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Migraine Headache Cure: Natural Tried-and-True Herbal Remedies for Severe Headache Pain

Posted by Jennifer Shipp | Feb 28, 2023


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Migraine headaches tend to take shape on the left side of the forehead along the gallbladder meridian. Finding an herbal remedy for migraine proved quite difficult, but licorice root and red clover finally released John and me from our migraine agony.

Our Herbal Remedy for Migraine

My husband John and I had never had migraines before in our lives and then suddenly, we were having them on a regular basis. We had been living in a city in Mexico that went from being quite safe to relatively dangerous during the COVID pandemic and recently, we’d purchased land elsewhere and had begun planning to relocate. We would be homesteading on the new property, a large piece of land, so there were lots of details. And while our neighbors began selling drugs and working with cartel leaders next door in the old house, we worked out strategies to leave the house without being seen. It was in this context, that we began to experience horrible, incapacitating headaches that would often come on after our stress levels would go down. At first, this didn't make sense, but slowly, we've been working out different theories as to how the lack of stress could cause a migraine headache.

As someone who collects and works with rare and common medicinal agents to cure incurable diseases, I felt confident that I could cure migraine headaches and I set to work on it. My free time was somewhat limited though as we moved from our original home to an AirBnB and then to a small cabin and then onward into our house while working three days of the week to build a house for John and me and another, second house for Lydian and her husband, Naing Naing. Through all of these moves, John and I continued having migraine headaches at periodic intervals. They would come on slowly and progress despite any attempts to medicate them. It didn’t matter what we ate or what we didn’t eat. The headaches would still put us in bed for 1 or sometimes 2 days in a row several times a month. 

Time passed. Though I’d tried a number of medicinal agents, energy medicines, light therapy, electrical therapy, acupuncture, and herbs, nothing could touch these migraines. That is, until I found a small study that talked about Trifolium pratense / red clover as a “deobstruent” and Glycyrrhiza glabra / licorice root as an herb that inhibits prostaglandin E2. 

Headaches and Liver Function

After a year of studying my own headaches, their patterns, the type of pain involved with them, and a number of other factors in the middle of the night when there was no escape from the pain, I finally arrived at the hypothesis that the headaches were coming from the liver and gallbladder. I noted that invariably, these migraines were preceded by an extremely negative mood and a dark outlook on things. Often, the headaches would come on after we’d completed a “scary” and stressful construction project on our land. The odds that one or both of us would get a migraine would increase if one of us had to work alone on a project like plumbing. Any situation involving anger or fear was likely to end with a migraine within 48 hours after the project was completed. And this was consistent with the view in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that the liver processes anger and the kidneys process fear. The gallbladder deals with decision-making, a thing we were doing all the time as we were building on our land. 

Conventional medicine does not acknowledge the connection between migraines and liver function or migraines and gallbladder function. But in TCM and also in Ayurvedic medicine, there is something known as the gallbladder headache that travels along the gallbladder meridian. 

I needed to test my hypothesis. John and I had already done two Hulda Clark Gallbladder Cleanses in the past month to try to rid ourselves of gallstones in both the liver and the gallbladder but we weren’t due to do another cleanse for another week or so. What I was really looking for on this afternoon that was supposed to be filled with fun and relaxation, was an herb that would relax John's liver ducts. My theory was that the liver and gallbladder were congested and that they were contracting out of sync with other parts of the digestive system. In conventional medicine, a doctor might give me a “dual” diagnose of biliary dyskinesia and migraine headaches and if I didn’t know better, I might think that these two health problems weren’t actually related to each other. But in real life and in systems of medicine that have been around a lot longer than conventional medicine, the liver-gallbladder headache is a real problem and the only way to cure migraines is to treat the liver and the gallbladder so that they can sync back up with the rest of the body.

It was late in the afternoon and John had just told me that he felt like vomiting. In a burst of inspiration, I decided to look up Trifolium pratense / red clover, a cancer cure that I had in my medicine cabinet and that I’d studied years ago. As it turns out Trifolium pratense is a “deobstruent”, so it removes obstacles or obstructions in the ductwork of the body. This was perfect and just what I wanted to try on John.

Trifolium pratense / Red Clover

I brewed a tea of T. pratense and gave it to John explaining that it has “deobstruent” properties. At this point, his faith in my ability to find an herbal remedy for migraines had been seriously challenged, but he drank the tea anyway as I kept reading about other herbs to combine with the T. pratense. I told him that we’d wait an hour before moving on to anything new, so he sipped dutifully at the tea, cringing from the pain of every movement. 

An hour passed and nothing noteworthy happened.

Inhibiting Prostaglandin E2 to Cure Migraines

John was sitting beside me with his eyes glued to the wall. He had a moderate headache now. It was approaching the point where he would call it “excruciating” and he was staring at the wall fixedly, trying to concentrate and get the headache to somehow go away magically before bedtime. Meanwhile I was doing yet more research and brainstorming to try to find something that would work to get rid of the pain of migraines naturally. 

