Five Foods for a Better Period
Five Foods for a Better Period
Enjoying nutrious foods can help you feel great while on your period.
As a registered dietitian and someone who simply wanted to have a better period, I made it my mission to find out how nutrition impacts period health. That’s why I recommend to follow the best dietary practice advice from my other article “Five Ways to Address PMS Through Food, From an RD.” When exploring the topic in the latest research, I learned firsthand that it is possible to eat the right foods to support a healthy period. Here is a sneak peek at top five foods I recommend that help to achieve a more comfortable, easier and better period.
These days, this is a trendy and more desirable vegetable at the dinner table. Brussels sprouts can do more for your period than you may thank – they contain a compound known as indole-3-carbinol found in cruciferous vegetables. This compound helps to enhance the metabolism and breakdown of estrogen. Excess estrogen in the body may often lead to amplified PMS symptoms or even endometriosis. So be sure to load up on Brussels sprouts at your next trip to the grocery store!
Loaded with an abundance of vitamins, minerals and protein, eggs truly have it all. They are also an excellent source of Vitamin D. Vitamin D plays a critical role in reproductive health, hormonal balance and mood regulation. Before your period arrives, it’s normal to feel cranky because hormones, like estrogen and progesterone, start to plummet. These hormones inadvertently also lower Vitamin D levels in the body which can further worsen our mood. Thankfully, you can get ahead of the inevitable dip and boost your intake of Vitamin D rich foods with some eggs!
A pretty purple vegetable that might also help period symptoms? Sign me up! Beets are high in arginine, an essential amino acid that fights inflammation. Your period is a natural inflammatory process as you rid your uterine lining. Thankfully, beets are rich in nitric oxide which expands constricted blood vessels and helps bring nutrient-rich blood to the ovaries and uterus. This can ultimately help decrease inflammation and replenish the tissue with healthy and nutrient-dense blood.
The probiotics in yogurt are truly superbugs! They’re healthy bacteria that can help with a bevy of conditions like mood regulation, anxiety and gut health. Gut bacteria can often be disrupted by the rapidly-changing hormone levels during periods. Ever heard of period poops? Thankfully, the probiotics in yogurt can help replenish and restore gut flora and get you feeling more balanced in no time!
Not only crunchy and delicious, sunflower seeds are packed with a ton of nutrients that help with period issues. Sunflower seeds are high in vitamin E which can reduce period related inflammation, a.k.a. bloating. They also contain N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), which is a powerful antioxidant, helping to tame oxidative stress and create a better reproductive environment. Toss sunflower seeds onto your salad, morning oatmeal or enjoy as a healthy snack!
Author Summary: Tracy Lockwood Beckerman, MS, RD, CDN is a registered dietitian, women’s health expert and author of “The Better Period Food Solution.” She is also the face behind the Instagram account @thehappiestnutritionist.