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Period Diet Tips

Can Diet Changes Help Period Cramps?

Dr. Meera Sethi 90% (199 ratings)
MBBS, Diploma in Gynaecology & Obstetrics, MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Gynaecologist, Delhi
Can Diet Changes Help Period Cramps?

Menstrual cramps are a common occurrence in women who are of childbearing age. The pain is mostly felt in the back or lower abdomen. Menstruation is unavoidable and natural, but the cramps associated with it can disrupt your normal lifestyle. You find it hard to focus and concentrate on your work, among other things. Fortunately, there are ways to counter your pain.

So, here are 10 ways to relieve your period cramps-

  1. Over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen and naproxen can provide relief. Ibuprofen is effective in lowering prostaglandins (hormones responsible for menstrual cramps). But you need to take the medicine 3-4 days before your periods start.

  2. This may surprise you, but birth control pills can also reduce pain. Besides regulating your periods, they also maintain a steady hormonal level in your body. When hormones aren’t fluctuating, the severity of pain reduces.

  3. Maintaining a healthy diet can provide long-term relief from menstrual cramps. If you have a healthy weight, you would experience lesser pain. Oestrogen is produced by fat cells and abnormal amounts of fat cells can increase its production, and when you have a healthy weight, you can prevent hormonal imbalances.

  4. Drink plenty of water - it not only keeps you hydrated but also keeps your hormones in balance.

  5. Stay away from beverages that contain caffeine, such as coffees and sodas. Caffeine is inflammatory in nature, and it will only worsen your pain.

  6. Yes, moving too much during periods sounds crazy, but exercising can reduce your pain! If you exercise regularly, your stress levels reduce (too much stress worsens pain) and your body releases endorphins, which will lessen the pain considerably.

  7. Cramps are stubborn, and sometimes all the preventive measures fail. At times like these, heat is your best friend. Whether it is a heating bag on your abdomen or a nice, warm bath, heat can reduce your pain and make you feel comfortable.

  8. Sometimes, magnesium deficiency can trigger pain and make your life difficult. Do consume plenty of magnesium-rich food such as dark leafy vegetables, bananas, yoghurt, nuts, fish, whole grains, etc.

  9. Sweet or salty cravings are common during periods. But you need to stay far away from all kinds of processed foods, because they will only cause more pain.

  10. Yoga is an excellent remedy for menstrual cramping. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a gynaecologist.

3782 people found this helpful

Painful Periods- Can A Specific Diet Help Ease The Pain?

MBBS, DGO
Gynaecologist, Bangalore
Painful Periods- Can A Specific Diet Help Ease The Pain?

Menstrual cramps are not new to women after puberty, and generally are manageable without specific care. However, when the abdominal cramps interfere with your regular activities, it is important to take some steps in relieving it. The pain is usually caused by chemicals known as prostaglandins that promote inflammation and aid in blood vessel constriction as well as the contraction of muscles. The chemical breaks down during menstruation while constricting blood vessels in the uterus which causes muscle contractions, referred to as cramps.

It is possible to manage the pain caused by these cramps by following a healthy diet that can include the following foods:

  1. Soy milk: Some women have reported that having soy milk can help in reducing menstrual cramps. It is rich in natural plant chemicals known as isoflavones that act like estrogen in the body. Fortified soy milk also offers around 300 milligrams of calcium which will fulfill 1/3rd of the daily recommended intake of calcium.
  2. Fatty fish: Fish is considered one of the prime sources of anti-inflammatory fats referred to as omega 3-fatty acids. Researchers have found that women who consume omega 3 fatty acids experience less intense pain. To get maximum benefits, you can consume mackerel, salmon or trout. You should also include ground flaxseeds in your daily smoothies and yogurt.
  3. Legumes: Legumes such as lentils and beans offer a high amount of protein and fiber without the saturated fat that is found in animal-derived protein sources. Taking a high fiber diet that constricts intake of animal fats can improve the estrogen levels which, in turn, can help in reducing the menstrual pain.
  4. Fruits and vegetables: Eating foods rich in antioxidants and reducing the intake of processed ones can help in improving period cramps. You should opt for different colored fruits and vegetables, from broccoli to berries, from citrus fruits to bell peppers to tomatoes, and anything else that comes to your mind. Many fruits and vegetables such as apricots, raspberries, and brussels sprouts are also rich in fiber that can help in reducing muscle cramps during periods.
  5. Nuts: There is hardly any individual who doesn’t like eating nuts, particularly when they are roasted. It can help in alleviating the hunger for junk foods and the rich magnesium content is essential for reducing period pains.
  6. Dark chocolate: Research suggests that dark chocolate is known for satiating cravings for junk foods while boosting the serotonin levels. When you are on your periods, you should take one ounce of dark chocolate every day for reducing depression and fatigue and alleviating the physical discomfort.

