PERIODS‼️ the menstrual cycle and diet adherence
It’s currently THAT time of the month for me 🙄 I might not look it, but currently I feel watery, bloated and uncomfortable in my body. Coupled with feeling a little bit, ‘meh’, I also have an obscene craving for Nutella, which doesn’t even make me feel GOOD. Despite how we feel, most of us want to eat more during our time of the month and I think there’s a rational explanation for this!
Did you know that women can burn between 2.5 - 11% more calories while on their period? One particular study actually found that women expended 7% more energy on average during menstruation. For someone maintaining on 2500 calories, that’s an extra 175 calories! It doesn’t seem like a lot, but that’s quite a bit of extra food that we can potentially factor into our diet. This isn’t just me trying to find an excuse to eat Nutella 🙄 This is me trying to rationalise why we’re all so hungry!
Something important to remember is that during menstruation, our bodies will tend to crave and perform better with food higher in dietary fats. This may explain why we typically crave chocolate 🍫 (but that may also be due to being low in magnesium). There is also a greater incentive to consume more red meat given the high iron content! AND THAT MEANS BURGERS 🤤
It’s fascinating just how differently our bodies behave when we’re on our period. Some women may feel sick all the time and not want to eat, so it’s about finding ways to actually consume those calories. And for others, it’s about saying, “Look! You can actually eat the extra food! You’re going to be fine!” 💛 Listening to your body means providing your body with the nourishment it wants and not necessarily what you want.
But, just for the record... if you’re hungry. Just EAT! Your body will thank you for it later. Just listen to your hunger cues in the process and choose food that your body will be happy with, as opposed to what YOU want to satisfy your tastebuds.