Do foods such as chia seeds and castor oil help regulate a woman’s menstrual cycle? I researched the best foods for regular periods, and found some scientific research that supports the health benefits of certain vitamins, nutrients, and proteins.
These tips and foods for regulating your periods are easy and healthy; they’ll normalize your menstrual cycle, improve your mood, and help you feel good again. Balancing your hormones is the key tip on how to get regular periods – and the food you eat directly affects your hormone levels.
You can regulate your periods without taking prescription medications or herbal supplements. There’s a catch, though. If you don’t know why your menstrual cycle is off, then you can’t eat the right foods for regular periods. For example, if you have endometriosis or PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), then it doesn’t matter how much castor oil you choke down. Foods help you get regular periods by balancing your hormones and nourishing your body, but they won’t cure serious female health problems.
That said, however, the foods you eat directly affect your body, brain, and mood. And yes, foods can help regulate your periods. In fact, eating the right foods is one of the best and healthiest ways to get regular periods naturally.
Certain foods (dark leafy greens, castor oil, chia seeds and small amounts of dark chocolate) can help normalize your menstrual cycle, especially if you have irregular periods or amenorrhea (no periods at all). Knowing what foods make your periods regular will help you feel healthy and happy by balancing your hormones.
9 Foods for Regular Periods
Good news about getting your period: “When estrogen is high during their cycle, women are more at ease with themselves,” writes Dr Rebecca Booth in The Venus Week: Discover the Powerful Secret of Your Cycle…at Any Age. “They are more confident performing tasks and accomplishing goals and more socially agile and bale to articulate themselves more fully and clearly.”
This is one of the benefits of menstruating regularly! But before you can reap the rewards, you need to regulate your cycle. The best way to get regular periods naturally is to try different foods and food combinations until you find what works for you. And, remember that it will take at least three months before your menstrual cycle stabilizes and becomes more predictable.
1. Chia seeds and other healthy omega-3 fatty acids
Viva Naturals Organic Raw Chia Seeds — Chia Seeds are similar to flax seeds. They’re a nutrient-dense superfood: on a per-gram basis, chia seeds have the highest source of omega-3 fatty acids (a 3.5-ounce serving of chia seeds have 20 grams of omega-3 fatty’s). Chia seeds are also an extremely high source of fiber.
The hormonal benefits of chia seeds include improved insulin sensitivity, stabilized blood sugar levels, and easing blood pressure and blood sugar spikes.
Chia seeds are one of the best foods for regular periods because they increase blood flow and reduce cholesterol. The blood vessels in your ovaries are tiny, which makes them vulnerable to damage and poor circulation. Smoking, obesity, and high cholesterol can negatively affect a woman’s ovarian blood vessels, which blocks hormones and blood flow. Fish oils enhance blood circulation, reduce damage from free radicals, fight the effects of aging, and increase dopamine (which improves your mood!).
2. Fish oils for regular periods
Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega-3 Fish Oil SoftGels contain concentrated fish oils with more DHA and EPA. EPA (Eicosapentaenoic Acid) and DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid) support overall wellness, including heart, brain, joint, eye, and mood health. Research has shown Omega-3 products also support healthy glucose levels, healthy fat levels in professional athletes, bronchial health, and the body’s ability to respond to stress in a healthy way.
Omega-3’s and fish oils aren’t exactly “foods for regular periods”, but Dr Booth (author of The Venus Week: Discover the Powerful Secret of Your Cycle…at Any Age) recommends that women add a fish oil supplement to their daily diet. Remember that every woman’s body is different, so what works for some doesn’t work for others. Even if a scientific research study shows that, for example, flax or chia seeds help balance hormones and regulate periods naturally, the same foods may not stabilize your menstrual cycle.
It’s important to figure out what is causing your menstrual problems. Once you determine the cause, it’ll be easier to find the right foods for regular periods.
3. Colorful foods that are NOT white (avoid white bread, crackers, pasta, rice)
Most natural foods are not white. White foods such as bread, buns, crackers and pasta are processed to the point of being unhealthy! Avoid eating foods such as white flour, sugar, white potatoes, white bread, white pasta, and white rice. They disrupt your menstrual cycle by creating insulin surges that result in fat storage. This excess fat storage negatively affects ovulation and menstruation – which is why you should not eat processed white foods if you want regular periods.
