Seedling Superpower – Foods to eat during menstruation?
Have you been wondering what are the best foods to eat during menstruation?
What foods to eat while you are bleeding, cuddling a hot water bottle at your desk and wondering when it’s home time?
The menstruation phase is typically around Day 1-4 of your cycle and when you are experiencing your Seedling Menstrual Superpower.
(If you don’t bleed anymore, are on a break from bleeding or have never bled, you may like to support your Seedling Superpower with these foods on the Dark Moon, New Moon and at Winter Solstice.)
Here a list of the best foods to eat during menstruation:
- Seed Cycling
Seed Cycling refers to a seed rotation system across the menstrual cycle to support optimum levels of progesterone and the right kind of estrogen.
2 tablespoons of pumpkin seeds or linseeds/flaxseeds (they are the same seed) are the best seeds to eat for the first half of your cycle. These seeds support and balance your estrogen levels, and you can start eating them from Day 1 right up until after you ovulate or Day 14.
If you are trying to coax back your cycle, or are experiencing peri-menopause symptoms, start eating pumpkin seeds or linseeds/flaxseeds on the New Moon, up until Full Moon.
Always choose organic and preferably activated seeds, as activated seeds are much easier to digest.
Ideally, purchase a new spice grinder or coffee grinder to use with your seeds, and grind only 1-2 days worth of seeds at a time to sprinkle on your food. (Any more than a few days, and the seeds start to oxidise and lose their potency.)
If you are like me and get overwhelmed by which grinder to buy online, don’t let that stop you from starting to seed cycle – just pop down to your local health food shop, buy the seeds and mindfully chew them. You can always go shopping for that appliance another time!
Alisa Vitti from Flo Living recommends beets, kale, kelp and mushrooms during your bleeding phase.
Check for vegetables from non-GMO sources and organic or biodynamic where possible. Low GI foods are always a good choice for all phases in the cycle.
You might find raw veges harder to process during your Seedling Menstrual Superpower, so opt for cooked instead.
Quality protein is critical for so many processes in the body, but at menstruation it’s is a pretty big deal.
Consider this: the only other time in your life that your cervix opens, is when you are in the process of childbirth. You would choose the very best quality food for yourself during childbirth, and so I think it’s quite okay to do that every time you menstruate too!
Please choose the very best protein you can. If you eat animal products, consider grass-fed, organic or bio-dynamic – even if you can only afford to buy these while you are bleeding.
Opt for duck and pork for meat, and for seafood, Alisa Vitti recommends catfish, clam, crab, lobster, mussels, octopus, oysters, sardines, scallops or squid.
Celtic Sea Salt contains minerals that are not found in regular table salt, and you’ll benefit from using it very day in your cooking.
You might find you need a little more Celtic Sea Salt just before your period starts and during the Seedling phase, as the blood in your veins is more viscous than usual.
To keep you feeling well hydrated and juicy, make up an electrolyte drink during menstruation.
Put ½ teaspoon of Celtic Sea Salt into a tall glass of filtered water with a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice and sip over 20 minutes. Your cells will thank you for it even if your tastebuds aren’t too impressed!
5. Warm foods
Stews, soups and one pot dishes are excellent choices with lots of leftovers for the following day or for the freezer.
For breakfast, Chinese Medicine practitioners recommend a warm breakfast while you are bleeding and actually, I’m a big fan of doing this every day!
If eggs in the morning aren’t your thing, anything savoury that’s easily digested is a beautiful way to start your day.
Bone broths, vegetable broths or leftovers gently warmed up on the stovetop, are a wonderful way to nurture your body and brain during Seedling Menstrual Superpower.
Parsley and thyme are wonderful all rounders to support your liver and uterus and are easy to cook with – just add a few sprigs to roast vegetables, stews, poultry or meat.
Now, I couldn’t write a blog post about menstruation without mentioning Raspberry Leaf – Raspberry Leaf is famous for supporting menstruation and womb-care. As a tea, it’s certainly an acquired taste, but you might be surprised how the taste of cut grass starts to grow on you!
I only use Raspberry Leaf when I’m menstruating, but you may choose to check in with a herbalist or naturopath for their recommendations if you want to drink it more often.
You can also use stinging nettles in soups and stews, or make a tea that is chock-full of wonderful nutrients for womb care.
Note: When I was pregnant, my father-in-law found a patch of wild stinging nettle near our apartment. I wasn’t game to pick it so he did, having been taught by his mother when he was a boy how to harvest it without getting stung. Stinging nettle packs quite the sting, which can be relieved with a baking soda and water paste, so wear gloves or … buy your nettles already dried from a health food store!
I can’t over-emphasise the importance of fats and hormones.
You absolutely need fats to support your hormones and to help you thrive.
Think avocados (half an avo a day is a wonderful idea!), coconut oil, olive oil, unsalted butter, ghee, nuts and seeds (organic and activated pumpkin, linseeds/flaxseeds, almonds, walnuts and pecans), and animal fat if you eat animal products.
8. Order Takeaway
When cooking feels too hard especially on Day 1, remember the Seedling Menstrual Superpower Rule: it’s always okay to order takeaways at least once during this phase.
Dismiss the guilt and instead spend the time doing something just for you – take a warm bath, go to bed early, or read a much anticipated book.
Try and stock up your fridge and pantry with the above foods a few days before your period is due.
This will help you feel organized, more than a little bit smug, plus you won’t need to make any emergency visits to the shops.
Your body and brain is doing big work, so you can receive the best creative ideas to take you through the rest of the cycle.
Let this phase be all about very best food, rest and self-compassion.
Because you deserve it.
If you’d like 1:1 support for your Menstrual Superpowers and how to incorporate them in to your life, please explore my Services page.
If you are new to charting your cycle and your corresponding Menstrual Superpowers, you may like to download the 2019 Cycles Calendar here by signing up to my newsletter – it’s a complimentary digital download.
Or, you can send me $25 on Paypal and I’ll a pop a professionally and sustainably printed copy (it’s even on recycled paper – SWOON!) in the post to you. I can’t wait to support you in your Menstrual Superpowers journey!
Menstrual Superpowers Leadership Coach
In 2016, after nearly 2 decades working in corporate, I created Empress Crow and Rabbit. Designed to celebrate the cycles (lunar, menstrual + seasonal) I also loved interviewing imaginative women in inspirational careers. Now, I'm a Life Coach + I support Corporate Wonder Women just like you, to explore + harness your own Menstrual Superpowers. When a client discovers her Menstrual Superpowers + plays to her strengths on these days, her corporate life + home life transform. She is more productive, more inspirational, more creative + more rested. Yup. All of it.
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Photo credit: Lucy Spartalis