Everyone knows that diet plays an essential role in keeping a healthy mind and heart, but did you know that your lady parts can also benefit from the food that you eat? Your vagina won't change in appearance, but a healthy diet can help you avoid yeast infections, vaginal dryness, urinary tract infections, and even menstrual cramps.
But if there are foods that help you avoid vaginal diseases, there are also ones that make you more susceptible to health problems. Noticed an unpleasant smell down there? It's probably because of the food you're eating. Feeling an itch that no one else can scratch? You might be eating too much of a certain food.
Overall, eating foods that are good for your vagina promotes a healthy reproductive system, not to mention a more phenomenal sex life. Here are 15 foods that you should eat—or avoid—in order to keep your vagina happy.
15 Avoid Sugary Foods Especially If You Have Diabetes
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, around 75 percent of women will suffer from yeast infections at some point in their lives. And one of the reasons for these infections is eating too much sugar since yeast and bacteria are very fond of sugary environments.
But while you would need to consume an awful amount of sugar to actually suffer from yeast infections, those with diabetes or pre-diabetes should not take things lightly. Yeast infections are just one of the many complications that they might get if they don't control their blood sugar levels.
In general, the World Health Organization advises women to limit their sugar intake to just around six teaspoons a day.
14 Minimize Chocolate And Caffeine To Avoid Bladder Irritation
When we talk about vaginal health, we also can't help but talk about bladder health since these two organs are close to each other. Whatever irritates your bladder might also have a detrimental effect on your vagina.
Caffeine and chocolate both act as diuretics that make you pee more than you should. If you have a condition known as interstitial cystitis or painful bladder syndrome, you would do yourself a huge favor by avoiding these two foods because they contribute toward an overactive bladder.
Artificial sweeteners like saccharin and aspartame also do the same, so steer clear of diet sodas that contain not just artificial sweeteners, but also caffeine.
13 Avoid Curry And Asparagus If You Don't Want A Stinky Crotch
Every vagina smells different, but you can influence it a little by avoiding foods that make your sweat more odiferous than usual. After all, your vagina also contains sweat glands, pretty much like the rest of your body. Such foods include asparagus and curry, whose strong odors might affect the smell of your sweat in your nether regions.
However, there's no need to worry if you only eat these foods occasionally. Just make sure that you don't make these foods a staple in your diet. It would also help if you avoid wearing tight clothing and of course, practice good hygiene.
12 Don't Eat Too Much Red Meat For A Healthy-Smelling Vagina
Red meat may be delicious, but it's certainly not very good for your overall health. Not only is red meat full of saturated fat that's linked to heart disease, but it also makes your sweat smellier. In fact, try to smell yourself two hours after eating red meat and you'll already notice the difference. There was even a study published in 2006 that showed that men found women on a non-meat diet more attractive than those on a meat diet because of their more pleasant scents.
Plus, meat and fish are highly alkaline, in contrast to your vagina's slightly acidic pH. Hence, eating red meat might also raise your vagina's pH levels, paving the way for infections to occur.
11 Take Garlic For Its Antimicrobial Properties
Garlic is best known for its antimicrobial and antifungal properties, so it works wonders against yeast or candida infections. The herb contains the active ingredient allicin, which is responsible for garlic's healing effects.
But before you add garlic to all the foods you're cooking, be warned that it also has a potent smell that might affect how you smell down there. Like any other food, this should be taken in moderation so that you reap its benefits without putting up with its stink.
It might also help to just use a garlic vaginal suppository to treat your yeast infection but consult your doctor first before doing this.
10 Eat Fresh Fruits For Overall Vaginal Health
Aside from being an integral part of a balanced diet, fresh fruits contain vitamins that support overall vaginal health. For instance, citrus fruits, berries, kiwi, and guava are all rich in vitamin C, which boosts the immune system and helps fight off yeast and bacterial infections. Studies also show that fresh fruits keep menstrual cramps at bay especially for those who experience premenstrual syndrome.
And here's one popular tip, though it's not yet backed up by research: pineapples make your nether regions smell and taste pleasant. There's nothing wrong with eating pineapples either, so doctors say that if it works for you, then just do it.
9 Eat Yogurt To Prevent Yeast Infections
Aside from being loaded with vitamins, natural Greek yogurt is beneficial for those who suffer from chronic yeast infections, urinary tract infections, and bacterial vaginosis, thanks to its rich probiotic content. Probiotics, often referred to as "good bacteria," help maintain the vagina's slightly acidic pH, thus making it difficult for other bacteria to thrive in it. Just remember to avoid sugary and flavored yogurts because they won't do much for your vaginal health.
But yogurt is not your lone source of probiotics. You can also try other fermented foods like kimchi, sauerkraut, kefir, and miso as they all contain live and active cultures.
