Leave It to Mother Nature: Natural Remedies for a Bloat-Free, Pain-Free Period
It’s that time of the month again, ladies. However, this time around, instead of dealing with mystery bloat and mood swings, I’m revealing natural ways to ease your period probs with the help of Love Wellness resident award-winning OB/GYN, Dr. Christine Sterling. Together, we’re here to explain and decode natural remedies for Mother Nature’s monthly “gift.”
1. Sweat out the PMS. Rolling out of bed and getting to the gym might be the last thing you want to do while on your period. However, Dr. Sterling states: “Studies suggest that regular exercise can help decrease PMS symptoms. As there is a long list of health benefits to getting your body moving, this is one lifestyle change that any woman should get on board with.” Whether it’s a relaxing downward dog, or some light strength training, it is possible to maximize your time at the gym while making sure you’re giving your body exactly what it needs (including rest time).
2. Optimal health starts from the inside out. While it’s tempting to indulge in all the salty and sweet cravings, maintaining a consistent diet that incorporates nutrients and wholesome foods can prevent you from further nausea, upset stomachs, and bloating. “For many women, gastrointestinal complaints such as bloating predominate their PMS symptoms. Every day we are learning more and more about the importance of gut health to the proper functioning of the rest of our body,” says Dr. Sterling. Support healthy gut function by taking a daily probiotic and avoiding excess salt, alcohol, and caffeine to help limit those PMS symptoms.
3. Catch those zzz’s! Whether we’re on our periods or not, getting enough sleep is crucial for our bodies to get some much needed R&R. Dr. Sterling notes, “Lack of sleep has been linked to a myriad of health problems, including heart disease and depression. For women who experience fatigue, depression, mood swings or irritability before and during their period, getting enough sleep is crucial to improving these symptoms.”
Dr. Sterling recommends, “With good sleep hygiene, including disconnecting from devices for the hour before bed and having a regular routine to wind down from the day, even the worst sleepers get their full night’s rest.” Adding natural supplements containing magnesium and melatonin can also help you sleep well.
4. Stay mindful of your own needs. We sometimes overlook taking time out of our busy schedules to relax and practice self-care. Daily meditation is a great way to unwind and breathe through any pain and discomfort you have. “In one study, women who engaged in daily meditation for 15-20 minutes over the course of three months showed a significant reduction in their PMS symptoms. Sitting silently in a chair and going from the top of your head to the bottom of your toes and relaxing your muscles, followed by either a mantra meditation (a meditation in which you repeat a word or a phrase over and over) or a meditation that focuses on the breath, should elicit the relaxation response thought to be key in improving symptoms,” says Dr. Sterling.
If you’re experiencing serious discomfort from your period, it might be helpful to ask your OB/GYN for their recommendations. These natural remedies can also help cultivate healthy habits to adopt post period woes. For more on feminine care by Dr. Sterling, check out The Body Blog from Love Wellness and follow along @lovewellness.
Got any tips to ease that time of the month? Share them with us @BritandCo.
(Photo via Getty)
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