HealthWomen's Health

Menstrual Cramps and Diet: What to Eat for Relief & What to Avoid

Chocolates, ice- cream, lime juice, toffees… 

There is a never-ending list of period cravings. But is any of that food helping you with the period cramps? 

I know, I know, your hormones are boggling your mind and you do not want to have those soups or veggies, but your body is asking for certain nutrients which you do not get from all the fast foods. so, to calm the hormones down, you need to eat a bit of “ghar ka khana”.

In this article, we are going to talk about the diet you can follow to relieve menstrual cramps and how can you add a healthy twist to your favourite foods.

 Let’s start with foods you must include in your diet when you are on your period.

Carb Rich Foods

  1. Magnesium-Rich Foods:

Dark Leafy Greens like Spinach, kale, and Swiss chard are high in magnesium and are a must during your periods. These greens help relax muscles and reduce cramping.

Twist: Craving chips? let’s add green colour to them.

Baked Spinach Chips


  • 2 cups fresh spinach leaves, washed and dried thoroughly
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • In a large bowl, toss the spinach leaves with olive oil until they are evenly coated.
  • Arrange the spinach leaves in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Make sure they’re not overlapping.
  • Season the spinach leaves with salt, pepper, and any optional seasonings you prefer.
  • Bake in the oven for about 10-15 minutes or until the spinach leaves are crispy and lightly browned. Keep an eye on them as they can quickly become too brown.
  • Once done, remove from the oven and let the spinach chips cool for a few minutes before serving.
  1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids:

Healthy menstruation is one of the many advantages of omega-3 fatty acids, which can be found in fatty fish like salmon, flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts. It eases the intensity of inflammatory symptoms and discomfort by regulating hormonal fluctuations during the menstrual cycle.

Flaxseeds and Chia Seeds seeds are rich in omega-3s and can be sprinkled on yoghurt, oatmeal or added to smoothies.

  1. Complex Carbohydrates:

Whole grains contain essential nutrients like iron, magnesium, and B vitamins. These nutrients play a role in maintaining overall health and can support menstrual health by replenishing lost nutrients during menstruation.

Brown rice, quinoa, oats, and whole wheat products offer a steady release of energy and can help stabilise blood sugar levels, potentially reducing cramping.

Twist: Did you know Popcorn also comes under the umbrella of whole-grain? Try air-popped popcorn this menstrual cycle for a nutrient-dense alternative.

Baked Spinach Chips

  1. Fruits and Vegetables:

Fruits and vegetables are an excellent reservoir of vitamins and minerals that help with digestion, reduce inflammation, ease bloating and discomfort during the menstrual cycle, and support general health.

Fruits and veggies that you cannot skip when you are down with periods are:

  • Bananas: Rich in potassium, bananas can help alleviate bloating and reduce water retention.
  • Leafy Greens: Spinach, kale, and other leafy greens are excellent sources of magnesium, which may help relax muscles and reduce cramping.
  • Sweet Potatoes: High in vitamins A and C, as well as magnesium, they can aid in reducing bloating and supporting overall health.
  • Berries: Strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries contain antioxidants that can help combat inflammation.
  • Pineapple: It contains bromelain, an enzyme that may help relax muscles and reduce cramping.

Pro tip: Are you among those who find green vegetables repulsive? No worries, blend them into a vibrant smoothie to diversify your dietary intake of nutrients. Or make a colourful salad that looks like a rainbow on your plate by adding lots of fruits and vegetables.

  1. Herbal Teas:

Herbal teas such as chamomile, lavender, or lemon balm have calming effects and help reduce stress and anxiety often experienced during menstruation.

Teas help you stay hydrated, which is important for preventing bloating and feeling uncomfortable during your menstrual cycle. Because of its anti-inflammatory qualities, ginger tea may help lessen the inflammation that causes menstrual cramps.

Golden Milk

  1. Herbs and Spices:

Several herbs and spices are believed to possess properties that may help relieve menstrual cramps due to their anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, or pain-relieving effects. 

The following options are usually pointed out:

  • Turmeric: Contains curcumin, known for its anti-inflammatory properties. It can be added to various dishes or consumed as a supplement.
  • Cinnamon: Contains anti-inflammatory compounds and might help reduce menstrual pain and inflammation. It can be added to foods or brewed into tea.
  • Fennel Seeds: Known for their antispasmodic properties, fennel seeds may help relax muscles and reduce bloating or cramping during periods.

Twist: Have you heard of  “golden milk” or “turmeric latte”? It is celebrated for its anti-inflammatory properties, which may help ease menstrual cramps. This period give a try to grandma’s Turmeric milk.

  1. Hydration:

Drinking enough water can help the body’s fluid balance, which may lessen bloating and water retention that is often brought on by periods. It may help reduce the intensity of menstrual cramps by ensuring muscles, including the uterus, function efficiently.

Drinking enough water can help fight fatigue and sustain energy levels, which can lessen the drowsiness and fatigue that come with periods.

So this time, if you don’t want to be a sluggish bear, drink more water and keep a water bottle handy.

You can even stay hydrated while enjoying your favourite ice cream, too! Check out how.


Foods to Avoid

It is more important to understand which foods to avoid during your menstrual cycle than what to eat to promote an easy and smooth cycle.

Below is a list of red flags that you should bypass when you are menstruating:

  • Highly Processed Foods: Foods high in sugar, refined carbohydrates, and trans fats may exacerbate inflammation and worsen menstrual symptoms.
  • Excessive Salt: Too much sodium can lead to water retention and bloating, worsening discomfort.
  • Carbonated Drinks: Carbonated beverages may lead to increased bloating and gas.
  • Alcoholic Beverages: Alcohol can contribute to dehydration and may worsen mood swings and fatigue.
  • Coffee and Energy Drinks: Caffeine can potentially worsen anxiety, irritability, and breast tenderness.
  • Fried Foods: Greasy or fried foods might worsen bloating and discomfort.

Omega 3 Rich Foods 1

Caution: Don’t let your cravings dictate what you eat when you’re bleeding.

Every person’s experience with menstruation is unique. While these foods might help ease menstrual cramps for some, individual responses can vary. It’s essential to listen to your body and make dietary adjustments that work best for you. 

Listening to your body helps you understand your specific symptoms, comfort levels, and needs during this time. 

Thus, pay attention, figure out what foods suit you, and utilize your periods as a chance to slow down, take it easy, rest, and reestablish your connection with yourself. 

What else can you do for relief during those menstrual cramps?

Yep, you read that right. While there are many things you can eat to relieve those menstrual cramps, there are other ways to bring yourself relief during your periods. Things like:

  • Yoga
  • Masturbation
  • Sex
  • Hot Water bottle
  • Period Underwear!

But how does a Period Underwear bring you relief?

One of the factors that makes cramping worse is stress. The stress of getting a rash or just leaking out of your undies altogether. What would you do when you have that long meeting or those back-to-back lectures in college? You pick period underwear and tick off another thing to worry about when you are already cramping!

Try Qnix Period Underwear today!

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