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Period Problems? 14 Foods To Eat And To Avoid When Aunt Flo Comes Calling

Periods can be quite annoying and unpleasant for a lot of women. While some people have mood swings, others can barely get out of bed due to abdominal cramping, nausea, bloating, and fatigue. Amid all this discomfort, do you find yourself craving fries, burgers, sweets, and other high-carb foods? You are not alone! However, eating junk food isn’t really making things better. Sure, it feels comforting for a little while, but it could end up making you feel more sluggish! In case you are wondering what to eat during your period to make your ordeal easier, we’ve got you covered.

Eating right during your periods can help you deal with the discomfort better. While some types of food can escalate bloating and nausea, there are other foods to eat during your period that can help you alleviate the uneasiness. Scroll ahead to find out what you should eat, as well as foods to avoid during your period.

Foods To Eat During Periods

Let’s be honest- even without symptoms, periods aren’t easy on anyone. Sudden cravings are also often accompanied by an increase in hunger, and that should not be ignored. However, eating right can not only help you satiate your hunger and curb cravings but can also make you feel much better! Below is a list of foods to eat during your period.


Fruits to eat during period

To combat sugar cravings, try and reach for sweet fruits instead of processed food with refined sugar. Water-rich fruits such as watermelon, strawberries, oranges, cucumber will help you stay hydrated. Staying hydrated is important especially during your period to avoid feeling fatigued and to reduce the likelihood of bloating. Many women also struggle with digestive issues during their period, in which case, eating bananas can help. Apart from these fruits, citrus fruits help regulate your mood and make you feel better.

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Green Leafy Vegetables

Green Leafy Vegetables - foods for periods

Your iron levels can drop during your period, especially if you experience heavy bleeding. This is why it is important to consume iron-rich food to replenish your body’s iron levels. You can do so by adding green leafy vegetables such as spinach, radish leaves, kale, and parsley to your diet.


Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that can help relax your achy muscles. Besides, it may also help with reducing nausea. Having ginger tea during your period can make you feel more comfortable and improve some symptoms of menstruation. However, have it in the right quantity as too much ginger can cause heartburn.

Chicken And Fish

Chicken And Fish - food to eat during period

Chicken is packed with proteins and iron. Consuming it will not only help you replenish your iron levels, but will also help you stay full, thereby curbing your cravings. In fact, fish is among the best foods to eat during your period as it can help relax muscles and relieve cramps. Besides iron and protein, fish is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which can reduce the intensity of period pain.

Dark Chocolate

Dark Chocolate - best food during periods

Not only is dark chocolate a great comfort food, but it is also one of the best foods to eat during period. Dark chocolate is a good source of iron and magnesium. Magnesium can help you increase energy levels, and regulate serotonin. It is a great option for those who experience mood swings during their periods. However, choose chocolates that contain 65 percent or higher cocoa content. 


Nuts - food to eat during period

A lot of women experience low energy levels during their periods, owing to hormonal changes. At such a time, munching on nuts can work wonders! Packed with nutrients, nuts can boost your energy levels and can help ward off tiredness. Besides, nuts are also great sources of protein and omega-3 fatty acids that work to relax your muscles.


Yogurt contains calcium and magnesium. While magnesium can help boost your energy levels, calcium can help relax your muscles and ease menstrual cramps and aches.


Quinoa is packed with nutrients such as iron, protein and magnesium, and is one of the best foods during periods. It is gluten-free, and has a low glycemic index, making you feel satiated and full for a long time.

Foods to Avoid During Periods

Sugar cravings will likely hit you during your period, but it is important to remember that refined sugars and processed food might worsen the symptoms of your period. While it is okay to give in to your cravings occasionally, don’t make it a habit. Scroll down to find out which foods to avoid during your period.


Consuming too much sugar during your period is not a great idea, even though having it may feel really comforting. Here’s the catch- eating too much sugar can cause a short-term spike in blood sugar, followed by a major crash, which might worsen your mood. Reach for fruits instead of sweet snacks as they can also add to the bloating and gas.

Spicy Food

Spicy Foods - foods to avoid during period

Many women experience some digestive distress during menstruation, in which case, it isn’t wise to add to it by eating spicy foods. This can cause acid reflux, and can also upset your stomach. Avoid spicy foods at such times, especially if your tolerance for spice is already low.

Processed Foods

It is best to avoid processed foods during your period as it usually contains high sodium, chemicals and preservatives. The problem with high-sodium foods is that they can make you feel bloated. When your salt intake is high, your body retains fluid in order to dilute the excess sodium.

Fried And High-Fat Foods

High-fat foods and foods containing trans fats increase inflammation in the body, which can contribute to period pain. Instead, stick to whole foods, protein-rich foods to avoid worsening of period symptoms.  

Carbonated Drinks

Any kind of carbonated drink can cause bloating, which is why it is best to avoid carbonated drinks during your period. Instead, increase your water intake to avoid dehydration and to ease water retention.


Coffee - foods to avoid during period

Drinking coffee during your period might cause digestive issues, water retention, and bloating. It can also cause constipation and headaches. However, if you are used to having coffee every day and absolutely cannot function without it, reduce its consumption instead of cutting it out completely.  


Do you have further questions about what to eat during your period? We have answered a few questions below related to diet during periods, fruits to eat during periods, foods to avoid during period, and more.

How does eating citrus fruits affect your period?

Citrus Food - fruits to eat during periods

Citrus fruits are packed with fiber and Vitamin C and are high in water content. Not only do citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, and limes keep you hydrated, but they can also help regulate your mood. You can safely consume these fruits during your period.

Should we take supplements for periods?

Vitamin and mineral deficiencies can make your period symptoms worse, which is why you need to load up on those by consuming foods rich in nutrients. But it is best to consult a health professional/doctor before taking supplements for relief from period symptoms.   

What Indian food to eat during periods?

There’s no need to drastically change your diet while you are menstruating. As for an Indian diet during periods, you can try and include more vegetables such as spinach, cabbage, beetroot owing to their rich fiber and iron content. Avoid extremely spicy food, as mentioned above.

What should I eat to reduce period pain?

Try and consume foods that are rich in Omega 3 fatty acids such as fish and nuts. Omega-3 fatty acids help reduce inflammation and can help greatly in relaxing your muscles and making period pain more manageable.

Can we drink milk during period?

While milk is regarded as a complete food and has many nutrients, you should try and avoid it during your period. Consuming too much milk or even dairy products may worsen your period cramps and can also lead to bloating.  

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We hope this list of what to eat during your period helps you power through the monthly ordeal and makes your period symptoms more manageable.

Featured Image: Unsplash, Freepik

13 Aug 2021

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