Best period comfort foods: Foods that help in Menstrual Cramps
A change in diet can prove to be a lot more beneficial in relieving menstrual cramp. Opt these foods during the period to relieve pain.
During or before menstrual periods, women experience throbbing or cramping pain in the lower abdomen. This is dysmenorrhea, commonly known as menstrual cramps, this lasts for 5-7 days. The pain varies from person to person and range from mild to extreme.
Now, except for crying all day and binge-watching Netflix, there are some home remedies and medications that might prove to be helpful in easing cramps. Below listed are few of those:
Having naproxen sodium or ibuprofen, which are Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs(NSAIDs) can relieve cramping and heavy menstrual bleeding. It is to be taken before or on the onset of periods.
Having a massage at certain points during menstruation helps a lot in easing the pain. The specific points around the back, abdomen and side. Also, aromatherapy can also prove to be a boon in calming the brain, and thus relaxing muscles.
Doing yoga and mild exercising can also help in relaxing muscles, thus easing pain.
Applying heat over the specific areas like lower back and abdomen helps in relieving pain. Use a hot pad for better results, if not, make one at home.
But apart from the above-mentioned solutions, a change in diet can prove to be a lot more beneficial. Here are some of my recommendations
1- Drink a lot of water. You can never have enough water during periods. It helps in reducing bloating, prevents water retention and also dehydration cramps. Otherwise, also, peppermint tea is said to soothe the symptoms of PMS and can reduce cramps.
2- Increase the intake of fibrous foods like fruits and vegetables, as it helps in regularizing bowel movements, thus reducing bloating. The important point to note here is that take fibre along with a good amount of water or it might lead to constipation.
3- Add leafy or green vegetables in your diet as it is a good source of iron. Losing blood signifies losing iron also, which can make you feel lethargic and fatigued. Also, increase the intake of calcium, as calcium is said to relieve pain to a great extent and also helps in water retention.
4- If you are lactose intolerant and cannot consume dairy, then go for other alternatives of calcium like leafy greens. You can never have too many greens also. Calcium supplements are a good alternative in this situation.
5- Having anti-inflammatory foods like ginger can help in soothing muscle pain and nausea. Just consume it in moderation, as it may give stomach burns.
6- Consumption of high protein food like chicken and fish will help in curbing cravings, as it keeps you full for longer and protein, anyway is essential for overall health. Also, fish is rich in iron and omega 3 fatty acids also. Now, for all the vegetarians out there, lentils and beans are always a substitute.
7- Having dark chocolate does not only satisfy your cravings, but it is also rich in iron and magnesium. So yes, a win-win situation.
Not to forget to mention the foods that might worsen your condition, and hence are advised to be avoided. Salt, sugar, caffeine and alcohol, these items should be avoided as they might cause bloating, digestive issues, fatigue and can cause dehydration.
Disclaimer: It is advised that you should not take these foods and medicines without consulting a health practitioner as might do harm to people who are allergic to certain food.