Foods You Should Avoid While On Your Period
Dont we already suffer enough every month? Do we really need to start limiting our food choices, too?
Well, theres the contradiction. Certain foods can make us feel much, much worse when we are blessed with our monthly bleed, so taking the right precautions before and during can mitigate and even prevent some of that pain.
Weve reported on comfort foods to eat during your period but which ones should you avoid? Eating the wrong foods during your period can make your symptoms worse: bloating, mood swings and decreased energy levels are all influenced by what you eat and drink. No one needs that, so at the very least, try to detach yourself from the following foods when that time of the month comes up.
Health experts reveal that dairy foods are responsible for everything: bloating, cramping and pain. They reveal that foods like milk, cheese and ice cream contain arachidonic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid that can increase inflammation and can cause cramping.
Its not news that the consumption of alcohol can cause dehydration in the body. Those who consume alcohol will know. Alcohol can also cause diarrhoea and digestive problems and also hangover symptoms like headache, nausea, fatigue and vomiting which can all intensify period discomfort.
Foods To Eat During Periods
Lets be honest- even without symptoms, periods arent easy on anyone. Sudden cravings are also often accompanied by an increase in hunger, and that should not be ignored. However, eating right can not only help you satiate your hunger and curb cravings but can also make you feel much better! Below is a list of foods to eat during your period.
Whats Best To Eat During Your Period
Especially during the first couple of days of your period youll feel withdrawn, your energy levels will be low and youll be tired. Thats why its important to focus on a diet that keeps your energy levels up.
- To beat tiredness replenish your iron and vitamin B12 intake by eating organic red meat, salmon, legumes, liver, beans, chickpeas, raisins, cheese, milk, almonds or fish.
- Even though cravings will still be strong, try to avoid eating junk and processed foods as they contain a lot of sodium and refined carbohydrates which increase bloating.
- You can replace unhealthy food cravings with healthier options like pieces of fruits, nibblling on nuts or almonds which are rich in omega-3. Try switching a candy bar for a piece of dark chocolate.
- Soft drinks are a hidden source of great amounts of refined sugar, which can increase your cramping. Try to replace the soda with lemon-water, a glass of freshly pressed juice, fruit or herbal tea or a smoothie.
- Try not to consume anything that is very cold. Drinks should at least be at room temperature.
- Have a cup of herbal tea instead of coffee to avoid increasing cramps due to the high levels of caffeine.
- Spice up your veggies or soup with some turmeric, cardamom, ginger, cilantro or cumin these are all spices that will support anti-inflammation
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What Not To Eat During Periods
Much like how we have mentioned a wide range of foods to eat during periods, there is actually a list of foods not to eat during periods.
It is important that you keep a close eye concerning this part of the list. It is because of the fact that the diet plan during periods plays a very crucial role in maintaining the overall well being of an individual.
The list for the foods to avoid during periods includes:
Follow A Healthy Lifestyle To Feel Your Best
The key recommendation for foods to eat during your period is that you should choose plenty of fruit and veg, whole grains and high-quality protein. Stay away from highly processed foods, including cakes, sweets, fried or fatty foods.
Choosing foods that are rich in nutrients and have a high fibre content will help you to feel your best at this time, soothing your digestive system and replacing any nutrients lost from menstrual bleeding.
While you may not feel like it, try to eat regularly to keep your energy levels up. Skipping a meal can leave you feeling nauseous or tired.
My final tip is to make sure you drink enough water! Replacing fluids and staying hydrated can help to minimise some of the uncomfortable symptoms you may experience.
Choosing whole foods at any time of the month will help you feel better
Your body is amazing, and as you learn more about how your body responds to different foods you will learn how to make healthy food choices that help you to feel better at any time of the month.
* Results may vary. Strict adherence to the nutrition and exercise guide are required for best results.
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Say Goodbye To Stress
A stressful life can delay your periods. If you are leading a life full of tension, anxiety and worries, then be sure to expect irregularities in your menstrual pattern.
So, if you want to have a proper period schedule and even get them earlier, then relaxation is a must. You might resort to various activities that you think have the potential to soothe and calm you.
Most importantly, reduce your workload. You can choose to spend time with your friends or family. Pursue your favorite hobbies, get to watch some movies. With excruciating pain or burden of work, you can never enjoy a happy period.
