Relationship Between Drinking and Having a Period
Drinking while on your period can affect your hormone levels…in a bad way. Alcohol is known to increase estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels in your body.
These are the key players involved in ovulation, bowel contractions, your mood, and more. Too much of these period hormones can exacerbate PMS symptoms, such as mood swings, cramps, diarrhea, and irritability.
3 Pros of Drinking On Your Period
While drinking on your period is not recommended by most healthcare providers, nothing is stopping you from reaching for that glass of wine. Some menstruators say that a little alcohol can help dull the feeling of period cramps.
A light beer or glass of wine may also help with de-stressing for those feeling irritable on their cycle. If you’re finding yourself very bloated, a little red wine may help.
The polyphenols in red wine and grapes are known to promote the growth of good bacteria in your gut.
In general, drinking during your period may help you feel better, but on one condition. Drink in moderation and stay hydrated because alcohol is a diuretic.
3 Cons of Drinking On Your Period
However, if you ask most doctors, drinking during your period is generally not recommended. Drinking alcohol is known to throw off your hormone levels on your menstrual cycle.
Alcohol increases the levels of prostaglandins, known to trigger muscle contractions in your womb. Higher levels of prostaglandins may induce more severe menstrual cramps.
Dehydration is another concern for heavy drinkers in their cycle. Since alcohol is a diuretic, drinking too much may result in the thickening of menstrual fluids.
Thicker period blood and blood clots will be harder to exit the uterus and vagina. Lastly, alcohol increases the levels of estrogen during your period.
This period hormone stimulates the thickening of the tissue lining your uterus. A thicker, overgrown uterine wall will take longer to shed, resulting in heavier bleeding.
Tips for Drinking on Your Period
If you’re adamant about drinking on your period, an important reminder is to stay hydrated! Alcohol is a diuretic, so drinking copious amounts of water during your period is important.
Certain phases of your menstrual cycle will leave you more dehydrated, such as the luteal phase (day 15 of your cycle).
Here are other tips to bear in mind when you’re on your period, especially if you’ve been drinking:
- Avoid stimulants like caffeine to keep your PMS symptoms at bay. Inflammatory substances like caffeine can make your period cramps worse.
- Eat foods rich in vitamins and fibre to help with your menstrual cramps.
- Get plenty of rest and sleep to give your body time to recover.
Can I drink alcohol while on my period?
You can drink during your period, provided it doesn’t worsen your PMS symptoms.
Alcohol affects menstruators differently. While a glass of wine may take the edge off for those feeling extra irritable and stressed, it may cause more severe period cramps in others.
Can alcohol make my period worse?
Drinking can make your PMS symptoms worse when you’re on your cycle. Alcohol is known to temporarily induce your body to produce more period hormones.
These hormonal fluctuations can cause irregular menstrual cycles and amplify PMS symptoms, such as bloating, cramps, and headaches.
What can I not drink during my period?
Avoid consuming alcohol, sugary drinks, and stimulants such as tea and coffee. These are all known to exacerbate PMS symptoms.
Alcohol dehydrates your body and can make your period cramps more severe.
What should I be drinking on my period?
Avoid drinking alcohol and sugary, caffeinated drinks while on your period. Instead, opt for more water or non-alcoholic drinks without sugar, like tea or sparkling water.
Read more: Why Do I Poop So Much On My Period?
Final Thoughts on Can You Drink On Your Period
Though having a glass of wine while on your period may help relax you temporarily, it’s easy to overstep the line between casual sipping and overdrinking.
More often than not, alcohol is known to make your PMS anxiety and symptoms worse.
Research shows that alcohol creates a hormonal imbalance, so many menstruators may experience heavier bleeding, more painful period cramps, irregular periods, and more severe bloating. And let’s not forget the association of drinking alcohol with infertility, poor heart health, and an increased risk of diabetes.
If you find yourself reaching for that beer or glass of wine, remember to stay hydrated while drinking!
Drinking more water, eating a diet rich in fibre and vitamins, and getting that much-needed rest will do wonders for your body during your period.
And since you’re here, why not check out our 100% compostable period pads?