Fox on the run, 9/12/14

Yesterday evening I was returning from my Pilates class and saw a fox dash across the main road near where I live.  It somehow arrived at the other side of the road unscathed, despite the almost constant flow of traffic. On the way to Pilates I had brought some left over food for the animals who must be finding it tough now that the weather is hitting -1 at night. I brought a piece of cake with me that was past its ‘eat by’ date and two overripe bananas.  I bunged them onto a piece of grass where I’d quite often seen a pair of crows. When I returned from Pilates it looked as if the cake had gone, but the bananas were still there.

The reason why I had donated the bananas was because overripe bananas are high in tyramine. From last Sunday I have embarked on a low tyramine diet to see if it might help help me with anxiety, given that I know from personal experience that avoiding some low tyramine foods helps reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. It’s a bit of a long shot because I haven’t read anywhere that reducing tyramine can help with anxiety, but my reasoning is that because migraine and anxiety are closely connected, and because reducing tyramine and other vasoconstrictive compounds definitely reduces my migraines and headaches, maybe if I exclude the high tyramine foods that so far I haven’t excluded from my diet, this might help me to relax more. In particular I am aiming my sights at nuts, bananas and avocados, foods that I normally eat a lot of and which are high tyramine foods. I am worried though that there will be some unforeseen consequence with my latest self-help health measure, because this is often what has happened in the past.  At various points in the past, I’ve had an idea to try something that I thought was harmless and then experienced an unexpected consequence.  Like when I was told that I had one leg shorter than the other and I tried a shoe raise which created a cascade of health issues. Bananas, nuts and avocados are quite filling so I need to find some filling replacement.  Yeast extract is also on the list of high tyramine foods and I have been eating yeast extract to make up for not eating much red meat. Maybe I’ll buy some lambs liver from our local butcher because I like lambs liver and it’s quite cheap. It’s nice if you cook it with onions and serve it up with boiled potatoes and peas.

On Saturday evening I went to a folk open mic acoustic session.  To start with I was quite apprehensive because the room only had hard seats.  So rather sheepishly I asked if there were any cushions I could use. I was directed to a room upstairs where there was an assortment of yoga blocks and cushions and so I collected a pile of these and had to walk through the room of musicians towards my chair carrying a strange assortment of soft seating.  The yoga blocks were not practical so I settled on quite a flat cushion which ,as it turned out, served me well for the evening and reduced the pain to a minor level of discomfort.


I suffered with chronic daily headache for many years.  I was told that it was psychological, and I guess that there is some truth in this because any pain is made worse by stress.   There is a link between concussion and headache – and in my case every time I have had a concussion I have experienced headache, so I don’t know how much concussion has made me vulnerable to headache. However, what really helped me was following the Low Tyramine Diet and avoiding working directly under fluorescent lighting. I still get headaches but much, much less frequently. When I first suffered with headaches they were more like tension headaches, but now they have evolved more into classic migraines, however if I avoid too much tyramine, looking at fluorescent lighting and disrupted sleep, I can be pretty much free of them.