Let’s be real, we all hate periods; they are painful, unexpected and messy. The untimely cravings, awful cramps and uncomfortable bloating are a put off during this time of the month. As if all this wasn’t enough, our elders advise us to avoid consuming cold foods and drinks while we are on periods, which is unfortunately what we crave the most. But is this advice right? Why do cold foods hamper our system, if at all? According to the olden Chinese studies, drinking cold water during periods harms the balance of your body and as a result affects your skin and health. Let’s unveil what lies beneath.
What really causes menstrual cramps?
Menstrual cramps are caused due to the excessive contractions of the uterine and abdominal muscles to discharge the menstrual fluid out of the body. These muscle contractions are caused by various chemicals that may also include prostaglandins, which is why we are asked to avoid certain foods and beverages that are responsible for instigating the production of this chemical.
It is believed to be a common Chinese old wives’ tale that drinking cold water leads to reduced temperature in the intestines that makes it difficult for the intestines to absorb essential nutrients. Moreover, it may cause acne. Cold foods like ice creams and chilled desserts may lead to severe cramps further worsening the condition.
According to Health Practitioner and Macrobiotic Health Coach, Shilpa Arora, “While you are on your period, you should avoid drinking cold water and eating cold foods as they worsen menstrual cramps. The muscles in the ovary and the vaginal walls tense up. These muscles cannot stretch further, which is why it leads to discomfort. For easy blood flow, drink warm water and avoid very cold and sugary items to keep away the inflammation.”
All this, however, depends from person to person. Every woman has a different body system that works according to the different doshas of the body. While most may feel absolutely okay after consuming cold items, some may experience severe cramps. Our suggestion is to know what your body is used to and act accordingly. However, taking precaution doesn’t hurt either. Eat and drink items that help produce heat in the body in order to let the blood flow without hampering your health. Include more green leafy vegetables, nuts, whole grains and green tea in your diet to ensure happy and healthy periods.