How Omega-3 Fats Prevent Migraines with Endocannabinoids
The first thing that comes to mind when you hear “cannabinoids” probably isn’t omega-3 fats. I say cannabinoids and you think cannabis, right? Cannabinoids like CBD or THC are from cannabis, after all. However, cannabinoid receptors are located all over the body.
Sure, cannabinoid receptors may activate from the cannabis-derived cannabinoids that you get from outside of the body, such as CBD or THC. But cannabinoid receptors also—and more importantly—activate from the cannabinoids that your body naturally makes. These cannabinoids are called endocannabinoids.
These endocannabinoids compose the endocannabinoid system and control the immune system, inflammation, energy, memory, stress, temperature, sleep, and much, much more. 
Endocannabinoids control your health and migraine sufferers can’t do without this system. A severe endocannabinoid deficiency is linked to migraines and endocannabinoid dysfunction may be the origin of all migraines.  Migraine sufferers need more endocannabinoids and this is where omega-3 fats come into play.
8 Things You Should Know About Omega-3 Fats, Endocannabinoids, and Migraines
8. Omega-3 Fats Form Endocannabinoids
The year 2017 was a breakthrough for endocannabinoid research. Researchers from the University of Illinois discovered that omega-3 fats convert into endocannabinoids. This breakthrough may partially explain why omega-3 fats have had success in treating migraines.
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How CBD and Endocannabinoids Prevent MigrainesLook inside
Migraine sufferers need endocannabinoids and these healthy fats are hooking them up with some endocannabinoids. CBD is not the only player in the game or, as grandma used to say, there’s more than one way to knit a cannabis sweater.
7. Healthy Fats Triple Cannabinoid Absorption
Researchers from the University of Nottingham, UK, discovered that healthy fats may triple the absorption rate of cannabinoids such as CBD. Yes, that’s correct, you get more bang for your buck—triple the bang for your buck—if you consume healthy fats with your CBD.
We know that CBD increases endocannabinoids. We know that omega-3 fats convert into endocannabinoids. And now we know that healthy fats may increase CBD absorption as well as create their very own endocannabinoids.
The research suggests that we use hemp extracts that contain healthy fats from foods like MCT oil, olive oil, or hemp seed oil. And our pursuit of healthy fats shouldn’t stop there.
6. Omega-3 Fats Fight Migraines
Several studies have found that increased consumption of omega-3 fats results in fewer migraines.   One study by the National Institute of Health (NIH) found that increased omega-3 intake and decreased omega-6 intake dropped the average headache hours per day from 10 hours to less than 4 hours in chronic headache sufferers—93 percent of whom had a migraine diagnosis.  Omega-3 provided better results than our top migraine medications.
Omega-3 fats might not provide the fast results of migraine medications. In fact, the NIH study was conducted over a three-month period. It took time and progress was slow. However, the results of something as healthy as omega-3 fats in regard to migraine treatment are stunning.
I’ve got a few more examples of omega-3 fats and migraine success in this article.
5. Healthy Fats Fuel Brain Function
“The human brain is nearly 60 percent fat. We’ve learned in recent years that fatty acids are among the most crucial molecules that determine your brain’s integrity and ability to perform.” This is according to a study that sums up the shared consensus by researchers today. It is amazing to think that in the 80s and 90s we thought that low-fat diets were a good thing.
Here’s a basic example of what healthy fats do for the migraine brain. Fat is required to absorb fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin D. Vitamin D is required to produce serotonin, the happy brain chemical. Without serotonin, you and your brain will not be happy. Migraine protection requires serotonin and raised serotonin levels are how many migraine treatments work.   Antidepressants fight migraines with increased serotonin, and both CBD and THC may also fight migraines through their ability to raise serotonin levels.
Serotonin is just one reason why healthy fats protect against migraines. Healthy fats are the building blocks to make any migraine treatment work for you. Here’s my full article on healthy fats and migraines, if you want to dig into the research.
4. Cannabinoids, Omega-3, Oxidative Stress, and Migraine
I’m going to break this complex subject down into a couple of simple sentences. This is what my entire book is about, and I feel that I only scratched the surface of this amazing research. But here goes nothing.
Oxidative stress is associated with nearly all migraine triggers and high levels of oxidative stress are found in migraine sufferers. There is a headache threshold and when migraine sufferers get too much oxidative stress, it breaks that threshold and triggers a migraine.
