chocolate cravings, mama disrupt

The science behind chocolate cravings and your menstrual cycle

In Features, Stories, Wellness by Nicole Fuge

You know that urge to devour chocolate right around that time of the month? Guess what? It’s not just your sweet tooth talking – there’s some science behind those cravings.

By Ava Wilde

Let’s dive into the delicious world of chocolate and how it intertwines with your menstrual cycle. It’s going to be a sweet ride!

First things first, why does it seem like chocolate is calling your name louder than ever when Aunt Flo comes to town? Well, blame it on those fluctuating hormones. During different phases of your menstrual cycle, your body experiences changes in hormone levels, especially oestrogen and progesterone. These hormonal shifts can influence your mood, appetite, and yes, your cravings.

Now, let’s break it down by cycle phase, shall we?


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Menstrual Phase (Days 1-5)

As you bid adieu to your period woes, your body is in need of some extra TLC. Chocolate to the rescue. It’s not just about satisfying your sweet cravings; chocolate contains magnesium, which can help alleviate those pesky period cramps. Plus, who can say no to a mood boost during this time of the month?

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Follicular Phase (Days 1-13)

As your body gears up for ovulation, your energy levels are on the rise. This is the time when you may find yourself reaching for that chocolate fix to keep those energy levels steady. Dark chocolate, in particular, is a great choice as it’s packed with antioxidants and can help keep those midday slumps at bay.

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Ovulation Phase (Days 14-15)

Ah, the golden window of fertility. During ovulation, your oestrogen levels peak, and you’re feeling like a radiant goddess. While chocolate may not be at the forefront of your mind during this time, a little indulgence won’t hurt. After all, you deserve it.

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Luteal Phase (Days 15-28)

Here comes the PMS parade. As progesterone levels soar and your mood takes a dip, chocolate becomes your trusty sidekick once again. This is when those cravings kick into high gear, but fear not – a small serving of chocolate can work wonders for your mood and overall wellbeing.

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That’s the why, here’s the how

When it comes to snacking smart, moderation is key. Instead of devouring an entire block of chocolate in one sitting (trust me, we’ve all been there), aim for a small portion to satisfy your cravings without overindulging. Opt for dark chocolate with a higher cocoa content for maximum health benefits and minimal guilt.

But wait, there’s more! Pairing your chocolate fix with some protein or healthy fats can help stabilise your blood sugar levels and keep you feeling fuller for longer. Think almond butter on a piece of dark chocolate or a handful of nuts alongside your favourite chocolate treat.

And finally, don’t forget to listen to your body. If you’re craving chocolate, it’s okay to indulge occasionally. After all, life is all about balance, right?

So, the next time those chocolate cravings come knocking, embrace them with open arms (and a square of dark chocolate). Your taste buds – and your menstrual cycle – will thank you for it.

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