According to a research study conducted at the University of Texas Health Science Center and published Nutrition, some nuts such as walnuts contain melatonin. Melatonin promotes better sleep, which will help you feel healthier and happier.
The Happy Belly Nuts, Chocolate & Dried Fruit Trail Mix is an excellent snack food that has a variety of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Beta-sitosterol in nuts, for example, that helps lower blood cholesterol levels. It also helps balance cortisol (a stress hormone), and it may also help restore other hormones to normal levels.
Nuts and dried fruit are delicious, healthy foods that regulate periods by stabilizing hormones, improving overall health, and maintaining a steady blood sugar. Read 23 Best Vegetables to Eat for a Normal Menstrual Cycle to learn more.
4. Raspberry leaf tea for “the female system”
Yogi Tea – Woman’s Raspberry Leaf – Supports the Female System – A soothing blend that contains Raspberry Leaf, which is traditionally used for centuries by midwives and Western herbalists to regulate periods and ease menstrual discomfort.
Yogi Raspberry Leaf Tea contains herbs to help soothe the minor tensions and discomfort of your monthly cycle. If you’re prone to PMS (premenstrual syndrome), you might enjoy this warm brew because it addresses common menstrual discomforts.
5. Matcha green tea muffins
Jade Leaf Matcha Green Tea Powder proves that healthy teas aren’t just for sipping! Green tea powder can become an essential food for healthy, regular periods. For example, Jade Leaf’s Matcha Green Tea Powers Healthy Superfood – matcha is a great source of beneficial green tea nutrients and natural energy.
Green tea contains theanine, which blocks the release of cortisol. According to a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, green tea extract can increase metabolism and fat burning. Some naturopaths recommend drinking four cups of green tea daily for the full health benefits.
6. Protein-laden foods for regular periods
“Finding sources of balanced protein can be a challenge for busy women, but it is a must for hormonal balance,” writes Dr Booth in The Venus Week. “The more you balance your hormones, the more regular your menstrual cycle will be. Plant proteins are especially good for enhancing fertility and hormonal balance: almonds, walnuts, peanuts, cheese, hard boiled eggs, soy chips, hummus, canned sardines, and edamame.” Lean chicken, beef, turkey and other meats are high in protein and iron.
If you don’t eat much meat or other protein-laden foods, consider a protein powder such as the Vegan Plant Based Protein Powder Shake, Gluten Free, Non Dairy, Non Soy, Non GMO.
I’m not much of a meat-eater; I put protein powder in my cereals, muffins, and even on my salads. I don’t like dairy foods because they disrupt my system, but cottage cheese, yogurt, milk and other dairy delights can be healthy sources of protein.
You might consider soy-based forms of protein. However, soy contains estrogen – so if you have an estrogen-based health issue, talk to your doctor before eating soy to regulate your periods naturally. Some nutritionists say soy can improve heart health when consumed daily. Soy also keeps bones strong, lowers cholesterol, and eases the symptoms of menopause. Research conducted at the University of Illinois suggests that soy protein might also help with weight management, because it helps increase metabolism and limits the growth of fat cells.
7. A Vitamin D supplement for regular periods
Vitamin D isn’t readily available in most foods, which makes this vitamin hard to absorb naturally. Eat vitamin D-fortified milk products, tuna, egg yolks, salmon, sardines, and (yuck) cod liver oil. I also drink lots of skim milk, which has vitamin D added.
If you aren’t getting enough vitamin D, consider a Vitamin D3 Softgel Supplement. This vitamin improves communication between your cells, which stabilizes your hormones. Vitamin D is also vital in cancer protection – especially breast, colon, ovarian, and prostate cancers. In How to Get Rid of Period Pain Quickly and Easily, I describe in more detail the benefits of Vitamin D for getting regular periods and herbal teas for relieving painful menstrual cramps.
