Period pain is something which most women will be able to relate to, and finding relief from its monthly onset is top of the list for many of us. Today I’m looking at 6 easy things you can do to help manage your period pain, so you can have a happier period!
1. Eat Banana
Banana have natural pain-killing properties, and have been found to help reduce period pain, as well headaches. This is thought to be because of the high level of potassium in this fruit, which helps to reduce muscular cramps. Additionally, bananas are rich in vitamin K, which can help to balance the hormones and menstrual flow, thus reducing period pain and other symptoms of PMS.
2. Try a Tea
Raspberry leaf is considered to be a mild uterine tonic. Try a cup of raspberry leaf tea each day throughout the month. It is available at Whole Foods by the company Traditional Medicinals. Keep in mind you are looking for the herbal tea, not raspberry-flavored black tea!
3. Eat More Greens
Dark leafy greens are a dietary source of magnesium, calcium, and countless other micronutrients. These nutrients are essential for mediating muscle contractions. In Chinese dietary therapy, dark green vegetables are also considered to be mildly cleansing, which is what the body needs in a “stagnation” condition. Some greens such as dandelion greens (very bitter, but very helpful) also have a mild diuretic effect, which reduces bloating.
4. Cut Down on Coffee
Caffeine, especially from coffee, is a well-known vasoconstrictor – it makes blood vessels constrict. Indeed, it may cause the vessels that feed the uterus to tighten more than they do in non-coffee drinkers. If you’re a diehard coffee drinker and can’t cut it out entirely, try avoiding it just in the week before your period and see if you notice a change.
5. Use a Heating Pad
A heating pad or hot water bottle is a simple, tried and true way to reduce muscle spasms.
6. Try Acupuncture
Certain acupuncture points are thought to regulate blood flow through the abdominal cavity and relax the nervous system, which can help calm muscular contractions. Studies show that acupuncture is just as effective as over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medicines for reducing pain.
In addition to pain relief, don’t be surprised if these changes also lead to better digestion, better sleep, and a steadier mood. However, if these measures aren’t enough to improve your quality of life, an acupuncturist or naturopath can offer you further refinement of natural strategies.
Also, keep in mind that excessively painful menstruation can be a sign of a more serious underlying medical issue, such as endometriosis, a uterine infection, or a problem with the uterine anatomy. Don’t forget to consult your primary care provider to make sure these possibilities are addressed, especially if you just can’t seem to get your pain under control.
May you enjoy smoother cycles!