What are the links between diet and the menstrual cycle?
The menstrual cycle has an impact on many aspects of our lives. Diet is one of them. Eating well helps you have a regular cycle, and a regular cycle helps you eat well. It's a virtuous circle. But what does it mean to eat well? What are the foods that help us to live better our menstrual cycle? We tell you everything, in this article!
First advice: to respect your vulva, especially if you suffer from endometriosis, we advise you to wear our menstrual panties in organic cotton.
Jeremy (aka Mint Banana) is a dietician psycho nutritionist. He specializes in eating disorders and shares advice on how to achieve a balance between physical and mental health, helping us to know what to eat when suffering from endometriosis, excessive PMS or PCOS.
Eating during the menstrual cycle: what diet should you follow?
Jeremy explains to us that the diet, throughout the cycle, must be adapted to better live your cycle, especially in case of PMS or pain.
As you probably know, the menstrual cycle is made up of four phases: menstruation, the follicular or pre-ovulatory phase, the ovulatory period and finally the luteal or post-ovulation phase.
During these periods, the hormones vary, fluctuate, which will have an impact on our morale, our desires and desires.
Jeremy explains that food is central. Cravings are for example the result of a serotonin deficit (most of the time). Serotonin is the hormone of well-being, of returning to a calm state. During the luteal phase, when PMS occurs, there is a drop in estrogen, which is responsible for the synthesis of serotonin. This explains the drop in serotonin and therefore the drop in mood.
To remedy this lack of serotonin, we can act by providing tryptophan: it constitutes the proteins, which is a precursor of this serotonin. We advise, for this contribution of proteins and fat, like eggs, hummus for breakfast.
For the end of the day: a fruit, chocolate and oleaginous. The ideal is to take it around 4pm, before the cravings that occur at the end of the day.
During this period, you should keep your meals fresh and listen to yourself. Be careful not to confuse weight change with weight gain. Indeed, during the luteal phase, there is a drop in progesterone, except that progesterone allows you to release water. So, with the drop in progesterone, it is normal to have water retention, which can be confused with a slight weight gain: nothing abnormal, it will eventually pass.Related : Why do I have digestive problems during my period?
How to manage chronic inflammation in the context ofendometriosis ? Does diet have a role to play in it?
At present, there is no treatment for endometriosis, an inflammatory disease that affects 1 in 10 women. However, even if there is no definitive treatment, endometriosis can nevertheless be relieved by several factors, in particular by diet. An anti-inflammatory diet can modulate the hormonal terrain and therefore stabilize the lesions and symptoms of this pathology.
Nutrition to relieve endometriosis:
In the case of endometriosis, it is strongly recommended that you review your diet. Certain foods should be avoided and others favored. In fact, it has been proven that some foods have a pro-inflammatory effect while others have, on the contrary, anti-inflammatory properties.
Certain chemical additives found in highly processed foods and dishes will also promote chronic inflammation. Foods rich in sugar will increase the level of sugar in the blood, which will lead to the secretion of insulin, and solicit the pancreas. As a result, inflammation will increase. Foods with a low glycemic index should be favored to help regulate blood sugar levels.
Another advice: we prefer foods rich in Omega 3 and we reduce Omega 6. There are two types of omega 3: vegetable and animal. It is moreover important to vary the Omega 3 so that they come from the two sources if possible.
The omega 3 in the vegetable sources: They are found in the vegetable oil as the flax oil or the oil of cameline. The ideal is to integrate them daily into the diet at a rate of one teaspoon per day for flaxseed oil and 3 tablespoons for rapeseed oil. These oils should not be heated: there is a risk of oxidizing them.
Omega 3 in animal sources: It is found in particular in fatty fish and small fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, herring,...). Ideally, we should eat them 3 to 4 times a week.
On the same subject : Special menu for menstruation
What is the ideal diet for endometriosis?
The ideal plate is composed of half vegetables, of different colors to have multiple antioxidants. Antioxidants are also anti-inflammatory. The vegetables and fruits chosen are organic to avoid pesticides as much as possible.
Cereals should be whole grain to avoid the blood sugar spike which will also be inflammatory.
Finally, dairy products should be avoided.
Foods to be favored to fight against inflammation:
We recommend that you consume foods such as:
- green tea
- citrus fruits
- cabbage, spinach
- fatty fish
- olive oil
- coconut oil
- dark chocolate
- chia seeds
To learn more, you can also watch our video dedicated to this subject.