9 Best Herbal Teas for Migraines: Natural Remedies for Headache Relief

MA Hemal

Migraines are a common and painful type of headache that can greatly impact one’s quality of life. For many migraine sufferers, over-the-counter or prescription medications only provide limited relief and don’t address the root causes. Herbal teas are a gentle and effective option that has helped people manage their migraines for centuries. In this article, we will explore several herbal teas which clinical research and traditional practices have shown to ease migraine symptoms.

Explanation of Migraines

Migraines are more than just headaches – they involve various neurological symptoms and sensitivities to light, sound, and smells. The exact triggers may vary between individuals, but common ones include lack of sleep, changes in routine, skipped meals, alcohol, caffeine withdrawal, certain foods, hormonal shifts, and stress. Attacks usually involve pounding or throbbing pain, nausea, vomiting, and temporary visual disturbances which can last from 4 hours to 3 days. While modern medicine has improved migraine treatments significantly, it’s still important to consider lifestyle and herbal remedies as complementary approaches.

Importance of Herbal Remedies

Plants have been used medicinally for millennia, as their chemical constituents often interact with the body in beneficial ways. Herbal teas pair the hydrating effects of water with therapeutic plant compounds, making them gentle enough for daily use. Sipping a calming tea can potentially prevent or lessen migraine episodes by addressing root causes like stress, inflammation, muscle tension, or hormonal fluctuations. Some herbal teas like peppermint or ginger may need to be avoided during acute attacks due to menthol compounds, but others like chamomile can help through relaxation. Consider trying these soothing herbal teas for migraines.

9 Best Herbal Teas for Migraines:

Peppermint Tea

Peppermint tea offers relief through its menthol content, which gives the plant its refreshing scent and taste. Menthol is absorbed through the mucous membranes in the nose and throat, helping to relax blood vessels in the head and ease tension or inflammation that contributes to migraines. Its cooling sensation provides comfort during mild attacks.

To prepare, steep 1-2 teaspoons of dried peppermint leaves in 8oz of just-boiled water for 5-10 minutes and sweeten to taste if needed. Try it between migraine episodes or at the first sign of one to help prevent worsening.

Ginger Tea

Ginger is a potent anti-inflammatory thanks to compounds called gingerols. Inflammation reduction is helpful for migraines, as it plays a role in headache pain. Ginger also targets nausea, a common migraine symptom.

To make ginger tea, grate a 1-inch piece of fresh ginger root and steep it in 8oz of hot water for 10-15 minutes. Add honey if you need to mask the spicy taste. Brewing ginger tea is a wonderful home remedy and the fresh root packs more of the therapeutic compounds than dried powder. Enjoy this up to 3 times per day for migraine relief.

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile has a relaxing effect on both body and mind due to apigenin and other constituents. Tensions and stress are migraine triggers for many, so a cup of chamomile tea at the start of symptoms may help prevent a full-blown attack. Chamomile also has mild anti-inflammatory and muscle-relaxing properties.

To brew a relaxing cup, steep 1-2 teaspoons of dried chamomile flowers in 8oz of freshly boiled water for 5-10 minutes. Sweeten with honey if desired. Its calming nature makes chamomile an easy daily tea to manage stress levels and potentially ward off migraines.

Feverfew Tea

Feverfew has a long tradition of use for migraines and is one of the best-researched botanical remedies. It contains parthenolide, which relieves migraine pain and prevents serotonin and other inflammatory substances from causing pain signals in the brain.

To make feverfew tea, use 1 teaspoon of dried leaves per cup and steep for 5-10 minutes in 8oz hot water. Be aware that the raw leaves may cause mouth ulcers in some people. Consuming 1-2 cups daily has been shown to reduce migraine frequency and severity over time thanks to feverfew’s anti-inflammatory properties.

Butterbur Tea

Petasites hybridus, more commonly known as butterbur extract, has undergone extensive scientific testing for migraine prevention. Clinical trials have found it significantly reduces migraine days per month versus placebo. Butterbur’s active compounds called petasins block pain-signaling molecules and ease inflammation. It’s important to only use supplements standardized to contain no more than 15mg of petasins daily due to butterbur’s toxic properties in large amounts. Look for dried butterbur powder or capsules to provide therapeutic levels safely rather than brewing tea with fresh leaves.

Lavender Tea

Lavender’s lovely floral scent has a noticeably calming effect as its fragrance is sensed in the limbic system of the brain. This helps lower stress, anxiety, and muscle tension—all of which can trigger migraines. It also has mild anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.

To prepare lavender tea, steep 1-2 teaspoons of dried lavender buds in hot water for 5-10 minutes. Add honey if desired and drink 1-2 times daily as needed for relaxation and natural headache relief. Many find lavender’s subtle tastes complement black or green teas nicely as well.

