Shark Week: How the $!&# do I stay healthy?

558152b0a504e785d2d53167cbaaf8df Hey guys,

Today’s post is brought to you by that one relative we all share and loathe with the fire of a thousand suns: Aunt Flo. For those of you little ladies that are standing there, shrugging and going “Oh, I don’t really notice her that much”, take a seat.

If, at this point, you’re still wondering what the bleep I’m talking about it – it’s your period. That miserable soul-sucking creature that pays a visit once a month. I’ll make sure to use lots of silly euphemisms along the way to make this morose subject as entertaining as possible.

tumblr_m1i0jeUTEa1qfq2ulThe question begging to be answered here is: how does one stay on track when Aunt Flo is in town?

Well, it’s simple, really. You don’t. At least I don’t. I try? Okay, okay I will try this week. Since my turning over a new, fitter leaf I’ve decided I want to stay as healthy as possible while on the lady bug. 

Give me all the food. NOW!

For me, the biggest factor that needs tackling in this situation is food. My cravings fluctuate more than my Rogers WiFi does, and I’m not even exaggerating. Typically, when you look up substitutes for the food you’re craving, they tend to be along the lines of ‘spinach, and carrots, and yuck’.

While giving into PMS cravings for a couple of days will not be the end of the world for you, if you really want to keep what you eat under control try these healthy but realistic substitutes:

Screen Shot 2014-06-08 at 8.05.48 PM

  • Raw/dark chocolate: Since your hormone levels go ape shit around this time of month it is normal for your blood sugar levels to drop, making you crave sweet foods. Dark chocolate is not only a healthier alternative to milk chocolate but is also high in serotonin levels, which can help with the mood swings (which let’s be honest, is a win-win for you and everyone around you).  It would be a good idea to switch to raw cacao for any baking you might find yourself doing too.
  • White meat: If you feel extra carnivorous, try steering clear of steaks and bacon (as heinous as that suggestion sounds) and sticking with white meats like chicken, fish and turkey (high in Vitamin B6). This will also help with mood swings along with bloating and water retention.
  • 2183433_12019107_lzMimosas: Well, more like Vitamin C, but everyone knows mimosas are a land mine for Vitamin C. Right? Right?In case anyone’s wondering, Mimosas are a scrumdiddlyumptious mixture of orange juice and champagne. If you haven’t tried them yet, I can’t be friends with you! Vitamin C is a large contributing factor in reducing typical symptoms of the big red monster. Personally, this is great to hear because I average about five medium-sized oranges a day.
  • Carbs: Unfortunately, I’m not talking about chilli fries or an entire cake BUT it would be wise to stack up on some sweet potatoes, brown rice and whole wheat pasta (and other complex carbs) when Aunt Flo is in town to keep you fuller for longer which will curb cravings and prevent you from inhaling an entire pizza like I did today. And hello, sweet potato fries are GREAT!
  • Hydrate: To conclude, it’s absolutely imperative that amidst your loopy appetite you don’t forget to drink water. If you feel bloated and are trying to skimp on the fluids, try considering that your body might be holding on to whatever fluids are in there because it’s dehydrated.

I need to exercise? WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO SUGGEST?!

When I watch ads for tampons I always see women skirting along to tennis or football or track practise and think “what the f-?” That’s normal, do not feel bad for throwing in the towel this week. We aren’t supposed to magically feel like gym bound unicorns this time of the month but wait – I bet you didn’t know working out while on your period could actually helpIf you’re feeling up to your normal workouts, good for you! If not, light cardio will give you the happy hormones (endorphins) you need to make you feel better while yoga can help ease cramps and put your body at easy.

If the gym and shark week simply don’t go together, consider taking Brenda-Leigh’s advice. She founded Lean Secrets and is one smart and tough cookie. Brenda gives us some smart tips on how to plan around your time of the month and get the most out of every month.

Next week, I try my hand at the almighty green smoothie in a mason jar that many of you have probably seen while rummaging through Instagram.

Here’s hoping Aunt Flo doesn’t destroy my life by then.

Thanks for reading, you’re awesome!

Photo credit:

  • New Girl – Season 02 Episode 07 (TV series)
  • No Strings Attached (Movie)
  • Shrek 2 – Fairy Godmother (Movie)
  • HomSweetHom – Daily Dishonesty (14/39)

About Karuna Israni

Going into my third year at UofT, aspiring writer, desperately trying to get back into shape, traveller, amateur photographer (aka iPhone owner/ Instagram account holder)
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