Heavy menstrual bleeding, menorrhagia, negatively affects the lives of many women, causing frustration and, sometimes, embarrassment 4. Several treatment options exist, but most of them cause side effects.
Natural remedies like fruit extracts may offer you an alternative approach. It's important to speak with your doctor before diagnosing yourself or taking supplements.
Menorrhagia Affects Millions
A November 2017 report in Family Practice stated that many women with menorrhagia don't seek medical attention. Failure to treat heavy menstrual bleeding places you at risk for anemia, according to a November 2014 paper in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, and can also greatly lower your quality of life 234.
Read more: What Are the Dangers of Being Anemic?
Causes of Menorrhagia
Glycerine Vs. Glycol
The causes of heavy menstrual bleeding remain unknown 123. Researchers, however, have made significant progress. A January 2016 article in Women's Health briefly reviewed the many possible causes of menorrhagia.
The authors listed fibroids, tumors and polyps as potential mechanisms.
Unfortunately, diseases like cancer may also play a role. So please speak with your doctor if your period changes.
Read more: Ovarian Cancer Warning Signs and Symptoms
- The causes of heavy menstrual bleeding remain unknown 1 briefly reviewed the many possible causes of menorrhagia.
- The authors listed fibroids, tumors and polyps as potential mechanisms.
Take Shepherd's Purse
They also turn extracts of this fruit into nutritional supplements. A report published in the July 2018 Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine tested the health benefits of this Asian fruit.
Women with heavy menstrual bleeding took 500 milligrams of shepherd's purse twice a day during their periods 4. They repeated this protocol for two consecutive cycles. Compared to placebo, shepherd's purse significantly decreased menstrual bleeding.
- Asian manufacturers use Capsella bursa-pastoris, shepherd's purse.
- A report published in the July 2018 Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine tested the health benefits of this Asian fruit.
Use Myrtle Syrup
Pomegranates and Blood Sugar
Ancient physicians used myrtle extracts for fever and pain. Modern scientists have confirmed these effects.
They have also found other benefits of this Mediterranean fruit. For example, a June 2014 article in DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences described the positive effects of myrtle fruit in women with heavy menstrual bleeding 48.
Participants drank 5 milliliters of myrtle syrup three times a day, completing this routine each day of their period for three cycles.
Compared to controls, women given myrtle had significantly shorter periods. The women also reported improved quality of life.
- Ancient physicians used myrtle extracts for fever and pain.
- They have also found other benefits of this Mediterranean fruit.
Eat Pomegranate Extract
Because extracts of this fruit act as a blood coagulant, researchers have looked at its ability to help in menorrhagia. The authors of an April 2015 report in the Medical Journal of the Islamic Republic of Iran tested women with heavy menstrual bleeding 410.
The researchers gave the participants 500 milligrams of pomegranate extract for the first five days of their period.
The researchers continued testing the women for three straight cycles.
Participants used a unique chart to track their blood loss.
Results indicated that pomegranate extracts dramatically decreased blood loss when testing ended. The women also showed improved quality of life scores at that time.
Read more: Causes of Constant Menstrual Bleeding
- Ayurvedic healers have used pomegranate flowers to heal ailments.
- The women also showed improved quality of life scores at that time.
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- National Institute for Health and Care Excellence: Heavy Menstrual Bleeding
- Family Practice: Incidence and Treatment of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding in General Practice
- Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Nonsurgical Interventions for Treating Heavy Menstrual Bleeding (Menorrhagia) in Women With Bleeding Disorders
- Women's Health: Pathophysiology of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding
- Healthfully: Shepherd's Purse Tea Side Effects
- Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine: Effect of Hydroalcoholic Extracts of Capsella Bursa-Pastoris on Heavy Menstrual Bleeding
- Medicines: Antioxidant Activity of Myrtus Communis L. and Myrtus Nivellei Batt. & Trab.
- DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences: Effect of Myrtle Fruit Syrup on Abnormal Uterine Bleeding
- Healthfully: Effect of Pomegranate Juice on Blood Clots
- Medical Journal of the Islamic Republic of Iran: Anti-hemorrhagic Activity of Punica Granatum L. Flower (Persian Golnar) Against Heavy Menstrual Bleeding of Endometrial Origin
- Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Interventions for the Treatment of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding
- Walker MH, Borger J. Menorrhagia. [Updated 2019 Jan 12]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2019 Jan-.
- Santos IS, Minten GC, Valle NC, et al. Menstrual bleeding patterns: A community-based cross-sectional study among women aged 18-45 years in Southern Brazil. BMC Womens Health. 2011;11(1):26. doi:10.1186/1472-6874-11-26
- InformedHealth.org [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Heavy periods: Overview. 2009 Dec 31 [Updated 2017 May 4].
- Elmaoğulları S, Aycan Z. Abnormal uterine bleeding in adolescents. J Clin Res Pediatr Endocrinol. 2018;10(3):191–197. doi:10.4274/jcrpe.0014
- Davis E, Sparzak PB. Abnormal Uterine Bleeding (Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding) [Updated 2019 Aug 2]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2019 Jan-.
- Whitaker L, Critchley HO. Abnormal uterine bleeding. Best Pract Res Clin Obstet Gynaecol. 2016;34:54–65. doi:10.1016/j.bpobgyn.2015.11.012
- Govorov I, Ekelund L, Chaireti R, et al. Heavy menstrual bleeding and health-associated quality of life in women with von Willebrand's disease. Exp Ther Med. 2016;11(5):1923–1929. doi:10.3892/etm.2016.3144
- Kolhe S. Management of abnormal uterine bleeding - focus on ambulatory hysteroscopy. Int J Womens Health. 2018;10:127–136. doi:10.2147/IJWH.S98579
- Farrukh JB, Towriss K, McKee N. Abnormal uterine bleeding: Taking the stress out of controlling the flow. Can Fam Physician. 2015;61(8):693–697.
- Maybin JA, Critchley HO. Medical management of heavy menstrual bleeding. Womens Health (Lond). 2016;12(1):27–34. doi:10.2217/whe.15.100
- Bouzari Z, Yazdani S, Azimi S, Delavar MA. Thermal balloon endometrial ablation in the treatment of heavy menstrual bleeding. Med Arch. 2014;68(6):411–413. doi:10.5455/medarh.2014.68.411-413
- American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Frequently Asked Questions: Abnormal Uterine Bleeding. Mar 2017.
Tomas Linnaeus is a psychologist, scientist and activist. Extensively trained in neuroscience, he has been published in professional journals like "Physiology and Behavior," "Journal of Sleep Research" and "Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews." Linnaeus has been writing for over 25 years and received a doctoral degree in psychology from Bowling Green State University.