Foods, Recipes & Yoga to Curb Different Types of Period Cravings

how to stop period cravings

Foods, Recipes & Yoga to Curb Different Types of Period Cravings

The easiest way to stop period cravings at home is by making slight changes in your diet and practicing yoga asanas.

It’s 11.30 in the morning, and you’re hungry again. And the worst part of it all is you’re stuck in an hour-long business meeting at the moment!

Yes, not a very pleasant experience and neither a very rewarding one for your career when hunger and irritation are screaming through your facial expressions!

Well, this kind of agony is not new for women during their periods and neither are the other Premenstrual Symptoms (PMS). 

It’s, in fact, quite normal to encounter common period cravings for sugary foods and chocolate along with other weird period cravings for unusual food combinations “during that time of the month”. (Ever had salty chips with ice cream and chocolate tea? Yes, that’s the kind of weird I’m talking about.)

While a serious dip in serotonin levels is to be blamed for your intense craving for that bag of potato chips (carbs), these sudden hormonal shifts can spell trouble for all diet management plans.

Clearly, as much as periods are a blessing, excessive pre and post-period cravings can be a pain in the backside, whether you’re busy working, mothering, or just wanting to eat healthily.

And that’s why you must know how to manage cravings better so that periods don’t become an every-month nightmare.

So, how to stop period cravings?

Ladies, what you really need is planning and some changes to fight your period cravings other than just giving up. 

Listed below are some of the simplest ways to stop period cravings and control sudden hunger pangs.

 

How to Stop Period Cravings? [6 Easy Ways]

There are diverse ways to control cravings during the period. Some of them are as follows:

#1. Enhance your diet by adding more nutritious food.

#2. Choose healthy substitutes for the foods you are craving.

#3. Go for small regular meals rather than a few large meals. 

#4. Plan your meals wisely and stick to them.

#5. Undertake mindful eating to avoid needless calories leading to silent weight gain.

#6. Perform yoga to take control of your not-so-healthy cravings.

Adopting these simple rules might answer your question about how to stop cravings during periods.

And then you definitely don’t have to adjust when you can remedy your problems.

Let’s dig in a little deeper to know more about how to stop period cravings in detail.

 

#1. Revamp Your Diet 

You cannot disparage the power of a healthy balanced diet.

Having said that, the first and foremost answer to how to fight period cravings is leveling up your consumption of nutrients.

Here’s how to control cravings during period and have better authority over your eating habits:

#1. Eat complex carbs or fiber-rich foods to balance your blood sugar levels and ease your mood swings and food cravings.

E.g. – whole-grain pasta, brown rice, and cereals.

#2. Key macronutrient, protein, which is also known as the building block of our body not only helps rebuild tissues but also keeps you fuller for longer hours.

Hence, keeping control of your untimely cravings.

Some of the protein-rich foods are lentils, eggs, and fish.

#3. Add iron-rich foods to your diet.

It has been found that around 80-90% of the girls suffer from anemia and period forms one of the preeminent reasons behind it.

Therefore, adding iron and potassium-rich foods should be a must to prevent iron deficiency due to periods.

For instance, you can have bananas, spinach, apricots, and mushrooms.

#2. Say Hi! to Healthy Alternatives

Healthy alternatives are the most reliable way to barter with your period craving without sabotaging your diet.

Some of the common period cravings are for chocolate, ice cream, and spicy foods.

So, rather than having normal chocolate bars, develop the taste for dark chocolate. 

It has been found that dark chocolate is rich in magnesium. 

Just like that, you can substitute ice cream with frozen yogurt. 

This way you are adding calories but with additional benefits of probiotics.

#3. Hold On to Smaller Meals

It’s any day better to have small feeds at frequent intervals rather than just stuffing yourself with one large meal. 

To clarify, having smaller meals throughout the day successfully suppresses hunger pangs aka cravings. 

Moreover, it also helps in smooth digestion.

Furthermore, loading yourself with one large and heavy meal can make you sick. It’s not only unhealthy but unsafe as well.

#4. Plan Your Meals

Mostly, planning doesn’t fail to give results. 

If period food cravings are persistent in your case, you must try framing your meals beforehand.

For instance, either you can plan your meals weekly or the night before. Keeping a food journal can also help you.

