Menstrual Myths

How to Induce a Period: 13 Natural Methods and Myths

Image from

Prachi Shah

It’s a story passed from word of mouth, across households, generations and countries. Young people, often young women with an important event coming up, are told to eat certain foods to induce or delay their menstrual period in order to make sure that it doesn’t coincide with a birthday, religious occasion, or other event. Plants and herbs such as turmeric, mangoes, pineapple, and papaya have been touted for centuries as natural ways to encourage the early onset of a menstrual period. However, the evidence regarding these herbal treatments, known as emmenagogues, is often strictly anecdotal, and is often contradictory. 

A menstrual period is the culmination of the body’s roughly 28 day reproductive cycle. The cycle begins with the maturation of an ovum, or egg, which is then released into the body. Over the next few weeks, the endometrium (thick lining of the uterus) thickens. The cycle culminates with the shedding of this lining through the vagina, which is known as the menstrual period. The menstrual period is regulated largely by hormones such as estrogen and progesterone, among others. When these hormones are not present in the correct ratios, it can result in irregular periods, which may lead someone to seek out natural remedies to induce it. 

Anecdotes claim that foods such as citrus, berries, spinach, and tomatoes bring on a period through the increased intake of vitamin C (ascorbic acid), based on the rationale that this will have a hormone-like action that induces uterine contraction and a subsequent shedding of uterine lining. There are several hypotheses that need testing in theories like this. Other foods such as turmeric or pineapple supposedly induce periods by affecting levels of estrogen and progesterone (hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle) in the body. Unfortunately, there is little scientific evidence to support these concepts. Additionally, a few of these recommended herbal remedies, such as dong quai and parsley, can be toxic in high quantities or when children are exposed; therefore, they should be used in moderation. 

Aside from eating particular foods, there are some other suggested methods to help relieve irregular or painful periods. Exercise has been proved to help relieve menstrual pain. However, excessive exercise can delay or temporarily stop one’s menstrual cycle as can eating disorders or prolonged stress. People who seek regular periods may choose to participate in light/moderate exercise and relaxation techniques.

At the end of the day, the only reliable, scientifically proven method to fully control one’s period is hormonal birth control, which needs to be prescribed by a medical professional.

24 thoughts on “Menstrual Myths”

  1. Needed to post you a tiny observation just to say thanks once again over the extraordinary knowledge you’ve shared here. This has been incredibly generous of people like you to convey without restraint just what many individuals could have supplied for an e-book in order to make some bucks for themselves, certainly considering that you could possibly have tried it in case you wanted. The suggestions as well acted to be a fantastic way to be aware that other individuals have similar desire like my very own to understand a good deal more concerning this matter. I am sure there are millions of more fun periods in the future for individuals who looked at your site.

  2. Hello there I am so glad I found your blog, I really found you by error, while I was looking on Google for something else, Regardless I am here now and would just like to say cheers for a incredible post and a all round entertaining blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to look over it all at the minute but I have bookmarked it and also included your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read much more, Please do keep up the superb work.

  3. Hello! Someone in my Myspace group shared this website with us so I came to check it out. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m bookmarking and will be tweeting this to my followers! Terrific blog and superb style and design.

  4. I wanted to send you one little remark just to thank you very much over again just for the gorgeous advice you have featured on this page. It has been certainly pretty generous with people like you to deliver extensively precisely what a few individuals would have sold as an e book to earn some profit on their own, chiefly considering the fact that you could possibly have done it if you considered necessary. These concepts likewise acted like a good way to know that other people have the same fervor like mine to understand lots more when it comes to this problem. I am sure there are a lot more pleasant moments in the future for individuals who start reading your blog post.

  5. I am extremely inspired with your writing talents and also with the structure on your weblog. Is that this a paid subject or did you modify it your self? Anyway stay up the excellent high quality writing, it’s uncommon to see a great weblog like this one these days..

  6. Oh my goodness! a tremendous article dude. Thanks Nonetheless I’m experiencing issue with ur rss . Don’t know why Unable to subscribe to it. Is there anybody getting an identical rss problem? Anybody who knows kindly respond. Thnkx

  7. Hello there, You’ve performed a great job. I’ll definitely digg it and in my view recommend to my friends. I am confident they will be benefited from this site.

  8. Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive read something like this before. So nice to search out somebody with some original ideas on this subject. realy thank you for beginning this up. this web site is something that is wanted on the net, someone with a bit originality. useful job for bringing one thing new to the internet!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *