Why Do You Get Bloated On Your Period
There just isnt much that is pleasant about being on your period. And reallyeven the days leading up to it can be just as annoying. For many women, its not just bleeding, cramping, and psycho mood swings: it also means bloating. You might be one of the 70 percent of women who deal with bloating during their cycle. If you look in the mirror and feel like your boating makes you look pregnant, you are not alone.But why is this happening? Is there anything you can do? Thankfullyyes! Well give you our favorite tips and tricks, but its also good to understand what is happening to your body so you can give yourself the best chance of feeling like a human being during your period.
Things To Do To Ease Period Bloating
Drink lots of water
As above, drinking enough water is key here. “On the days leading up to your period, make sure youre increasing your water intake,” advises Dr Chichi. Drinking lots of water while youre bloated may seem a bit odd, but actually, it will help get your digestive system moving and prevent wind and constipation, it will also help to flush out any excess water and sodium, and reduce swelling. Sounds easy enough, right?
Increase your physical activity
Again, probably not something that’d spring to mind, but this is also key. Dr Chichi explains that exercise can help with all symptoms of premenstrual syndrome , but particularly any pains, cramps, or discomfort around your digestive system. “Dont underestimate how effective exercise can be for bloating,” he shares. “It helps to expel gas and get your digestion working normally.”
Visit a GP
If lifestyle changes arent working for you, Dr Chichi points out that there is the option of the contraceptive pill. “The pill can reduce PMS symptoms, such as period bloating, but its about finding one that suits you and it may not work for everyone”.
Do note here: some women find that bloating is a side effect of the pill, however, for other women it can help. If at all interested, it’s worth booking an appointment with your GP for some expert advice.
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When To See A Healthcare Provider
If period bloating has become so severe that lifestyle changes do not help and you are unable to keep up with your daily activities, talk with your healthcare provider or gynecologist. They will likely ask you to keep a symptom diary to understand when the bloating starts and what helps it.
Your healthcare provider may recommend taking diuretic medication around your period to relieve water retention and bloating. Its important to note that diuretics should never be taken with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs because of the risk of kidney damage.
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What Are Signs Of Period Coming Discharge
Vaginal discharge before period is thick white discharge.
During your menstrual cycle, your vaginal discharge may change from time to time. At the beginning of your cycle, after menstruation ends, vaginal discharge is thick white. Some women may experience vaginal dryness just after period ends.
At the middle of your cycle or just before ovulation occurs, vaginal discharge becomes stretchy and egg white. After ovulation occurs and before your period, vaginal discharge is thick white again.
Changes in vaginal discharge are due to hormone changes during menstrual cycles. Thick white discharge is a sign your period is coming. It occurs due to low levels of progesterone and estrogen.
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We Should Drink About 12 Litres Of Fluid Every Day To Stop Us Getting Dehydrated
Staying hydrated is often recommended to reduce menstrual bloating. Some people believe that one of the ways to reduce bloating is to drink lots of water, as it may improve kidney function. Start drinking water especially on the days leading up to your menstrual period. The amount of water to be taken daily varies from person to person as well as environment and personal health factors. The NHS recommends that in climates such as the UKs, we should drink about 1.2 litres of fluid every day to stop us getting dehydrated. Take a water bottle with you all the time
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Is There Anything I Can Do To Alleviate Period Bloating
Remember: With period weight gain, you’re not gaining actual fat. It’s mostly just water weight thanks to your hormones . Still, you might not feel like waiting around five to seven days for your period to end before your body feels normal.
You can try these fairly quick fixes to at least minimize the period puffiness.
- Get more H2O. Drink tons of water, says Dr. Borchardtat least eight glasses per day to flush your system. Staying hydrated actually helps combat fluid retention, even if that might seem counterintuitive.
- Get moving. If you can, stick to your exercise routine in spite of your cramps and fatigue. “At least 30 minutes of exercise daily leading up to and during your cycle, with a good mix between weights and cardio, can help release endorphins and combat the hormonal effects ,” Dr. Borchardt says.
- Consider taking supplements. Dr. Borchardt says you can combat your hormonesand their side effects on your mood, hydration, and skinwith some supplements to reduce your PMS woes. She recommends a supplement like vitamin B, which can reduce bloating and other PMS symptoms.
- Get more magnesium in your diet. “Magnesium decreases bloating by contributing to the production of normal stomach acid. When stomach acid is low, there is increased bloating and gas,” says Dr. Chambers. To up your magnesium, you can take it as a supplement or add more magnesium-rich foods to your diet, like spinach.
