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If your period is irregular or nonexistent, you won't benefit from the effects of high estrogen. The point of highest estrogen is your pre-ovulatory stage. If you're on a 28 day cycle, ovulation occurs from days 12-16 (though it varies, depending on your stress level, the foods you eat, the exercise you're doing, etc). This means that pre-ovulation occurs on about days 8-11 (but again, it varies from woman to woman).
Your first step in regulating your periods is figuring out what's causing an irregular menstrual cycle. Once you determine the cause, you'll be better able to find an effective treatment.
1. Omega-3 fatty acids - salmon, sardines, fish oil supplements
The blood vessels in your ovaries are tiny, which makes them vulnerable to damage and poor circulation. Smoking, obesity, and high cholesterol can negatively affect your ovarian blood vessels, which blocks hormones and blood flow. Fish oils enhance blood circulation, reduce damage from free radicals, fight the effects of aging, and increase dopamine (which improves your mood!).
2. Non-white foods to regulate your menstrual cycle
Most natural foods are not white, so you can assume that if a food is white, it is probably processed to the point of being unhealthy! To make your menstrual cycle regular, avoid white flour, sugar, white potatoes, white bread, white pasta, and white rice. They disrupt your menstrual cycle by creating insulin surges that result in fat storage. This excess fat storage negatively affects ovulation and your periods - and can cause irregular periods. The simple tip on how to get regular periods: stop eating food that is white.
3. Protein - cottage cheese, lean meats, nuts to balance your hormones
Finding sources of balanced protein can be a challenge for busy women, but it is a must for hormonal balance. The more you balance your hormones, the more regular your menstrual cycle will be. Plant proteins are especially good for enhancing fertility and hormonal balance: almonds, walnuts, peanuts, cheese, hard boiled eggs, soy chips, hummus, canned sardines, and edamame.
4. Healthy beverages - because your cycle is affected by what you drink
Another 'food' to make menstruation regular is nettle leaf tea. The ingredients are so healthy: Organic Fennel Seed, Organic Ginger Root, Organic Cinnamon Bark, Organic Chamomile Flower, Organic Raspberry Leaf, Organic Anise Seed, Dong Quai Root Extract, Chaste Tree Berry Extract, Juniper Berry Extract, and Organic Parsley Leaf.
5. Vitamin D for regular periods
Vitamin D is a little hard to come by in food, Eat vitamin D-fortified milk products, tuna, egg yolks, salmon, sardines, and (yuck) cod liver oil. This vitamin improves communication between your cells, which stabilizes your hormones. Vitamin D is also vital for cancer protection - especially breast, colon, ovarian, and prostate cancers.
To increase your vitamin D and make your menstrual cycle regular, make sure you're getting enough sunlight. Where you live and the color of your skin determines how much time you should spend in the sun, but my research tells me that the average North American should spend about 10 minutes in the sun about 2-3 times per week. If you aren't getting enough vitamin D and you want to regulate your menstrual cycle, check out the vitamin D supplement above.
6. Dark chocolate to balance your menstrual cycle
Chocolate contains flavenoids, which have estrogen-like activity and help improve circulation by reducing platelet clumping. Flavenoids also enhance microcirculation in the ovaries and endocrine glands and increase dopamine (a 'feel good' hormone). Not just any old chocolate will do: eat dark chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa solids.
But don't eat too much chocolate. You'll gain weight and confuse your hormones, which can contribute to irregular periods.
7. Castor oil and hot water bottles
Here's how to use castor oil and hot water bottles to regulate your period:
Moisten a flannel pack (an old T-shirt will do) with warmed castor oil. Place the oil-side down on your lower abdomen with a hot-water bottle on top of the flannel pack. Cover with a towel. Do this daily for an hour - but not when you're getting your period) for a few months. Then, gradually reduce frequency to twice a month.Your period might become heavier or more painful, but that's just stagnation clearing from the uterus.
8. If your periods are heavy, consider iron supplements
If your periods are both irregular and heavy, you might consider taking iron supplements. One of the common causes of iron deficiency and anemia is heavy bleeding during menstruation. If you don't get enough iron in your diet or the foods you eat, your body's iron stores will diminish and you'll experience fatigue.
9. Learn about Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
While irregular periods are common among teenage girls, an underlying hormonal disorder may be the cause of long-term irregular periods in adult women. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is an endocrine disorder that is characterized by an excess of androgens or male hormones in the body. The imbalance of hormones interferes with the growth and release of eggs from the ovaries, which can prevent ovulation and menstruation.
Menstruation begins on average at age 12 for most women, and a normal menstrual cycle is approximately 28 days. Girls should have a regular menstrual cycle within approximately two years after they get their first period, or by age 17 at the latest. If you've been getting your period for more than two years and you're over 17 years old, you may want to talk to a doctor about how to regulate your period - and you may need more than information about foods to make your menstrual cycle regular.