Increasing your intake of calcium and vitamin D may help to reduce symptoms of PMS, says a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Chow down yogurt, a hearty source of calcium. The good bacteria cultures in yogurt also promote healthy digestion to soothe tummy troubles during that time of the month.
2. Whole Grains
Combat fatigue and sluggishness by swopping your white rice and bread for whole grain alternatives like brown rice.
Whole grains are a great source of magnesium, and studies suggest that magnesium can help alleviate menstrual pain. They’re also chock full of fibre to keep you full for longer and aid healthy bowel movement.
High in potassium and vitamin B6, bananas ease bloating and help your muscles relax (including your uterus!).
Getting enough potassium also helps to regulate blood pressure and send oxygen to your brain – all useful in keeping your mood in check!
4. Fatty Fish
Get your omega-3 fix from fatty fish like salmon and tuna.
Omega-3 fatty acids aren’t just good for your heart, but have also been shown to help ease muscle tension and reduce cramps during your period. Other alternative sources of omega-3 include walnuts and chia seeds
Broccoli is a good source of fibre, vitamin B6, vitamin E and magnesium – all of which are useful nutrients to help you beat PMS and regulate your digestion.
Broccoli is also one of the veggies that has iron (others include spinach and kale).
6. Red Meat
Your body’s iron levels drop when you have your period, and this can cause you to feel sluggish or light-headed.
Take this as your free pass to indulge in some steak. If you prefer getting iron from non-meat sources, add more lentils, beans, spinach, kale and broccoli to your diet.
7. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is high in antioxidants and magnesium to help ease cramps and mood swings.
It also stimulates the production of endorphins, otherwise known as “happy hormones” that keep you calm and cheery. Just remember: the darker the better!
Text: Dawn Chen/SHAPE