Is Bloating A Sign Of Period Or Pregnancy
Bloating could be a symptom of either PMS or early pregnancy. Bloating before and during a period is triggered by changes in the levels of estrogen and progesterone. Hormonal changes in early pregnancy also cause a feeling of bloating, similar to common symptoms just before the start of your period. Bloating in early pregnancy makes some people feel more snug than usual in their clothes.
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How Oestrogen And Progesterone Can Cause Bloating And Weight Gain
An increase in oestrogen occurs in the days leading up to your period, which causes your body to retain more water and salt. The added water retention swells the cells in your body, and this sometimes results in some minor weight gain along with the feeling of being bloated and slightly puffy. Equally, a decrease in progesterone which occurs just before your period can also slow down your digestive system and cause bloating. Low progesterone can also cause diarrhoea this is another great example of how everyones body reacts differently, so its really just a matter of getting to know and understanding your own body!
What Even Are Prostaglandins
Yep, the partys not ready without prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are eicosanoids but since this is not a pop-quiz, lets just say that they act just like hormones, but arent hormones. Prostaglandins help your uterus contract to shed its lining every month, since one of their functions is to help muscles contract. Well, it happens that sometimes prostaglandins cause your intestines to contract as well, and this worsens gas build-up. And this is how you get bloating.As you can see, a powerful combination of oestrogen, progesterone and prostaglandins is causing you to be bloated and gassy during your period. Sometimes birth control helps, but you should talk to your doctor.
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Period Bloating: Why You Get It And How To Manage It Naturally
As if cravings, irritability, stomach cramps and fatigue werenât enough to have to deal with around your period, thereâs one other very uncomfortable symptom that many of us have to deal with: bloating.
For some, this extreme bloating during their period is so painful and debilitating, that it prevents them from performing even the simplest of everyday tasks. For others, bloating and gas during their period lasts for days, and really disrupts normal life.
Now, what is it that causes this swollen belly syndrome in so many women around their period? More importantly, what remedies are there to help to keep it contained?
When Is Period Bloating A Sign Of Something More Serious
Symptoms of bloating should be short-lived, lasting only a few days, Dweck says. They usually resolve with onset of flow. But there are moments when bloating may warrant a trip to a doctor, especially if your symptoms are starting to interfere with your day-to-day activities.
Certain ovarian and gastrointestinal conditions can present with persistent bloating, and this should be evaluated by your doctor, Patrusky explains. And while these issues can be serious, Dweck says it’s best to avoid falling down a Google hole of anxiety, especially if you think your bloating symptoms are a sign of a potentially grave health issues.
Dr. Google will surely scare many readers about bloating and ovarian cancer, she explains. Ovarian cancer is rare, but difficult to diagnose early, and is often associated with vague GI symptoms. She does say, though, that any persistent, worsening or increased severity in bloating warrants a trip to your doctor. This also applies to PMS or menstrual bloating that doesnt resolve cyclically, Dweck says.
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Eat Protein And Potassium Rich Foods
In addition to avoiding salty foods, fill your plate with potassium rich foods like bananas, asparagus, melon, avocado, sweet potato and tomatoes to help maintain a good balance of fluids in your system. These type of foods helps to lower prostaglandins, which are a group of hormones responsible for causing bloating and muscle contractions. Research shows potassium decreases sodium levels and increases urine production. In this way, potassium may help reduce water retention and improve period bloating. Also try cucumbers, lemon juice, watermelon, garlic and ginger as these type of foods act as natural diuretics.
What Can I Do
As bloating is largely caused by water retention, try the following tips to reduce water retention in the body, in turn reducing bloating:
1. Avoid salty or processed foods
These contribute to water retention and can make your bloating worse. Instead, focus on eating fruit, veg and whole grains.
2. Eat protein
Try chicken, eggs and healthy fats like nuts, avocados, salmon and chia seeds.
3. Avoid anything rich in fibre
This will contribute to gas and in turn bloating.
4. Avoid caffeine and alcohol
Caffeine is a stimulant which can further upset your digestive system, and alcohol contributes to bloating.
If you find it hard to skip your morning cup of coffee , try replacing it with a drink that has less caffeine, like tea, or substitute some of the caffeinated coffee for decaf.
5. Eat foods rich in potassium
Research shows potassium decreases sodium levels and increases urine production, helping to reduce water retention and improve bloating. Potassium-rich foods include: spinach, sweet potato, bananas, avocados and tomatoes.
6. Practice light exercise
This can boost sluggish digestion and help to clear any excess gas from the body to reduce bloating. It has also been found to help many other PMS symptoms. Lighter workouts like swimming and yoga are best. High-intensity workouts can promote inflammation, adding to the bloat.
