Fix Your Period
Better Nutrition|May 2020
Are you ready to completely revitalize your body and hormones and put your PMS symptoms in the rearview mirror?
By Nicole Jardim

When it comes to all things menstrual cycle-related, medical professionals often tell us that our symptoms—moodiness, brain fog, fatigue, fertility struggles, and low libido—are normal, or are a natural response to getting older. Nothing to worry about.

One of the biggest myths perpetrated on women today is that our menstrual issues are not fixable. They are. Each month, your body tries to tell you something about your health. PMS, a heavy period, no period— whatever you’re experiencing isn’t the result of your body randomly rebelling against you. Rather, these issues are your body’s way of communicating with you—your period problems are a sign of your body needing attention. Your body is always working for you, not against you.

Feed Your Hormones

The foods we eat play a big role in how our hormones behave. In fact, the number one cause of hormonal imbalances, period problems, and fertility issues is a lack of the right nutrients in our diets. If you don’t have the nutrients you need to produce hormones properly or the understanding of how different foods affect your body, you won’t have a sturdy enough foundation to build on.

It’s important to understand that a one-size-fits-all approach to food is not possible. That’s why I’ve incorporated various elements from a couple of different dietary theories to create the Fix Your Period way of eating and living.

Carbohydrates

Not all carbs are created equal. I can’t stress enough that the best choices in carbohydrates are those found in whole foods. Simple or refined carbs such as white sugar, white flour, and the products made from them, such as pasta and baked goods, are typically the worst-quality carbs to consume. On the other end of the spectrum, vegetables are the shining star of the carbohydrate world.

Leafy Greens

Leafy greens are the most nutrientdense foods on the planet, yet are totally underrated—and missing from most people’s daily diet. It’s time to up-level your greens intake.

There are many different types of leafy greens, and each of them contains an array of nutrients that not only impact your overall health but also have a pretty profound effect on the health of your reproductive organs—and all are essential for optimal hormone production and regulation:

* Arugula Beet greens

* Broccoli rabe

* Collard greens

* Dandelion greens

* Kale

* Mustard greens

* Red/green leaf lettuce

* Romaine lettuce

* Spinach

* Swiss chard

Just as the rainforest cleans the air, the abundance of nutrients found in leafy greens (chlorophyll in particular) helps remove potentially harmful toxins from your blood, makes new red blood cells, improves circulation, strengthens the immune system, and reduces inflammation. Indeed, when it comes to period problems, the nutrients in greens are gold:

Calcium. This mineral can be a big help in reducing PMS symptoms such as anxiety, depression, fatigue, and pain. In fact, low levels of calcium in the luteal phase have been found to cause or worsen PMS. Estrogen supports intestinal absorption of calcium, so having sufficient estrogen in your body is necessary for the integrity of your bones. It’s crucial for women with amenorrhea or low estrogen to make sure they are getting adequate calcium through food and possibly supplementation.

Magnesium. This essential mineral has been shown to reduce bloating and breast tenderness and also helps to build progesterone. It reduces PMS-related anxiety and sleeplessness and works amazingly well for period pain and migraines.

Iron. This contributes to healthy egg production, stable energy levels, and healthy menstrual blood flow. (Hint: too-heavy or too-light periods can be a sign of insufficient iron levels.)

Potassium. This powerhouse mineral and electrolyte allows your body to make energy from the foods you eat, reduce bloat, and relieve menstrual cramps.

Vitamin A. This vitamin helps maintain healthy, acne-free skin and may even help reduce heavy periods.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM BETTER NUTRITIONView All

Women's Health AT EVERY AGE

A woman’s health needs change dramatically over the years. Use this guide to find hormone-balancing tips and remedies based on your age.

8 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

women's health AT EVERY AGE

A woman’s health needs change dramatically over the years. Use this guide to find hormone-balancing tips and remedies based on your age.

8 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

TRANSFORMED FROM HOME

After accepting Better Nutrition’s Transform from Home challenge, coworkers Abby Maher and Lisa Stockton saw dramatic improvements in their health and vitality. Here, they share their stories of amazing transformations with the help of leptin pioneer Kat James.

8 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

The Healthy Way to Go Vegan

Whether you already follow a plant-based diet or want to give it a try, here’s how to make this style of eating work for you.

6 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

More Than Meets the Eye

Protect the skin around your eyes from blue light damage and signs of aging with nourishing natural eye creams.

3 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

Just Jujubes

If your only experience with jujubes involves the candy that got stuck to your shoe at the movie theater, Alisha Taffwould like to introduce you to the “real” version of this timeless treat—a nutrient-packed fruit with deep roots in ancient Chinese medicine.

3 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

Instant Pot Lamb Stew

Celebrate spring with this quick-and-easy seasonal favorite.

1 min read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

Flower Power

It’s flower season! We’re celebrating with six beautiful blooms that heal.

2 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

3-Step Detox

A simple plan for clearing the junk out of your body and hitting the reset button on your health.

5 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021

15 Snacks to Stabilize Your Blood Sugar

Eat small, quick, balanced food combinations to prevent low energy, mood swings, and crankiness in between meals.

5 mins read
Better Nutrition
May 2021