QuickCheck: Does coffee help ease menstrual cramps?

MANY women dread “that” time of the month for the sole reason of the cramps that tag along. The discomfort, ickiness and hot flashes can be dealt with one way or another, but the cramps, that is another story altogether.

The pain differs from one person to another. Some have it very bad, to the point of getting dizzy spells and fainting, with some even ending up hospitalised. And yes, this happens every month!

Some of the comfort items often sought after include a warm blanket, hot water bottle and a hot drink. What better drink to have than a cuppa, right?



Wrong. Research has proven that coffee may not be the ideal drink to consume during menstruation.

Caffeine blocks a hormone that can make blood vessels present in the uterus smaller, slowing the flow of blood. Coffee can also cause inflammation and bloating, adding to tummy pain. So, drinking coffee can make cramps worse.

What’s interesting is research shows heavier and prolonged menstrual flows with women who drink caffeinated coffee, however, the exact mechanism of why this occurs isn’t clear.

The relationship between coffee (or caffeine) and menstrual cramps is a topic of discussion among both researchers and those who menstruate. Some people find that caffeine intake can exacerbate menstrual cramps, while others do not notice a significant difference.

Despite these considerations, scientific research has not clearly defined the link between caffeine and menstrual cramps, and more studies are needed to draw definitive conclusions.

If you find that your menstrual cramps worsen with caffeine intake, it might be beneficial to reduce coffee or other sources of caffeine during your menstrual period and see if it makes a difference.

Some alternatives to coffee to consider before and during your period include black tea, green tea and ginseng.

Always consult with a healthcare provider if you have concerns about how diet and lifestyle factors are impacting your menstrual health.






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