One thing that Toro could never predict was if her period was going to show up in a month. Sometimes, it did and sometimes, she didn’t see it and may be for the next three months, she would only get all the pre-menstrual symptoms and not see aunt flo.
It was a situation that hadn’t bothered her so much as a teenager but the older she grew, the more, she realised, it wasn’t normal that her period kept skipping on her like that. She had tried one doctor, who had often induced her period but she knew, she couldn’t do that for a long time, especially as it wasn’t as though she wanted to get pregnant immediately. Hers was a situation that demanded a long term but effective treatment plan.
So she changed doctor, and from the start had explained what she really wanted, a treatment plan that would regulate her period in the long run and she definitely did not want to induce her period. That worked magic as she was sent home with a list of lifestyle changes she must undertake, including that of making some dietary changes that would help her cycle, get into some semblance of normalcy; at least, what normal was to her.
From the doctor’s office, she headed straight to get her supplements but that was not the end. She had to absolutely take charge of the food that goes into her mouth. Here are some of the food choices she had to make, even though, she got frustrated at times and wanted to stop, as she wasn’t seeing the desired changes but her doctor encouraged her to stay on course, as it was changes that suited her overall lifestyle.
Omega 3 or essential fatty acid (EFA) rich foods:
These foods included, cooked or boiled spinach, oily fish, pumpkin seed or oil, flaxseed oil, salmon and oysters. These foods all contain omega 3 fatty acids and FFA’s are important for hormone production.
According to a recent study in medical journal, Obstetricians and Gynecology, women who received six grams of fish oil every day suffered from fewer premenstrual syndrome symptoms than those who didn’t consume the same.
These foods can also help relieve the cramps and pains that accompany many normal menstrual cycles. If you aren’t a fan of those foods, then make sure you get six grams of fish oil every day by taking the supplements.
Then you don’t have to worry about chewing your food properly when you’re learning what to eat for a normal menstrual cycle! (Eating fast and not chewing your food properly could lead to indigestion; while this doesn’t cause abnormal menstrual cycles, it’s not good for your general wellbeing).
Fresh or frozen fruits
Have you ever had chocolate craving around the time of your menstrual period? Well, Toro does, she always has the urge to indulge in a sugar binge, which she pays for, if Madam flo decides to actually show up and not tease her, as it sometimes does.
With her new lifestyle, rather than turning to chocolate or sweets like she used to do, she had moved on to eating more apples, pears, berries, and watermelons. It did not help the first few times she tried it but it worked in the end.
Fruit helps you deal with sugar cravings and provide with all the macro and micronutrients you need to help you get a normal menstrual cycle, without the sugar surge, you don’t need.
Calcium-rich foods like milk and yogurt
According to a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, calcium and vitamin D help reduce the aches and pains of menstruation. Calcium in milk and yogurt; along with vitamin D is the same, it can act as a muscle relaxant and help ease stomach aches.
This finding was confirmed by a certified holistic health counselor and nutritionist, Latham Thomas, who noted that women need at least 1,200 mg of calcium every day. “Some good sources of calcium include kale, collard greens, broccoli and yogurt.”
For those that are lactose intolerant, then foods that are rich in calcium — leafy greens, nuts, soya, sesame seeds, and broccoli would do. These foods are readily available here.
Food rich in magnesium and potassium
These foods include, bananas, avocados, sweet potatoes. Foods, that are rich in magnesium and potassium; micro-nutrients that help to alleviate period cramps and other symptoms of menstruation.
Pumpkin seeds, beans are also good sources of magnesium, and they help reduce bloating. Bananas, avocados, and sweet potatoes are rich in potassium, which helps improve your mood during your menstrual cycle. Potassium also helps with sleep and regular bowel movements, all of which could make your menstrual cycle easier.
Protein is what to eat for a normal menstrual cycle because it helps build muscle, keeps your blood sugar levels in check, and limits sugar cravings. Some experts recommend staying away from beans and legumes such as chickpeas, kidney beans, and black-eyed peas because they cause bloating due to their saltiness. However, you can have them in moderation, because they’re high in protein and low in fat.
Walnuts, almonds, and Brazil nuts are packed with essential nutrients and proteins. Although, you should remember, that nuts are super high in calories, so don’t eat more than a handful a day.
While the ingesting of these foods will work in the long run to get pre-menstrual syndrome under control and bring some semblance of normalcy to a cycle, there is only so much they can do, if it is a medical condition like PCOS, stress or other hormonal issues. In these instances, the symptoms presented will be what will be treated, until things return to normal.
However, dietary and lifestyle changes help a lot with all of these conditions.
Food for the body…food for the mind!
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