This is what you should and should not eat during periods

That time of the month is really challenging for every woman no matter at what age you are. From mood swings to cravings to cramps — everything can test your patience and sanity as well. If you have tried everything under the sun to soothe your cramps and settle your mood swings, now try out these foods. There are foods one must take and one must avoid feeling better during periods. Eating the right foods during menstruation can help you to deal with those days better.

So, here goes your list:

  • Eat proteins - Include more of dals, tofu, paneer and boiled eggs in your diet, especially in your lunch. Protein in your diet will help you to keep your blood sugar levels in check and limit sugar craving that is common during this time. However, stay away from legumes such as chickpeas, kidney beans, black-eyed peas etc., as they can cause bloating. Also stay away from spicy chicken and fish curries, which can cause nausea. Keep your diet simple and light.
  • Avoid caffeine - Caffeine is a stimulant that occurs naturally in plants, such as tea, coffee and cocoa beans. It's also added to various diet products and beverages. While caffeine affects people differently, it can contribute to irregular periods. Caffeine can also worsen agitated moods, sleep difficulties and menstrual pain. To avoid these risks, limit your intake of energy drinks, coffee, black tea, soft drinks, chocolate and coffee-flavored sweets.

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  • Eat vitamins - There are some vitamins that you can’t do without during your periods. Foods rich in Vitamin B6 can help you in reducing symptoms like bloating and control mood swings. So eat lots of pista, broccoli, tomatoes, corn and other fortified cereals that are rich in Vitamin B6. Lemons, oranges and sweet lime that are rich in Vitamin C are good for a woman’s reproductive health and can keep you energised during those days. Also, foods rich in Vitamin E like pumpkin seeds, peanuts and sunflower seeds help to reduce PMS symptoms.
  • Avoid meat and dairy products - The fats found in meats and dairy products are saturated. Similar to trans-fats, saturated fats can cause and worsen pain and inflammation during your period. It is recommended to eat more fish, lean meats and beans for protein for reduced pain. Avoiding high-fat cheese sauces, heavy cream, ice cream, meats with visible fat and dishes prepared with cheese or butter can also help.
  • Add nuts - These are packed with essential nutrients and are great to munch on during this time. However, avoided processed and salted ones as they could make you feel bloated due to high salt content. Keep in mind that nuts are high in calories so don’t go overboard with them.
  • Avoid refined grains - Refined grains lose much of the original grain's nutrient content during food processing. As a result, they can interfere with blood sugar and appetite control between meals -- factors that can worsen menstrual symptoms. Such as white bread, enriched pasta and sugary sweets, and opting for whole grains instead. Other common refined grain products include instant rice, low-fiber cereals, pretzels and commercially prepared cookies, cakes and pastries.