From wee tampons to bath soaks, the demand for period pain relief is driving a growing herbal industry.
The latest: P&D Treats have created chocolate with that purpose in mind — this time without cannabis but CBD infused with MCT oil instead.
The dark chocolate leaf shaped candy is called QUEEN, inspired by the rapid rise in modern women empowerment. Not only is QUEEN manufactured by women but the company boasts its all-women employee organization and close ties with national sororities.
Each QUEEN chocolate contains 60% cocoa and 100% pure CBD oil, which also improves circulation and boosts serotonin levels.
We're majorly skeptical of the idea that fancy chocolate can replace ibuprofen and a heating pad when it comes to healing your aching midsection and yet, we love chocolate and welcome basically any excuse to eat more of it.
Plus, there is arguably a scientific reason to indulge in chocolate and other sweets if you have symptoms of premenstrual syndrome or PMS. During the two weeks leading up to your period, your body goes through multiple hormonal and chemical shifts. One of these is fluctuations in the neurotransmitter serotonin, which is most famous for playing a role in mood, according to the Mayo Clinic. A recent study in Annals of Endocrinology found that people really do tend to eat more carbohydrates (like candy, chocolate, and other sweet treats) during the two weeks preceding their periods, potentially as a way to boost their moods.
So, if you're feeling crabby because of PMS, this may be a remedy. If you're feeling crabby because of something else — or if you're just craving chocolate for no reason at all — it could work for that, too.
All we want during that time of the month is a heat pad, some tea and the best of sweet indulgences. Though most of us crave milk chocolate during our periods, it's actually best to stay away from that sweet little devil. But that doesn't mean you can't drown yourself in chocolaty goodness when in pain. Simply, opt for dark chocolates; and a few variants of dark chocolates that will help you relieve some of that irritating period pain.
During our period, our the estrogen levels fluctuate, so do our hormones, and the body reacts by trying to balance out the hormones. As a result, the cortisol (stress hormone) levels increase and the body needs to balance this out by craving the feel-good hormone, called serotonin. This serotonin requirement is fulfilled by carbs, sugars and salts, but some healthy alternatives can do exactly the same for your mood--uplift it. So, all those carbs and butter can just be replaced by dark chocolate--and not just any dark chocolate;
Dark chocolate has heavier amounts of the healthy cocoa bean, which is high in magnesium, potassium and iron. These can help relax your muscles and uplift your mood without you having to consume as many calories. In milk chocolate, on the other hand, cocoa is loaded with excess sugar, butter and almost double the calories, which can worsen bloating and cause weight gain.
There are several reasons women crave chocolate. Statistically, women tend to desire chocolate much more than men. While the craving may not come from a chocolate deficiency, per se, there are several components in chocolate that the body may become deficient in, especially magnesium and antioxidants.
Chocolate can also affect the brain, leading to an increase in neurotransmitters and dopamine and a feeling of happiness.
In studies, chocolate cravings seems especially tied to hormone changes (menstruation, pregnancy, etc) and the magnesium in chocolate, as well as its ability to affect neurotransmitters may be a large part of the reason.
Magnesium in Chocolate is not the highest magnesium food available, though it does make the top ten list. It is the only top-ten magnesium food that also is known for its ability to promote neurotransmitter activity and dopamine production, so this combination makes it especially desirable during hormone imbalance. Other foods, like leafy greens, figs, avocados, and nuts are higher in magnesium per gram, but dark chocolate has 327 milligrams of magnesium per 100 grams.
Since experts estimate that 80% of us (or more) are deficient in magnesium, it is important to find ways to increase magnesium levels in the body. I’ve noticed that when I am consuming enough magnesium-rich foods, I don’t have PMS or other hormone struggles.
The basic fact that chocolate tastes good and we enjoy eating it means that the body releases dopamine during chocolate consumption. Chocolate also increases serotonin in the brain, a neurotransmitter responsible for better mood, sleep, and reduction of anxiety.
Women have a natural decrease in serotonin in the brain in the week before menstruation, so this may partially explain the specific craving for chocolate during this time.
Chocolate also contains theobromine, a chemical known to increase heart rate and energy, as well as arousal. Plus it has antioxidants and decent amounts of flavonols, which are said to be anti-aging and promote healthy blood flow and blood pressure.