7. Try diuretics
8. Avoid refined carbohydrates
9. Birth control
10. Avoid foods that cause gas
11. Avoid fizzy and sugary drinks
12. More shuteye
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Oestrogen Is Ready To Cause Trouble
During your cycle, the levels of the hormone oestrogen will rise, peak, and then decrease. Simple, right? Well, not so much.
Oestrogen peaks around the 14th day of your cycle and then decreases steadily, but while doing it, it really does a number on your intestine. Oestrogen affects the receptors in your stomach and small intestine. Specifically, oestrogen reduces bowel motility, which means food moves more slowly through your intestine.
As such, it is common to experience some flatulence and constipation. And since your intestine is not working properly, theres a build up of gas which causes bloating.
Do you struggle with menstrual pains? Check some home remedies for period cramps.
Why Are Women Bloated During Periods
The main reason for bloating during a period is a fluctuation in hormones. When you are approaching the start of your period, your progesterone levels tend to fall, causing the uterus to shed its thickened lining, which results in menstrual bleeding. Such activities in your body lead to increased sensitivity, bloating, and general discomfort.
Moreover, changes in progesterone and estrogen levels cause your body to retain more water and salt, which again leads to bloating. So hormones are not the only ones to blame for your mood swings during PMS, they are also the culprits when it comes to answering the question why you bloat on your period
However, bloating can also be connected to your genes, your diet, as well as your alcohol and caffeine consumption. Check the tips in this article to see which changes you should implement in your daily routine to keep bloating under control.
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Why Am I So Bloated And Gassy During My Period
Many, many women feel some bloating during their periods. The tummy feels full and tight to touch and might even be painful or at least cause some discomfort.
It is also common to pass gas frequently just before and during the days of menstruation. There are also women who experience intestinal symptoms which affect bowel movements yes, the so-called period poop.
But why do women get so bloated and gassy during periods? It has a perfectly logical albeit not very satisfactory explanation. Read on!
Here Are Some Foods You Can Incorporate Into Your Diet If You Experience Period Bloating
Pumpkin seeds can help reduce bloating
Periods can be uncomfortable and tiring to deal with. Menstruating for an average of 4-5 days each month can be exhausting. Besides the bleeding, there are various other symptoms that one may experience during their periods.
One of the most common symptoms of periods is bloating. Bloating refers to constipation or tightness around the stomach. Bloating during periods can be due to digestion issues which are very common among menstruating women.
Some foods can poorly affect our digestion and worsen pre-existing bloating. Whereas, some foods can help curb this boating. In this article, we discuss foods to add to your diet if you experience bloating during periods.
9 foods that reduce period bloating:
1. Peanut butter
Peanuts or peanut butter are very rich in magnesium. Magnesium is one of the key minerals that aid smooth digestion. Consuming magnesium-rich foods ensure your digestive system works properly which reduces bloating.
Ginger is one of the most popular solutions to various digestive issues. Ginger can also help curb bloating especially period bloating. Besides improving digestion it also has anti-inflammatory properties which help soothe other digestion issues as well.
Kiwi is rich in the enzyme called actinidin. These enzyme hooks decrease bloating by aiding better digestion. Kiwi is also abundant in fibre and water. Both of these components play an integral role in digestion.
5. Dark chocolate
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How To Minimise And Manage Bloating
Period bloating isnt a nice feeling, so even if you know its going to disappear after your period comes, you may want to try a few tricks to lessen the impact. While you cant always prevent bloating completely, there are some home remedies that can help:
Do you experience bad bloating around your period? Wed love to know how you manage it. Share in our or drop us a note on Insta @itsyoppie. Don’t forget that our personalised period subscription box can get organic tampons delivered easily and regularly through your letterbox, which is one less worry to weigh you down.
Bring Up A Diuretic To Your Doc
Lauren Streicher, MD, clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, sometimes prescribes her patients a mild diuretic to help with bloating.
Its one thing to gain a little weight or be bloated, but some women also get really significant breast tenderness because of the water retention and a mild diuretic can be very helpful with that, she says. Its definitely not harmful.
There are also natural diuretics that you may already be consuming on a regular basis, such as caffeine, Dr. Streicher says. Of course, some people dont do well with caffeine, so I will always tell patients to also drink plenty of water and to restrict never fluid, she says.
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Why Does It Happen
The main reason you can end up with bloating around your period is due to the hormonal chemical changes that come with your menstrual cycle, namely changes in levels of the sex hormones progesterone and estrogen.
As well as causing menstrual bleeding, research suggests that changes in progesterone and estrogen levels cause the body to retain more water and salt. The bodys cells become swollen with water, causing the feeling of bloating.
A 2011 study found that women retained most water and experienced the worst bloating on the first day of their period.