I found that Glycyrrhiza glabra / licorice root inhibits prostaglandin E2, one of the substances in the body that has the greatest impact on processing pain signals and I confirmed that indeed, it is prostaglandin E2 that causes migraines. I already knew that licorice root can enhance the effects of other herbs that it combines with so I decided to make a T. pratense and G. glabra combination tea as the next experimental migraine treatment for John. My hope was that the deobstruent activity of the T. pratense would empty the liver and gallbladder ducts that might have gallstones or sludge irritating them. At the same time, the anti-prostaglandin E2 activity would naturally get rid of migraines or at least the pain from the migraine. The goal was not just to cover the pain though, but hopefully move John and me closer to a place where we can cure migraine at home and no longer have to deal with these awful headaches at all.

Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen and other analgesics target prostaglandin E2, but they can also cause adverse effects like kidney toxicity, and gastrointestinal bleeding and ulceration. We generally avoid NSAIDs for this reason and anyway, they don’t ever work to treat our migraines anyway. I had already administered acupuncture to the Gallbladder 21 point, I’d done neural therapy on John, and he’d had a cup of Lobelia inflata tea as well as Trifolium pratense tea with no relief. I handed John the cup of T. pratense plus G. glabra tea and again, he started sipping.

Red Clover and Licorice Root Herbal Cure for Migraine Headaches

Within minutes, John started feeling better. He said his migraine was starting to go away. We were both skeptical. Maybe the migraine pain went away for some other reason. Perhaps the tea had nothing to do with it. John got up and made dinner and checked his email. He said he was feeling pretty good. After a few hours, when he started feeling a twinge of pain on the left side of his forehead again, I told him to take another dose of our migraine herbal remedy and again, the headache pain disappeared within minutes after the initial few gulps of the red clover and licorice tea. 

By this time, I was was starting to feel the aura of a migraine coming on myself, so I drank a bit of tea and the pain went away. I assumed that perhaps I’d imagined the headache coming on. John and I watched a movie together and then we went to bed. 

I was a little wired by this time and I stayed up after John to read for a bit. I fell asleep briefly in the middle of a paragraph and then woke up with that same headache from before coming on again. When I get these migraine headaches, I become useless and even at that stage of things, I didn’t even want to get out of bed to get myself the tea that seemed to work so well to get rid of migraine pain for John and me earlier. I pulled myself out of bed, still incredulous about the idea that finally, perhaps we’d found an herbal cure for migraine. I brewed my tea and drank half the cup immediately and within less than 30 minutes, the headache was gone. 

Now, I became a believer. I could feel that there was something going on in my liver and gallbladder as I lay there in the dark of night. It felt similar to the Hulda Clark Gallbladder / Liver Cleanse where gallstones were leaving the gallbladder and liver. I still felt wide awake and I found myself focusing on the feeling of stones or air moving through the area just below my diaphragm. In Ayurveda, this inner focus amounts to a focus on old, stagnant anger that needs to be released and the focus is required in order for the anger to find its way out of the body. Some weird imagery accompanied these sensations. But I didn’t feel pain. And I thanked the licorice root and the red clover for their work on my migraine. It would be a life-changer to not have to have fear of getting a migraine every time I do work that conjures up a little fear or anger in my life. 

Herbs for Migraine Prevention

Though I’ve worked with Lobelia inflata as an herb that can relax the sphincters in the body, this herb has not been as miraculous as I’d hoped in terms of a natural treatment for migraines at home. And we’ve also worked with Viburnum opulus / Cramp Bark, but to no avail. For us, the magic formula was definitely Trifolium pratense and Glycyrrhiza glabra brewed as a tea in the following way:

In a regular-sized mug, put ½ teaspoon of Glycyrrhiza glabra powder with 2 teaspoons of Trifolium pratense dried herb. Put the dried herb in a colander or infuser of some kind. Boil water and pour it through the colander, making sure that all of the herb materials are covered with water. Allow it to steep for 10-15 minutes. Drink the first half of the mug right away. Then, sip slowly at the remaining liquid in the mug for the next hour or so. Administer this tea 3-4 times per day as needed. 

NOTE: It may be possible to administer half of this dose and take more doses throughout the day as a cure for migraines. For example, if you wanted to drink the tea over the course of 24 hours, try halving the dose and drinking the tea 6 times per day/night, every 4 hours.

Licorice Root should not be taken long-term without breaks. If you wish to use herbs for migraine prevention, drink this tea for 2 weeks and then take 1 week off before using this treatment again.

Azadirachta indica: Neem for Migraines

Some people might benefit from using the migraine herbal remedy Azadirachta indica or “neem”, an herb that reduces blood pressure while increasing blood flow that’s been constricted in certain areas of the body. 

Butterbur for Migraines

Yet another herbal remedy for migraines is the plant known as “butterbur”. I have taken butterbur with feverfew, white willow, and cayenne people with decent results at least twice, but it isn’t a reliable natural migraine remedy for me. John has never gotten any relief from using butterbur, feverfew, cayenne, and white willow. But that’s not to say that other people with other types of headaches wouldn’t benefit from this herbal remedy for migraines. Follow the dosing instructions on the bottles if you wish to use these herbs to treat migraines. Take them all at the same time as a combo herbal treatment for migraines. Be sure to eat a tiny bit of food or else the cayenne pepper could cause a burning sensation in the stomach.

