There’s nothing more frustrating than when menstrual cramps hit you suddenly in the middle of the day. Sometimes, it feels like all that you can do is curl up into a ball and suffer until they stop. These cramps that you are feeling are a result of the muscles of your womb contracting and relaxing to get rid of any built-up lining.
Many women prefer to avoid taking painkillers because they can have varying negative side effects including nausea, headache, gastrointestinal ulceration/bleeding, dizziness, high blood pressure, and the list continues.
So what are you supposed to do when you’re in the middle of a busy day, and it feels like someone is stabbing your gut repeatedly with a knife? We have the answers! Here are some natural remedies to combat those pesky cramps.
If you stay hydrated during your period, you will be less likely to retain water and cause painful bloating. We recommend that you drink at least 64 oz of water a day (about eight glasses).
Warm or hot water will be most effective in healing your cramps, because it will increase blood flow to your skin and help relax your muscles. Because of this, we suggest that you drink your favorite herbal tea; or hot water with lemon and honey (an anti-inflammatory!)
If you hate drinking water, you can also hydrate by eating fresh fruits and vegetables including watermelon, berries, cucumber, lettuce, and celery.
If you are at home when your cramps hit, some simple exercise to get your heart rate up will release endorphins that can relieve your pain. You can go for a short walk, or even do some yoga.
The tighter your hip flexors are, the more cramps you will have. Lunges and deep breathing will help to target this area.
Here is a quick, 8-minute long yoga video specifically for menstrual cramps:
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Apply MuscleCare to your lower abdomen and lower back, because all of the nerves that sense pain in the uterus and abdomen are connected to the lower back.
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Consider Your Diet
It is common for women to crave junk food during their period due to a hormone imbalance. Unfortunately, most of these trans-fatty/sugary/salty foods can increase inflammation and add to the menstrual pain.
Some foods to avoid include: sugar, soda, red meat, bread, pasta, and any processed food like cookies, crackers, French fries, chips, etc. Alcohol and tobacco are also known to be inflammatory.
Instead, try to fill your diet with anti-inflammatory, magnesium-rich foods like berries, nuts, fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, tuna, and sardines), broccoli, avocados, peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes, cherries, leafy greens, and olive oil.
Calcium will also reduce menstrual pain because it helps maintain muscle tone. Eating Greek yogurt, cheese, or milk are all great ways to incorporate calcium into your diet.
Applying heat via a hot wet towel or a heating pad to your abdomen can relax your muscles and increase blood flow, which will ease your pain. If you don’t want to use a heating pad or towel, a hot bath will also help.
A study at the University of London has shown that “when heat over 104 degrees Fahrenheit (40 Celsius) is applied to the skin, heat receptors deeper down, where the pain is, are switched on. The heat receptors, in turn, block the effect of chemical messengers that cause pain to be detected by the body” (LiveScience).
Hang in there, ladies! There are remedies to all pain, and the best remedies are natural. We hope that this article has helped you in your time of need and that you were able to find something that works for you and your pain.
For more information on MuscleCare, please visit getmusclecare.com