Adding these food items can contribute a lot in sparing you from the undesired stomach cramps during periods.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3455 people found this helpful

Diet in Pregnancy

Dr. Vidya Bisla 92% (17 ratings)
MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology, MBBS
Gynaecologist, Gurgaon
Diet in Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a very special time in a woman's life when there is an added focus to take care of yourself and your unborn child. The adage 'you are what you eat' takes on a whole new meaning during this period as it becomes the soon to be mother's responsibility to pack in extra nutrition to nourish her growing bump. Doctors often add in a dose of vitamins to ensure that the both mother and child are well nourished. But beyond that, the food choices you make will maintain a healthy weight gain for you and your baby and eventually even help when you want to shed the extra weight after your child is born.

Here are some tips to have a perfect diet during your pregnancy

  1. Load up on the good stuff: Even if you've always been eating healthy, it is time to crank things up a notch and include more proteins, vitamins, minerals especially folic acid and iron and some extra calories for energy and increase it as you progress in your pregnancy. But eating to get more nutrients doesn't have to mean eating more in general. If you are already at a healthy weight, then you don't need extra calories in the first trimester. In the second trimester, you need about 340 extra calories a day and about 450 extra calories a day in the third trimester. The numbers will change if you are underweight or overweight.
  2. Say no to some: During pregnancy, give a skip to food items like raw seafood and undercooked meat and poultry. This could lead to potentially dangerous infections. Other foods to steer clear from include unpasteurized milk and soft cheese. All of these are possible sources of bacteria that can be harmful to an unborn child. It is always good to give your fruits and veggies a good extra wash, as always. Try to avoid the known culprits like popular local fruits that may be laden with artificial ripeners. Also avoid food with excess oil or preservatives. You will also have to say a complete no to alcohol or smoking during this period. While most sites suggest that you also ditch your caffeine fix, you can best keep it less than 200 mg or 12 ounces in a day. Stick to decaffeinated tea and sodas when possible. Some other foods that have to be avoided during pregnancy are packaged food, cold drinks, preserved food items as they contain preservatives, which are harmful. Also, chinese food should be avoided as it contains monosodium glutamate, which is again harmful due to teratogenic chemical.
  3. Diet a big no: Another big no during pregnancy is dieting or controlling the intake of food to lose weight. Pregnancy is the time you actually, for once, get to legally gain weight and be happy about. Don't mess up your natural system with forced diets.
  4. Keep the food coming: Pregnancy is the time for food craving at all odd hours and the time to give into them without an ounce of guilt! If you are dealing with nausea and food aversion, try to stick to small meals throughout the day. Replace the chips with carrot sticks and the pizza slice with soup. If that sweet tooth starts acting up, give it a frozen fruit dessert or shake.
3189 people found this helpful

Everything You Need To Know About Paleo Diet

Dt. Neetha Dilip 89% (3595 ratings)
M. Sc. Foods, Nutrition & Dietetics, B.Sc-Home Science
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Visakhapatnam
Everything You Need To Know About Paleo Diet

Paleo diet is one of those diets which have been gaining widespread popularity in the recent times. It has been touted by its supporters as the natural diet for human beings and also the diet that our ancestors used to consume. There is a lot of debate on its efficacy and it has its own set of advantages and disadvantages alike.

What exactly is a paleo diet?

The Paleo diet gets its name from the Paleolithic period of human civilization, thousands of years ago, where the availability and choices of food were varied and limited according to seasons. Most foods included lean meat, fruits, nuts, vegetables and were very different from the fast food, high sugar and saturated fat-based diet that humans are having now. This diet aims to go back to the basics to correct nutritional deficiencies as well as to try out to correct excesses of the modern diet.

Advantages of Paleo diet

  • Huge decrease in consumption of processed sugar
  • Normalization of blood pressure levels
  • Decreases in the level of bad cholesterol in the blood
  • Balance of protein intake due to limited and lean meat consumption
  • Increase in the consumption of vegetables and natural foods with less processed chemicals
  • Optimization of insulin within the body

Disadvantages of Paleo diet

  • Far too restrictive - Many believe that although it is a good diet, it loses out on the balance and becomes too restrictive with certain food groups being cut out completely, which may cause imbalances.
  • Excess of protein - Although Paleo diet cuts down on unhealthy fats, some of its ingredients may cause the consumption of too much protein which may not be good for health either.
  • Lacks of carbohydrates - Some believe that Paleo diet lacks carbohydrates and may not be a good source of energy. When working throughout the day, carbs provide energy but a low carb diet may cause energy-related problems. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a Dietitian/Nutritionist.
3356 people found this helpful

