That time of the month not only makes you moody, but bloating during your period is another huge downer. Even though you can’t prevent this naturally occurring issue from happening in the first place, you can stop it dead in its tracks when it starts. There are some simple tips to fight bloating during your period I have been using for years and I highly recommend you do the same! No need to lounge around in your yoga pants all week dear, just take these 11 tips with you, and slip on your favorite pair of jeans instead!
1. Drink Fennel Tea
Fennel seed might have a funky smell, but it’s one of the best agents for fighting bloating during your period. Fennel seeds, which come from the fennel plant, are miraculous little gems for fighting water weight. They also help with indigestion, constipation and nausea. Many ethnic cultures actually chew them after meals because they help with digestion and prevent bloating. Fennel teas are an easy way to fight bloating around the clock, without having to chew the seeds. Just drinking the tea can help your body shed water weight, get rid of any digestive disturbances due to your period, and it actually helps restore your hormones since fennel is a fantastic source of phytoestrogens. I like to sweeten mine up with stevia, lemon and cinnamon for a better tasting tea that also fights food cravings for sugar and salt.
2. Add Flax
During your period, bloating can occur from both water weight gain and constipation. The last thing you want to be is both! Adding some flax can help move things along. The fiber is easily digested and won’t cause bloating or gas like fiber supplements will. The specific lignans and fibers in flax also help promote more frequent and healthy bowel movements. Flax seeds are also a great source of phytoestrogens, which can help enhance your mood during your period which occurs due to estrogen loss. Just be sure to buy them ground so your body can absorb all their magical benefits. Chia seeds are another great idea with many of the same benefits, except they don't contain phytoestrogens. You can eat them whole or ground.
3. Eat Your Diuretics
Celery, parsley, dandelion tea or greens, cucumbers, asparagus, onions and fresh fennel are all some of the best sources of food diuretics you can consume. They help shed water weight from the body and also provide anti-inflammatory benefits that can help some of your period symptoms as well. These foods are also easy to digest, so long as you don’t add bloating beans and cruciferous veggies alongside of them.
4. Drink a Tea Blend
Another great idea, outside from fennel tea, is to drink a specific tea formula to help slim you down. This is a natural way to fight water weight, and isn’t harmful like over the counter diuretics can be. My favorite blend is Weightless by Traditional Medicines and Yogi brand's Detox blend is a great product as well.
5. Drink Water
I know you feel like drinking water might make your weight gain worse, but if you don’t drink water, things start to slow down on the inside! You need to consistently flush your body out by drinking water. This fights water weight, toxic buildup, food cravings and constipation. Add a slice of lemon, which is also a natural diuretic, and a great remedy to poor digestion.
6. Ginger It up
During your period, I’d suggest upping your intake of fresh ginger root and the ground spice. Ginger is a great way to fight bloating. It aids in digestion, nausea, gets rid of cramps and indigestion, and even headaches. Add fresh shaved ginger to oatmeal for a slimming breakfast, or even add an inch of fresh ginger to a smoothie. You can also use the powdered ginger which I like. I enjoy sprinkling it on everything from fresh brewed tea, steamed fish, yogurt and smoothies. It even makes a fun addition to salads as well by adding a flavorful little punch!
7. Walk Each Day
If you’re not up for exercising during your period, that’s okay, but be sure you at least take a little walk once or twice a day around the block, or on a treadmill. Walking helps decrease bloating and moves things along in your digestive tract. It also fights water weight gain by increasing flow in your kidneys as well. Just 20-30 minutes should do the trick!
8. Eat Protein
Protein is important for all your meals, but especially during your period. How does it help with bloating, you might ask? Well, lean sources of protein contain no sugary or starchy carbs, which can bloat you up and add to water weight gain. Protein’s amino acid complex also slims you down and actually flattens your belly. Fish is one of the easiest to digest sources of protein, and one of the most slimming. As a bonus, it helps curb your sweet tooth and starchy cravings which let’s be honest; these can both get a little out of hand during your period!
9. Digestive Enzymes
Most of us have digestive issues during our period, because hormone fluctuations cause the body to not only add water weight, but also decrease optimal digestion. To fight this, just add some digestive enzymes into your routine. I take one before each meal, or you can take one after.I like Rainbow Light brand, which are vegan and contain no allergens. It’s a great way to help your body break down your food easier, which can become compromised during your period, or from other stresses in the body.
10. Take Probiotics
Another great idea is to take probiotics to fight bloating. Probiotics don’t just help with digestive issues, but also break down gas in the digestive tract, and help move things along so water weight is less of an issue. I like Renew Life brand, Garden of Life Brand and Phillips brand of probiotics. All are different prices ranges, and available for various types of budgets. The healthy bacteria in probiotics help everything from gas, nausea, indigestion, diarrhea, and constipation. If you tolerate dairy, eating a Greek yogurt once a day without added sugar, is also a great way to get in some healthy bugs!
11. Do Yoga
Yoga is a gentle form of exercise that literally detoxes your organs. The twists, inversions, and various movements help to decrease your bloating, just by increasing your blood flow. Doing just 10-20 minutes a day can help fight bloating from water weight, gas, and even other digestive issues. It even relieves headaches! Check out a video on You Tube, which are often free, or pop in your own DVD if you don’t feel like heading to a class.