Anti-inflammatory and Low-sugar Swaps for Your Period Cravings

Anti-inflammatory and Low-sugar Swaps for Your Period Cravings
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My endometriosis is under control. In fact, most of the time I either have pain-free or low-pain periods — that is, unless I eat my trigger foods.

If you’ve followed me for some time, you’ll know one of the key ways I manage my endo is through adopting an anti-inflammatory and hormone supportive diet.

Most of the time, I avoid sugar, caffeine, alcohol, and trans fats. Additionally, because my body finds them to be inflammatory, I avoid dairy and gluten. During my follicular and ovulatory phases, however, I do enjoy the odd piece of sourdough toast or cup of tea, as I still have a few weeks until my period. But if I eat these kinds of foods in my luteal or menstrual phases? My pain shoots up. I’m the same girl I was seven years ago — in agony.

As a result, I’ve spent a number of years tweaking and perfecting different anti-inflammatory snacks to enjoy while on my period. If you’re as sensitive as I am to certain foods but still want to satisfy those cravings during your period, the ideas below might be helpful.

Popcorn

The combination of trans fats from the cooking oil and sugar are sure to flare me up and are generally inflammatory for all of us.

I get around this by making my own popcorn at home using coconut oil or a popcorn machine, then I top it with inulin syrup (I use this one) or sprinkle it with pure stevia powder and salt. Some of us are better able to tolerate grass-fed butter, and so you could try melting an organic butter to combine with stevia and nut butter for a butterscotch-like drizzle.

Chocolate

Cacao is packed with antioxidants that help lower inflammation and hormone supportive nutrients like magnesium. The problem is mainly the sugar (and possibly the dairy) in chocolate.

Because I’ve gotten used to dark chocolate, I now eat 100% dark chocolate that’s entirely sugar-free. Those of you who prefer something milder can get very low-sugar dark chocolate, like this one. You can also get chocolate with sugar-free natural sweeteners such as stevia and monk fruit — this is a popular brand in the U.S. that many of my clients love.

If you can’t get hold of low-sugar chocolate, you could try making a rich and velvety sugar-free hot chocolate using my recipe here.

Wine

I’m not much of a drinker, so some of you who know your wine might find this sacrilegious … but hear me out.

Infused waters.

I know, they sound drab, but actually, they’re delicious: crisp sparkling water, ice cubes, anti-inflammatory fruits and herbs, and even floral notes from rose or lavender water.

Thankfully, many supermarkets now stock sugar-free, naturally flavored sparkling waters like this brand and this one, for those of you who don’t want to spend much time making something up.

Stuck for ideas? Check out this incredible book I recommend to my clients.

Ice cream

Surely a period is not a period without ice cream, right? A few years ago, the ice cream gods blessed us with sugar-free alternatives. Over here in the U.K., I love Perfect World, and I’ve heard good things about Arctic Zero in the U.S.

You could also try making your own ice cream, which I do often, using nut or seed butter, plant milk, stevia or inulin syrup, and my flavor of choice, like cacao or fresh mint with 100% dark chocolate pieces.

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Note: Endometriosis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Endometriosis News or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to endometriosis.

Jessica is the creator of This EndoLife.com, a website dedicated to supporting women with endometriosis, women’s health conditions and the associated mental health issues that accompany them. She is also host of This EndoLife Podcast, where she interviews guests managing chronic illnesses and mental health problems in their own unique ways and are helping others to do the same. Jessica has a background in the arts and charity, having spent the past six years working with organizations supporting women with endometriosis, vulnerable young people and survivors of domestic violence and trafficking.
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Jessica is the creator of This EndoLife.com, a website dedicated to supporting women with endometriosis, women’s health conditions and the associated mental health issues that accompany them. She is also host of This EndoLife Podcast, where she interviews guests managing chronic illnesses and mental health problems in their own unique ways and are helping others to do the same. Jessica has a background in the arts and charity, having spent the past six years working with organizations supporting women with endometriosis, vulnerable young people and survivors of domestic violence and trafficking.

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