However, what must be kept in mind is that not only planning but sticking to the meal plan is equally important when you think of how to stop period cravings.

Nevertheless, this is also an innovative way to take control of the nutrient intake in your hand.

#5. Remember the Rules of Mindful Eating 

Mindful eating is yet another way to curb and prevent different types of period cravings. 

To be precise, it is about being aware of your eating habits. 

Mindful eating includes: 

  1. Know what you are eating and when. 
  2. While practicing mindful eating to fight period cravings, you must analyze the quantity and quality of the food you are eating.
  3. Moreover, it is also important to know whether you are eating because you are hungry or is it just the craving.

Adding to this, mindful eating also involves diverting your mind from food.

For instance, to stop yourself from eating haphazardly, you can try talking to someone, watch videos, read books, or do anything that distracts you.

Remember, not seeing is not eating.

#6. You Go for Yoga Poses

Yoga is often associated with mental peace.

Research has found yoga can reduce binge eating.

Therefore, performing specific yoga poses like the cat pose relaxes your mind, minimizes the stress level, and, hence, takes command of the cravings.

Some of the yoga poses that might help to curb your period cravings include:

#1. Cat Pose

Follow the following steps for cat pose:

Step 1: Start on your fours and keep your knees in line with the hips and hands in line with the shoulder. 

Step 2: Inhale while dropping your chin to the chest and tilting your pelvis like a cat.

Step 3: The last step is to exhale while lifting your face towards the ceiling and arching your back in the opposite direction.

#2. Wind Pose

Perform the following steps for wind pose:

Step 1: Lie down with your face up.

Step 2: Slowly bring your knees to your chest and reach your arms around your shins.

Step 3: Keep your lower back pressed to the floor and take a slower and deeper breath.

#3. Thunderbolt

Step 1: Kneel and sit back on your heels.

Step 2: Rest your hands on your thighs and keep your shoulders back and down.

Step 3: Maintain the posture and take slow and deep breaths about 20 times.

#4. Seated Twist

Step 1: Sit with legs extended.

Step 2: Cross your left leg over your right leg and keep your left foot flat next to the right knee. 

Step 3: Slowly bring your right heel near your left hip. 

Step 4: Inhale and twist your torso to the left while wrapping your right hand around your left knee.

Step 5: Hold this position for about 10- 15 deep breaths. Switch sides and repeat.

#5. Child’s Pose

Step 1: Start on all your fours with knees under hips and hands under shoulders.

Step 2: Exhale and sit back on your heels. 

Step 3: Bend your hips and round your back and rest your chest on your thighs.

Step 4: Rest your forehead on the floor.

Step 5: Draw your arms back along the floor to the side of your thighs. Also, keep your palms up.

Step 6: Hold this position and take 20 deep breaths.

Focusing on these smooth yoga practices will take your mind off the not-so-diet-friendly cravings you feel during your periods.

Clearly, while you can’t control period cravings, you can definitely learn to deal with them in a healthy way.

Interestingly, there are also different types of food cravings, and dealing with each type has to be sorted out. 

 

Types of Period Cravings and How to Deal with Them

While craving for sugary foods is common during periods, there are other period cravings as well which differ from woman to woman.

Let’s have a look at different types of period cravings and what alternative you have for some of the common period craving foods.

#1. Chocolates

Chocolates are one of the most common and best-period craving foods.

The requirement for magnesium increases during periods. 

And cocoa, being rich in magnesium, often tops the list to curb this craving.

So, the answer to the question of what to eat when craving chocolate on period is dark chocolate.

Instead of regular processed chocolate with less magnesium, try dark chocolate with more magnesium content.

REASON: Lack of Magnesium

WHAT YOU CRAVE: All things chocolate like chocolate bars, brownies, and candy.

HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES: Dark chocolate, oats, green veggies, almonds, nuts, cashews, and seeds.

HEALTHY RECIPE: Hot Chocolate (use dark chocolate, recipe mentioned below) and oats cooked in milk, topped with nuts, and drizzled with honey and cashews coated with dark chocolate.

#2. Salty Foods

Periods cause fluctuation in hormones. 

Naturally, the adrenal glands which control hormonal imbalance get to work during periods. 

But the adrenal glands require various minerals to work; lack of which gives you the cravings for salty foods.

