Headaches often take brief and temporary roles in our life, but they can also become loathsome burdens. Whether it’s the sharpness of the pain or how long they last, a persistent or severe headache can turn a good day into an uphill battle.

Oftentimes we go right for the aspirin. It’s a quick fix and then it’s quite literally out of mind. But what you may not know is that oftentimes taking over-the-counter painkillers is a short term solution to a long term problem. It’s a case of treating the symptom, not the cause.

Natural Solutions to Headaches through Good Nutrition

Natural solutions like changes in diet, massage oils, and simple physical exercises offer lasting results, and without the negative side effects of popping painkillers. Just a few simple lifestyle changes can not only reduce the intensity and duration of your headaches, it can also lead to better health and overall wellbeing.

The first remedy to consider is drinking more water. Staying hydrated has been proven to calm and prevent headaches and migraines. Avoiding coffee, alcohol, and sugary drinks is also a good practice, as they all cause dehydration.

Next, take a look at almonds. For the everyday stress headache, almonds are a fast and easy solution because they contain salicin, an anti-inflammatory agent that pharmacists often put in the over-the-counter meds. See how your head feels after downing a couple dozen—salted or unsalted.

Finally, get the kettle out and boil yourself some tea. When it comes to more severe headaches or migraines, the Feverfew plant may your saving grace. Parthenolide, a substance found naturally within the flower, has been found to reduce pain by easing any blood vessels potentially putting pressure on nerve endings in your head. Simply add the plant to boiling water and let it steep.

The list goes on—there’s numerous ways to alleviate headaches that don’t require a visit to the pharmacy. Next time your head is throbbing, consider looking in your pantry instead of your medicine cabinet.