Drinking a lot of water is always important, and this is especially true during your period. Staying hydrated can reduce your chances of getting dehydration headaches, a common symptom of menstruation.
Drinking plenty of water can also stop you from retaining water and bloating.
Water-rich fruits, such as watermelon and cucumber, are great for staying hydrated. Sweet fruits can help you curb your sugar cravings without eating a lot of refined sugars, which can cause your glucose levels to spike and then crash.
Leafy green vegetables
It’s common to experience a dip in your iron levels during your period, particularly if your menstrual flow is heavy. This can lead to fatigue, bodily pain, and dizziness.
Leafy green vegetables such as kale and spinach can boost your iron levels. Spinach is also rich in magnesium.
A warm mug of ginger tea can improve certain symptoms of menstruation. Ginger has anti-inflammatory effects, which can soothe achy muscles.
Ginger may also reduce nausea. Few studies confirm this, but a 2018 study found that ginger effectively reduced nausea and vomiting during the first trimester of pregnancy. Since it’s safe and relatively cheap, it’s worth trying.
Don’t consume too much ginger, though: Consuming more than 4 grams in one day could cause heartburn and stomachaches.
Chicken is another iron- and protein-rich food you can add to your diet. Eating protein is essential for your overall health, and it can help you stay full and sated during your period, curbing cravings.
Rich in iron, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids, fish is a nutritious addition to your diet. Consuming iron will counteract the dip in iron levels that you might experience while menstruating.
Omega-3s can reduce the intensity of period pain, according to a 2012 study. Subjects who took omega-3 supplements found that their menstrual pain decreased so much that they could reduce the amount of ibuprofen they took.
2014 study showed that omega-3s can also reduce depression. For those who experience mood swings and depression around menstruation, omega-3s may be helpful.
Turmeric is known as an anti-inflammatory spice, and curcumin is its main active ingredient. A 2015 study looked at the effects of curcumin on PMS symptoms and found that people who took curcumin had less severe symptoms.
A tasty and beneficial snack, dark chocolate is rich in iron and magnesium. A 100-gram bar of 70 to 85 percent dark chocolate contains 67 percent of the recommended daily intake (RDI) for iron and 58 percent of the RDI for magnesium.
A 2010 studyTrusted Source found that magnesium reduced the severity of PMS symptoms. According to a 2015 studyTrusted Source, people with magnesium deficiencies were more likely to have severe PMS symptoms.
Most nuts are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and they’re a great source of protein. They also contain magnesium and various vitamins. If you don’t want to eat nuts on their own, try nut butters or nut-based milks or add these ingredients to smoothies.
Every 15 milliliters of flaxseed oil contains 7,195 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids. For perspective, the Office of Dietary Supplements says you need only about 1,100 to 1,600 milligramsTrusted Source of omega-3s per day.
A small study found that consuming flaxseed oil soothed constipation, a common symptom of menstruation. However, more research is needed to show how flaxseed oil can improve digestive health.
Quinoa is rich in nutrients such as iron, protein, and magnesium. It’s also gluten-free, so it’s a great food for those with celiac disease. Plus, it has a low glycemic index, which means you’re likely to feel full and have energy for a long time after eating it.
Lentils and beans
Lentils and beans are rich in protein, so they’re good meat replacements for vegans and vegetarians. They’re also rich in iron, which makes them great additions to your diet if your iron levels are low.
Many people get yeast infections during or after their period. If you tend to get yeast infections, probiotic-rich foods like yogurt can nourish the “good” bacteria in your vagina and may help you fight the infections.
Yogurt is also rich in magnesium and other essential nutrients, like calcium.
A popular source of protein for vegetarians and vegans, tofu is made from soybeans. It’s rich in iron, magnesium, and calcium.