It’s possible to reduce period pain naturally, Dr. D.K. Guyer says in her latest health column. Today she tells you how.
For many women, the dreaded monthly visitor delivers extraordinary discomfort. Caring for the variety of accompanying symptoms can become costly. Women spend hundreds of dollars annually addressing flu-like symptoms, acne, gas, bloating and diarrhea to get through their period. It can also result a day or two of lost wages.
While this subject touches millions of lives, education about why periods can be so painful seems nominal. Women experiencing monthly distress want to learn why it happens to them when others are less affected.
Flu-like symptoms during period
There is a medical and scientific reason for feeling bad before and during periods. The key contributor is a hormone-like chemical called prostaglandins. This chemical assists with blood flow and clotting. Prostaglandins increase as the monthly cycle is reaching menstruation. They are also responsible for the flu-like symptoms of nausea, vomiting, cramps, achiness, fever, and fatigue associated with menstruation.
Understanding the effects of prostaglandins establishes a base for addressing the cause of painful periods.
Tips to handle period flu symptoms
Prostaglandins also attach to cells where inflammation exists to aid in healing. By avoiding certain food products known to exacerbate the inflammatory response, period flu symptoms can be drastically reduced.
- Avoid or minimize these food and beverage items:
- Caffeine and sugars – coffee, sweet tea, energy drinks, and soda
- Fast foods, junk foods, and fried items
- Excessive sodium
Too much caffeine can shrink blood vessels and restrict blood flow. Excessive sugar, sodium, junk food, fast food, and fried items create inflammation for all body systems. Thus, increasing prostaglandins and promoting period discomfort.
Add these items to your diet:
- Wild caught fish
- Fresh fruits and vegetables
- Red Rooibos tea
As the time frame for menstruation approaches, the additional processes the body must perform requires increased nutrients. Choosing a small portion of wild caught salmon or tuna provides a balanced source of Omega 3, 6, and 9 fatty acids, vitamin D and iodine. Dark leafy greens, nuts, seeds, berries, and citrus fruits provide magnesium and calcium. Red rooibos is caffeine free, packed with vitamins and minerals, and has 50 times more antioxidants than green tea. Rooibos reduces inflammation, insomnia and promotes muscle relaxation. Drinking water throughout the day lessens water retention because the body remains hydrated.
Importance of diet, hydration
From one month to the next, the pain can increase or decrease based upon eating habits and hydration. Too many margaritas at a party during the weekend can create elevated pain for the ensuing period on Tuesday, for example.
Using food as medicine is proven to reduce the severity of period flu-like symptoms. Menstruation comes with enough challenges. By changing a few habits, some of those unwanted monthly hurdles can become ancient history.
Dr. Guyer is a Wilson College alumna, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Business and Economics. Furthering her education, she earned a dual doctorate in Natural Health and Nutrition and is a renown natural health expert. She is an author, speaker, educator, founder and former CEO of Gardens by Grace, LLC, an organic company. Her passion is helping people regain their health through wholesome nutrition and life style changes. Check out her webpage here. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Your body is your fortress. It is up to you to defend it.” – DK Guyer, PhD