Before you reach for the pain meds (hey, sometimes it’s necessary – we get it) during those uncomfortable period cramps, try these natural remedies that we can get in our food and drinks to help relieve bloating and pain.
Fennel Extract and Vitamin E
One study found that fennel extract combined with vitamin E proved even more effective than over-the-counter medication in helping to relieve period cramps. Taking this when your period starts can vastly improve pain.
Taking cinnamon capsules during the first few days of your period may help with heavy flows and painful cramps.
Is there anything ginger can’t do? It’s definitely my go-to when I’m feeling under the weather. And it’s even effective for cramp relief. Add some to hot water every day for a few days.
Having dill before your cycle may help with menstrual cramps. You can find this in capsule form, as well and dill contributes to many other health benefits as it’s rich in antioxidants, magnesium and vitamins.
Calcium can also help relieve cramps and tofu is high in it. Whip up your favorite tofu dish and feel the relief.
While the herbs listed above can all be helpful in relieving cramps, Healthline cautions you to ensure you’re purchasing your herbs from a reputable source and are checking in with your doctor.
In general, eating a diet high in iron, omega-3’s, magnesium and vitamins and of course, naturally anti-inflammatory foods like leafy greens and certain nuts will help relieve the negative symptoms that come along with our cycles. But it’s important to incorporate these nutrients all the time – not just during that time of the month.
And unfortunately, cutting back on the things we crave most during our periods (hello, salty foods, caffeine and excess sugar) can drastically improve our symptoms. However, that doesn’t mean you have to deny your cravings at all costs. Slipping in your favorite bag of chips here or a chocolate treat there will help you not crash and binge leading to those yucky feelings. Eat your way to happier, more comfortable periods!