|Picture got from LiveStrong|
So, some of you might be dreading our "lovely" monthly visitor and I mean, it's annoying having it, but if you look at my post from a few months back about how to stop period cramps, you won't dread it that much anymore as you will experience no discomfort, have more energy and the only annoying thing will be having to....*cough* TMI, Sammy *cough*.....every few hours.
Anyways, this post is about the best things to eat when on your period.
During our period, we lose quite a bit of vitamins and minerals. The ones most popularly discussed, and I'm guessing because we lose a greater amount of them than the other nutrients, are iron and calcium. This means that during our periods, we have to eat more foods containing these minerals and also, during the week after our period for best results.
As you all know, I am on a plant-based diet and I believe that nutrients from plants are absorbed more easily by the body than the nutrients from other sources such as meats. Therefore, I am going to be talking to you about plant-based things to eat while on your period.
1. Green Smoothies
Green smoothies are a delicious store of nutrients we need to stock up on while on our period. Depending on what greens you put in them, the can contain not just iron, but the calcium that you need during your period. A green smoothie I had yesterday contained frozen raspberries, frozen pineapples, mangoes, jazz apples, clementines, orange, spinach and kale. I drank just under a litre of this smoothie. This drink is packed with nutrients that not only help with keeping healthy and in tip-top shape during your period, but with keeping you healthy, glowing and full of energy every day.
I will highlight 4 ingredients in it - the clementines, oranges, spinach and kale. Citrus fruits are known to contain vitamin C which is needed in the absorption of iron by the body. Therefore, by including this in the smoothie, we are aiding our body in absorbing the iron we are feeding it.
A clementine contains about 35mg of vitamin C, about 60% of the amount of vitamin C a human on a 2000 calorie diet is expected to consume. Also, it contain 22mg of calcium which is 3% of the amount a human is expected to consume if on a 2000 calorie diet.
In my smoothie, I used 1 large orange. This contains about 95.1mg of vitamin C, 51.3mg of calcium and 0.18mg of iron.
100g of spinach contains about 26.8mg of vitamin C, 66mg of calcium and 2.7mg of iron.
100g of kale contains about 116.7mg of vitamin C, 110mg of calcium and 1.44mg of iron.
Green smoothies can contain as many or as few fruits and vegetables as you want and these aren't limited to the ones I have mentioned above.
Oh! And in case you were wondering, green smoothies are delicious! :)
2. Tomato Soup
A tomato can contain up to 41% of the expected amount (EA) of vitamin C for a human on a 2000 calorie diet, 1% of the EA of calcium and 2% of the EA of iron.
As we all know, tomato soups do not contain just tomatoes. Sometimes, they contain many more ingredients such as bell peppers, which contain up to 305% of the EA of vitamin C, 1% of the EA of calcium and 2% of the EA of iron, shallots, which contain 13% of the EA of vitamin C, 3% of the EA of calcium and 6% of the EA of iron (when 10 tablespoons are used), garlic, ginger, et cetera, all which contain amounts of these nutrients.
Potatoes are one of my favourite things to eat, so it shouldn't be a surprise that they are on this list. 1 large potato contains 121% of the EA of vitamin C, 4% of the EA of calcium and 16% of the EA of iron while a small potato contains 55%, 2% and 7%, respectively. This makes potatoes really good to eat while on your period (and whenever! I love potatoes!).
Potatoes can also be eaten with a tomato sauce which will also increase the amount of these needed nutrients consumed.
4. Medjool Dates
I snack on these throughout the day. I love them so much. 4 medjool dates contain about 5.56% of the EA of iron 6% of the EA of calcium. Therefore, they are a delicious and sweet way to get in these nutrients.
All mushrooms contain at least 1% of the EA of iron. However, chanterelle, enoki, oyster and morel mushrooms contain much more than 1% with morel mushroom containing as much as 67% of the EA of iron. This means that a mushroom soup, sauce, side dish or meal will be good for a woman on her period.
So, remember, vitamin C, iron and calcium rich plant-based foods are the best things you could possibly eat during your period.
I hope this list helps you all!
p.s These foods will also help anaemic people. However, I do not advice you to stop taking your iron pills until you feel healthy enough or you feel you can get in a good amount of iron into your body daily. You can also use these foods to reduce the amount of iron pills you require daily, but please note, I am not a doctor. I speak mainly from experience, I overcame anaemia about a year ago.