Nothing ruins a good day at work or a fun night out with your friends than suddenly feeling like you just got kicked in the lower abdomen by Muhammad Ali. Let’s face it, menstrual cramps are one of the worst pains a girl can feel. The aches sometimes become so bad that it can cause a lot of women to miss work or to just spend the entire day crawled up on their beds wishing for the pain to go away.
There are medicines and pills to help deal with menstrual pain, but to some, these can have other unwanted side effects. But don’t worry. If you incorporate these 4 natural nutrients to your diet, it can help curb your painful period problem.
- Vitamin E.
This particular vitamin has anti-inflammatory properties which help deal with the irritation that most periods cause. It also helps to regulate your hormone levels, lessening the chances of a hormonal balance which are often the main cause for period problems. Foods rich with vitamin E include most nuts and seeds like almonds and sunflower seeds, and leafy greens such as broccoli and spinach. Have these in your diet and you’re guaranteed to not only decrease menstrual pain, but due to its antioxidant properties, can even help you look naturally younger.
- All of the B Vitamins.
Increasing your intake of foods rich in vitamin B will really help females to reduce menstrual pain. The vitamin B1 (also known as thiamine) can relieve muscle pain, cramping, and fatigue, which are all symptoms of Premenstrual Syndrome (most commonly referred to as PMS). Most pain from menstruations are due to your uterus muscles contracting and causing general discomfort. This is due to the lack of magnesium. Ingesting foods with the vitamin B6 will help ensure that all of the magnesium you get from your food enters your muscle cells, which will help these cells (and your uterus) relax.
Foods rich with Vitamin B are lean pork, fish, crabs, breakfast cereals and enriched soy or rice milk.
- Healthy fats.
Inflammation of your uterus lining is one of the reasons why periods can become a hellish experience. Consuming anti-inflammatory omega-3 foods can reduce the risk of menstrual cramps. Cold-water fish such as salmon, herring, or sardines are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Green leafy vegetables and nuts and seeds such as walnuts and chia seeds also contain a decent amount of these acids.
I mentioned before that magnesium helps curb inflammation by helping your muscles relax. I’ve also mentioned that most of the pain associated to menstruation is due to the uterine muscles contracting uncontrollably. By increasing your magnesium intake to healthy levels, you are guaranteed to reduce cramps caused by your periods.
Foods that contain high amounts of magnesium include dark leafy greens, nuts and seeds, fish, beans, whole grains, yogurt and dark chocolate. Eating these regularly will provide you with all the magnesium your body needs.