Valerian Root Tea

Valerian is widely used as a safe and natural sedative. Since stress and disrupted sleep are migraine factors for some, winding down with valerian may help prevent episodes. Clinical trials show it to be an effective relaxant thanks to compounds like valerenic acid, isovaleric acid, and valeranone. Its muscle-relaxing effects also counter tension headaches.

For tea, use 1⁄2 teaspoon dried root per cup and steep 5-10 minutes before bedtime. Be aware that valerian has a strong, earthy odor, so try brewing double-strong and discarding the first steeping.

Passionflower Tea

The delicate passionflower vine is traditionally valued for easing anxiety, insomnia, and stress-related conditions. Its benzodiazepine-like compounds work on GABA receptor sites in the brain to help relax both body and overactive thoughts. This makes it a useful preventive herb for migraines triggered by daily pressures.

Brew 1-2 teaspoons of dried passionflower leaves or flowering tops in 8oz hot water for 5-10 minutes. Enjoy up to 3 cups daily as a relaxing, non-sedating alternative to valerian. Passionflower tastes subtly sweet with a floral aroma.

Green Tea

As one of the most widely consumed beverages globally, green tea earns its popularity through health benefits like antioxidant content. EGCG and other flavonoids may help ward off migraines, as some triggers involve oxidative stress. Caffeinated green tea can in fact help some individuals versus triggering caffeine withdrawal headaches.

Brew a cup using 1-2 teaspoons loose tea steeped for 2-5 minutes in 8oz water, drinking up to 3 cups daily for general wellness and potential migraine prevention. Be aware that green tea still contains caffeine, so drink it earlier in the day.


In conclusion, these herbal tea choices can gently support migraine management through anti-inflammatory activity, relaxation effects, hormonal support, stress relief, and general wellness. Consider experimenting to see which suits your specific symptoms and triggers best, paying attention to factors like aroma, taste, and caffeine content. Remember that prevention often takes consistency in self-care measures like hydration, nutrition, exercise, and managing daily stress levels—all of which teas can complement nicely. There’s no risk in brewing yourself a soothing cup of chamomile, ginger, or peppermint to ward off or alleviate a migraine naturally.


Can herbal teas completely cure migraines?

While herbal teas can help reduce migraine frequency and severity over time by addressing triggers, they are unlikely to provide a complete cure on their own in most cases. Migraines often have multiple contributing factors, both internal and environmental. Teas are best viewed as a complementary or preventive approach as part of an overall migraine management plan that may also include lifestyle changes, prescription options in severe cases, and identifying personal triggers to avoid.

Are there any side effects of drinking herbal teas for migraines?

Most herbal teas have a strong safety profile when consumed in normal culinary amounts. However, some individuals may experience mild side effects like an upset stomach, drowsiness, headache, or allergic reactions in rare cases depending on the herb. It’s generally recommended to start with a single tea and notice any reactions over a few days before integrating others. As with any new substance, moderation is key. Be aware of contraindications like avoiding valerian before driving. Consulting with a medical professional can help navigate personal circumstances.

How frequently should one drink herbal tea for migraine relief?

There’s no single right answer, as individual biochemistry and triggers will vary. In general, most find relief with 1-3 cups per day of their preferred tea, especially around times they previously noticed migraine onset. Teas focused on relaxation are best in the evening hours to wind down, while daytime options like peppermint provide comfort throughout. It’s wise to start with 1 cup and see how symptoms respond before potentially increasing to a regular preventive amount. Consistency provides the best opportunity for teas to support one’s unique migraine experience.

Can pregnant women consume these herbal teas?

A word of caution applies here. While options like chamomile and peppermint are generally considered safe during pregnancy in moderation, others like feverfew, valerian or butterbur should be avoided as they have not been sufficiently studied. Always check with a healthcare provider for any herb in pregnancy or breastfeeding. Certain teas may interact harmfully with any prescription medications as well. When in doubt, simple ginger or peppermint sipped in small amounts under medical guidance may offer relief for expectant migraine sufferers.

Should I consult a doctor before using herbal teas for migraines?

Consulting your doctor is prudent advice, especially for severe or frequent migraine cases or if other medical conditions are present. Not all remedies are appropriate depending on an individual’s circumstances. Your health practitioner can help determine a safe course of action, screen for interactions, address migraines through standard treatment as needed, and monitor effects in combination with teas. Their expertise is invaluable, so communicating intentions for natural remedies ensures you follow a supportive, doctor-guided plan for migraine relief. Complementary therapies work best under proper medical guidance.

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