Fascinating Fennel: How to Cure Period Pain the Ayurveda Way
Updated: Oct 1, 2019
The October weather smiles down upon us today - invigorating sunshine, white fluffy clouds and a benevolent breeze.
But for many of us, it is one of those days, when our mood would give Hades a run for cover. Blame it on those four days of the month.
Yes! You know what I am talking about.
I, like many women, being one of those who suffer terrible period pain during the first two days, had been battling it till Ayurveda saved me.
The body bloating up does not make things any better.
And let us not talk about our mood at all! I am sure many of you will relate to our vexation.
In many countries, as soon as a woman reaches puberty, she is prescribed to take contraceptive pills.
Contraceptive pills are also recommended to do away with temporary uterine cysts.
So are pain killers consumed to counter the menstrual cramps.
Now, I am a flag-bearer of Mother Nature. And it is my very personal opinion that women need not resort to contraceptives or painkillers unnecessarily.
Certainly, she has all the right to choose to be a mother or not. Contraceptive pills help her to affirm this right.
However, contraceptives and painkiller, when used regularly, will have their respective side effects. One, for example, the association of heart attack in women and the use of contraceptive.
The British Heart Foundation states in their practical support section that
"The combined contraceptive pill (a combined pill containing the hormones oestrogen and progesterone) can slightly increase your risk of high blood pressure and blood clotting problems so it is important to be checked on a regular basis.
Problems with blood clotting can increase your risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT). This increases the risk of pulmonary embolism, where a blood clot moves up into your lungs and blocks the flow of blood.
A pulmonary embolism is life-threatening and needs emergency treatment." (BHF)
Clearly, the side effects of contraceptives are evident and they are more prominent if you are habitual to smoking and consumption of alcohol.
Where period pain killers are concerned, NHS UK advice as quoted here "You can take ibuprofen and aspirin to help manage your pain.
However, don't take ibuprofen or aspirin if you have asthma or stomach, kidney or liver problems.
Aspirin shouldn't be given to anyone under 16 years of age.
You could also try paracetamol, but studies have shown that it doesn't reduce pain as effectively as ibuprofen or aspirin.
If ordinary painkillers are ineffective, your GP may prescribe a stronger painkiller, such as naproxen or codeine."
One doesn't need to read between the lines, to decipher that both contraceptive and pain killer come with 'chemical baggage' which can throw your entire humane system into jeopardy if you resort to their prolonged use.
One of the reasons, I always stay away from the use of either contraceptives or pain killers, unless absolutely necessary.
The famous singer-songwriter had so aptly mirrored the deepest feelings of every woman in this world, when pain is concerned, be it physical or emotional. And I quote her here as period pain has both the physical and emotional aspect to it.
"Really, every woman is an example to me, because as women we go through so much pain. We have to live this perfect life when we are messed up inside. We all go through trials and tribulations."- Mary J. Blige
For many of us women, this is the dreaded time of the month.
Many of you are mercifully spared of nausea, headache, vomiting and even seizures, but we need to empathize with those who are not so lucky.
Some of us also suffer from terrible depression during their cycles.
I have witnessed all those symptoms from my childhood friend. Poor soul, she, like many of us, had resorted to very high dosage of painkillers in her bag. Today, she is under medication for kidney problems due to excessive use of NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory)
You can certainly try and not make our bodies dump ground for chemicals.
To cure one symptom lets not produce another, and be enslaved in the endless cycle of pill-popping.
Imagine the amount of chemical residue in your body if you have been taking contraceptive since your puberty.
Mother Nature heals us slowly but surely.
All it takes is a little bit of patience and self-discipline.
I learned about the various treatments for period pain and menstrual trouble from our Ayurvedic Physician. And don't worry about your body type and Doshas.
This remedy is for anybody irrespective of your body type or Doshas. So go ahead, you have nothing to lose except for the pain.
These are simple and easy remedy for most menstrual troubles especially period pain.
I strongly advise that for blinding headaches, serious nausea and seizure, please consult with a specialist physician.
Simultaneously, I recommend that you continue to imbibe these simple healing treatments.
You really need not wait for Whoopi Goldberg to push marijuana for a menstrual cure. And what about those women from the countries where marijuana will never be legalized?
Should they be left to suffer in pain alone, and not be made aware of an effective Natural Therapy? Mother Nature does not discriminate, and as women, neither should we.
Fennel seeds are for everyone!
Fennel seeds are cheap, easily available, tastes fantastic and make a great drink, so go ahead and see for yourself.
You may never know when your body decides to respond to natural treatments.
Nature is, after all, far mightier than we can even fathom.
It's during these difficult times, fennel seeds come to our rescue.
They not only regulate monthly menstrual cycle but is most curative of menstrual cramps. The seeds are aromatic and have a sweet taste.
You can simply chew a teaspoon of them after every meal, a couple of days before your period starts.
Fennel seeds taken after every meal controls the bloating during your periods as they are excellent digestive aids.
It also helps to reduce the uterine contraction during menstrual cycles which is the primary reason for cramps. It works as a natural mouth freshener too.
During your periods, wash the seeds in water.
Boil 2 teaspoons of the washed fennel seed in a cup of water for about 2-3 minutes.
Strain and keep drinking this water during those 4-5 days. (You can simply chew off the strained fennel seeds, they are equally good and reduces waste).
I make this early in the morning and store it in an easy-to-carry a 500 ml bottle. For 500 ml, I use 2 tablespoons (generously filled) of Fennel Seeds.
Saves me a lot of time and effort. I just refill it when empty.
Speaking about fennel seeds, it is also an Ayurvedic remedy for burning sensation in the eyes, sore or inflamed.
So, if you are working late looking at your computer screen. Just dip a cotton wool into your fennel solution and gently dab the eyes.
And yes! drink lots of H2O! No, not packed juices, energy drinks, fizzy colas, but plain water!
Cutting down on Salty and Sugary food, during these days can make life a little easy.
And yes, try and avoid oily, hot, over-processed food.
Often our face breaks out into zits and pimples during these days and many suffer from scanty periods. They too can be treated naturally.
Did you know the word 'Menstruation' comes from the Latin word 'Menses' (month) which relates to Greek 'Mene'? In many cultures, menstruation is considered unclean, embarrassing and is a taboo topic altogether.
Conversely, in many cultures, it is an empowering time for women as they become 'ready' to play the part in the creation or propagation of human species.
Whether society celebrates it or shuns it, Nature Always Runs Her Course.
I shall end this very personal post with an Ode to All Women :
Know dear visitor, in pain, we are together.
"Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars. - Kahlil Gibran"
Special diet for difficult days.