Although having a period is entirely natural, it’s also very painful for a lot of women, both physically and emotionally. With all the discomfort, cramping and outright pain that comes with it, all you fancy doing is lying down, curling up and praying for it all to end.
And the worst thing is that you know exactly when it’s coming. And there is nothing you can do about it.
… Or is there?
Over-the-counter painkillers can certainly help to alleviate period pain. But they’re not always the best things for your body. Moreover, they’re not natural. Instead, let’s take a look at 10 amazing natural remedies for period pain.
Exercising being in the list of natural remedies for period pain might seem counter productive; exercising is probably the last thing you want to do as you clutch your stomach from all the pain.
“Exercise? Are you crazy!?”
I hear you. But hear me out.
Any type of physical activity right now is not going to exacerbate your pain. In fact, it’s going to relive it. Sounds silly?
Listen to this: When we engage in physical exercise, our body pumps more blood. More blood means that we release more endorphins. More endorphins means less cramps. It’s like a domino effect, with the end result being that you feel a lot more comfortable than you did before you exercised. You don’t have to hit the gym like a beast. Just a brisk walk can be enough to alleviate pain and make you feel a whole lot better.
Eating more vegetables and cutting down on fat while you’re on your period can go some way to easing your menstrual cramps. Less fat in your body means less inflammation, which means less pain. The good thing about adopting a better diet during your period is that you might be encouraged to stick to it all-year round. This will not only reduce the amount of pain you suffer from during a period, but it might also prevent pain altogether.
The reason you’re suffering from so much pain right now is because the muscles in your uterus are contracting. When muscles contract, they cause a LOT of pain. And unfortunately, the muscles in your uterus contract once every month. Not cool.
Applying heat is another one of amazing natural remedies for period pain. You can purchase over-the-counter heat pads to alleviate pain, with ThermaCare being our top pick. Alternatively, you can fill up your hot water bottle (or any plastic bottle) with hot water before applying to your sore abdomen.
Drink Water – Avoid Caffeine
Caffeine can cause your muscles to contract more. Water, meanwhile, is the most natural substance on the planet. Swap coffee for water during your period as the former will increase blood flow and can relax tense muscles.
Vitamin B1 or Fish Oil
Fish oil or vitamin B1 should become staple points of your diet during your monthly war with your period. According to a study published in the Global Journal of Health Science, girls who consumed more fish oil and vitamin B1 during their period experience a massive relief in pain.
Tea is another one of fabulous natural remedies for period pain. There are a great variety of teas available that benefit our body in different ways. Ginger tea, for example, can relieve indigestion, while green tea gives us a boost in energy. And chamomile tea is your go-to brew if you want to ward off period pain. One study showed that women who drink more chamomile tea produce more hippurate in their body, a natural anti-inflammatory which soothes the symptoms and pains associated with menstrual cramps.
Eat More Herbs
When you’re menstruating, more prostaglandins are released in your body, which exacerbate inflammation. Herbs. meanwhile, contain anti-inflammatory properties which interfere with the production of prostaglandins, and therefore reduce your period pain.
Get More Vitamin D
Vitamin D doesn’t just relive your symptoms – it can also prevent them from even occurring in the first place. Now, isn’t that what we all want? The problem is that many of us just don’t have enough vitamin D in our system. Why? Because vitamin D is very hard to get from our diet. Moreover, if you live in perpetually cold and wet country like myself, it’s also very difficult to get it from the sun!
It’s important that you find ways of getting more vitamin D from your diet in order to starve off painful menstrual cramps. You can find vitamin D from foods including:
- Egg yolks
The Chinese have been relying on acupuncture to treat numerous common ailments for centuries. Indeed, it’s actually a key part of traditional Chinese medicine. Essentially, your skin is pricked with small needles in certain points to stimulate your body. It might not sound very pleasant, but it’s highly effective. And it is one of great natural remedies for period pain.
A study carried out in South Korea found that out of the 944 women who were treated with acupuncture to relive menstrual cramps, most noticed an improvement in pain relief.
Finally, perhaps the easiest thing to do if you’re trying to fend off period pain is to sleep more.
As you’ll probably have noticed, sleep tends to heal your body. When we go to sleep with aches or pains, we more often than not wake up without them. This is thanks to our body’s remarkable powers of healing and recovery, which it puts to good use when you’re taking a snooze.
So, curl up in bed and relax your body.