Diet

Food to women's rescue

In recent years, the link between diet and health has been scientifically proven, thus the explosion of “medicine-foods”.

These foods are, for example, omega-3 enriched eggs, dairy products with added calcium, fruit juices with extra vitamins, etc. More and more studies focus more specifically on the links between diet, fertility and menstrual cycle. A diet tailored to each woman contributes to reduce the inconvenience and disruption of menstrual cycles and fertility. But first, you must understand your own cycle and be able to identify the various manifestations of your fertility their disturbances. To do this, the sympto-thermal method is one of the most effective natural methods. By taking your basal body temperature daily and noting the characteristics of cervical mucus and cervix, you’ll be able to determine your periods of fertility and infertility. You will have a global vision of your cycle, learn to understand better your body and adapt your diet accordingly.

Menstrual pain or dysmenorrhea

Women who feel more pain have more prostaglandin or are more sensitive to its effect than normal. In fact, this hormone leads to excessive contractions of the uterus, causing cramps. It also causes inflammation, which leads to bloating and pain. Some women as well experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or headaches during this period. Those most at risk are young girls and women who have not yet had children, women who have very heavy or extremely long periods, obese women, women with ligated Fallopian tubes and those who are exposed to stress, tobacco and alcohol.

Preventing pain
  • Drink a lot of water. Vasopressin, an antidiuretic hormone, stimulates the contractions of the uterus’s soft muscles. To reduce these contractions, you should drink at least eight glasses of water a day a few days before your period.
  • Eat more fatty fish (mackerel, salmon, herring, sardines), flaxseed, and hemp seeds and oil, which are important sources of omega-3 fatty acids, used to block the production of pro-inflammatory prostaglandins.
  • Eat less margarine and vegetable fat (look out for trans fats), red meat and refined sugars that produce pro-inflammatory prostaglandins.
  • Take nutritional supplements. Vitamin B12 enhances the effects of fatty acids; Vitamin E, an antioxidant, prevents the destruction of fatty acids; magnesium and calcium are muscle relaxants that help reduce cramping; Vitamin D helps calcium absorption; multivitamins and minerals are essential in the production of omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Sleep well and relax. Each person has different needs in terms of sleep. Lack of sleep increases stress which can cause pain in addition to other symptoms. It is therefore important to rest and relax.
  • Do regular and moderate exercise. Exercise reduces anxiety and improves resistance to stress. It causes the body to produce endorphins, hormones that provide an overall well-being and relieve pain. Active people are better prepared to deal with stress or emergencies when they arise or accumulate.
  • Limit your consumption of energy drinks and those containing caffeine; they prevent you from relaxing.
Too long or too heavy period

Many factors can explain a too long or too heavy period: endometriosis, the period following the cessation of oral contraceptives, lack of progesterone, reduced thyroid function, overweight, polycystic ovarian syndrome, fibroids (tumors of the muscular portion of the uterus ) or other conditions that contribute to the problem. It is therefore important to consult a doctor to ensure that you’re in good health, and once it’s confirmed, why not try some nutritional changes?

If you lose too much blood, or to the contrary, if you have bright-red losses with mucus, it’s a sign that your uterus’s healing mechanism is not working as well as it should.

To improve the healing
  • Eat iron-rich foods, such as meat, beans, blackstrap molasses, eggs, green vegetables. The ingestion of vitamin C at the same meal increases iron absorption.
  • Drink milk, rich in Vitamin A, which accelerates cell turnover, vitamin D, which affects the process of healing, vitamin E, which is full of antioxidants, and vitamin K, which stimulates the production of healing proteins.
  • Take nutritional supplements : vitamin A (eggs, oranges, carrots, sweet potatoes, apricots), vitamin B (cereal, legumes, eggs, pork meat, green veggies, cheese), vitamin C (guavas, currants, parsley, pepper, tarragon, cabbage, lemon, etc.), vitamin K (liver, broccoli, artichokes, celery, bananas, oatmeal, most legumes), vitamin E (sunflower, corn and grape seed oils, hazelnuts and almonds, wheat germ and fatty fish), vitamin D (fish oils, fatty fish), essential fatty acids, iron and zinc.
  • If unexpected heavy bleeding occurs, take chlorophyll tablets. Rich in vitamin K, they act quickly to reduce bleeding.
Reference
  • Marilyn M Shannon; 2009; « FERTILITY, CYCLES & NUTRITION », 4th Edition; The couple to Couple League International, Inc.
Seréna

Seréna Québec has refined the Symptothermal Method, a science-based fertility awareness method which empowers (ourselves, not an algorithm) to precisely identify the infertile phase and the fertile phase of each cycle, with 3 signs to observe and interpret in correlation: basal body temperature, cervical fluid and cervix. Users will adapt their sexual practices according to their objective (contraception or trying to conceive) during the fertile window. Recognized by the Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services and supervised by consulting physicians and scientists, Seréna Québec’s team and certified volunteers provide these services: Information service Teaching-sessions and follow-ups Conferences Training for professionals In these 5 fields of intervention : menstrual cycle’s health natural birth control natural conception return of fertility after birth perimenopause Adress : 6646 Saint-Denis, Montréal, Québec, H2S 2R9 Web site, Facebook page, DirectionCommunicationCoordination  

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