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Food can be undeniably comforting. . . especially on your period. But, have you ever stopped to wonder why you’re so hungry on your period? Probably so if you ended up here. Grab a snack and let’s find out.

Why do I experience increased hunger during my period?

About a week before your period begins, progestogens, such as progesterone, should start to peak. Some may say that progesterone is to thank for the appetite increase or cravings around or during your period. While others may say it’s simply psychological. Other reasonings include women being more responsive to insulin in the days leading up to their period. To understand your body and what is causing your cravings specifically, contact your doctor. As for how we can help, slip on our buttery soft period underwear and go for that ice cream you’ve been thinking about all day. 

Is it normal to have intense cravings for certain foods while menstruating?

Hello PMS. . . nice to meet you, again. Premenstrual Syndrome or PMS are a set of physical and emotional symptoms that can occur 1-2 weeks before your period. Cravings can be a PMS symptom. While there are ways to manage PMS, it will take some willpower to overcome cravings. Life’s all about balance. So prioritize your health and happiness and indulge as you see fit. If you have any concerns, consult your doctor. 

What causes the hunger and cravings during my menstrual cycle?

You may notice you crave certain things (because who doesn’t crave sugar and carbs) during your menstrual cycle. It’s no coincidence though. Hormonal changes can cause blood sugar levels to drop which can lead to sugar cravings. Double whammy – serotonin levels, the “feel good” chemical in the brain can also be lower around your menstrual cycle. This can also cause women to crave sugar and carbs—emphasis on the carbs, as our bodies use carbs to make serotonin. 

Can increased hunger on my period lead to weight gain?

Some women may experience bloating and/or weight gain around that time of month. Eating more certainly won’t help the situation. Try your best to make good choices and avoid foods with high sodium levels as they can worsen the bloat. Drinking lots of water can also help.

Tips to manage cravings and hunger during menstruation

Managing cravings is no easy feat, but there are ways to help you cope. Try these tips:

#1. Eat smaller meals

Eating smaller, more frequent meals can help keep your tummy and mind happy. Plus, it’s easier to digest this way. Doing this can also help stabilize blood sugar levels which can help control cravings. We get that time may not allow you to stop for a bunch of meals during the day, so play with your routine. Consider slightly smaller normal meals and small snacks in between. 

#2. Take a walk

When we aren’t feeling our best, getting outside can be challenging. By doing so, you can soak in the natural benefits of sunshine and movement to reduce PMS. It can also help distract you from cravings that are calling your name. Sunlight also helps produce serotonin which can reduce cravings. 

#3. Exercise

Exercise may sound like a stretch around that time of month, but it can help you feel better. Exercise can help reduce cravings as well as lessen other PMS symptoms such as depression, bloating, fatigue, and more. Finding exercise you enjoy can give you that extra encouragement to get up and go for it. Setting realistic goals can also help. It’s okay to rest a little more, period or not, just do your best to make a schedule or goal and stick to it. Find what works best for your mind and body. 

When should I be concerned about excessive hunger during my menstrual cycle?

Anytime something affects your health, you should be concerned. If excess hunger is causing weight gain or the foods you’re eating or craving are causing health issues, you should contact your doctor. Periods can come along with a variety of symptoms, most not so enjoyable, so we have to do all we can to learn to cope. Recognizing that excessive hunger is due to your period is a step in the right direction. Try snacking on fruits, vegetables, and healthier snacks to fuel your body and keep it healthy. 

Closing thoughts

Periods are yet another function of the female body and all it goes through. While it may not be your favorite time of month, appreciate your body a little extra and give yourself some grace. The more aware you are of your mind and body connection, the better you can cope with cravings and other PMS symptoms. Staying comfortable day and night can help going through the motions be a little easier. And on that note, meet the new staple item in your underwear drawer. 

Shop Proof period underwear

Because periods can take a toll on your body, comfort is one thing you should not compromise. You may have to compromise which cravings you feed and which you ignore, but comfort should always be a non-negotiable. At Proof, we deliver reusable period underwear with a moisture wicking liner that helps you feel dry. Incredibly functional and incredibly comfortable, our period underwear are buttery soft with multi-way stretch fabric that moves with you. Unseen yet powerful! Oh and did we mention they’re designed to fight odor too? Period or not, our leakproof undies are panties with protection.

Discover basics, made better. . . shop Proof  today!

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