Final Thoughts Regarding The Foods To Eat During The Period Days
Women are the bringers of new life into the world, and the menstrual period are a part of that process. If you have a daughter, whos of an age where shes menstruating or about to start and struggling for Dysmenorrhea, share this information with her or with your niece and girlfriends.
P.S. Like and share this post with your peers to spread the love.
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What To Eat After Your Period
Starting already towards the end of your period, when your flow is lighter, you will want to focus on food that supports estrogen production. Its the hormone responsible for boosting your mood and energy levels.
Youll feel your absolute best during this phase, which leads up to ovulation, so this is a great time to start a new habit, focus on new workout routines and schedule social appointments.
- Adding a tablespoon of flaxseeds and pumpkin seeds to your salad, porridge or energy balls can naturally increase your estrogen levels.
- Make the most of the rise in energy levels, and get active. Support your muscles growth and body by making sure that your body gets enough proteins.
- Youre appetite will decrease during this phase, so focus on eating your meals regularly. It will be a lot easier to focus on healthy foods in smaller portions, so if theres a new healthy recipe you want to try, this is the menstrual phase to do it.>
- Its a great week to consume calcium-rich foods such as kale, spinach, collard greens or turnips.
- But theres also a downside to all of the energy coming from the estrogen-peak: some might feel anxiety or stress. If thats the case for you and you feel restless, try to meditate a little and add a ritual that includes drinking chamomile tea, taking a few moments for yourself and relaxing.
You can find a variety of creative, delicious recepies for this menstrual phase here.
Hormonal Changes During Your Menstrual Phase
Before we focus on different nutrients that are essential during your menstrual phase, one must understand the bodys requirements. Heres a brief description of all the hormonal changes prevailing in your body during the entire menstrual cycle.
- Hormone levels in menstrual phase/bleeding phase: The secretion levels of hormones estradiol, progesterone, follicular stimulating hormone , and luteinising hormone are minimal.
- Hormone levels in follicular phase: The levels of secretion of hormones take a surge during the follicular phase. For example, estradiol is at its peak, and FSH, LH, and progesterone secretions increase gradually.
- Hormone levels on ovulation day: The LH and FSH levels are at their peak on the 14th day of the menstrual cycle. That marks the maturation and release of the ovum. Furthermore, oestrogen levels drop, and progesterone levels are moderate.
- Hormone levels in the luteal phase: FSH and LH levels are significantly low. On the other hand, progesterone surges up, and estrogen is also high.
During the bleeding phase, the energy levels of the body are low. Therefore, you must focus on eating the right food items that raise your energy levels. Heres a list of nutrients you must focus on during your periods.
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Chocolate And Ice Cream
Sometimes all you want to do is curl up on the sofa with a tub of Ben and Jerrys. Yet this comfort food could actually be doing more harm than good, as Mina explains:
Foods such as these are really high in both saturated fat and sugar. When we eat excessive amounts of foods such as these, were putting ourselves at risk of weight gain, skin problems, diabetes and heart disease not to mention mood swings!
Wed recommend swapping milk and white chocolate for dark when the cravings kick in thanks to its high iron content. And any other sugary treats can be enjoyed though moderation is key.
Why Am I Craving Chocolate
Eating chocolate releases endorphins and serotonin, which regulate your mood and balance neuromediators, encouraging relaxation. After getting used to this positive reaction to chocolate, your body starts to crave it. It intensifies during your period because of hormonal shifts and the loss of blood and nutrients.
Consider swapping that chocolate bar with a serving of sliced fruit. If that doesnt seem realistic, then opt for dark chocolate with less sugar when you really want to indulge.
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How To Reprogram Those Cravings
Youre not going to go from loving brownies and chips to appreciating salads overnight, but its possible to make better choices gradually. Dr. McClure recommends not just making healthy swaps around period time but changing the way you eat overall, so its easier to stay on track when your cycle starts. For example, instead of finding comfort in your favorite chocolate dessert, she suggests going for a small piece of dark chocolate.
Its really about reprogramming and changing the foods that youre going for. In the beginning, it might be tough to make a complete switch from hot fudge sundaes to healthier foods, but its possible. For instance, if you want dessert, switch to something like a small piece of dark chocolate. Youll still get the antioxidants from the chocolate that youre craving only not in a large amount and with less sugar. Eventually, you can make a goal to try to avoid sweets altogether.
