Menstrual Bloating

10 Easy-to-make Natural Remedies to fight Pre-menstrual Bloating

There are plenty of side effects that the menses brings along with it. One problem that may not seem so big and yet is quite a bit of a trouble maker is the pre-menstrual bloating sensation. Nausea, a slight acidity and either a complete repulsion to food or intense cravings are all a result of the changes that occur in the gut and the walls of the gut during the period bloating.

Bloating often times goes away with the onset of the periods. It usually exists from three to four days (sometimes a whole week) before your periods begin. We don’t really need any medical treatment for bloating as it is not such a serious problem that it affects our daily lives and hence, a few simple home remedies will do a good enough job in curbing all the discomfort. However, if there is some serious pain and discomfort, you may opt to check with your physician.

Why do we bloat during periods and PMS?

Among the many organs of our body that the periods affect, the GIT (gastro intestinal tract) is one that is most evident to us with all the symptoms. This could probably be because the GIT lies within close proximity of the uterus and also that the walls of the gut are lined with muscles almost entirely that get affected during the periods. The most common reasons for pre-menstrual bloating,

Low Bowel motility    

The muscle movements of the walls of the gut go down due to decreased blood flow (As more blood goes in that direction) and this leads to low bowel motility and a lesser number of peristaltic movements that usual. This may lead to bloating and a gassing up of the stomach and the intestines.

Water Retention

Water retention is one of the most common side effects of periods. This leads to a swelling of the internal organs along with the external organs. The walls of the stomach and the lining swell as well and this makes it difficult for normal gut movements.

Hormonal Changes

Like many of the period problems, the bloating during periods can also be attributed to the changes that occur in the hormones – the estrogen and the progesterone levels in the body.

A swelling of the uterus (due to a lot of blood flow)

The uterus and the walls of the uterus swell up during the periods as the blood flow increases around the organ. This causes the gut (which lies right next to it) to constrict a bit. This may also lead to the bloating.

Sudden Muscular Spasms

As opposed to low bowel motility, PMS and periods are also characterized by an increase in sudden muscular spasms. This may lead the walls to have quick and intense bowel movements leaving the stomach empty and acidic. This can then lead to bloating.

10 Natural remedies for bloating during menstruation

A few herbal teas, the right foods and some good nutrition are all that it takes to heal the problematic menstrual bloating symptoms. We list out some of the simplest and the most effective remedies in healing this issue, for you to try out. Make sure that you don’t over-do these remedies and consult a doctor if you think that there is any added discomfort.

1. Peppermint tea

Peppermint tea is often used as one of the best remedies for healing a bloated stomach whether or not it is due to periods. This is because of the properties of peppermint to restore the bowel movements of the GIT to normal by stimulating the muscles in the walls. The menthol that is present in the peppermint tea is also of great help in preventing period-related fatigue and fighting the swelling around the stomach too. How do we make this great drink at home? Here’s your guide.

  • Find and buy some peppermint leaves from a herbal store near your location.
  • Take some water and bring it to boil.
  • Add these leaves and continue with the boiling.
  • Once the water turns yellow, strain it out and drink it. Add some honey to the tea if you would like to make it more palatable to the tongue.

2. Lemon juice           

Lemon juice is one of those multi-purpose drinks that work in healing many period symptoms, bloating being one of them. Lemon juice works in two ways to reduce pre-menstrual bloating – by working as a mild laxative and by removing the swelling around the stomach which is also responsible for causing the bloating.

The laxative effects of lemon juice may not be strong but are good enough in healing the mild bloating we get during our periods by setting the bowel movements right. Lemon juice also acts as an anti-inflammatory and therefore reduces the swelling around the stomach. This makes it clear out the bloating. Here’s one great way to drink Lemon juice as a part of your daily diet.

  • Take a glass and squeeze out lemons into it.
  • Add little honey (a spoon or two) and mix the two of them up well.
  • Boil some water and add the water to this mixture to form the juice.
  • Drink it hot on an empty stomach every morning (and whenever you feel like it in the rest of your day).

3. Ginger (tea or other forms)

Ginger tea is yet another period tea that helps in beating many period symptoms including bloating. Ginger is a carminative by nature – a substance that removes excess gas in the stomach and induces bowel movements so that the GIT is normal. It also recues the inflammation that is caused around the stomach and thereby reduces the bloating that is a result of that.

Along with these uses, ginger can be of great help in eliminating period cramps and keeping the body healthy during the menses. Here’s how you make a ginger tea for yourself.

  • Take a piece of ginger, skin it and cut it into tiny pieces.
  • Take water in a vessel and bring it to boil.
  • Add the ginger pieces and continue with the boiling.
  • When the water turns golden yellow in colour, strain it and use it as a tea.
  • You can add honey or lemon drops if you would like to.

4. Fennel tea

Fennel is one of the best digestive spices that have ever been used because of its ability to heal any GIT related problem. This is one of the reasons we use Fennel tea for getting rid of menstrual  bloating as well.  It stimulates the walls of GIT and induces bowel movements so that the bloated-ness is gone.

In addition to that, fennel can also work in hormonal-related bloating by stimulating the production of estrogen in the body. This also helps in easing out the cramps. Here’s how you make a simple tea out of fennel seeds.

  • Take some water and bring it to boil.
  • Add the fennel seeds to it and continue with the boiling.
  • Add some turmeric so that the tea is more flavorful and lot more healing.
  • Strain it and drink it (after you add some teaspoons of honey if you’d like to).

5. Caraway seeds

Caraway is yet another herb that is of great use in getting rid of menstrual bloating. The tiny black seeds of caraway are known to remove flatulence, bloating and any other digestive problem that we can get. It works equally well in ridding us from menstrual and pre menstrual  bloating.

