Taking Time to Nurture Yourself not the Beast

A month ago I made a decision to spend five weeks writing in a more positive tone. I challenged myself to express the nutritional and self care aspects of migraineurs within a frame of what we can do more of rather than “a don’t do this and you can’t do that” approach. It has been a challenge, but I rose to meet it over the past three weeks.

I’ve spent the better part of the past two weeks trying to find another good news story to no avail. Maybe everyone is holding their findings for the big annual meeting of the International Headache Society in the beginning of September. Until then I guess we’ll just have to bide our time.

Time. Time is something that we all need more of. Those of you that suffer from migraines and those of us who help care for migraineurs. That’s because migraines are the world’s biggest time suck. Worse than a child learning how to put on socks and insisting that they can do it themselves. Thirty minutes later you are finally out the door.

Migraineur’s households have a different lifestyle out of necessity. That’s one in every four households working to keep the migraine beast at bay. Each of us has a different way of managing this, but it all takes time, a significant amount of time.

I struggle with giving myself the permission to take the time I need to support a migraineur. Stuart is lucky in that he has a good support person, however there are plenty of single migraine sufferers who have to do it all on their own. I wonder how you do it. I wonder how you find the time.

Making the decision to incorporate dietary choices to help control and manage your migraines is a lifestyle choice.

It is not this year’s fad, but a commitment to a more traditional way of life.

It’s about getting back to our roots. Taking the time to grow, harvest and then cook foods free from man made enhancements that have one purpose, to speed things up. Make everything take less time.

local veggies

Forage for locally grown produce. If in doubt ask where it came from.

The chef Massimo Bottura says it best:

“It’s a great present to your family if you dedicate half an hour every couple of days to shop seasonally and cook what you have in the refrigerator. First of all, you’re going to bring the waste to zero; second, you save money; third, you eat beautiful food.”

When I first read this I scoffed at it. Where I would find the half an hour? Easy for a celebrity chef to say I should be sourcing seasonally paddock to plate and that it would only take me 30 minutes. It’s their job to shop for food.

But I made time. Half an hour for shopping, half an hour to make pizza dough, half an hour here and half an hour there and before I knew it we had more traditional life. The way my great-grandmother lived. More importantly, we are living in a way that keeps the migraine beast at bay.

making pizza dough

Making pizza dough with a three-year-old requires time. And a good broom.

It’s not a fad. It’s a way of life.

So this week, take more time.

Start a garden. Gardening has been shown to significantly reduce stress over other forms of relaxation. Plus, you’ll be out in the sun making much needed vitamin D. Even if you only have the space for a few potted herbs, naturally high sources of magnesium and potassium, on a window sill, you’re helping your mental and physical health.


Make friends with your local green grocer, butcher and baker. They will always steer you in the right direction. Check out those raspberries.

Talk to your green grocer, baker and butcher about your migraines. You’ll be surprised how many of them are in your situation, readily offering their expert knowledge to aide you make smart choices. They may even offer to help. A butcher recently offered to make preservative free sausages to my recipe especially for us. That will save me a whole day of sausage making when we want to have a big BBQ.

If you don’t have a green grocer, baker or butcher, take the time to find one. Here in Sydney we are spoilt for choice. I know that a lot of my readers are in America where there are a dearth of these traditional shops. Finding unprocessed food can be a real challenge. Perhaps try looking online for farm based providores.

Have a real conversation about your health needs with your favourite chef. Again, you’ll be surprised how many are or live with sufferers. Just don’t try and do this in the middle of the lunch or dinner rush. Chef’s want people to be able to eat their food. Just like any expert craftsperson, they enjoy using their considerable knowledge to create a dish that you can eat. Think of the time it will save if you know you can reliably order a safe meal.

birthday cake making kids

Making birthday cakes is a great way to get back to traditional baking. They always taste better if made with bed hair.

So my friends, what are your tips for making time?

As always, whenever making lifestyle changes be sure and consult your healthcare team. Under no circumstances should you stop or start taking medication or supplements without their consent.

Enjoy my friends.

Informed by science, cooked by you.

2 thoughts on “Taking Time to Nurture Yourself not the Beast

  1. I certainly like to be self-sufficient. Try to make extra of certain dishes over the weekend. For example, I never buy crumbed chicken or veal. I make the crumbs myself as I like to choose the bread it’s made with, crumb a large batch of chicken and freeze. This way it’s freshly cooked but the prep is already done. Biscuits or muesli slices are better than cakes as they last longer. Baking is handy as well. Tonight I baked fish rather than pan fried I can do other things while the fish is baking. It also makes less mess. So many tips…


    • You are so right. A handful of little things at the time can save heaps later. I love your tip about prepping a large batch so that it’s ready for the future. I too don’t buy precrumbed anything as the crumbs usually have preservatives in them. I will say there there is something relaxing in the rhythmic motion of crumbing, flour, egg, crumbs repeat. Maybe crumbing zen is a new thing 😁

      Liked by 1 person

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