This article has been researched and written by Arelang Naturals® in-house writers.
Every month, women experience the unavoidable discomfort of menstruation. Along with mood swings and fatigue, one common issue that plagues many is menstrual cramps. While they are a natural part of a woman's life, there are ways to alleviate the discomfort and pain associated with periods. In this detailed blog, we'll explore the role of nutrition in managing period pain and introduce you to a wide range of menstrual pain relief foods, providing you with the comfort and relief you need.
Food for period pain
Nutrition plays a pivotal role in regulating hormones and managing menstrual pain. As we age, the focus on nutrition reduces, and estrogen levels dwindle. It makes it crucial for us to focus on the food that we eat, not just while on our period but throughout the month. To help you understand the significance of what you eat during your period, let's delve into the specific nutrients that can make a significant difference in your comfort level.
Foods that Relieve Cramps
1. Magnesium: This essential mineral is known for its muscle-relaxing properties, which can help ease cramps. Foods like nuts (especially almonds and cashews), seeds (such as pumpkin and sunflower seeds), and leafy greens (like spinach and kale) are excellent sources of magnesium. Incorporating these into your diet can contribute to overall period pain relief.
2. Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fatty fish like salmon, walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds, have potent anti-inflammatory properties. They can reduce the severity of cramps and help ease the associated discomfort. Those smoothie bowls with chia seeds you always wanted to have? You can devour them for some much-needed instant period pain relief!
3. Iron: Menstruation often leads to blood loss, which can result in iron deficiency and the associated fatigue and weakness. Iron-rich foods like red meat, beans, lentils, and dark leafy greens (such as spinach) are foods that relieve period cramps and can help replenish your iron levels, keeping you energized during your period.
4. Vitamin D: Adequate vitamin D levels reduce menstrual pain. While sunlight is a natural source of vitamin D, you can also find it in fortified dairy products like yogurt and milk. Stock up on your favourite Greek yogurt, add in some nuts and that's a healthy period pain-relieving snack right there.
5. Calcium: Calcium is essential for muscle function and can help ease muscle tension and discomfort. Dairy products, tofu, and more leafy greens (like broccoli) can provide the calcium your body needs.
6. B Vitamins: B vitamins are crucial for energy production. Including foods like whole grains, poultry, and green leafy vegetables in your diet can provide you with these essential nutrients.
Now that you understand the importance of these nutrients, let's delve into specific foods that can help relieve period cramps effectively.
6 Foods for Period Cramps:
1. Chocolate: Yes, you read that right – chocolate can be a saviour during your period! Dark chocolate, in particular, is packed with magnesium, which helps relax your muscles and alleviate cramps. But remember, moderation is key to avoid excessive sugar consumption. Opt for dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa content for maximum benefits. Dark chocolate supplements like Rekindle For Women are great additions to your month diets. Not only do they have chocolate, they also have essential plant-based nutrients from ingredients like Shatavari, Black Cohosh and Flax Seeds that help balance estrogen levels in the body and alleviate period and PMS related issues. They are delicious and sugar-free and cut those pesky dessert cravings that come with your period.
2. Walnuts: Walnuts offer significant relief during PMS due to their rich content of omega-3 fatty acids and anti-inflammatory properties. These healthy fats play a crucial role in reducing the severity of PMS symptoms, including menstrual cramps. Omega-3 fatty acids work to mitigate inflammation and muscle tension, thereby lessening the intensity of cramps and overall discomfort. Walnuts provide a healthy source of protein and essential nutrients, which can help stabilize energy levels, contributing to a sense of well-being during this challenging time of the month. Incorporating walnuts into your diet not only offers physical relief but also provides a tasty and convenient way to address the discomfort that often accompanies PMS.
3. Turmeric: Turmeric is a natural ally in alleviating period cramps due to its potent anti-inflammatory properties, primarily attributed to its active compound, curcumin. During menstruation, the uterus can become inflamed, leading to increased pain and discomfort. Turmeric works as a natural anti-inflammatory agent, helping to reduce this inflammation and ease the associated pain. Furthermore, curcumin has muscle-relaxing properties, which can help ease the contractions and spasms in the uterine muscles that often lead to cramping. Incorporating turmeric into your diet, such as turmeric tea or adding it to your meals, can offer a natural and effective way to combat period cramps, promoting a more comfortable and less painful menstrual experience. That trending turmeric latte you've been hearing about? Well it just haldi wala doodh, prep some and see those period pains vanish.
4. Salmon: Salmon can be a remarkable asset for mitigating period pain, primarily thanks to its generous supply of omega-3 fatty acids, specifically EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). These omega-3 fatty acids offer a unique ability to reduce period pain by addressing the root cause. During menstruation, the body often experiences an upsurge in inflammation, exacerbating cramps and discomfort. Omega-3s, as abundantly found in salmon, act as natural anti-inflammatory agents, diligently countering this inflammation and diminishing its impact on the body. Moreover, these fatty acids possess muscle-relaxing properties, serving as an effective means to ease the contractions and spasms within uterine muscles, ultimately resulting in reduced cramping and alleviated pain. Introducing salmon into your diet not only offers a natural solution but also adds a delectable and nutritious dimension to your meals, contributing to a more harmonious and comfortable menstrual cycle, and help reduce period cramps naturally.
5. Leafy Greens: Leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and Swiss chard are rich in both magnesium and calcium, which can help relieve muscle tension and cramps. Include them in salads, or smoothies, or lightly sauté them as a side dish for a healthy dose of nutrients. Replenish With Greens are plant-based, sugar-free gummies that are packed with essential nutrients from green plants, veggies, and fruits. Add them to your every day to help with skin, hair and collagen, and overall immunity.
6. Ginger: Ginger is known for its anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. It contains compounds that can help relax the uterus and reduce period discomfort. You can make ginger tea or add fresh ginger to your meals to help ease period pain. Additionally, ginger has been reported to help with nausea and digestive discomfort often experienced during menstruation.
Some Other Natural Tips to Reduce Cramps
In addition to period pain relief food, there are other natural approaches you can explore to reduce period pain and discomfort. Let's take a closer look at a few of them:
Though it might seem counterintuitive, light exercise can help relieve period pain. Activities like yoga, walking, or swimming can increase blood circulation and reduce muscle tension. Incorporate a gentle exercise routine into your menstrual days to experience the benefits. Yoga, in particular, with its focus on stretching and relaxation, can be incredibly soothing during this time.
Limit Fried Foods
Fried and greasy foods can exacerbate inflammation, making your period pain worse. Try to minimize the consumption of such foods during your menstrual cycle. Instead, opt for baked, grilled, or steamed options that are great foods for period pain to keep your diet as inflammation-free as possible.
Acupuncture, an ancient practice, involves the insertion of thin needles into specific points on the body. Some women have reported relief from menstrual cramps through acupuncture. It's worth considering if you're looking for alternative therapies. Consult with a licensed acupuncturist to discuss your specific needs and concerns.
Managing period pain is essential for a comfortable and productive life. While there are various over-the-counter remedies available, it's always a good idea to explore natural options that can work alongside traditional treatments. Nutrient-rich foods, like the ones we've discussed, play a vital role in alleviating period cramps. So, make conscious choices about what you eat during your menstruation, and don't forget to include dark chocolate, walnuts, turmeric, salmon, leafy greens, and ginger in your diet.
At Arelang Naturals, we understand the importance of a woman's well-being. Our product, Rekindle for Women, is designed to support your health and comfort during menstruation. Explore Rekindle for Women and experience the natural relief you deserve. Say goodbye to period pain and embrace a more comfortable, happier you. Your comfort and well-being are our top priorities.