The Hulda Clark Liver Cleanse and Coffee Enemas as a Cure for Migraine Headaches

Our strategy, in terms of finding a permanent cure for migraines, is to clean out the liver and the gallbladder. Gallstones, in particular, cause back, shoulder, and neck pain that can turn into a migraine headache if it isn’t treated. The Hulda Clark Liver and Gallbladder Cleanse is a way to get rid of gallstones without surgery. And it’s true that as the gallstones are released, back pain, shoulder pain, and neck pain disappear too. It's pretty amazing and an awesome feeling to get rid of that chronic shoulder pain or neck pain that is ever-present even if you take over-the-counter painkillers.

I don’t know if the Hulda Clark Liver Cleanse will totally get rid of migraine headaches permanently if we do 5 rounds, as recommended. We are also doing regular coffee enemas to remove bile sludge from the liver. The combination of the Hulda Clark Liver Cleanse and coffee enemas has been amazing for us in terms of getting rid of the foggy thinking we had going on after building two houses (ourselves, by hand) and putting in all of our homesteading infrastructure. A lot of people might mistake the foggy thinking for adrenal fatigue, especially after doing the gargantuan projects we’ve been working on here in Mexico, but it made sense to me that liver congestion and especially gallbladder congestion could cause such a problem. And I was right. After the second cleanse, I felt like an entirely new woman in terms of my mind and my upper back pain (which was significantly diminished). My adrenal glands are fine. But if one's gallbladder is filled with stones or sludge, a person simply can't think clearly.

Combining the Hulda Clark Gallbladder / Liver Cleanse and coffee enemas with the use of licorice root and red clover tea is a powerful combination and I’m hopeful that it will permanently cure migraines over time. I’ll post updates here if I find additional herbal remedies for migraine headaches, but in the meantime, I wanted to share this awesome herbal tea with everyone. A lot of people have a fear of getting migraines and rightly so. To have some level of control over headaches can change your entire life.

I know how it feels to be scared of a migraine. It sucks to live in fear of getting a migraine, so I’m hopeful that this herbal remedy will help others too. There are likely other types of migraine headaches besides those that are caused by the liver / gallbladder and “biliary dyskinesia” or whatnot. Any organ that’s attached to the vagus nerve could theoretically provoke a migraine headache. But licorice root, through its action on prostaglandin E2 should be able to get rid of migraine pain even if it comes from a different source other than the liver or gallbladder. 

Finally…why do I get migraines when I go outside?

For us, outdoor construction work has definitely been a trigger for migraines, but I’ve never felt confused about why this is the case because sunlight exposure tends to cause the liver and gallbladder to heal. The melanin in human skin captures sunlight like tiny solar panels and it sends this energy sources to the liver along with unactivated, naturally produced vitamin D and fumaric acid. In the liver, fumaric acid is fully activated to produce more energy for our bodies and vitamin D is partially activated. Vitamin D moves on to the kidney to become fully activated. The skin, liver, and the kidneys are our most important organs of detoxification and these organs are all hardwired into the skin to absorb sunlight. While some people get psoriasis or a severe rash in response to  liver toxicity, other people get migraines. Psoriasis sufferers use sunlight to cure their disease and migraine sufferers can do the same thing, in theory. 

Sunlight acts to heal the liver and the kidneys, so it’s best not to avoid it by wearing toxic sunscreens. The sunscreen is part of what clogs up the liver ducts in the first place. If you get headaches after spending time in the sun, it’s likely that your problem is due to liver congestion, gallstones in the gallbladder, and biliary dyskinesia. Over time, if you don’t start taking prescription drugs that worsen the core issue, the migraines should resolve. Migraines due to stress must be treated using strategies to release the stress. Migraines linked to trauma should be treated by releasing the trauma. Though doctors will readily prescribe something to cover up migraine pain, an herbal migraine remedy like licorice root and red clover will cover pain and treat the root cause of migraines which is much more desirable. Both TCM and Ayurvedic medicine assert that migraine headaches come from emotional wear-and-tear, especially trauma or at least experiences involving high stress. For us, this makes sense, and John and I have been lucky in that we both developed this migraine-issue around the same time. This clued us into the fact that the headaches were circumstantial and not a permanent fixture in our lives. But for those of our readers who are wondering, can you grow out of a migraine? Or can migraines go away? …the answer is yes, as long as you work toward finding a cure for the core issue, including for unresolved stressors or trauma rather than taking synthetic medications that can worsen migraine headaches through their negative effects on liver health.


Kawabata, A. (2011). Prostaglandin E2 and Pain–An Update. Retrieved February 27, 2023 from

The Sacred Willow (2023). Trifolium pratense. Retrieved February 27, 2023 from

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