8 Drink Cranberry Juice To Avoid UTIs
Pure cranberry juice is beneficial for both the urinary bladder and vagina. It relieves symptoms of urinary tract infection or UTI, and at the same time balances the pH levels of the vaginal area.
As a fruit, cranberry is also a great source of essential vitamins like C, E, and K, which all contribute towards better health. But instead of buying those packaged cranberry juices that contain too much sugar from your local grocery, try to make your own unprocessed version at home. Unsweetened cranberries are not exactly palatable, but you can eat them fresh or combine them with bananas to create a cranberry banana smoothie.
7 Eat Seeds And Nuts To Prevent Vaginal Dryness
Almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, and the oils derived from them are all rich in vitamin E, which prevents vaginal dryness and the itchy feeling associated with it. Similarly, flaxseed and sunflower seed contain phytoestrogens and omega-3 fatty acids that help boost estrogen levels and combat vaginal dryness. These are especially helpful for menopausal women who experience a natural drop in their estrogen levels that eventually lead to a dry vagina.
Almonds and pumpkin seeds are also beneficial for women who are experiencing their monthly periods since their rich zinc content helps regulate their menstrual cycles. They also help prevent menstrual cramps.
6 Keep Your Vaginal Membranes Hydrated With Water
You really cannot put a limit on all the health benefits of water. That includes its hydrating effect on the mucous membranes or walls of your vagina, thus helping them to function properly and stay in tip top shape.
Water also provides natural lubrication down there, which not only helps fight off vaginal dryness but also neutralizes unwanted odors coming from the food you eat. So if you've eaten more than your share of curry today, then you only need to increase your water intake to flush off the unpleasant scent.
Drink six to eight glasses of water every day to make sure that your vagina and the rest of your body stay hydrated.
5 Take Advantage Of Sweet Potatoes' High Vitamin Content
Sweet potatoes are not just a healthy and yummy alternative to traditional potatoes, but they are also chock-full of vitamin A that helps keep the walls of your uterus strong. This is certainly helpful when you're planning to get pregnant, as it prepares your uterus for childbearing. In addition, it also contains a lot of vitamin B6, which helps prevent morning sickness among pregnant women.
Sweet potatoes also contain nutrients that encourage the production of sex hormones, helping you to stay vibrant and energetic just when you need it the most. So instead of munching on your fatty French fries, why not make sweet potato fries instead?
4 Have Some Dark Leafy Greens To Enhance Circulation
You already know that dark green and leafy vegetables are good for your body, but could you ever imagine that it's also good for your lady parts? Aside from preventing vaginal dryness, they also purify the blood and enhance circulation in the area, which eventually speed up stimulation. They also contain lots of B vitamins that help convert carbohydrates to glucose that serve as your body's fuel, thus making you feel more energetic and ready for a few more rounds.
Seriously, whoever thought that veggies like spinach, kale, cabbage, collards, and Swiss chard can give you a better sex life?
3 Keep Your Vagina Well-Lubricated With Soy
Just like nuts and seeds, soy contains lots of phytoestrogens that keep your lady bits well-lubricated even during menopause. Many women also reported that soy milk helps relieve the uncomfortable signs of menopause, like hot flashes, night sweats, itching, and pain and discomfort during intercourse. Around 25 grams of soy protein a day is enough to get rid of your menopausal symptoms.
To enjoy the health benefits of soy, aim for unprocessed products like edamame rather than soy burgers and nuggets. You may also create delicious tofu recipes to incorporate soy into your diet, as well as other soybean products like soy cheese and soy ice cream.
2 Boost Your Libido With Avocado
Here's a bit of a trivia: During the time of the Aztecs, the avocado tree was named as "the testicle tree." Although it was probably because avocados grow in pairs, the name is pretty apt considering that the fruit is known to boost your libido and enhance lubrication because of its high potassium and vitamin B6 content. In fact, Spanish priests used to ban their parishioners from consuming them owing to their notorious nature.
But aside from getting you in the mood, the nutrients and healthy fats found in avocados also make your vaginal walls stronger. You can really never go wrong with a fruit named after a man's balls.
1 Munch On Zinc-Rich Foods For A Healthy Menstrual Cycle
Have you tried eating oysters as an aphrodisiac? Well, it works because oysters are high in zinc, which is a nutrient that has the capacity to increase your libido.
But the vaginal benefits of zinc don't just end there. Zinc-rich foods like pumpkin seeds, almonds, dark chocolate, beef, and mushrooms all prevent vaginal dryness and itching. They also regulate your menstrual cycle to make it more manageable and predictable. If you're suffering from vaginitis, zinc can also boost your immune system and revitalize vaginal tissue.
Zinc's like a wonder drug for your vagina, but make sure that you don't go over the recommended daily requirement of 45 milligrams.