studies. Many of the participants had never responded to conventional treatments. But most responded favorably to feverfew, some reporting complete cures.
The British medical journal The Lancet reported one of the most compelling studies. In this study, researchers gave 72 migraine sufferers either a placebo or a capsule of powered, freeze-dried feverfew. Those taking the feverfew saw a 24% reduction in the number of headaches they experienced. And the headaches they did have were relatively mild. And they had significantly less nausea and vomiting.
The results of these and many more studies have shown feverfew to be an effective, even miraculous migraine treatment. What’s more, there were no side effects. So, if you suffer from migraines, give feverfew a try. Many of the studies used only 25 mg daily of freeze-dried leaf capsules. This is a small dose. Most brands of freeze-dried feverfew have 125-300 mg per capsule. Try a small dose and see how it works for you. Then take more as needed.
If you exceed the bottle’s directions, do so under a doctor’s supervision. Feverfew can slow blood clotting, so talk to your doctor if you take Coumadin before taking it. And make sure you stop taking it two weeks before any scheduled surgeries. You can find freeze-dried feverfew in most health food stores and on the Internet.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.