Alternative Medicine, Home Remedies for Menstruation Relief
Menstruation is the term used for the natural monthly cycle of periods in
the female body. Periods are when the unfertilized eggs are ejected out
of the reproductive system along with blood and several other tissue
cells. This flow happens once a month. The flow is profuse on one
particular day of the month. However the discomfort of the periods could
generally last for three days.
The female reproductive system is indeed marvelous. Every month the
ovaries produce one egg which is deposited in the fallopian tube. The
uterine wall known as the endometrium thickens and there is increased
blood circulation in the entire reproductive system. This is all in
preparation of a pregnancy. However, if the woman does not get pregnant,
then all these things need to be expelled from the body. This is known as
the period. Once the expulsion is done, the ovaries produce a new egg and
the cycle continues for another month.
Women may face several difficulties during their menstrual flow. There is
increased moistness in the vaginal area, and there could be infections.
Women could have fevers, extreme pain in the groin area, giddiness,
nausea and vomiting, etc. In some women the effects are more aggressive
than others. And the most worrisome thing is that the symptoms could
recur month after month. The biological term for menstrual problems is
In Ayurveda, menses (i.e. the flow of the menstrual period) is considered
to be the excess pitta which flows out of the body. It is called as Raja.
Hence the menstrual flow is also called as Raja Pravritti. Though
menstruation is a typically pitta phenomenon, effects on the vata and the
kapha are also seen. Some women have insomnia and mood swings during
their periods. This is vata vitiation. Some women gain weight. This is
(1) Useful Herbs in the Treatment of Menstruation
b) Asafetida (Ferula fetida)
Asafetida is known to increase the secretion of the female hormone,
progesterone. Thus it facilitates menstruation. Using asafetida gum fried
in ghee and mixed with goat’s milk and a spoonful of honey for a month
can reduce the pains during menstruation and also make the flow reduced.
c) Asoka (Saraca indica)
The bark of the asoka tree is given to women who experience extreme blood
loss during menstruation due to leucorrhea or uterine fibroids. The plant
has a stimulating effect on the uterine wall and the mucus layer in the
d) Bamboo (Bambusa bambos)
Bamboo acts as an emmenagogue which stimulates menstruation. Its leaves
are prescribed for this purpose. Regular consumption of the leaves of the
bamboo is prescribed to promote and regulate the menstrual flow.
e) Bloodwort (Achillea millefolium)
The hot infusion of leaves of the bloodwort is taken as an emmenagogue. A
decoction of the herb can correct irregular periods. The herb also yields
an oil which can be used in the treatment of female reproductive
f) Chicory (Chichorium intybus)
Seeds of chicory are prepared into a decoction to treat problems of
g) Dill (Anethum sowa)
This fragrant herb is efficient in stimulating menstrual cycles. It helps
women who have delayed periods to get their periods on time. Young anemic
girls are prone to spasmodic menstruation, which can be quite painful. A
decoction of dill is prepared with the leaves of parsley to treat such
h) Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
Cold climates can sometimes cause painful and irregular periods. An
infusion of ginger sweetened with sugar is taken for correcting such
i) Henna (Lawsonia alba)
Henna is a cooling agent. Suppositories of its leaves are made and placed
in the vagina for women who have problems of excessive menstruation.
j) Hermal (Peganum harmala)
The hermal is a little-known herb, but in Ayurveda it is prescribed
regularly for menstrual problems such as painful menstruation and
k) Indian Aloe (Aloe vera)
The Indian aloe is a stimulant of the uterus. Hence it is given in cases
of painful menstruation.
l) Indian Spikenard (Nardostachys jatamansi)
The jatamansi is a very popular Indian herb used in the treatment of
painful and irregular periods.
m) Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon citratus)
Lemon grass is used in painful and difficult menstruation. It can be
taken in the form of a tea.
(2) Dietary Treatments for Menstruation
The following dietary tips are beneficial to women who have painful or
1 Avoid all constipating foods, especially in the last week of the
menstrual cycle. This includes fried foods, sour foods and protein-rich
2 Fish is a good dietary indication for painful periods. Fish contain
omega-3 fatty acids which help to ease the spasms during menstruation.
Meat, poultry and dairy products must be avoided.
3 Among vegetables, white pumpkin, papaya, drumstick, snake gourd, bitter
gourd and cucumber are good for dysmenorrhea. Potato, yellow pumpkin and
eggplant must be avoided.
(3) Ayurvedic Treatments for Menstruation
Kumari is the drug of choice for menstrual problems in Ayurveda. This is
nothing but the aloe vera plant. It is taken in the form of Kumarasava in
a dose of six teaspoonfuls twice a day. There is a special preparation
called as the Raja Pravartani vati, which contains aloe and asafetida as
its main ingredients. This medication is taken in the form of pills – two
of them twice a day a week before the periods are due.
(4) Home Remedies for Menstruation
1 Fry asafetida in ghee and add a teaspoonful of it to buttermilk. Have
this once a day in case of dysmenorrhea.
2 Mix some sesame seeds in a glassful of water. Drink this twice daily
when you have menstrual pains.
3 Have salads with boiled beetroot in them, or have beetroot juice.
The following exercises help in reducing the pain of menstruation:-
a) Take a firm chair and stand behind it holding your hands firmly on the
chair’s back. Lift one heel and then the other. Continue this for about
ten minutes. You can also do knee-bends.
b) Lie on your back on a firm bed. Fold your legs and bring the knees up
to your chin. Repeat this ten times.
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