Keeping your pelvic floor muscles strong is an important, yet often overlooked, part of women’s health.
You’ve probably heard of pelvic floor exercises, and of course you’re doing them every day, but did you know there are certain foods that can help keep things in tip top condition down there.
A strong pelvic floor not only sends your sex life off the charts it also helps prevent the unthinkable, prolapse of a woman’s internal organs, something that can happen after giving birth.
In severe cases a uterine prolapse can result in a woman needing to undergo a hysterectomy, leaving her infertile.
Luckily Amy Morris, a naturopathic nutritionist, has listed five foods that help strengthen your pelvic floor.
Any food rich in omega 3, like salmon, is good for down there.
“Many of us are consuming more omega 6 fatty acids than we should (from vegetable/seed oils), which can cause inflammation in the body,” Amy said.
“Omega 3 fatty acids are another type of fatty acids from fish oils, which have consistently shown to lower levels of inflammation, helping to reduce any irritation that can occur from omega 6 fatty acids.
“Omega 3 can be found in many foods including oily fish, flax seeds and walnuts, however to ensure you’re reaching the recommended daily amount, I recommend taking a high quality supplement.”
Bananas are rich in magnesium, which provides much needed support to your nerves and muscles.
“Magnesium is an important mineral for proper muscle and nerve function, and can also ease incontinent worries, as it reduces bladder muscle spasms and enables the bladder to fully empty upon urination,” Amy explained.
“Magnesium has also been proven to relieve constipation due to its laxative effect; it draws water into the stools, easing any tension, and making them softer and easier to pass.
“If you suffer from incontinence or constipation, then you should incorporate magnesium-rich foods into your diet, such as potatoes, bananas, wholegrains, beans and nuts.”
Avocados are a low acidic fruit, so it helps support bladder control.
“Foods that contain high amounts of citric acid, such as oranges, lemons, grapefruit and cranberries, can cause irritation and worsen bladder control,” Amy said.
“Opt for fruit and vegetables that are low in acid, such as bananas, avocados, peas and apples, as they will provide the body with vital nutrients including fibre, without causing irritation to the pelvic floor. If possible, choose organic.”
Part of maintaining overall healthy is staying well hydrated and your pelvic floor is no different.
“Drinking plenty of water will hydrate your body and flush out toxins, keeping your colon intact,” Amy added.
“Dehydration can lead to bowel dysfunction, primarily constipation, and constipation can play a huge role in contributing to a weakened pelvic floor.
“You should avoid caffeinated beverages, like coffee, tea and fizzy drinks, as they are a diuretic and bladder irritant, and can cause the bladder and any part of the pelvic to become overactive.
“Bladder irritation can also lead to chronic bladder infections, incontinence, and difficulty urinating, so it’s always best to stick to water.”