Are You Pregnant? Take Care of Your Diet

Dr. Mohan Krishna Raut 90% (83 ratings)
MD - Obstetrtics & Gynaecology, MBBS, DGO
Gynaecologist, Mumbai
Are You Pregnant? Take Care of Your Diet

Pregnancy is that period of time in a woman's life when she is excited about giving birth to her baby. She is not only responsible to keep herself healthy, but her baby is also her responsibility. What she eats, how she lives and her daily routine will affect the baby. Thus, to have a healthy pregnancy it is necessary that you exercise regularly and eat well. You should also avoid those things that may hurt your baby. 

Take care of what you eat:
During pregnancy it is important to get proper nutrition so that you and your baby are healthy. For slow and gradual weight gain, it is necessary to pay close attention to the folic acid, calcium and iron intake. However, if you are obese, then your weight gain regime will be different from others. 

The diet during pregnancy should include:

  1. Intake of fruit and vegetables is important as they are good sources of vitamins, minerals and even fiber. They are good for digestion and also help in preventing constipation. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables daily.
  2. During pregnancy carbohydrates are also important as they act as an important source of energy. Different food items that are rich in carbohydrates are potatoes, bread, breakfast cereals, pasta, rice, noodles, millet, maize, oats, yams, sweet potatoes, and corn meal. It is better to eat whole grains and potato with the skin on as they are rich in fiber. 
  3. Intake of protein is very important during pregnancy, and thus you should take lean meat, pulses, beans, nuts, fish, and eggs. All these items should be cooked well so that you do not face any problem in digestion during pregnancy. 
  4. It is also necessary to eat dairy products like milk, cheese, butter and yoghurt during pregnancy. They are important because they contain the calcium and nutrients that are necessary for the growth of the baby. 

What to avoid?
Just as you should eat certain food items to be healthy, there are certain foods that must be avoided to be fit and healthy. Avoid the following during pregnancy

  1. Drugs and alcohol
  2. Medicines that are not prescribed by your physician
  3. Smoking tobacco
  4. Fried and oily food
  5. Fishes those are rich in mercury like shark, tilefish, swordfish and those fishes that are caught in local waters are not considered safe. 
  6. Too much intake of caffeine is also hazardous for a pregnant lady. 

Thus, by following the above-mentioned  diet tips you can keep your baby and yourself healthy. Always get advice from your physician for any decision that you take during pregnancy.

4033 people found this helpful

Can Right Diet Prevent Infertility?

Dr. Vandana Hegde 83% (19 ratings)
MBBS, MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Post Doctoral Fellowship in Reproductive Medicine, Fellowship in Infertility, Diploma in Assisted Reproductive Technology & Embryology
Gynaecologist, Kolkata
Can Right Diet Prevent Infertility?

Infertility is a condition that refers to the inability to conceive, even after regularly having unprotected sex for a period of 6 months at least. In most cases, infertility may also refer to the biological inability of a person to contribute to the process of conception; or to a woman who is incapable of carrying a pregnancy to its full term.

There are several causes behind infertility; but taking the current lifestyle of the people into account, stress and a sedentary lifestyle are emerging as major factors behind this condition.

How do stress and a sedentary lifestyle cause infertility?

1. Stress: Stress is turning into a major cause of infertility, esp. in women. A research carried out by Emory University observed 16 women between their mid 20s-30s, with normal weights for a period of 6 months to come to this conclusion. It found out that each of these women did not get their periods for the 6 months under observation due to high amounts of cortisol (stress hormone) in their body. Each of these women had really hectic work lifestyles, which indicated that women with stressful jobs are at a higher risk of experiencing infertility due to stress.

In fact, both the partners, when going through a period of stress, are unable to conceive. However, during periods when they felt good, their chances of having a baby increased dramatically.

2. Sedentary Lifestyle: Again, more of a risk factor for women than men.

Amongst women, a sedentary lifestyle during teenage causes hormonal imbalance and anovulatory cycles more commonly seen in PCOD (polycystic ovarian disorder - the development of multiple small cysts in the ovary) patients, which is a major cause for infertility.

As for men, those with a sedentary lifestyle generally tend to be overweight or obese, which can lead to low sperm quality. This, in turn, can significantly reduce a couple’s chances of conceiving.

What can do you to prevent infertility?

