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8 Things That Your Period Can Tell You About Your Health

8 Things That Your Period Can Tell You About Your Health

As women who are always on the run, it can be easy to miss the signs that your body gives you or to dismiss them as not being anything serious. However, in some cases, ignoring these signals can be dangerous to your health.

A woman’s menstrual cycle can tell her a lot about the things that are going on in her body. Here are 8 things that your period can tell you about your current health:

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1. Intense Cramping

Because cramps can start early on in a woman’s life, they may think that experiencing an intense level of cramping is normal, but it really isn’t. These kinds of cramps can be an early symptom of endometriosis, which can be a source of infertility. When your cramps rise to the level that they disrupt your life, it is important to talk to a doctor.

2. Heavy Flow

When your menstrual flow is particularly heavy, it may cause you to become anemic. Common signs of this are headaches and a lack of energy. If this is the case, your doctor can simply test your iron levels. If you are anemic, there are several simple solutions that you can implement that don’t require big lifestyle changes, but are important to your overall health.

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3. Unexpected Bleeding Before or After Your Period

When you experience bleeding that takes place apart from your usual cycle, it is known as “breakthrough bleeding.” In some cases, it may be harmless, but it can also be a sign that you may have polyps within your uterus or on your cervix. When you’ve noticed this, talk to your gynecologist.

4. Missed Periods on a Regular Basis

If your periods have stopped occurring and you have gained or lost a lot of weight, it may be a sign that your body is not getting the nutrients that it needs. If you are not eating the amounts that your body needs, your cycle may stop completely. If this is the case, it is important to speak with a physician about how to best support your body.

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5. Varying Levels of Period Flow

If your period is light one month and extremely heavy the next, it may be a sign that your thyroid is having difficulty in functioning correctly. The thyroid helps to regulate your hormones, and doctors can perform some simple tests to determine if this is the cause of the irregularity.

6. Individual Missed Periods

If you regularly experience abnormal or irregular periods, your body may be trying to tell you that your hormone levels are out of whack. It’s easy to have your hormone levels checked by your doctor, so talk to them early if this is a regular occurrence for you.

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7. Bleeding That Starts and Stops

If your flow starts and stops during your cycle, it may be a sign of uterine cancer or a number of other conditions that may not be as drastic. However, if this symptom is coupled by intense pain when involved in sexual activity, it’s a good idea to discuss it with your doctor to determine the cause of your symptoms.

8. Discharge from the Breasts

If you have begun to experience discharge that is a creamy white color from your breasts, coupled with irregular or missed periods, it may be an early sign of a tumor on your pituitary gland. Talk to your doctor immediately if you experience this symptom, especially if you also regularly deal with headaches.

Paying Attention to Your Body

Your body will usually let you know if something is not working properly. If something doesn’t feel right, talk to your doctor about it. It can be scary to take the time to face health issues head on, but doing so in a timely manner can also make things much easier to treat or address. Your body can be your best friend or your worst enemy. Give your body your best by paying attention to the things that it is telling you and your health will show the results!

Featured photo credit: Girl-woman/ Unsplash via pixabay.com

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Sasha Brown

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Last Updated on August 12, 2019

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark Chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko Biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and Black Tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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