Bloating and cramps are typically experienced together, and they are caused when gas forms and gets trapped in the stomach and intestines. Bloating can be caused by certain foods, or they can be a result of premenstrual syndrome. Foods that are notorious for causing gas, bloating, and cramps include beans and sugars. Bloating and cramps are also common symptoms right before and during menstruation, which is most likely due to the hormone fluctuations. That being said, there are several natural ways to treat bloating and cramps.
While it is important to avoid certain foods that cause bloating and cramps, it can be helpful to eat healthy foods to avoid these symptoms. Eating fiber can prevent bloating. Other beneficial foods to help prevent bloating and cramps include Greek yogurt, avocado, nuts, and whole fruits and vegetables. Eating healthy foods can also provide maximum energy and alertness.
Exercising is an effective way to ease bloating and cramps. Exercising helps reduce stress and releases “feel-good” neurotransmitters, like serotonin, in the brain. The general recommendation is at least 30 minutes of aerobic activity every day, five days of the week. Exercising can also significantly increase energy levels and improve mood. Walking, cycling, and swimming are all good forms of low-impact workouts that can help treat bloating and cramps.
Coconut oil has recently gained popularity for its versatility and numerous health benefits. One of which is anti-inflammation, which helps relieve pain and bloating. Coconut oil contains medium chain triglycerides, a healthy kind of fatty acid.
Peppermint is a soothing herb that can help relieve upset stomach and support digestion. Also, it helps relieve spasms in the gastrointestinal tract, bile duct, and gallbladder.
Passion flower is an herb that has been used to treat sleep disorders, night sweats, anxiety, and gastrointestinal disorders. Passion flower has anti-inflammatory properties, which provide a soothing effect.
Ginger contains several active ingredients, including the potent compounds gingerols and shogaols that help reduce inflammation in the intestines. This helps the herb to reduce nausea and bloating.
Taking a Bath
Soaking in a warm bath with essential oils (e.g., lavender or chamomile) can also be very beneficial in relieving pain. After that, applying a heating pad to the painful area can help relieve cramps and bloating.
Getting plenty of sleep every night is vital for your body to function properly. This includes preventing bloating and other ailments. The average adult needs between seven and eight hours of sleep every night.
Bloating and cramps often go hand-in-hand, and they can be very painful. Certain foods and PMS can cause bloating and cramps, so it is important to try to avoid unhealthy foods full of sugars and salt. Natural remedies that can help ease bloating and cramps include applying a heating pad to the cramps, drinking peppermint or ginger tea, and getting plenty of sleep every night.
Besides these 8 natural ways, there are also 3 main approaches you should know about.
- Bruton-Seal, J. & Seal, M. Backyard Medicine. (2009). New York: Skyhorse Publishing.
- Does Not Lead to an Adverse Metabolic Profile When Compared to Olive Oil. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 27(5), 547-552. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2874191/
- National Health Service UK. (2012). Stomach ache and abdominal pain. Retrieved October 27, 2014, from http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stomach-ache-abdominal-pain/pages/introduction.aspx