The Gorgeous Peeps

Monday, September 19, 2011

On Chocolates And Menstrual Cramps



So prolly its about time that I share something that deals with the "perks" of being a woman -- her monthly period. 

It is one torture that women experience at least every month, and eversince I had my menarche (the very first menstrual flow) I have always been reminded by my Godmother (a Nutritionist) of the food to avoid and one of them are chocolates. Girls usually have mad cravings prior to having their period, Im pretty sure most of you ladies experience this too. Im  not a fan of chocolates and indeed, I do get cravings for it whenever my period is coming. 

With regard to this, I found an article on Livestrong that basically says everything we need to know about the direct correlation of Chocolates and Menstrual Cramps. 

****

credits : http://www.menstrual-cycle.info

Overview

Menstrual cramps generally begin after your period has begun and often trigger the desire to binge on sweets in the hopes that the sugar will alleviate the pain. Cravings for chocolate are perhaps the most prevalent desire as it is widely considered to be a comfort food. But contrary to what might seem like a perfect antidote to feelings of discomfort, chocolate actually can aggravate symptoms, making the cramps much worse.


The Cause of Menstrual Cramps

Menstrual cramps are caused when the lining of the uterus releases a hormone-like substance called prostaglandin. As prostaglandin is dispensed into the system, it causes the uterus to undergo spasms or contractions, which are from increased production of the substance. It is normal to have mild to moderate cramping at the beginning of menstruation because of prostaglandin's inflammatory effect as well as its influence over the constriction and dilation of blood vessels, which also causes variations in blood pressure.

What Causes Chocolate Cravings

A craving for chocolate during the early menstrual cycle is often because of higher levels of hormones that are triggered as insulin increases. This causes low blood sugar. When blood sugar is low, the brain sends signals to the body that it needs more fuel, which is often a misguided message to eat chocolate and other types of sweets. Instead of chocolate, increasing the intake of complex carbohydrates such as whole grains will help counter fluctuating blood sugar levels, which in turn helps lessen cramps.

Chocolate's Effect on Menstrual Cramps

According to the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Drugs and Biologics, though chocolate contains a small amount of caffeine, it contains large amounts of theobromine, an alkaloid that is classified as a mild stimulant of the central nervous system. Because of this, chocolate can create a nervous condition that actually accentuates pain and discomfort.


credits : http://www,riteaid.com

Calcium, Not Chocolate

Chocolate is also considered an antidote to menstrual cramp pain because of its calcium content. According to Dr. Susan Link, director of the PMS Self-Help Center in Los Altos, Calif., women using calcium supplements have less cramp pain than those who do not augment their diets with the mineral. In this regard, it is best to take a calcium supplement rather than seeking calcium in chocolate. When combined with magnesium, which helps the body absorb the calcium, menstrual cramps can thus more realistically decrease without the aggravation of the stimulants found in chocolate.


Chocolate and PMS

Premenstrual syndrome, or PMS, often creates mood swings along with depression, irritability, anxiety, insomnia and other discomforts. PMS can occur up to two weeks before menstruation and is caused by hormonal fluctuations. As with menstrual cramps, chocolate cravings can become heightened during PMS, but it is best to avoid the urge to indulge as chocolate can inflame emotional symptoms because of its caffeine and theobromine content. Fighting the urge for sweets by supplementing them with whole grains along with calcium and magnesium supplements is as essential during PMS as it is throughout the course of menstruation.



**** 

Original article can be found HERE

The article says pretty much everything we need to know since I know a lot of girls who crave for chocolates before having their period. So before giving in to that mad craving, its nice to know that it can actually aggravate the discomfort that you might experience. So instead of munching on chocs, try chugging down a glass of milk or yogurt or just take Cal+Mag supplements to help ease the discomfort of menstrual cramps. 

Have a great week ahead, Fabulous People! 

Xoxo, 

3 comments:

  1. wow. this just made me crave some chocolate! haha.

    by the way, i just awarded you here: http://beekyoote.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-award.html !

    i hope you like it!
    ^_^

    ReplyDelete
  2. wow! interesting!!i always crave chocolate esp during my period!! now i know better! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. @rach : Not a fan of chocolates, we have tons at home and we dont really eat them anymore but there are times that I crave for chocolate before I get my period and thats prolly the culprit why I get cramps. :(

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for reading whats inside the Pink Thought Bubble ©

My readers inspire me to write better, would love to hear your questions & suggestions. Feel free to drop a comment.

Peace and Love!!
Dee (BabyJapRN)