Ginger Baths for Menstrual Cramps
- Published on: 06 January, 2017
- Last update: 25 September, 2020
Baths are a regular part of my health regimen, and most of the time you can find me soaking in some Epsom Salts and essential oils. But around the time of my menstrual cycle, I switch to warming ginger baths to stimulate blood flow and add a healthy dose of heat to my body! I take one in the days leading up to my cycle, and another within the first 2 days of menstruation. This is the best way to soothe cramps and backaches, encourage the removal of old/stagnant blood, and banish “cold” from the uterus (from a TCM perspective, ‘cold’ is one of the 6 evils that contribute to illness).
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, a “cold” reproductive system is a major root cause of womens’ reproductive health issues, especially symptoms that arise around menstruation. The other issue at play would be “liver stagnation,” which I have a YouTube video explaining in relation to PMS, PCOS & cysts! You can watch it by clicking here.
When we think of the word “cold,” we think of frigidity, contraction, and stiffness. That is exactly how TCM views a reproductive system that doesn’t have enough warming “yang” energy to smoothly release free-flowing blood each month. When the body is too ‘cold,’ blood vessels become constricted, creating congestion & stagnation (which can manifest as scant bleeding, clots, painful cramps, and even missed periods & cysts). ‘Yang energy’ is the heat of the body, which would move and circulate not only our blood, but also our hormones!
The overconsumption of raw fruits & vegetables, iced & frozen foods/drinks, and cold juices are all contemporary Western causes for blood stagnation & yang deficiency in the uterus (especially if they are eaten just before or during menstruation when they are often craved). This includes sugar, which is very “yin” and cooling energetically.
A hot ginger bath is the perfect way to get your blood flowing and nourish your reproductive system with warming energy. I use 1/2 cup per bath, and it gives my skin a tingling sensation as the ginger promotes circulation! Ginger, especially as a bath, purges cold/dampness from the body, warms the stomach & uterus, reduces joint pain & arthritis, regulates the menstrual cycle and increases your yang Qi. You can of course sip it as a tea in the morning as well.
The brand I’ve shown in the photo above is no longer available, but another brand I trust is sold here on Amazon. Enjoy your bath!