If you’re going through hell once a month, or just feeling uncomfortable on your period, you’ll be pleased to hear there are lots of natural ways to deal with period pains- without upsetting your body with NSAIDS or hormonal contraceptives. Here, Amy Morris, Naturopathic Nutritionist from water for Health, reveals some of her secrets to correct this unwanted PMS symptom.

Tea!

Tea!

Improve your diet! - This means reducing or cutting out high-fat foods and boosting your fruit and vegetable intake. When you start ingesting the right foods, your hormones should revert to equilibrium. Incorporating anti-inflammatory foods such as flax and chia seeds, spirulina and turmeric into your regular meals will reduce unnecessary inflammation in the body and will help to ease period cramps.

Drink lots of tea - There is something very soothing about sipping warm tea when you are suffering from period pains. Herbal teas, especially chamomile and peppermint act as oestrogens and have anti-inflammatory capabilities that can help soothe and relieve cramps. Glycinen can be found in chamomile tea and has researched effective in reducing muscle spasms and relaxing the nerves.

Fish Oil and Vitamin B12 - Studies have shown that young women and adults taking these supplements experienced cramps far less. When they did occur, it was less painful and for shorter periods of time. Those who took the fish oil and B-12 supplements together reported the most improvement, and unlike the effects of fish oil alone, the effects of fish oil and B-12 supplements together lasted for at least three months after the women had stopped taking the capsules. Vitamin B-12 has been shown to lower homocysteine levels which can cause inflammation, and is an essential nutrient important for human metabolism. Fish oil provides relief and it is completely innocuous, so there is no risk in trying it. If you’re looking for some try UnoCardio 1000, which has been rated as the best fish oil for 3 years running. Get it here: http://www.water-for-health.co.uk/

Massaging with essential oils - Diluted lavender, clary and sage oils can help to reduce the duration cramps. When conducting a study, researchers found that women who were massaged with essential oils, reported pains much less frequently than those who were massaged with a ‘placebo’ oil. They also published that the cramps lasted on average 1.8 days, instead of their previous 2.4.  Other essential oils such as peppermint, rosemary and eucalyptus also work by reducing stress and anxiety, encouraging healthy sleep habits, managing hormone levels and treating headache pain.

Boost your endorphins - For those of you who haven’t heard about these before, they are basically your brains ‘feel good’ chemicals, released during exercise.  I know that exercise is probably the last thing on your mind during that time of the month, but getting more endorphins generally can help prevent pains before they happen. It will also put you in a good frame of mind, which is an added benefit.  You can also boost your endorphins by eating chocolate/something spicy or have sex.

Up the magnesium in your diet- Mg can be found in many common foods such as fish and nuts. Magnesium helps regulate nerve and muscle functioning, among other vital tasks. Researchers who evaluated the evidence on magnesium call it a promising treatment for menstrual cramps. It is also very important for your general health, so make sure you get enough.

Acupuncture - This treatment can relieve stress but can also help you cope with the pain, so the reward is double. Acupuncture aims to relax the nervous system and in turn will help to ease the cramps; it is also thought to have an anti-inflammatory effect. Research has shown that women who undergo acupuncture of acupressure are much less likely to experience period cramps.


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