Ok, ladies, we’ve all been there...
It’s that time of the month again, and no matter what you do, you can’t stop thinking about that chocolate candy bar. You just ate lunch, so you’re not even hungry, but your body is telling you that you won’t be happy until you give into that craving and just eat a little bit… And by a little bit, I mean all of it. Time to do something about it!
🍫 Exactly what causes period cravings
✌ How to kick cravings to the curb
🤒 How to avoid bloating and other "monthly" symptoms
Cravings are a natural side effect of having a period, and everyone craves different things, from sweet chocolate, greasy pizza, to that soda we know we shouldn’t drink. Many of the foods we crave can even make your periods worse and harder to deal with. It is like a never ending cycle where we find comfort in food that doesn’t find comfort in us. Certain foods we crave are known to cause bloating and impact our sleep, which then makes us more irritable and exhausted.
These cravings come on strong and can be difficult to ignore, and with everything else your period is putting your body through, we tell ourselves that we deserve it and we cave in.
Unfortunately, caving in can have many adverse side effects and knowing how to deal with your cravings and prepare for them can have a significant impact on your menstrual experience.
Most women experience cravings either before or during their period due to a change in hormones. As you begin your cycle your cortisol levels spike, all while your serotonin levels drop. This means that simultaneously your stress levels are rising while your feel good hormones are dropping and your body begins to seek ways to find comfort and happiness again. One way to do this is through sugary and fatty foods that your body knows will give it a sudden release of “feel good hormones.” These foods that you crave are meant to keep your body happy and relaxed.
Whether you are on your period or not, your hormone levels are constantly changing throughout the entire month and the cravings you feel right before your period are not actually a response to your period, but rather a response to recent ovulation.
Post ovulation, your estrogen and progesterone become imbalanced, which can lead to changes in mood, anxiety, and food cravings. It is this that we often associate with our periods because it occurs the week before and it is actually the start of your period that helps to even out our hormones. It is the drop in estrogen and progesterone levels that triggers the lining of the uterus to collapse, which causes your period. This decline in hormones is also often associated with a more calm and relaxed feeling with fewer cravings as your period progresses. This is why most women experience most of their cravings and changes in their mood the week before their period, or what we all know as PMS.
Food consumption plays a significant role right before our period starts. In fact, we don’t just crave food we shouldn’t have, but we actually consume more on a daily basis than we otherwise would.
If you are keeping track of your health, or have goals regarding weight loss, caloric intake and cravings can have an adverse effect and interfere with these goals as you consume more unhealthy foods and more calories. Some studies show an average increase of 500 calories a day in the week before your period begins. Over a period of seven days, this is an extra 3,500 calories.
Although period cravings are natural, they are not wanted. Yes, if you give into them they may make you feel better at that moment, but often the sugary, salty, and fatty foods that we crave can have a very negative impact. It can end up making you feel worse, make you more bloated, and giving into your cravings can have a negative impact on your health.
And if you are trying to maintain your weight, or lose weight, these cravings are the last thing you want. As mentioned, cravings can lead to the consumption of unhealthy foods and a significant increase in calories.
Giving into a craving is and eating something unhealthy any other time of the month is the same thing. Too many sugary and fatty foods can negatively impact your health, so the best way to not give in to cravings it to learn how to eliminate or limit them in the first place.
If you are trying to control your cravings before your period, the best way is to outsmart your cravings, and you can do this by limiting how often they may be occurring and finding healthier ways to give into them.
The first way you can outsmart your craving is by starting your day off with more protein. When you consume protein, you better control your blood sugar levels, and this will help you feel more satisfied throughout the day. Every morning, start your day off with at least 20 grams of protein, and you may find yourself experiencing fewer cravings throughout your day.
You can also cut down on cravings by making sure you are keeping yourself from being hungry throughout the day. If you know you won’t have time to make breakfast in the morning, prep something the night before that you can easily take with you, rather than going hungry. While cravings can happen even when we are not hungry, they are more likely to happen and be harder to give into when your body is in need of more fuel.
Cutting your caffeine intake can also be helpful. Many of us rely on caffeine every day to give us the energy we need to get all of our work done, but caffeine doesn’t always work well in conjunction with cravings and our periods because it can interfere with our stress levels, blood flow, and sleep patterns. The same thing goes for alcohol, and the last thing we need during a time when we are stressed and irritable are things that make us more stressed and more irritable. And, as we know, stress can make cravings more prevalent. Instead, rely on whole foods to give you energy or limit your caffeine and alcohol intake.
Finally, I understand that there will be times when cravings happen, and you will want to give into them. If you do decide to break down and give into them, then do it wisely, and you’ll be okay. One way to give into your cravings is by choosing to eat dark chocolates and almonds. This can provide you with the sweetness you crave and with a dose of healthy fat, rather than choosing something that is fried or greasy. You can also consume Detox Organics to satisfy your sweet cravings. Simply add it to some almond milk or your favorite type of yogurt, and you’ll have a delicious chocolate snack that is also healthy. So, instead of consuming sugary candy, you are choosing to consume herbs and vegetables that taste like chocolate.
There are many things you can do with Detox Organics besides mixing it is yogurt or almond milk. In fact, you can use it to make your own chocolate candies and desserts.
Making your own sweets with our superfoods powder when you know your body is going to be cravings sweets is a great way to get a head of the game.
Perhaps one of the positive aspects about cravings that are related to your menstrual cycle is that, unlike typical sugar cravings, these cravings can be predictable and we know when they are going to be impacting our lives.
⚡ Related: Learn How to Stop SUGAR Cravings for good
We can then prepare ourselves, make some healthier snacks, and store them in the fridge. This way, when you have a craving you can’t get rid of all you have to do is reach in and grab one. When you do this, you are less likely to impact your health and may even consume fewer calories than you would when you reach for less healthy alternatives.