What to Eat During the Luteal Phase

What to Eat During the Luteal Phase

The Luteal Phase is the second half of your menstrual cycle. It occurs after ovulation and before menstruation, typically lasting around 14-16 days.

You can learn more about the luteal phase in our latest article: "Luteal Phase - What it is and how it impacts you"

What to eat during the luteal phase is a common question among most of us.

If you don’t get pregnant during the luteal phase, the drop in progesterone will bring out the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). Some women experience severe PMS symptoms while others may not ever experience them at all.

Some of the most common symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) are:

  • Bloating
  • Fluid retention
  • Breast tenderness
  • Mood-related symptoms
  • Cravings
  • Mood changes
  • Headaches
  • Trouble sleeping

This article will guide you through what you need to eat during the luteal phase.

Nutrition for the Different Phases of the Menstrual Cycle | Elara Care
In this post, we will cover how our nutrition should change at different stages of the menstrual cycle and other supporting topics.
graph showing the different phases of the menstrual cycle

Increase healthy fats & vitamin B6

Food items that help us stay in a good mood and enhance skin function are important during this phase. Healthy fats support skin health and prevent the breakouts that are so common during this time.

It is thought that eating foods that produce serotonin will help most during this time, like quinoa and buckwheat. It is also useful to add more healthy fats to your diet, so try to include things like avocados, nuts, and fish where possible.

The luteal phase is when progesterone levels rise and peak, leading to PMS symptoms. Progesterone is the hormone responsible for helping us to ease mood swings, water retention, and insomnia.

Eating foods such as sesame seeds and sunflower seeds is beneficial to help support progesterone levels during this phase.

It is understood that eating magnesium-rich foods can help fight the fatigue and low libido associated with this time in your cycle.

Add foods like spinach and bananas to your diet, and *cue the trumpets* dark chocolate!

Try to reduce your caffeine, alcohol, added salt, and carbonated drinks as these add stress to your liver.

a woman cooking in her kitchen

Add these food items to your diet: 

  • Avocado
  • Wild salmon
  • Sesame
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Red meat
  • Carrots
  • Sweet potato
  • Lentils
  • Oats
  • Walnuts
nutrition chart for foods to eat during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle

Article reviewed by stephanie baker, head nutritionist at elara care

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