REASON: Lack of minerals.

WHAT YOU CRAVE: Potato chips, fries, and spicy noodles.

HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES: Humus, sunflower seeds, cottage cheese, pickles, and balsamic vinaigrette.

HEALTHY RECIPES: Sandwich with hummus spread and cottage cheese (check out the recipe below), homemade fries using less oil and salt.

NOTE: Salt sometimes worsens the symptoms of PMS, thus keeping your sodium intake concentrated helps avoid bloating and fluid retention.

#3. Sugar and Carbs

Sugar cravings before the period are quite normal as well as the most common.

The more you eat sugary foods, the more you crave them.

This happens because most of the time you consume simple sugar which gets digested quickly.

REASON: Rise in cortisol (stress hormone) and dip in serotonin (feel-good hormones).

WHAT YOU CRAVE: Doughnuts, ice cream, pastries, and milkshakes.

HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES: Fresh fruits with yogurt, homemade fruit leather, and energy balls.

HEALTHY RECIPES: Baked apples, homemade honey roasted nuts, and trail mix.

While you cannot completely stop period cravings, you can control them by making some changes in your lifestyle and eating habits.

So, next up, you’ll find some of the quick and healthy recipes for your pre and post-period cravings.

 

 

Healthy Recipes for Period Cravings

To placate your period cravings, here’s a ready-to-make list of some of the best foods for PMS cravings.

Let’s have a look.

#1. Hot Chocolate

Ingredients: Milk, cocoa, sugar, dark chocolate, and vanilla extract.

Preparation: 

Step 1: Boil milk in a saucepan.

Step 2: Add a teaspoon of cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and sugar (as per taste).

Step 3: Now, add some dark chocolate and brew it nicely.

That’s it! Hot chocolate made using dark chocolate could be one of your best foods for period cravings.

#2. Hummus Sandwich

Ingredients: Sandwich bread, hummus, olive oil, crushed black pepper, and cottage cheese.

Preparation 

Step 1: Take two slices of sandwich bread and spread hummus on both of them evenly.

Step 2: Put some crushed cottage cheese on one of the bread and sprinkle some crushed black pepper and drizzle some olive oil.

Step 3: Put the other bread over it and press it in a sandwich maker for 20-30 seconds.

Step 4: Eat it!!

#3. Sweet Oats

Ingredients: Milk, Oats, Honey, and Dry Fruits.

Preparation

Step 1: Keep around 2-3 small cups of milk on boiling.

Step 2: Add 3 big spoons/half-a-cup of oats into the milk.

Step 3: Keep stirring the oats till it gets cooked.

Step 4: Crush the dry fruits (cashews, almonds, raisins, walnuts) and mix them into the oats.

Step 5: Take it out in a bowl and drizzle it with honey as per your taste.

These were the three easy recipes for your sweet and salty period cravings.

Furthermore, you can try other such tasty yet healthy alternatives for your period cravings.

With these, you can essentially satiate your hunger for longer periods of time and feel at ease when you need to be ready and active.

Remember the business meeting mentioned in the beginning! Yes, you’ll be able to go through the entire session without rumblings in your stomach.

So, rather than surrendering to your not-so-healthy period pains, tame them and take back your power.

 

Take-Home Message

Period cravings could be as, if not more, irritating as period cramps.

But unlike period cramps, period cravings are much more likely to last long after your period ends.

And whether or not you are a fitness freak, it’s not hard to understand that filling your body with junk and fried foods, sugary foods for 2-3 weeks each month could degrade the quality of your health. 

So, knowing how to stop period cravings is your first plan of action in making your periods less miserable while staying healthy.

Satisfy your cravings with the same joy and without damaging your diet routine by switching to the healthier options mentioned above. 

Therefore, the next time you have sugar cravings during a period, prefer energy bars instead of doughnuts.

Plus, understand that it’s perfectly normal to have cravings for all kinds of foods, even those you don’t usually eat.

So, no matter how weird it feels, try not to judge, especially when aunt flo is visiting.

Regina Stemers
regina@horizonclinics.org

Dr. Regina Stemers spent many years as a general physician before developing an interest in the management of skin conditions. This has led her to take an active part in multiple research studies centered around skincare, aging, and other areas of female medical concerns. Read More... About Me

No Comments

Post A Comment