According to a study, period pains affect up to 70% of women of the reproductive age.
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, say that more than half of the women experience period cramps for one or two days each month.
The pain usually starts within 24 hours of receiving your periods and this continues for days as the pain gets mild to intense abdominal cramping.
Usually, there are symptoms that prepare you for your periods. They include;
- Itchy nipples
- Change of moods
- Breakout of pimples on the face
- Pain in lower belly or back
- Feeling tired all the time
Mental Daily, an online psychology magazine, surveyed 2,000 young women between the ages of 18 and 29 to find out which habits made menstruation more painful. The research therefore indicates that certain habits, foods and activities could actually make your cramps worse.
Therefore, to get through your menstrual cycle without any stress, you need to avoid certain foods that leave you miserable.
- Too much caffeine
Coffee usually leaves you hydrated.
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Caffeine also increases your bloating discomfort and irritate your uterus which worsens your cramps.
Abdur- Rahman says that caffeine causes vasoconstrictions or the narrowing of blood vessels which decreases the blood supply to the lining and the muscles of the uterus which causes more cramping and pain.
- Eating salty foods
In most cases, this are foods that we crave during that period but unfortunately they cause more harm to our bodies.
According to Jamil Abdur-Rahman, M.D., board-certified ob./gyn and chairman of obstetrics and gynecology at Vista East Medical Center in Waukegan, Illinois, he says, salty foods increase water retention and causes issues with bloating.
It’s advisable to avoid slap chips, crisps and canned foods.
- Fatty Meats
Red meat is considered bad to your periods as it is highly saturated with fat.
The meat also contains arachidonic acid which produces prostaglandins that can cause uterine contractions and cramping as per Dr. Shemek.
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Usually, more uterine contractions result to more period cramps
Therefore, eating a diet high in saturated fat during the first few days of your period can lead to bloating, breast tenderness and breakouts.
- Alcohol and sweets
We are always tempted to reach out for chocolates, sweets and alcohol during the menstruation period. This worsens your symptoms.
Starla Garcia, MEd., RDN, LD, a registered dietitian in Houston
On the other hand, alcohol makes cramps worse as it retains water which causes bloating and makes one loose magnesium which helps relieve cramps.
Alcohol increases the prostaglandins in the body which increases pain in your periods.
Experts say that the sugar levels in the body fluctuate during the time of the month. So consuming too much sugar when on your periods messes with your already messed up sugar levels sugar causes inflammation and tends to intensify cramping.
Cheese, ice cream and other dairy products contains an omega-6 fatty acid called arachidonic acid which causes the production of more prostaglandins which makes you to cramp more.
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