Endocannabinoids and the endocannabinoid system control oxidative stress.  CBD also increases endocannabinoids and controls oxidative stress, which I believe is the reasons why so many migraine sufferers love CBD products. Omega-3 fats also stimulate endocannabinoids and reduce oxidative stress.
There’s a lot of exciting research that describes this process, but I’m going to end it here.
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Oxidative stress triggers migraines while cannabinoids (CBD, THC, CBC, etc.), endocannabinoids, and omega-3 fats promote the endocannabinoid system and reduce oxidative stress.
3. Omega-3 vs Omega-6
Omega-3 and Omega-6 fats are essential fats that are healthy when found in natural foods. In fact, both fats help your endocannabinoid system fight off migraines. These are called “essential fats” for a reason, but you may notice that migraine researchers suggest consuming more omega-3 fats and less omega-6 fats. Health research in general suggests limiting omega-6 fats.
These migraine researchers are correct when it comes to processed foods. Americans consume far too much omega-6 fat, but the real problem is where we are getting the fat from. Omega-6 fats from highly-processed foods are oxidized and not healthy. Corn oil, vegetable oil, and most packaged foods contain outrageously high levels of processed omega-6 fat. Fried foods and highly-processed foods with omega-6 fats are unhealthy, and most of us can agree on that. But we can’t put greasy french fries that have high levels of oxidized omega-6 fats into the same group as walnuts, peanuts, or flaxseed.
Nuts, organic meats, and many vegetables contain high levels of omega-6 fats. But there is no need to avoid natural foods with omega-6 fats. While corn oil and vegetable oil consist of predominately oxidized omega-6 fats and almost no omega-3 fats, olive oil and hemp seed oil contain significantly lower levels of omega-6 fats that are not oxidized and higher levels of omega-3 fats. Hemp seed oil in particular has a healthy ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fats. 
Eat less processed foods with oxidized omega-6 fats and don’t worry about natural foods that contain omega-6 fats, which, in moderation, are essential to your health. If this subject is new to you, it’s probably confusing, and you’ll want to look more into the basic health factors of eating higher levels of omega-3 fats and lower levels of processed omega-6 fats, which are covered by hordes of research on the Mediterranean diet.
2. Omega-3 Foods to Fight Migraine
Research shows that organic foods tend to have higher concentrations of omega-3 fats. According to a California meta-study—a study of multiple studies—published in Nutrition Journal, grass-fed and organic meats contained two to five times more omega-3 fats than grain-fed meats.
Some of the foods rich in omega-3 fats are flaxseed, salmon, chia seeds, walnuts, mackerel, beef, spinach, sardines, cauliflower, basil, broccoli, and arugula.
Fish oil or krill oil are ultra-high in omega-3 fats, but make sure your supplement is a high-quality one.
If you eat natural foods, chances are you’re eating plenty of omega-3 fats.
1. Omega-3, Ketones, and Endocannabinoids
The ketogenic diet is one of the most powerful migraine treatments ever. I wrote an article a few years back that summarized the research behind why ketones kill migraines. It was shared thousands of times across the internet and many people have written to tell me that the ketogenic diet had worked for them when all migraine medications had failed. I used the research behind the ketogenic diet for The 3-Day Migraine Diet, which summarizes the best ways to reduce or eliminate migraines through diet.
Omega-3 fats activate ketones, which are powerful migraine fighters. One of the ways that ketones reduce oxidative stress is by reducing the buildup of glutamate, a migraine trigger. Here’s where the endocannabinoid system comes in. The receptors that make it possible for ketones to reduce glutamate and oxidative stress are the mitochondria cannabinoid receptors (mtCB1).
You see, both ketones and cannabinoids help reduce glutamate and oxidative stress. The ketogenic diet and CBD are two of the most powerful treatments for epilepsy. Epilepsy medications, which also work by reducing glutamate and oxidative stress, are popular medications for migraine. Ketones and the endocannabinoid system work together to fight migraines.
It all comes back to oxidative stress and the most powerful ways to reduce oxidative stress are also the most powerful migraine treatments in research.
Sum it Up
Omega-3 fats are the building blocks of endocannabinoids. Not only do omega-3 fats form endocannabinoids, but they also increase the absorption of the cannabinoids you get from outside of the body, such as from CBD or THC.
Diets rich in omega-3 fats, such as the ketogenic diet, are among the most powerful migraine treatments. These diets work with the endocannabinoid system to fight off migraines by reducing oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is a migraine trigger and things that reduce oxidative stress prevent migraines.
Omega-3 fats along with CBD will help promote your endocannabinoid system to prevent oxidative stress and migraines.