World Bulletin / News Desk
Women who have migraines may have no greater risk of becoming overweight than other women, despite what some research has suggested, according to an international study.
Some studies have found a connection between excess weight and a higher rate of migraines, but they have mainly studied people at one point in time, leaving unclear whether the weight or the migraines came first.
The current study, which appeared in the journal Cephalalgia, looked at data from the Women's Health Study, a long-term clinical trial that began following thousands of U.S. women in the mid-1990s.
"Our study should be reassuring that having migraine is not associated with future increase in relative body weight or obesity," researcher Tobias Kurth, of the French national research institute INSERM and the University of Bordeaux, said by email.
Overall, women who had migraines at the outset were no more likely than other women to become overweight or obese over the next 13 years. The average weight gain in both groups was almost identical, at around 4.5 kg (10 lb).
In theory, migraines could contribute to weight gain indirectly, such as frequent or severe headaches keeping a person from regular exercise.
The new findings are based on 19,162 female health professionals who were aged 45 or older, and of normal weight, when they entered the study. Almost 3,500 reported a history of migraines.
Over the next 13 years, 41 percent of those women became overweight, while about 4 percent became obese. But the odds of becoming obese were no greater among women with a history of migraine, and the risk of becoming overweight was only slightly higher -- 11 percent.
Severe migraines did not appear to carry a risk of extra weight either, Kurth's team found. Women who had migraines weekly to daily were at no greater risk of becoming overweight or obese than those whose migraines came a few times a year.
The study did not look at whether overweight or obese women are at increased risk of migraines or more severe ones.
"That is still possible. In fact, several studies have now shown that obesity is associated with increased migraine frequency," Kurth said.
There is also some evidence tying obesity to an elevated risk of developing migraines in the first place, but the prevalence of migraine has remained stable in recent decades, while obesity rates have soared, he added.
H5N1 bird flu spreads to totally 11 states in Nigeria.
Since BSE was first identified in Britain in 1986, strict controls have tempered the spread of the disease.
The fatality brings the total death count to 84 in Egypt since the virus first appeared in 2006.
Precision medicine has been propelled by advances in two areas in particular: cancer and pharmacogenomics, the study of how DNA interacts with drug
The bacterial disease is mainly spread from one rodent to another by fleas.
Ebola has been "a mega crisis and it overwhelmed the capacity of WHO".
Pauline Cafferkey was admitted to the Royal Free Hospital after falling ill on her return from Sierra Leone, where she had been working for the charity Save the Children
"Both for malaria and AIDS we're seeing that the tools that will let us do 95 to 100 percent reduction, those tools will be invented during this 15-year period", said Gates.
A five-year-old boy died from the virus in the southern Assiut province
"The probability of global catastrophe is very high," says advocacy group
Nigeria H5N1 bird flu now in 7 states, suspected in 140,000 birds
Using video feedback-based therapy to help parents understand and respond to their baby's early communication style might help modify emerging autism symptoms
The unprecedented outbreak has so far killed more than 8,400 people, overwhelmingly in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.
Obama launched a new precision medicine initiative to bring closer to curing diseases like cancer and diabetes