New Health Guide

7 Foods to Eat During Period for Weight Loss

Apr 13, 2018

It is natural to feel cranky during your periods, but things get seriously annoying when you see your weighing scale telling a bad story. It is common to gain weight during period, but unfortunately, it takes time and effort to get rid of those extra pounds. Even when you have put on some water weight, you need to know what to eat during period to lose weight effectively.

Why You Gain Weight in Period

You gain weight because of a fluctuation in female sex hormones – estrogen and progesterone. The levels of estrogen are at their highest just before your period starts. The rise in these levels can lead to water retention and make you feel bloated. Estrogen levels start to come down again when your period starts, but this is the time when progesterone levels start going up, reaching their highest in the second half of your menstrual cycle. Again, the change in progesterone levels will lead to breast tenderness, water retention, and water weight. Progesterone is responsible for preparing your body for a potential pregnancy, which is why it starts pulling fluid from your blood vessels to all the tissues in your body. Progesterone levels begin to fall if you do not get pregnant at this time and everything returns to normal – eventually!

What to Eat

The hormonal changes are responsible for water retention and weight gain during pregnancy. However, you can manage things better by learning what to eat during period to lose weight. Here are some suggestions.

1. Toast


With your serotonin levels going down, it is natural to feel cranky and notice your appetite going wild. You are going to crave for carb-rich food during this time, and that is exactly the time when you should avoid going for simple carbs. The better option is to go for complex carbs such as whole grain bread. It provides you with natural sweetness to help calm your inner Cookie Monster. It also contains manganese and vitamin B6 that help improve your mood.

2. Pumpkin Seed

When you feel cranky during that special time of the month, be sure to include pumpkin seeds in your diet. These little bullets provide you with 75% of your recommended daily intake of magnesium, which not only helps boost your mood but reduces water retention at the same time. Magnesium also helps dilate your blood vessel, which in turn eases painful headaches. You can simply include pumpkin seeds in your salads or enjoy with veggie side dishes.

3. Melon


It is natural to feel bloated during your period, all thanks to fluid retention. Due to hormonal changes, your body begins to store fluids and sodium in tissues which can make it difficult to fit in the same jeans that were just fine a few days ago. Simply including melon in your diet will help treat bloating and reduce the discomfort as well. The presence of a compound called Cucumis melo makes melons work as a diuretic, which increases urine production and relieves bloating.

4. Popcorn

You may benefit from eating popcorn during period because whole grains help increase the production of serotonin. Be sure to opt for unsalted varieties to avoid salt-induced bloating. Along with keeping bloating at bay, it will also help improve your mood and make you feel a little less cranky.

5. Saffron


Some studies have found that saffron can help reduce feeling of depression, which is why it should be on your list of what to eat during period to lose weight. By reducing depression symptoms and improving mood, it discourages water retention and prevents overeating. It directly helps by increasing the levels of serotonin, the feel-good hormone. Even a little of it will go a long way in managing your depression symptoms. Be sure to include it in your Middle Eastern, African, and European-inspired dishes to enjoy some amazing benefits.

6. Chia Seed

If you are becoming very emotional during your period, you are not alone. It is natural for some women to cry at the drop of a hat while menstruating, but a nutritional fix can certainly help here. For starters, consider loading up on omega-3s because the nutrient acts as an antidepressant and elevates your mood. Experts believe that the nutrient helps by supporting the flow of serotonin through the cell membranes that heightens its effects. Chia seeds are a great source of omega-3s, so you should include them in your diet during period. Eggs, salmon, and grass-fed beef are also rich in omega-3s, but it is quite easy to include chia seeds in just about anything, including smoothies as well as homemade baked goods.

7. Beans

Beans help you fight weight gain during periods because they are rich in magnesium. They improve serotonin levels and discourage fluid retention at the same time. You can even opt for canned beans, but ensure that you opt for no salt-added varieties. Another benefit of eating beans is that it is going to provide you with a good dose of antioxidants and other nutrients, such as fiber, iron, zinc, copper, and potassium. You can add beans to soups, salads, and whole-grain pastas.

A Change to Your Diet and Exercise Pattern

Along with learning what to eat during period to lose weight, you also need to make some changes to your exercise pattern to get good result. Here is how to proceed:

Early Follicular Phase (Day1 to 4)

At this stage, your energy reserves will be depleting quickly. Therefore, it is a good idea to avoid high-intensity training. You will be better off sticking to light exercises, such as walking, yoga, and stretching. You may also consider eating smaller meals multiple times a day to deal with your reduced appetite at this stage.

Late Follicular Phase (Day 5 to 15)

Your energy will begin to increase during this phase, so you can afford to add more intensity to your workouts. You can do a mix of weight training and cardio – you can weight train twice a week and try cardio for 2-3 days a week. Be sure to add more protein to your diet during this phase.

Luteal Phase (Days 16 to 28)

Your energy will be on the higher side during this phase and you may as well be craving for energy dense foods. You can increase your exercise frequency, especially if you are getting enough carbs and healthy fats. You can afford to add an additional 200 calories to your diet during this phase, but be sure to get those calories from protein and healthy fats, such as olive oil avocado, and nuts. Try not to load up on carbs during this phase.