Okay, let’s start with me acknowledging that I’m a heavy-flow person. It’s not too excessive, but a light period is something else. So you know, I get the usual package. My period means heavy bleeding, fatigue and cramps. Thankfully I’ve learnt how to handle all of these things after 12 years of menstruating.
So today, I’m currently on day three of my period. That’s when things “normally” (what is a normal period anyway?) seem to calm down again. But this morning, my period decided to do quite the opposite. Instead of my period flow being lighter, my period flow decided to get heavier again. Plus, a horrifying comeback of period cramps.
So here’s the story of how I accidentally made my period flow heavier (again)
I love tracking everything about my period. Some may say I'm a bit obsessed, but I just feel more in control that way. And after years of tracking, I feel like I know my period flow pretty well. So I was really surprised that on day three there was still quite a lot of blood in my Ruby Cup (that’s one of the advantages of using a menstrual cup: you get to monitor your menstruation a whole lot better than with soaked up tampons or pads). And also, all of a sudden those mean motherf*cking cramps came back. So I knew something was up.
I tried to remember if I had done anything to insult my period karma. I had been quite conscious about my choice of food the days before and during my period, trying not to succumb too much to the PMS-munchies. No caffeine, no alcohol, no crisps. I even read something about pineapples and periods on Pinterest, so I bought a lovely pineapple and had been feasting on it the past few days. #healthydiet, I thought.
But are pineapples suitable period food?
That depends, but I’ll get to that further down below. First, I have to confess that I might have exaggerated a little about actually reading that article about pineapples and periods. I correct myself. I saw a picture of pineapples (come one, it’s Pinterest), with a caption that contained the words “foods” and “period”, so I concluded pineapples are good period food.
I probably should have read the full article, because actually, pineapples have quite a strong effect on your period. In the sense of increasing your blood flow. A lot. #helloheavyflow
3 ways how pineapples influence your period:
1.) They increase your blood flow
Pineapples increase the production of red and white blood cells. Therefore they can lead to an increased blood flow and possibly a heavier period than you may normally have. (I sure was relieved I had my Ruby Cup, making heavy-flow days way more manageable as my cup holds 3x the capacity of what a super-tampon holds. That means even with a heavy period, I could go 12 hours without having to change it.)
2.) They can induce an early period (and miscarriage)
Pineapples contain bromelain, which affects your uterus lining by softening it and helping it shed. That’s also why it’s recommended to skip eating big amounts of pineapples during the first few months of pregnancy.
For me, the effect of the pineapple making my period heavier wasn’t what I wanted, but I can imagine it being quite a nice alternative to try for people who are struggling with very light or irregular periods. So if you want to speed up your next period, give eating lots of pineapples a try.
Wait no more for the red flow to be back in town: eat some pineapples and she’ll be there faster than you can say….”pineapple”.
3.) Eating pineapple relaxes muscles and reduces cramps
Apparently, that same bromelain that softens the uterus is also an enzyme that helps muscles to relax and is said to help when suffering from menstrual cramps – yippie! Although I can’t really say that that worked for me (actually quite the opposite), but hey, every menstruator is different. So that’s that.
Should you stop eating pineapples during your period?
You don’t have to stop eating pineapples while you’re on your period. Just remember to eat them moderately while menstruating, unless you want to make your period flow heavier. Or try for yourself if they help against menstrual cramps!
Other food that can make your period flow heavier:
In case you’re are looking into other foods to eat to increase or induce your menstrual flow, here’s a couple more for you to try:
Unripe, raw Papaya
Papaya has a similar effect as pineapples have. It will help with the contractions of the uterus, possibly inducing a period or increasing your menstrual flow.
Beetroots are very rich in iron and therefore a period superfood. Also, it will help increase the circulation of blood, also in the uterus.