1. Stay Active: Acupressure, regular exercising, daily brisk walking, practicing yoga and meditation are some of the ways by which you can alleviate the problem of infertility. Each of these activities help in improving the flow of blood to your reproductive organs, which helps in the release of toxins from the body. They also help in enhancing the movement of the pelvic region and in reducing any type of inflammation and pain in the area, thereby increasing your chances of conceiving. The added benefit of practicing these is a significant reduction in your stress levels.

2. Eat Right: Diet too plays a major role. Certain foods are known to boost your fertility, while maintaining proper hormonal balance and reducing the chances of miscarriage. Foods like cold water fish, raw dairy, eggs, tomatoes and dark leafy greens among others should be a part of your daily diet. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a Gynaecologist.

4176 people found this helpful

Diet In Pregnancy - What Should You Know

Dr. Shalini Raman 92% (46 ratings)
MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Gynaecologist, Lucknow
Diet In Pregnancy - What Should You Know

Pregnancy is a very special time in a woman's life when there is an added focus to take care of yourself and your unborn child. The adage 'You are what you eat' takes on a whole new meaning during this period as it becomes the soon to be mother's responsibility to pack in extra nutrition to nourish her growing bump. Doctors often add in a dose of vitamins to ensure that the both mother and child are well nourished. But beyond that, the food choices you make will maintain a healthy weight gain for you and your baby and eventually even help when you want to shed the extra weight after your child is born.

Here are some tips to have a perfect diet during your pregnancy

Load up on the good stuff: Even if you've always been eating healthy, it is time to crank things up a notch and include more proteins, vitamins, minerals especially folic acid and iron and some extra calories for energy and increase it as you progress in your pregnancy. But eating to get more nutrients doesn't have to mean eating more in general. If you are already at a healthy weight, then you don't need extra calories in the first trimester. In the second trimester, you need about 340 extra calories a day and about 450 extra calories a day in the third trimester. The numbers will change if you are underweight or overweight.

Say no to some: During pregnancy, give a skip to food items like raw sea food and undercooked meat and poultry. This could lead to potentially dangerous infections. Other foods to steer clear from include unpasteurized milk and soft cheese. All of these are possible sources of bacteria that can be harmful to an unborn child. It is always good to give your fruits and veggies a good extra wash, as always. Try to avoid the known culprits like popular local fruits that may be laden with artificial ripeners. Also avoid food with excess oil or preservatives. You will also have to say a complete no to alcohol or smoking during this period. While most sites suggest that you also ditch your caffeine fix, you can best keep it less than 200mg or 12 ounces in a day. Stick to decaffeinated tea and sodas when possible. Some other foods that have to be avoided during pregnancy are packaged food, cold drinks, preserved food items as they contain preservatives, which are harmful. Also, chinese food should be avoided as it contains monosodium gulmate, which is again harmful due to teratogenic chemical.


Diet a big no: Another big no during pregnancy is dieting or controlling the intake of food to lose weight. Pregnancy is the time you actually, for once, get to legally gain weight and be happy about. Don't mess up your natural system with forced diets.

Keep the food coming: Pregnancy is the time for food craving at all odd hours - and the time to give into them without an ounce of guilt! If you are dealing with nausea and food aversion, try to stick to small meals throughout the day. Replace the chips with carrot sticks and the pizza slice with soup. If that sweet tooth starts acting up, give it a frozen fruit desert or shake.

2 people found this helpful

Diet Tips For Stomach Ulcer

Dt. Neha Suryawanshi 91% (14814 ratings)
M.Sc. in Dietetics and Food Service Management , Post Graduate Diploma In Computer Application, P.G.Diploma in Clinical Nutrition & Dietetics , B.Sc.Clinical Nutrition & Dietetics
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Mumbai

1. Eat three small meals and three snacks evenly spaced throughout the day. It is important to avoid periods of hunger or overeating.

2. Eat slowly and chew foods well.

3. Be relaxed at mealtime.

4. Sit up while eating and for 1 hour afterward.

5. Avoid eating within 3 hours before bedtime. Bedtime snacks can cause gastric acid secretion during the night.

6. Cut down on caffeine-containing foods and beverages, citrus and tomato products, and chocolate if these foods cause discomfort.

7. Include a good source of protein (milk, meat, egg, cheese, etc.) at each meal and snack.

8. Antacids should be taken in the prescribed dose, one-hour and 3 hours after meals and prior to bedtime. This regimen is most likely to keep the acidity of the stomach at the most stable and lowest level.

9. Milk and cream feedings should not be used as antacid therapy. Although milk protein has an initial neutralizing effect on gastric acid, it is also a very potent stimulator. Hourly feedings of milk have been shown to produce a lower ph than three regular meals.

