Would the following be of any use in reply to the query from Mrs Loveday in WDDTY vol 5 no 4, who asked whether the cod liver oil which sorted out her migraines meant they were caused by nutritional deficiencies?
As deficiency of A and D, the vitamins found in cod liver oil, is not commonly recognized as a cause of migraine, the benefit of the cod liver oil seems more likely to be explained in terms of the effects of the oil's fatty acid content on the formation of chemical mediators of the inflammation in the body.
Much of the fatty acid content of the normal Western diet either consists of or is converted to arachidonic acid (AA) in the body. Under the influence of certain enzymes, AA is converted into chemicals that generate inflammation. The fatty acids found in fish oils compete with AA for the metabolic pathway and receive preferential treatment. When they are present, they beat AA to the enzymes and are converted into chemicals that decrease inflammation. Since the inflammatory chemical formed from AA contribute to migraine, the reduction in their formation caused by the competition from the cod liver oil might explain Mrs Loveday's observation. Vicky Rippere, London......