Dr. McClure also recommends cutting back on caffeine and alcohol as well because these beverages can dehydrate you. If you simply cant live without coffee, she suggests that you have a cup in the morning, then switch to drinking water the rest of the day. She adds that sipping water throughout the day can actually help keep you awake. But if you find water is boring, just add some of your favorite fresh flavors to it like lemon slices, berries, herbs or cucumbers.
Energy Rich Foods To Eat During Your Periods
The menstrual cycle is a well-regulated process occurring in females after puberty. Studies reveal subsequent hormonal changes in the female body during the menstrual cycle. These hormonal shifts during the menstrual cycle lead to varied energy demands and nutritional demands, making it crucial to have a balanced diet to aid a healthy menstrual cycle.
A menstrual cycle consists of four phases. The brain and the uterine system precisely monitor all the phases: the menstrual phase, follicular phase, ovulatory phase, and luteal phase. Each phase plays a significant role in maintaining the overall reproductive health of a female. The female menstrual cycle starts with the menstrual phase , followed by the follicular phase , the ovulation occurs on the 14th day, and finally, the luteal phase lasts for the next 15 days.
Amid the menstrual phase, the female body sheds the blood vessel lining of the endometrium. During this time, girls experience abdominal cramps as the uterus tries to get rid of the inner blood lining. As a result, menstrual bleeding may vary from 30- 80 ml in females.
The second phase is the follicular phase, during which the development of the female zygote or ovum occurs. The phase ends on day 13, and people mark it by the development and maturation of the ovum.
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Stay Away From Caffeinated Drinks
Coffee, tea and fizzy drinks all contain caffeine. Caffeine restricts blood flow to those cramping areas which causes your body to produce more prostaglandins the hormone which induces cramps. The artificial sugars in fizzy drinks also make your body retain water, leaving you feeling even more bloated and yucky.
Stop Taking Medications Early
A hormonal pill is probably the best assured way to get your periods come faster. It is used by most women as a birth control pill. The course of the pill is of 21 days.
You continue the pills for 21 days and then there is pill free span 7 days. In these 7 days, the menstrual bleeding occurs.
So, you can stop taking the pills before 21 days to have the periods arrive earlier. The pills are basically combination of estrogen and progestin. The doctors prescribe these pills for those who are into active contraception.
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Drink Parsley Tea Twice Daily
What does it do:
Parsley is one of the oldest known remedies to have the periods back on track. Several such similar herbs are known for contraction of uterus to get the periods early.
How to use:
Boil a cup of water with handful of parsley leaves. Strain the tea and consume twice a day to make your period come early.
How Does Eating Citrus Affect Your Period
As mentioned, water with a twist of lemon increases your vitamin C intake and helps you stay hydrated. Fresh-squeezed juices and blended smoothies are awesome foods to eat on your period as long as you minimize the sugar content. Fruit contains plenty of natural sugars, so theres no need to add more.
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Phases Of Your Menstrual Cycle
Most basic info about menstruation says that your cycle consists of two phases, the follicular phase and the luteal phase . But its a bit more nuanced than that.
If youre unsure how your cycles work, this post is for you. Speaking about menstruation is taboo in our culture, and that doesnt help anyone. Women need to understand how their bodies and their cycles work. The menstrual cycle is a delicate ebb of hormones, the chemical messengers that influence fertility and menstruation. Theres a reason you have a lot of energy and feel more outgoing at certain times of the month and more tired and introverted at other times during the phases of your cycle. Thats totally normal, and its OK.
The average menstrual cycle lasts from between 21 35 days. The gold standard is 28 days. More on cycle length and how to regulate your period in this post. I also recommend tracking your cycle using the Fertility Awareness Method, an app, or a tracker like Daysy .
Phase One is menstruation. The first day of your cycle is the day you start bleeding. Your main female hormones, estrogen and especially progesterone, are at their lowest levels, which triggers the uterine lining to shed. And thats when you get your period. A typical period lasts 3- 7 days on average.
During period week, take detoxifying epsom salt baths with essential oils avoid overly strenuous exercise get plenty of sleep , Do some gentle yoga. Set your intention for the month.