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7 Meals You Can Prepare For A Healthy Menstrual Cycle

Written by Reshma Pathare on Fri, 11 November 2022

Key Highlights

  • Periods are a time for stress and discomfort but focusing on healthy eating can provide a lot of comfort
  • The key to a healthy period diet is a good dietary balance of proteins, minerals, antioxidants and vitamins
  • Here are some recipes that combine the best of nutrients for a healthy menstrual cycle
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Does a happy period sound too good to be true? Actually, it's not. If a woman can maintain a good dietary balance, and draw up a meal plan for menstrual cycle, she can experience hassle-free menstruation.

But first, we need to understand what are the symptoms that make periods so miserable for women.

  • Bloating
  • Breast tenderness
  • Mood swings
  • Irritating attitude
  • Spotty skin or greasy hair

These symptoms are most common for women. However, the intensity may sometimes aggravate, which can make this time miserable for some women. Doctors and dietitians who have studied the matter have proposed a few dietary suggestions to have a happy period.
Setting a certain diet plan during periods for your menstrual cycle goes a long way in helping your overall health. But how do I plan my meals and what dishes to include? What are the best period comfort recipes? If these questions are on your mind, we urge you to read on!

Here are some meals you can include in your meal plan for a healthy menstrual cycle:

1. Cinnamon Dark Chocolate Chip Overnight Oats

Dark chocolate is one of the most craved foods by women during their period. A cinnamon dark chocolate with oats is a delicious healthy recipe that can not only benefit her health but also satiate her tongue.

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup almond milk/cow's milk/oat milk/soy milk
  • 1-2 tbsp pure maple syrup/honey
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp dark chocolate chips
  • ⅓ cup plain Greek yoghurt
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract (optional)
  • 1 tsp chia seeds (optional)
  • 1 banana (optional)

Instructions:

  • All the ingredients are mixed the night before, in a bowl or mason jar, and it is covered with a lid
  • The covered bowl or mason jar is placed in the refrigerator overnight
  • The next day morning, slice a banana and place it on top of the oats.

A tasty meal for your menstrual health is ready to serve.

2. Thai Ginger Chicken Stir Fry

If you are a Thai food lover, this recipe can work wonders. The ginger can alleviate the period pain whereas chicken can give you strength.

Ingredients:

  • 300 gm boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into strips or bite-sized pieces
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ cup fresh ginger, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • ¾ cup sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil leaves or cilantro (optional)
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice

Instructions:

  • The soy sauce, garlic, and honey are combined in a small bowl
  • The avocado oil is heated in a large frying pan or wok over medium-high heat.
  • The chicken breast pieces are seasoned with salt and pepper and cooked in the oil until it is brown.
  • Later, the mushrooms, bell pepper, and ginger are added to the pan and stirred for another 2 minutes.
  • Then, the sauce is poured on the chicken in high flame and stirred properly
  • Stir the pan on high flame for 2-3 minutes, until the sauce gets thicker.
  • Prepare the brown rice in a separate bowl, garnish with basil leaves and have it with the hot Thai chicken recipe

Have this meal hot and fresh!

3. Avocado Toast

Avocado is full of proteins and minerals which is extremely beneficial especially during periods. Avocados can be added to any meal during the day - breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Ingredients:

  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced
  • One large slice of multi-seed or multigrain + flax seed bread, toasted
  • ½ lemon
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 egg (optional)

Instructions

  • The avocado slices are arranged on toasted bread in an even layer.
  • Later the radish slices on top of the avocado.
  • A bit of lemon juice is squeezed over both slices
  • Bagel seasoning, mixed seeds, salt pepper are sprinkled on top of the slices.
  • If desired, a sprinkle of olive oil can be added
  • If desired, egg poaches or egg omelette can be added to this recipe. Toasted brown bread can be an ideal combination for this recipe

A well-balanced meal for menstrual health is ready to serve!

4. Smoothie Salad

There is nothing healthier than a fresh fruit salad. Now what can be done if you are craving a smoothie during menstruation, but your health needs salad?
Not to worry. Smoothie salad can be an ideal go-to recipe during your menstrual month to make you feel better. In fact, it can be one of the best meals to eat on your period.

Ingredients:

  • ½ fresh avocado
  • 2-3 big handfuls of fresh baby spinach
  • ⅓ cup plain Greek yoghurt
  • ⅓ cup banana slices
  • ⅓ cup blueberries
  • ⅓ cup raspberries
  • 1 ½ cup orange juice
  • ½ cup milk of choice
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp flax seeds

Instructions:

  • The avocado, Greek yoghurt, frozen banana, and frozen berries are placed in a blender.
  • The chia seeds, flax seeds, and protein powder if desired are added, then spinach is added within the blender's capacity
  • The orange juice and almond milk is poured into the blender
  • The mix is blended for 1-2 minutes until everything is totally combined. If needed, a couple of ice cubes can be added to thicken it up.

This is a meal that is a treat for the tongue as well as your menstrual health.

