It may be a little TMI but I feel as though this information might be able to help somebody!
As many of you know, it’s difficult to go about your business at that time of the month when you have a sore tum, aching back and a bad attitude. If you suffer with heavy, painful or irregular periods Maca Root may be the answer. If you have diagnosed condition such as PCOS or endometriosis this may help you out but I recommend you do your own research on top.
I’d say I suffer with moderate to mildly severe period pain that I’m finding exhausting. After trying mefenamic acid on prescription and the usual over the counter painkillers, taking a combination of paracetamol and ibuprofen every 4hrs on the dot is the only routine I’ve found effective. This adds up to a massive 648 tablets a year, my poor poor liver!
After doing some research on herbal supplements around 6 months ago I stumbled across Maca Root (I’ll get into the nitty gritty in a bit). After reading about it’s hormone balancing (adaptogenic) properties I thought I’d give it a go and see if it improves PMS and period pain. It’s relatively cheap and easily accessible in the UK at £10.99 for 60 capsules at Holland and Barrett.
AND IT REALLY WORKS!
So what is it? How does it work?
Maca root is a root vegetable found in the Andes. It’s been used by the indigenous peoples of South America for hundreds of years as a herbal remedy for a wide array of conditions that effect both men and women. More information on uses of Maca can be found at http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/7-benefits-of-maca-root-for-women/.
Maca works as an adaptogen. In a nutshell, this means that it helps to naturally regulate hormones to restore a healthy balance. This works by stimulating your body to secrete more/less hormones to compensate in hormone imbalances and deficiencies.
The drop in estrogen and progesterone before a period is thought to be the leading cause of PMS, similarly an excess of prostaglandins causes your uterus to contract overtime. Estrogen aids production of serotonin (a feel good neurotransmitter) and endorphins. This steep drop in estrogen can therefore cause changes in mood and behaviour by making us feel down and irritable. Maca root helps to reduce the effects of hormonal imbalance and therefore improves mood and reduce cramping.
After taking Maca root for 4 or so months I can safely say I no long suffer with period related mood swings at all! Pain is reduced so significantly it only takes a tablet or two to completely numb the pain, I have never felt so comfortable on my period. In addition to all this good stuff, my period has become much lighter and is 2 days shorter than it once was which is amazing.
I’d be lying if I told you Maca has eradicated my period problems completely, but I can tell you it has made coping with them a tonne easier. Sometimes I even forget I’m even on!
The struggle with period pain is real and I sympathise, I hope this was informative!