Q. I started taking vitamin D3 supplements about a year ago when my doctor tested my blood and found out I was vitamin D deficient. Is it just a coincidence that my migraines and chronic headaches have almost disappeared? I’ve had them for over 25 years and I am glad not to be suffering.
A. There is not much research on this issue, but we found several case reports similar to your experience (Headache, Sept., 2009). Some investigators have noted that migraines are more common in areas where vitamin D deficiency is widespread (Journal of Headache and Pain, online May 13, 2010).

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  1. EM

    Thanks so much for this info, and for those who have relayed their success with Vitamin D.
    I recently started getting vestibular migraines; one which started January 11, 2014 and is still ongoing (February 28, 2014, I have never had headaches in my entire life until now (30) and there is no family history of migraines.
    I had a physical and was low in Vitamin D in August of last year (my first migraine hit September 26), and I had more blood drawn during the search for an end to this current episode, and my numbers were still low, apparently.
    The doctor prescribe 2000 DU, but I feel I may need much more. I’m so hopeful that this will stop the symptoms (major sensitivity to light, sound, motion, smell; general feeling of dizzy off-ness; ear-ringing, pulsating tinnitus).

  2. A.L.C

    So glad you found something that worked for you. Thanks so much for sharing this. Will try it myself.

  3. PT

    I have been suffering from VERY severe cluster migraines for 40 years. A highly respected NYC neurologist told me they were the worst he’d ever seen. They came in big clusters. I’d get them every 12 months or so. They would build up over a 2 month period until I would get one or two a day every day. They would completely incapacitate me. I could not sleep because the pain was so severe. All I could do was to rock, throw up, and furiously massage my head for 4 hours, only to get another. I read everything I could find on the subject: I eliminated all trigger foods, took the recommended supplements, exercised, tried to relax and be happy.
    Eventually I felt that there was something terribly wrong with who I am-that I was not fit for this world. A sad state for a child (I had my first around age 16), a wife, a mother. Then, 2 years ago my dermatologist discovered that I had early stage (1A) melanoma. I am a redhead from Manhattan who has stayed out of the sun religiously (except for a couple of summers as a teenager). After the melanoma was removed my dermatologist made sure I had some tests done. Turns out I was low in D3 and so was put on a supplement.
    I HAVEN’T HAD A MIGRAINE EVER SINCE. THIS IS HUGE. There are many opinions and numbers out there as to what ones level should be and the different forms of D3. I am taking a liquid form of high quality D3. One drop is 2000. I have experimented and was able to bring my level up to 73. My doctor thinks that this is now too high. My own research leads me to believe that this is a good number especially having had skin cancer.
    What is astounding and of utmost importance is the fact that my migraines seem to have disappeared. I so hope this information reaches other migraine sufferers and works for them also. No doctor I saw had ever related D3 with migraines.

  4. TDD

    A friend recently told me that a prescription dose of vitamin D over a period of time helped her get over chronic fatigue symptoms, and by the time her levels were up to 30 she felt like her old self again. I have been fighting cf for 30 years and the only thing any of the doctors have ever found with all their testing, was that my vitamin D levels were “a little low”. If I had back all the $ that I have spent over the years on doctors that don’t have a clue, I would never have to work again and would be living in grand style.
    It’s a shame that you have to pay doctors when they are clueless and don’t have enough interest in their patients to even attempt to find out or enough honesty to say “I don’t know”, or at least try to point you in the direction of someone who might have a better understanding. Instead the comment that I have usually gotten is “Oh, you’re just depressed” No, I know the difference. What makes me depressed is when I can’t function, and when I spend $ fruitlessly in search of an answer!
    Are there any negative side effects from taking too much vitamin D? And if you are a medical contrary, and the test are all based on the norm, what good are the test? Unfortunately med insurance only covers traditional western medicine, not those who are in it to actually HEAL their patients. It is more profitable for the doctors to keep you coming back for more pills, or to try and convince you that it’s all in your head so you will continue the loop with shrinks. Disenchanted

  5. DG

    I had the same happy experience. In January, my doctor told me my Vitamin D was low. I took 50,000 IU/week for eight weeks, and then was told to take 2,000 IU/day after that. After suffering with periodic headaches all my life, I have not had ONE headache since I started taking the Vitamin D supplements — six or seven months now. What a relief! I’d advise anyone who has headaches to have their blood tested for D and see if it’s low. Certainly a cheap and easy fix, with only good side effects : )

  6. tarhoosier

    I have had cluster headaches, similar to migraine, for many years. My pattern is to recur about once every 18-24 months. I began Vit D supplementation four years ago, shortly after my last episode. I did this for general health purposes and without thought for the headaches. I have not recurred since. I did not make a connection to the events until reading this. I take 7200 iu/day and am tested regularly to maintain 50-80 ng of D. This is by three 2400 iu gelcaps. I experimented with dose and type to settle on this regimen.

  7. LGF

    Peppy, be sure to get tested. It seems everyone I know is deficient or at very low levels. I was put on 50,000 iu once a week for 6 weeks when I was tested last year and my number came back at 23. Apparently, your score should fall somewhere between 35-80, but I hear different things from different people. I re-tested after 6 weeks at just 42, which I think is still a little low. I now take 2,000 iu a day (along with calcium) and try to get some sun exposure here and there; I re-tested last month at 39, and the doctor just sent a card saying I was “normal” (I had to call to get my exact number).
    I have heard some people are put on the Rx vit D for longer periods than 6 weeks–I know someone who was told to take it once a week forever! It seems like there’s not a standard protocol.

  8. Peppy

    This is fascinating as a migraine sufferer since my son’s birth. My seemed to be hormonal but have surfaced even more as I aged. I would love to see any other study references if available on this topic.
    How much D3 do you take? I guess it depends on your blood test results for D3?

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