It’s kind of normal to experience some level of cramping on your period. At the end of the day, your body is getting rid off the uterus lining so of course it’s not going to go completely unnoticed. However; if you’re finding yourself in agony every single month, popping painkillers and hugging a hot water bottle, it might be a sign of abnormally high levels of prostaglandin.
Prostaglandins are hormone-like compounds responsible for regulating inflammation and contracting the uterus in order to initiate and assist menstruation. Therefore the more prostaglandins your tissue produces the stronger muscle contraction within the uterus which can cause severe menstrual cramps and pain.
In addition to pain, you are also most likely to experience period diarrhoea and the reason why is because the same inflammatory compounds are also produced in the intestines which stimulates the bowels resulting in pooping more. Makes sense, right?
Want to take action? Here are your options…
Intermittent Fasting (IF) has been found to decrease overall inflammation in the body, incl. the production of prostaglandins. Over the last few months I had a number of female clients reporting significant improvements in period pain after introducing regular fasting. If this is something you’re interested in exploring but have no idea where to start my advice is to start slow and build up. Make sure you manage your blood sugar balance first (if you have any cravings your blood sugar level is most likely dysregulated), and after a few days start with 12 to 14 hrs fasting window & 10 to 12 hrs eating window. See how you feel and increase your fasting window by another hour or two if all goes well. Of course, if you’re on medication such as insulin discuss with your practitioner first and make sure you monitor blood glucose.
Anti-inflammatory foods can be also extremely powerful when it comes to reducing inflammatory prostaglandins and I would encourage you including these superfoods in your diet on daily basis.
Ginger, turmeric, green leafy veggies, celery, beets, broccoli, berries, pineapple, coconut oil, flaxseeds, chia seeds, bone broth, fish high in omega 3 such as salmon and mackerel, green tea
Foods feeding inflammation are most likely to stimulate your immune system and uterus tissues to produce even more inflammatory compounds so ideally stay away or reduce their consumption.
Avoid as much as possible:
Highly processed carbohydrates & sugar, conventional dairy products, refined vegetable oils, processed grains, processed conventional meats, alcohol , too much caffeine, and foods you might be sensitive to e.g. wheat, gluten, soy, eggs, yeast (to name a few)
Magnesium supplement can help to ease muscle cramps and chronic pain. A standard recommendation is to take a dose of about 300 - 450 mg at night. If you suffer from loose stool & diarrhoea you want to avoid magnesium citrate (works great for constipation!) and choose magnesium glycinate instead.
Any further question please leave a comment below or drop me a line via email. Happy to provide more details and/or point you the right direction.