Cramps, Bloat, Periods….OH MY!

Overweight woman
Yes That time of the month ladies and gentleman…YES gentleman too! Everyone needs to know how a woman’s body works especially a woman! I include men because, the majority need to start being open minded and learn a thing or two about the female reproductive system before penetration!
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So basically periods suck. Plain and Simple. Probably the ONLY good thing about it is, is that it’s a good indicator that you’re not pregnant! But that’s probably it.
There are a quite a few things that suck about periods but I wanted to talk about bloating, water retention and cravings. Personally I suffer from all of these symptoms (amongst other agonizing pain) whilse on my period. And it’s frustrating. Want to know why? I have been watching what I eat religiously and being really careful on how I eat my macros.

*Quick side note* I have edited my macros to be almost in Ketosis, which is basically low carb and high fat/protein. Now it’s nothing drastic like I’ve seen women/men do before a competition…like less than 40g carbs per day. I am eating roughly 116g carbs a day and it really does help FOR ME because I don’t feel overly full and bloated. I eat higher amount of complex carbs (oatmeal) in the morning to get my day started and keep me full (due to high fiber) And then throughout the day I’ll have lighter carbs (leafy greens & vegetables) This has been working for ME and not everyone can eat like this. Just FYI!

Back to periods, I just recently finished shark week (as I dubbed it) and I have lost 2lbs. I’m not lower than before…I just lost the weight I gained while ON my period! So about 1-2 days before my period I noticed my weight was rising, and all through my period I was about 3-4lbs heavier than the week prior. I was so frustrated and disappointed in myself. I tried to look back on what I was eating…I did have more candy than usual and salty foods…but other than that I was pretty spot on my macros. “Maybe I’m just building muscle and its my huge biceps that are making me heavier lol”

I did some research and learned about water retention. I knew what it was before this but I didn’t know it could happen while ON your period. So it seems unclear as to WHY this happens, but hormones seem to play a role in this. Something is telling your body to hold onto this water and keep it stored. So that full bloated feeling…its real! It’s not just in your head or your self-esteem saying “you’re fat” it’s actually an issue with women. Now how much weight gain there is varies from woman to woman.

There is also another reason as to why you’re gaining weight. Changes in diet will drastically have an effect on your weight gain. For me, I crave salty foods while on my period…well like all the time really. So if you add an increased intake of salt on top with your hormonal water retention phase, basically you’re setting yourself up for more weight gain! I don’t want to sound like you need to cut out all salt from your diet but because your introducing extra salt into your body, its going to want to hold on to more water. So if you are feeling the cravings, go ahead and enjoy, in moderation and with a big heaping glass of water! Wait what!?

Yes DRINK MORE WATER! It sounds counter-intuitive but think of it as flushing the existing water out because you’re hydrating yourself with more water. There is only so much water your body can absorb, it’s going to let some go if your drinking more H2O.

**WARNING** Drinking TOO much water CAN lead to water poisoning. NO ITS NOT MADE UP! its basically when your blodd cells are over filled with water and look like balls instead of dimpled doughnuts. It feels like being DE-hydrated but its NOT! if you have been drinking too much water and feel severe pain and cramping, stop drinking water! Eat some pretzels, or some chips! (I KNOW THIS FROM FIRST HAND EXPERIENCE!)

So in a nutshell; periods are a gift from the Devil himself, they’re painful and inconvenient. But good news, it’ll be over before you know it. If you keep working hard and watching what you eat, that weight gain will be gone as soon as hell week is over. It’s just how a women’s body works…for some reason. Take care of yourself and don’t think you’ve let yourself down like I did.
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