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Is eating papaya during periods safe? Know from an expert

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A few foods should be avoided in order to have a less painful menstrual cycle. One such food people advise to avoid during periods and pregnancy is papaya. Ever wondered if it is true or not? Well, the answer is yes and no, both. Eating “ripe” papayas is healthy during pregnancy, but “unripe” papayas are not. Unripe papayas are full of latex and papain, which can induce serious allergic responses and early labor by inducing uterine contractions. As a result, it is recommended that you use caution when consuming papaya during periods too. But can papaya impact your menstrual cycle? Let’s find out.

Can you eat papaya during periods?

In addition to the ripe and unripe theory of papaya, it is also generally believed that papayas are among the “hot foods” that produce excessive heat in the body and can disrupt both the fetus and the menstrual cycle. However, no research has been done to determine whether this superfood can increase your body’s core temperature to cause any problems.

To find out if eating papaya is safe during periods, HealthShots contacted Dr Shalini Vijay, Senior Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist, Motherhood Hospitals, Lullanagar, Pune.

papaya during periods
Papaya is very nutritious. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Dr Vijay says, “According to studies, eating ripe papaya is harmless and does not hurt a woman during her period. And even though papaya is a hot food, it causes no significant effect on the menstrual cycle. In fact, it is actually safe and beneficial to eat papaya during periods because your body will receive essential nutrients, vitamins, and minerals which can make your menstrual cycle smooth and prevent bloating and constipation also. Nonetheless, one should consume it in the recommended quantity.”

Also read: Papaya seeds: 7 health benefits you should consider before throwing them

Are there any benefits of eating papaya during periods?

In addition to fiber, enzymes, and glycosides, papaya also contains phytochemicals, vitamins, minerals, carbs, and proteins. Moreover, it contains a significant amount of flavonoids, which are potent antioxidants, and monounsaturated fatty acids. Hence, It is well known to have a number of health advantages. Here’s how it can help with your menstrual cycle.

1. It improves blood flow

Dr Vijay says, “Papaya can improve blood flow to the uterus muscles. Also, the papaya’s carotene content will help you manage pain or cramps.”

2. It helps to enhance gut health

By relieving digestion, papaya can aid women who suffer from severe cramps and irregular periods. It contains fiber and water content which regulate bowel movement and avoid constipation that is seen during menses. Papaya also supports the proper functioning of the uterine muscles. Hence, if you want to consume papaya, eat it! Going overboard is a strict no-no.

papaya during periods
Consume only gut-friendly foods during the menstrual cycle. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Regularize your period cycle

Eating papaya regularly helps in contracting the uterus muscles. Apart from producing heat in the body, the fruit contains carotene. This substance stimulates or regulates estrogen hormone levels in the body. Naturally, this induces periods or menses more frequently.

Eating papaya regularly aids in uterine muscle contraction. Apart from producing heat in the body, the fruit contains carotene. This substance stimulates or regulates estrogen hormone levels in the body. Naturally, this induces periods or menses more frequently.

So, it’s recommended to only eat ripe papaya during menstruation but in moderation.

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