Unlike most sweeteners, blackstrap molasses contains an impressive list of nutrients – like magnesium, iron and B-vitamins – that help to alleviate menorrhagia (aka heavy periods).
And while there isn’t a ton of research on the use of blackstrap molasses for heavy periods, I have come across online discussions where women share their positive experience with this pantry staple.
So, if you’re curious about how this simple home remedy can help with a heavy cycle, then keep reading!
In this post we’re going to cover:
- the health benefits of blackstrap molasses.
- how to take it.
- what to look for when buying blackstrap molasses.
BENEFITS OF BLACKSTRAP MOLASSES FOR EXCESSIVE MENSTRUAL BLEEDING
Blackstrap molasses is a thick syrup that is made from sugar cane.
Basically, juice is extracted from sugar cane, and then that juice is boiled down to produce sugar crystals.
Next, the sugar crystals are removed and the remaining liquid is what is referred to as molasses.
So, unlike regular, refined sugar – which has no actual nutrients – molasses actually retains a certain amount of beneficial nutrients that support our health.
Now let’s have a look at the 3 most important benefits:
1. Natural Source of Magnesium
1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses contains 12% of the daily recommended intake of magnesium, which is a mineral that supports hormone balance.
And if you have a heavy flow this can be very beneficial because magnesium has been shown to improve the levels of hormones known as prostaglandins.
When these prostaglandins increase to an excessive level, they can contribute to excessive menstrual bleeding (and cramps too, by the way) (source).
So, blackstrap molasses is one way to easily support your dietary intake of magnesium.
2. Contains Period-Friendly B-Vitamins
A scientific review published in 2017 showed that there’s a potential link between b-vitamin deficiencies and menorrhagia (source). And that potential link involves the liver.
You see, the liver is responsible for helping us get rid of excess estrogen.
However, without enough b-vitamins in our diet, the liver can’t do its job. As a result, estrogen builds up in the body.
So, what happens when there’s too much estrogen in the body? Well, the endometrial lining gets thicker.
And that means that when it’s time to shed that thick lining, you will experience more blood loss.
Now back to the scientific review…the authors recommend using a B-vitamin complex as natural therapy for heavy cycles.
And this is where blackstrap molasses can help because it contains various B-vitamins, such as (source):
- B1 (thiamine).
- B2 (riboflavin).
- B3 (niacin).
- B5 (pantothenic acid) .
- B6 (pyridoxine)
3. Provides Iron and Other Essential Minerals
Molasses are a very easy way to get more iron into your diet because 1 tablespoon provides 20% of the recommended daily intake for iron.
This is massively important when you’re struggling with excessive menstrual bleeding because iron-deficiency anemia is one of the most serious side effects of profuse menstrual bleeding.
And unfortunately, having anemia can lower your TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone), resulting in a vicious cycle of menstrual issues.
Here’s a quick overview of what I mean:
- TSH is a hormone that stimulates the thyroid to make thyroid hormones.
- In order to make TSH, the body needs iron.
So, based on the above, if iron is low, then TSH is also low. And if TSH is low, then thyroid function is out of balance (source).
Furthermore, that imbalance in thyroid function can show up as either hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.
- hypothyroidism is associated with heavy periods, irregular periods and fertility issues.
- hyperthyroidism is associated with irregular and light cycles.
So, no matter how you look at it, having healthy iron levels is an integral part of having a healthy period.
- calcium: improves premenstrual symptoms like fatigue, mood swings and bloating.
- selenium: low selenium is linked to a short luteal phase.
- potassium: alleviates menstrual cramps and bloating.
HOW TO TAKE BLACKSTRAP MOLASSES FOR HEAVY MENSTRUAL CYCLES
Most of the articles about blackstrap molasses reference 1 tablespoon per day as the standard serving size.
As for how to take it, you can:
- swallow it plain directly from a spoon: just keep in mind that even though it’s sweetener, blackstrap molasses don’t actually taste very sweet when consumed plain.
- mix in a glass of water.
- use it as a sugar substitute in oatmeal or other porridge.
Now, last but not least let’s talk about the effect of molasses on blood sugar.
Overall, I haven’t come across any research indicating that blackstrap molasses are harmful for blood sugar. However, if you have blood sugar issues or insulin resistance, then just be mindful with molasses as you would with any other sweetener.
Second, there’s some research showing that eating carb-containing foods together with molasses, actually improves blood sugar and insulin levels. In contrast, eating the carb-containing foods on their own doesn’t produce this positive effect.
So, just keep that in mind and pay attention to the feedback you get from your body.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT TYPE OF BLACKSTRAP MOLASSES FOR EXCESSIVE PERIOD BLEEDING
Very often, sulphur dioxide is added to blackstrap molasses as a preservative (source).
However, sulphur dioxide can trigger allergic reactions and induce an asthma attack in some people (source).
So, to be on the safe side, always buy molasses that are labeled “unsulphured.” The other benefit of getting unsulphured molasses is that it has a more pleasant taste.
As for where to find molasses, most grocery stores have it in the baking section. Very easy to find!
Last but not least, blackstrap molasses have a very strong, black color. This is because the same batch is often cooked twice. And the more it’s cooked the darker the color gets.
So, when doing your grocery shopping, make sure you choose molasses that is:
- labeled “blackstrap molasses” and not just molasses (they’re not the same thing).
- marked as unsulphured.
- very dark in color.
FAQs ABOUT BLACKSTRAP MOLASSES FOR HEAVY PERIODS
Does apple cider vinegar stop heavy periods?
Thanks to it vitamin and antioxidant content, apple cider vinegar helps to combat inflammation. In addition, apple cider vinegar has insulin-regulating properties.
These two properties together could help regulate overall menstrual health and provide relief from heavy periods.
Does ginger help heavy periods?
Ginger has been shown to be very effective at inhibiting the production of prostaglandins, which are prom-inflammatory hormones that contribute to heavy periods.
You can learn more in this post on how to use ginger for heavy periods.
As a natural source of B-vitamins and minerals like iron and magnesium, blackstrap molasses contain many important nutrients that are beneficial for heavy periods.
So, if you’ve been looking for a simple and natural remedy to reduce heavy blood loss during your monthly cycle, then you might want to give molasses a try.
Also, keep in mind that molasses is just one of the many foods that can support your cycle. For a more a better understanding on how to eat before, during and after your period, be sure to read this article on what to eat during each phase of the menstrual cycle.
I hope this article was helpful and don’t hesitate to check out the other free resources listed below. There are tons of resources on this blog to help you have a struggle-free period. So, go ahead and take advantage of these free resources 🙂