Caraway is also known for its ability to reduce the spasms of the body and this works in calming down the pelvic spasms that cause the menstrual cramps. It is therefore useful for more than one purpose during our periods. We can make a tea out of caraway seeds in the following simple steps.

  • Take some water and bring it to boil.
  • Add some of the caraway seeds to it and continue with the boiling.
  • Strain the liquid out once it turns slightly golden in colour and add honey to it.
  • Drink this tea twice a day during and a few days before your period for its effects to be shown.

6. Dandelion leaves

Dandelion is one of the greatest herbs that can be put to use during your periods as it can be helpful in many ways. Since menstrual bloating is our first concern, it helps in easing out the bloating by inducing bowel motility. It also acts as a very mild laxative.

Along with that, dandelion can ease cramps by working on muscle spasms, reduce inflammation and work in many other ways in helping out with period symptoms. Here’s how you make a simple dandelion leaf tea for yourself.

  • Get yourself some dandelion of fine and pure quality.
  • Take some water and bring it to boil.
  • Add the leaves and continue with the boiling.
  • Strain it out once the water turns yellowish and add honey to it before you drink it.
  • Drinking this tea twice a day can help fight the symptoms of your period.

7. Anise tea

Anise is yet another one of the kitchen spices that works great in relieving bloating, especially that which is caused by periods. The spice helps in relieving the muscles of the intestine and thereby removes any flatulence that is present in the GIT. It helps repair the bowel movements which get disturbed during your period.

Anise, in addition to that can also heal your period cramps by calming down the muscular spasms in the pelvic area. Here’s how you make an Anise tea (in which we also include other spices to enhance each other’s effect).

  • Take some water and bring it to boil.
  • To this water, add anise seeds, fennel and turmeric and continue with the boiling.
  • Once the tea turns golden yellow in colour, strain it out.
  • Add a few teaspoons of honey to this tea and drink it twice a day during your menses.

8. Primrose oil

Primrose oil is yet another natural cure for menstrual symptoms including bloating. It can be used both internally as well as externally. The primary reason primrose oil is good for relieving bloating is that it reduces the water retention around the stomach. It also reduces inflammation and retention everywhere else on the body.

We usually use primrose oil as a massage oil externally to reduce cramping. We can however, also use it internally in the form of capsules that you get in some herbal stores. Using two capsules a day, each of 500mg is the usual recommended dose. We can also make a primrose-raspberry tea for the purpose in these simple steps.

  • Get some primrose and raspberry leaves of a good quality.
  • Take some water, bring it to boil and add these leaves.
  • Continue with the boiling for a while and when the colour of the water changes, strain the tea out.
  • Add some honey to it if you would like to and then drink it.

9. Garlic

Garlic is yet another spice that works especially in healing the menstrual bloating as it has got the ability to detox the stomach. It can also reduce the inflammation around the stomach and thereby help with the bloating. It is also known to stimulate the muscles of the GIT to restore the bowel movements which slow down during your menses.

Garlic is also known to heal cramps and other menstrual symptoms like moodiness and headaches effectively. Here are a few ways in which you can use garlic to avail this anti-bloating effect to the maximum.

  • Make a soup out of any ingredient that you like (tomatoes, mushrooms etc.,) and add a lot of raw garlic cloves to it. Consuming this can be of great use.
  • Make a garlic tea or add some crushed garlic cloves to your regular milk tea. This is yet another great way of consuming garlic so that it can act against the bloating effect of the GIT.

10. Bananas

If you want something easy to eat without having to do much cooking or preparation, the best possible food that you can eat to beat menstrual bloating is bananas. Yes, you read that right, with all the fiber that they have got, bananas are great for fighting bloating in the stomach. They also keep you full and reduce the fatigue that you would normally feel during your periods.

They can also calm the inflammatory system and restore the hormonal balance in the body which can further add to the anti-bloating effect that it has got. Here are a few ways in which you can include bananas as a part of your daily diet.

  • Just eat the bananas. Three to four a day during your periods could be of great help in dealing with many symptoms.
  • Make a dessert like a milkshake or a smoothie out of it and eat it as a part of your dinner or lunch. This can also energize you by a great measure.

Pre-menstrual Bloating

Additional Tips That Help Alleviate Menstrual Bloating

To keep your gut healthy and stop all the bloating and discomfort, we have some tips for you that can definitely make a difference.

Keeping yourself hydrated – It is important that you drink a lot of water so that all the gassiness of your stomach goes away. Hydration also keeps the gut muscles in keeping their movements moderate.

Getting regular exercise – Working out enough can remove the swelling, the bloating and keep the blood flowing in the right amounts to the walls of your gut. This definitely helps fight the discomfort.

Watching what you eat – Keeping your diet mellow and avoiding foods that can make your stomach uncomfortable is one way to keep the bloating down. Going vegan is definitely an option that you can consider if the bloating is too much.

De-stressing  – Getting your daily dose of sleep is definitely a way to keep your gut healthy as the hormones and the muscles stay in tune when you get a good amount of sleep and keep yourself stress free.

Skipping alcohol and caffeine – Alcohol and caffeine are two foods that you should avoid as they are known to increase the bloating feeling of the gut.

Avoid foods that are too sugary – Sugar is one food that you better steer clear of as well. Too much sugar can make the bloating go up.

Bloating is definitely one of the easier period symptoms to deal with. It goes away with just a little care and attention. Got any more tips t curb that annoying bloating before periods? Do share with us and our readers!

Sources :

  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0072449/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3264926/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3901893/
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319579.php

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