It’s Xmas, and you’ve got your period, perhaps not the best of timing. But, did you realise that your Xmas menu can go a long way to making it better?
First up – Xmas dinner! Vitamin B6 can make a huge difference to how your body feels during your period. It helps to relieve pre-menstrual cravings, water retention and bloating, mood swings and tiredness. You can find B6 in turkey, fish, chicken, potatoes, nuts and eggs. Not only that but Vitamin C is helpful too! Get your dose from citrus fruits, cranberry juice and brussel sprouts! Vitamin C helps you to absorb the Iron in your food better, which supports any Iron lost during your bleed, especially if your prone to anaemia anyway.
Other foods to think about at Xmas time are your nibbles and treats. Try and skip the salty snacks. Crisps and nuts at the parties or as fillers while you wait for the dinner to cook are tempting but salt will make you retain water and feel bloated, adding to any discomfort you might be feeling. Nuts aren’t so bad, just go for unsalted ones!
Do I dare mention Chocolate….it’s kind of a given that there will be lots of chocolate around at Xmas, and if your having your period your likely to be craving it more than usual too. But actually the selection box might not be the best choice. You crave chocolate during your bleed because your body needs magnesium, which is in chocolate, just not in very high quantities. Your much better off going for the darkest chocolate you can find (70% cocoa solid or higher) or even better – raw chocolate. Raw chocolate is easily available and it looks beautiful too. You could even make it yourself, how about making some raw chocolate treats as Xmas gifts with the children?
Think about what your drinking over the festivities too. It’s probably best to not overdo the alcohol. Alcohol is bad for you on your period for two reasons. In larger quantities it will dehydrate you, and what you actually need is to stay hydrated to help prevent bloating and tiredness. It also affects your estrogen and testosterone levels which will increase pain and PMS issues.
Caffiene isn’t great during your period either. If you’ve got a lot to do and having a lot of late nights its very easy to reach for the coffee pot but just like alcohol it dehydrates you and raises your estrogen levels. Go for plenty of water or some herbal tea instead
Whatever you decide to eat and drink this Xmas, I hope its happy, healthy and pain free.
(c) Awen Clement – December 2015