The ul­ti­mate pe­riod sur­vival guide

Jamaica Gleaner - - YL:HEALTH - Latara Boodie YOUTHLINK WRITER

LADIES, YOUR not-so­favourite rel­a­tive, ‘Aunt Flo’, is in town and you are, once again, caught un­pre­pared for the may­hem she is about to un­leash in your life. From cramps and bloat­ing to un­con­trol­lable mood swings and detri­men­tal acne, you are def­i­nitely in for one very un­com­fort­able cou­ple of days. Youthlink is of­fer­ing the ul­ti­mate pe­riod sur­vival guide to help you power through dur­ing Aunt Flo’s monthly visit.

1. Grab a pa­paya Pa­paya con­tains sev­eral nu­tri­ents such as carotene, iron, cal­cium and Vi­ta­mins A and C, that help to sooth the uter­ine walls. It also helps to ease the con­trac­tion of the mus­cle fi­bres present. This re­sults in a reduction in the sever­ity of men­strual cramps.

2. Drink co­conut wa­ter

Did you know that co­conut wa­ter con­tains the same amount of nu­tri­ents as blood plasma? Blood is 55 per cent plasma. In de­vel­op­ing coun­tries, co­conut wa­ter is used dur­ing trans­fu­sions due to its sim­i­lar­ity to plasma. At this time when your body is los­ing blood, the eas­i­est way to help to re­store the blood loss is by drink­ing co­conut wa­ter. Co­conut wa­ter is rich in cru­cial nu­tri­ents such as mag­ne­sium, man­ganese, potas­sium and cal­cium, which help to re­lieve cramps. Co­conut wa­ter is also rich in other vi­ta­mins, min­er­als and an­tiox­i­dants ben­e­fi­cial for health and longevity.

3. In­dulge in dark choco­late Who said choco­late is a bad thing? Dark choco­late con­tains mag­ne­sium, which can help to al­le­vi­ate cramps and in­crease en­ergy. It also con­tains en­dor­phins or ‘happy hor­mones’, which can help to im­prove your mood. An­tiox­i­dants such as flavonoids in dark choco­late will also pos­i­tively im­pact your health.

4. Cre­ate a PMS playlist Mu­sic has the abil­ity to turn ev­ery bad day into a good one. Cre­ate a feel-good playlist with all your favourite songs to blast away your blues when the go­ing gets tough and you have to keep go­ing.

5. Drink herbal teas There are known herbs that can re­duce men­strual cramps and mood swings. Two of them are ‘blue ver­vain’ (Ver­bena has­tate) and ‘dog blood’ (Riv­ina hu­milis). Blue ver­vain is seen as a fe­male tonic, es­pe­cially for women who suf­fer from se­vere men­strual cramps. It re­duces bloat­ing and cramp­ing, and al­le­vi­ates mood swings and depression. You can find this in your lo­cal su­per­mar­ket un­der the brand Si­pacupa Ital Ja­maica, which is owned by TOPS. Dog blood is the go-to herb that ev­ery­body’s grand­mother would rec­om­mend for men­strual cramps. Dog blood is a com­mon herb in Ja­maica and it is used to treat in­fer­til­ity and help with men­strual cramps. There are no easy-ac­cess teabags cur­rently on the mar­ket for Dog blood, so next time you make a coun­try run, be sure to re­quest some. 6. Prac­tise yoga Yoga in­volves a lot of core stretches which can help to re­lease the build-up of ten­sion in your ab­dom­i­nal area.

7. Use a hot wa­ter bot­tle/towel Heat re­duces and soothes aches and pains within the body. Filling a wa­ter bot­tle with hot wa­ter or dip­ping a rag/towel in hot wa­ter then care­fully plac­ing it on your stom­ach will, over time, help you to re­lax and re­duce the pain that comes with men­strual cramps.

Sources: http://www.la­dy­care­health.com/ 4-nat­u­ral-foods-that-hel­pre­duce-men­stru­al­cramps/#sthash.8Vql76KW.dpuf

http://healthy­wildand­free.com/ women-eat-these-4-foods-be­forey­our-pe­riod-for-re­lief-ev­ery-time/

https://www.ubyko­tex.com/enus/pe­ri­ods/pe­riod-ad­vice/doeschoco­late-help-with-cramps-orpms

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