If you're like some women, you can tell when it's time for your period without even checking the calendar, simply because of the associated painful symptoms. You've probably heard the saying, “You are what you eat.” As you'll soon see by reading this article, there are certain foods that may not just benefit your overall health, but make period problems less severe.
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Keep reading to learn about several things that you should add to your diet as soon as possible, especially if you're fed up of the discomfort you experience just by going through a natural part of being female.
1. Dark Chocolate
If you had a preconceived notion that all the foods on this list would be fruits, vegetables, and otherwise solely healthy things, that's incorrect. Many women crave chocolate while they're on their periods, and as it turns out, dark chocolate in particular has several characteristics that can make it a practical addition to your diet in terms of managing period pain.
Firstly, researchers found that people who ate just one bar of dark chocolate every day for two weeks had lower levels of cortisol, a hormone that's produced as a response to stress.
That means that the simple act of eating chocolate could reduce the stress that comes with your period. If you have an option, try getting dark chocolate bars that are 70 percent cocoa or higher.
Furthermore, scientists found that chocolate is a natural mood booster because it encourages the production of endorphins in the body. The usual things about your period that bring you down might not seem as bothersome, because of the chocolate.
Endorphins alter the perception of pain, so instead of lying in bed all day with cramps, you could feel more able to face life. Also, chocolate has a high amount of magnesium, which is an essential mineral that acts as a muscle relaxant. It could relieve period cramps and lower back pain.
Celery contains mostly water, and it's well-known that by eating it, you're consuming more calories than it actually contains. However, celery is particularly good when you're on your period because it could reduce painful bloating. The high water content reduces dehydration and stimulates digestion.
If you're not crazy about eating celery by itself, try putting peanut butter on celery sticks or eating the celery with a ranch dip.
Spinach is another vegetable that's great for chowing down on during your period. It contains lots of vitamin B6 and vitamin E, both of which could ease cramps and cut down on bloating. Additionally, spinach leaves have a lot of calcium.
Perhaps one of the best things about this healthy veggie is that if you're not feeling up to preparing it at home, you can usually buy pre-bagged spinach salads that are ready to eat right away.
Simply store some in your fridge, and when you feel cramps starting to come on, just make yourself a spinach salad and feel like you're doing something proactive to ease the discomfort you're going through.
Often sold in bags near the part of your grocery store that sells trail mix and dried fruit, pumpkin seeds are great for taking on the go, and they could also stop your period from being so hard to handle. So, why are pumpkin seeds good for people who want relief from troublesome periods?
They contain zinc, which has been shown to make cramps less painful. If you can't find pumpkin seeds at your grocery store, look for sunflower or sesame seeds.
Those are also good for relieving symptoms associated with your period. No matter which kind of seeds you try, aim to get ones that don't contain salt.
Salt could make bloating worse, which could be counterproductive if you're already battling the bloat. If you're lucky enough that pumpkins are in season, try making your own pumpkin seeds by roasting them in the oven with a bit of butter. Some people also like to eat them with a dash of cinnamon.
Some people also like to eat them with a dash of cinnamon. If you're not up for eating the seeds by themselves, toss a handful onto salad, or use them to garnish vegetable casseroles.
People who exercise a lot often depend on bananas to reduce the likelihood of muscle cramps.
Although they work well for that purpose, these yellow tropical fruits are also good for minimizing cramps that aren't due to exercise, but your period. Like a lot of the other foods on this list, bananas help banish both cramps and bloating.
Also, they're very portable. You can throw one in your bag to eat during a busy day. They don't have to be refrigerated, and bananas are a fruit you can eat with just one hand after peeling it. In addition, they're sweet enough on their own so you don't have to add anything to them. However, if you want to, just chop up a banana and drizzle the pieces with a blend of honey and cinnamon.
In addition, they're sweet enough on their own so you don't have to add anything to them.
However, if you want to, just chop up a banana and drizzle the pieces with a blend of honey and cinnamon.
Hummus is a spread that is often used in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean dishes. It's made from mashed chickpeas, and you can often buy it with flavors mixed in, such as garlic, lemon and red pepper.
Like spinach, which was already discussed above, hummus is great for eating while on your period because it contains vitamin B6, along with many other nutrients.
There is also evidence to suggest that hummus promotes overall health by being good for the heart. If you have trouble sleeping during your period, eating more hummus during that time could help you sleep more soundly and wake up with a better mood.
That's because hummus contains several amino acids, including some that specifically work to regulate your sleep patterns and make you feel happier.
This fish is packed with omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D. Both of those can help with PMS symptoms, so it's a good idea to start adding salmon to your diet before your period even starts.
Salmon is an anti-inflammatory food, which means it will help you tackle both cramps and bloating. You can easily liven up salmon by eating it with sauces or spices.
Techniques To Accompany Your Food Consumption
You've just learned about seven foods that could make your period more bearable. If you want more strategies to try, keep in mind that there are other remedies that you may want to attempt in conjunction with eating certain things.
For example, a hot water bottle or heat pack could ease pain, and forcing yourself to regularly drink more water could cause you to urinate more and not feel as bloated.
Also, keep in mind that over-the-counter medications can temporarily make discomfort manageable so it doesn't ruin your day. As you can see, although periods will probably never coincide with your favorite time of the month, they don't have to throw your life off track.