Also, make sure you’re getting enough sunlight. Where you live and the color of your skin determines how much time you should spend in the sun; my research tells me that the average North American should spend about 10 minutes in the sun about 2-3 times per week.
8. A daily dose of dark chocolate
Raw Rev Glo Protein Bars – Double Chocolate Brownie Batter Chocolate are healthier than the typical chocolate bars in stores. Try to avoid the cheaper chocolate bars and even granola bars; they don’t contain the same nutrients, minerals, or even fiber of a protein bar.
Dark chocolate contains flavenoids, which have estrogen-like activity and help improve circulation by reducing platelet clumping, writes Dr Booth in The Venus Week. Flavenoids also enhance microcirculation in the ovaries and endocrine glands, and increase dopamine (a “feel good” hormone). Not just any old chocolate will do: eat dark chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa solids.
I’ve also heard of probiotic dark chocolate bars, but I haven’t tried them yet. I know probiotics are super healthy, but don’t know if they’re a food that helps regulate periods.
8. Castor oil and hot water bottles
Heritage Store Castor Oil is a new-to-me way to naturally regulate your menstrual cycle. It’s derived from the seeds of the Castor Oil plant and has been used by many cultures for centuries to promote healing – reproductive system healing in particular. In the past it was referred to as “Palma Christi” because it’s leaves were believed to resemble the Hands of Christ, able to perform healing miracles.
Castor oil has been found to help address congestion in the pelvic floor, increase blood flow and circulation to the uterus and ovaries, soften scar tissue (from c-sections, laproscopic surgery, cysts, cervical dysplasia or cancer), shrink fibroids, help with endometriosis pain, period cramping and irritable bowel syndrome.
I recently learned about the benefits of a castor oil pack to balance your hormones and soothe an aching tummy. Add a Hot Water Bottle With a Knit Cover for extra comfort!
Here’s how to use castor oil and hot water bottles to ease period pain: Moisten a flannel pack (an old T-shirt will do) with warmed castor oil. Place the oil-side down on your lower abdomen with a hot-water bottle on top of the flannel pack. Cover with a towel. Do this daily for an hour – but not when you’re getting your period) for a few months. Then, gradually reduce frequency to twice a month. Claudia Welch, author of Balance Your Hormones, Balance Your Life, says your period might become heavier or more painful, but that’s just stagnation clearing from the uterus.
8. Iron supplements and foods for medium-heavy periods
Solgar’s Gentle Iron Vegetable Capsules are iron supplements for women who struggle with anemia (symptoms are fatigue, low energy, low immunity, feelings of heaviness and even depression).
Research shows that iron deficiency caused by anemia may affect your physical performance, cognitive function, mood, and overall quality of life. I take iron supplements because I have ulcerative colitis, and I had heavy periods. My menstrual cycle was regular, but I didn’t eat enough iron-rich foods.
If your periods are both irregular and heavy, you might consider taking iron supplements. One of the common causes of iron deficiency and anemia is heavy bleeding during menstruation. If you don’t get enough iron in your diet or the foods you eat, your body’s iron stores will diminish and you’ll experience fatigue.
Bonus Tip for Regular Periods: Learn about Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
While irregular periods are common among teenage girls, an underlying hormonal disorder may be the cause of long-term irregular periods in adult women. If you have PCOS you may need to talk to a gynecologist or holistic health practitioner for more specific advice on how to get regular periods.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is an endocrine disorder that is characterized by an excess of androgens or male hormones in the body. The imbalance of hormones interferes with the growth and release of eggs from the ovaries, which can prevent ovulation and menstruation.
Menstruation begins on average at age 12 for most women, and a normal menstrual cycle is approximately 28 days. Girls should have a regular menstrual cycle within approximately two years after they get their first period, or by age 17 at the latest. If you’ve been getting your period for more than two years and you’re over 17 years old, you may want to talk to a doctor about how to regulate your period – and you may need more than information about foods to make your menstrual cycle regular.
Your comments on how to get regular periods are welcome below! I can’t offer advice, but you may find it helpful to share your experience. Talk to a gynecologist or your family doctor about the best foods for regular periods based on your specific diet, lifestyle, age, and genetic makeup.