5. Cacao and Popped Amaranth Porridge

Mashed banana into a warm bowl of amaranth and cacao porridge is great as a thickener and natural sweetener, which can be an ideal food during menstruation

Ingredients:

  • 4 tbsp (or 1/4 cup) dry, unpopped Amaranth
  • 1 - 1.25 cups of water
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tbsp cacao powder
  • 1/3 cup egg whites
  • 1 tsp chia seeds (optional)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions:

  • To pop amaranth, a large saucepan is heated, that has a lid over high heat so the bottom becomes extremely hot.
  • One tablespoon at a time, amaranth is poured into the pan and is immediately covered with the lid.
  • Shake the pan to pop. It's important not to burn the Amarnath. 3 more tablespoons of the amaranth are added.
  • The banana is cut into two halves and one half is mashed completely into a puree.
  • Warm water is added to the popped amaranth. Chia seeds can be added additionally.
  • Mashed banana and cacao powder are added and the mixture is stirred again.
  • The porridge is stirred continuously to mix the egg whites
  • Vanilla extract can be added for flavour
  • The mixture is stirred continuously until it thickens.

6. Chia Seed Pudding

Chia seed pudding is a great breakfast alternative that is rich in protein, vitamins and antioxidants which also provide relief during menstruation
It takes only 5 minutes to prepare this easy recipe and it could be one of the best meals during periods.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups almond milk (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 cup chia seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tablespoons pure maple syrup or raw honey
  • Fresh fruits and nuts for topping

Instructions

  • All the ingredients-almond milk, chia seeds, vanilla extract and sweetener syrup is poured into a bowl.
  • The mixture is stirred well until it begins to thicken.
  • The mixture is further covered with plastic foil and kept in the refrigerator overnight
  • A little amount of water can be added if the pudding is thickened a bit more.
  • Fresh fruit and nuts can be added as toppings as per choice.

7. Vegan Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

If you want to make your menstruation time happier without thinking of calories, these vegan cookies can be your best friend. It may take nearly 30 minutes to prepare the dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup gluten-free whole wheat all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup oats
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon and nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¾ cup homemade pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup organic coconut sugar
  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • ½ tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips

Process of preparation

  • The oven is preheated to 350°F.
  • All the dry ingredients (flour, oats, cinnamon, baking soda, sea salt, nutmeg) are poured into a mixing bowl.
  • The wet ingredients (pumpkin, sugar, coconut oil, flaxseed and vanilla) are mixed in a separate bowl.
  • Now the wet and dry ingredients along with the chocolate chip are mixed together.
  • The mixture is poured evenly on a cookie sheet and pressed in cookie shape and thickness. Each cookie is kept at an inch distance.
  • Drop rounded Tablespoons onto a greased cookie sheet. Press cookie dough down into a cookie shape with a spoon or your fingers. The cookies won't spread very much so you can space them about 1 inch apart.
  • The cookies are baked for 15-16 minutes.
  • Keep it in a separate container to cool it down and later consumption

Conclusion

Periods can be a testing time, but if you stay focused on eating healthy meals, and follow a menstrual cycle diet plan, a lot of the symptoms can be alleviated. The idea is to have the right combination of nutrients - proteins, vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants in your meals, reason why it is important to know more about Meal Planning: How & Why You Should Do It. How does one ensure that?

Well, follow the above easy healthy food recipes for starters, and you can surely add more to the mix. We hope that this article has helped you gain some insights into the various meals/dishes you can include in your meal plan for a happy period!

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Reshma Pathare

Reshma Kulkarni-Pathare has been a self-employed media professional since 1999. Starting off as a Freelance Journalist for Times of India Thane Plus, Reshma went onto write for more than 45 national and international publications including Times of India, New Woman, Femina, Indian Express, The Hindu, BBC Good Homes and many more. While her forte has been lifestyle writing, she is equally proficient in writing health articles. Her health articles have been published in Health International (Dubai), New Woman, Femina, and Mother & Baby.

Apart from being a journalist, Reshma also works as a copy-editor for self-publishing houses and academic journals.

She is an award-winning bi-lingual translator with more than 12 books published in her name.

She has been a Visiting Faculty Member for post-graduate department of mass media at MET College (Mumbai) and Welingkar WeSchool (Mumbai).

She has worked as a Consumer Marketing Insights Researcher for global organizations like CEB Iconoculture (USA) and Gartner (USA).

Consolidating her multifarious skills in the media, in 2021, Reshma launched her own boutique media agency called Talking Turkey Communications, which specializes in content writing, editing, and translation.

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  1. 18 Period Recipes: Meals to Enjoy During The Time of The Month. Available from: https://www.healthworks.my/18-recipes-try-period/
  2. Conquer PMS With These 15 Delicious Recipes. Available from: https://www.brit.co/pms-recipes/
  3. Quick Recipes for Foods you Crave during Periods. Available from: https://mycarmesi.com/blogs/f/quick-recipes-for-foods-you-crave-during-periods
  4. A Food And Nutrition Nonprofit Helping People Live Healthier, Happier Lives. Available from: https://oldwayspt.org/recipes/aztec-amaranth-cocoa-porridge