10. Caffeine-containing beverages (coffee, tea, and cola drinks) and decaffeinated coffee cause increased gastric acid production but may be taken in moderation at or near mealtime, if tolerated.

5 people found this helpful

PCOD- Diet You Must Follow!

Dr. Pradnya Aptikar 86% (186 ratings)
B.A. Sanskrit, BAMS, M.A. Sanskrit, MS -Gynaecology Ayurveda
Ayurveda, Thane
PCOD- Diet You Must Follow!

What is PCOD?

PCOD or Polycystic Ovarian Disease is a disorder that causes innumerable hormonal disorders. It causes disruption in the normal menstrual cycle, often delaying it. Having been diagnosed with PCOD makes a woman prone to diabetes, cholesterol and cancer. A large number of cysts develop on the ovaries which enlarge when afflicted by this condition. PCOD can increase the chances of severe muscle spasms during one’s periods.

Causes Of PCOD-

  1. The cysts are mostly caused due to hormonal changes and fluctuations.

  2. It could be genetic.

  3. PCOD can also be a result of an unhealthy lifestyle that includes little rest, inadequate sleep and unwholesome diet lacking in the right nutrients.

Symptoms Of PCOD-

  1. Acne

  2. Excessive growth of facial hair

  3. Weight gain

  4. Difficulty in losing weight

  5. Excessive hair on body as well, including chest, stomach and back

  6. Irregular menstrual cycle. Women may miss their periods, or bleed more than once a month

  7. Extremely heavy bleeding

  8. Severe pain and muscular cramps during menstruation

  9. Problems getting pregnant

  10. Infertility

  11. High blood pressure

  12. High cholesterol

  13. Depression

  14. Other serious hormonal disorders

  15. It can lead to diabetes

  16. It can lead to repeated miscarriages

  17. A major risk of PCOD if left untreated, is that it can lead to endometrial cancer

Diet For PCOD-

A healthy diet along with physical activities and abstinence from smoking can help to reduce the symptoms of PCOD and prevent the disease.

  1. Increase the intake of fresh, green vegetables.

  2. Cutting down on junk, fried food and most importantly, processed food.

  3. Abstaining from or greatly reducing the intake of alcohol.

  4. Including lots of fibre, roughage in the diet.

  5. Cutting down on sugary, aerated drinks.

  6. Including lean proteins in the diet.

  7. Reduce dairy products as milk may raise the levels of testosterones in the body.

  8. Reducing or eliminating consumption of caffeine may help to increase chances of a fertile reproductive system.

  9. Prevent yourself from giving in to unhealthy food cravings. Eat small healthy meals at regular intervals.

  10. Include fruits, nuts and colourful veggies in your diet. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an ayurveda.

5830 people found this helpful

Side Effects of Diet Pills

Dr. Sangeeta 87% (1312 ratings)
M.Sc - Dietitics / Nutrition, Diploma in Diet and Nutrition, Certificate Of Diabetes Education , Ph.D.Nutrition
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Indore
Side Effects of Diet Pills
Today ‘Diet Pills’ are the shortcut to lose weight and many people favor them to cut down their time and efforts occupied for losing weight. But they don’t know about the dangers of diet pills and side effects. While taking these pills they carry the risk of nasty potential side effects and possible complications.
Recently sales of appetite suppressants (e.g. dexfenfluramine) is stopped after a research that linked it to long-term problems including the heart diseases.
The diet pills are of two types:
• Placebos: – Drugs that contain nothing probably just sugar or chalk etc.
• Ephedra: – Pills based on the drug Ephedrine, similar to amphetamine. This drug carries the risk of many serious side effects including vomiting, heart palpitations, insomnia, strokes, kidney failures, miscarriages, and heart attack.
Diet pills available in the market are only suitable, if taken under the medical supervision. They are:
• Xenical:-A chemical that prevents absorption of fat. Side effects include diarrhea, wind, stomach ache, headache, tiredness, irregular periods and anxiety.
• Reductil:-Side-effects include heart palpitations, raised blood pressure, constipation, nausea, insomnia, and anxiety.
Medical Precaution: – The whole treatment should occur under strict medical supervision. Anyone who is overweight but not obese should be told to lose weight by a combination of healthy eating and exercise, perhaps with the aid of a dietician.
Danger Zones:- In August 2002, the Guardian reported that: “Five people have died and almost 500 have fallen ill after taking the dangerous and poorly regulated herbal slimming aids from China, according to reports in recent weeks that have highlighted the fatal consequences of Japan’s dieting obsession.”
77 people found this helpful
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