Periods are the worst, am I right ladies? The never-ending mood swings, reduced energy, the bloating and let us not forget the cramps. These are just a few of the aggravating symptoms that come our way each month. Our hormones can not only affect our mood, but they can impact our bodies in many different ways. This is also especially prevalent when we are on our period.

If you are like me, one of the worst period symptoms is food cravings, and this isn’t usually the time we reach for salads and fruits. But, we should.

Before you devour a whole pizza, read on to find out what some of the best period foods are and why.

1. Salmon

Sliced Tuna With Green Leaf Vegetables

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Salmon is an excellent option during your period because it is rich in vitamins like B12 as well as Omega-3 and 612 fatty acids. These acids play a vital role in relaxing your muscles and relieving discomfort associated with menstrual pain. 

However, if you are not a fan of fish, reach for nuts like walnuts or fatty foods like avocados, which are also full of Omega-3s. My favorite food to eat on my period is lemon grilled salmon with a side of asparagus and leafy greens like kale or spinach.

2. Leafy Greens

Vegetarian Juice on Table

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If there was ever a critical time to eat your greens, then this is it, sis. Veggies like spinach, kale, collard greens, and Swiss chard are some of the best foods to eat on your period because they are filled with tons of iron, which gets depleted when you are menstruating.

Mix them in salads or sautè them in risottos and stir-fries, even smoothies if that’s your thing. The options are endless.

3. Dark Chocolate

Chocolates and Raspberries

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I’ve heard lots of speculation on if chocolate helps cramps. But with my research, I have found that only pure dark chocolate cuts it. I am talking about the highest percent of dark chocolate out their ladies. This is because it won’t have as much sugar, which does us no favors on our period.

Dark chocolate is chock-full of antioxidants, and it also is an excellent source of magnesium, which cuts down mood swings and can help to regulate serotonin, known as "the happy hormone."  

4. Yogurt

Red Strawberry and Raspberry on White Ceramic Bowl

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Now is a great time to get crafty in the kitchen with your yogurt supply. You can make parfaits and smoothies, or maybe even whip up a special sauce with yogurt to top your salads with. Yogurt contains a good source of calcium, which can help relax your muscles and help with PMS symptoms. It also provides live cultures which promote healthy digestion. But, if you are looking for a non-dairy source of calcium try broccoli, kale or almonds instead.

5. Bananas

Bunch of Yellow Banana

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Bananas are considered one of the best sources of calcium and also contain other goodies like B6 and potassium, which can stop you from retaining a lot of water and feeling bloated. They can also help to regulate bowel movements, which is something a lot of people struggle with when they are menstruating.

6. Water

Clear Drinking Glass With Water Poured in

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Now I know this is something we usually drink, not eat, but it should be on the list nonetheless. Increasing your water intake throughout the day can help release some fluid your body retains. This can only be beneficial to us during our periods. 

7. Vitamins

Gel Capsules Inside and Outside Plastic Bottle

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Have you ever noticed that many of the intense cravings we get are more than likely due to a vitamin deficit that we are not providing our bodies? Make sure you are taking a women’s multivitamin every day to help cover all the bases.  

8. Chamomile Tea

White Yellow Flower

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The topic of tea and periods have been around for ages and a good reason. Chamomile tea can help wind you down after a long, stressful day, prepping you for a restful sleep, all while reducing cramps. According to WebMD, chamomile increases glycine in the body and turn reduces muscle spasms, encouraging your body to relax. It’s a win-win if you think about it.

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