Did you know that the Vagina is a self-cleansing organ? It cleans itself with the natural secretions produced by the body which are slightly acidic and is crucial to maintain a healthy vaginal environment and prevent bacterial growth.
Vaginal health is a very important part of a woman’s overall health and can be affected by medications, diet, clothing, exercise and even stress.
Can foods boost or improve vaginal health? Absolutely! There are some foods which are considered best foods for vaginal health. By eating a balanced and a healthy diet you can prevent vaginal infections and improve your vaginal health.
Here are the different food groups that can be beneficial for your vaginal health
Fruits to improve vaginal health
- Cranberries are rich in antioxidants, vitamin E and Vitamin C which can ward off any vaginal infections and urinary tract infections in women. Compounds in cranberries also help in balancing the pH level of the vagina due to the acidic property of cranberries. This helps in fighting against vaginal infections making cranberries one of the best foods for the vaginal health.
- Apples contain compounds like phytoestrogen and antioxidants which stimulates blood flow in your vagina keeping it healthy. Studies have shown that these compounds prevent the development of uterine fibroids and maintains a healthy vaginal environment.
- Avocados are rich in omega –3, vitamin B12 and potassium which increases libido which in turn enhances lubrication, estrogen levels and strengthens the vaginal walls.
- Guava, lime, kiwi, and oranges provide the required amount of vitamin C that is effective against vaginal infections.
Vegetables to improve vaginal health
- Dark green leafy veggies are rich in nitrates, which enhances circulation in the vaginal region, prevents dryness, itchiness and burning sensation.
- Sweet potatoes and carrots are rich in beta carotene and vitamin A and helps in strengthening the walls of vagina. They also prevent any kind of vaginal infections, increases libido and lubrication of the vaginal walls.
Probiotic foods to improve vaginal health
- Yoghurt, kefir, kimchi, pickles, and kombucha are rich in probiotics and help in retention of the good bacteria in the vagina to ward off the bad bacteria which can cause any kind of vaginal infections. The good bacteria in yogurt helps your vagina by balancing the acidic vaginal pH, thereby helps in maintaining the pH balance of your vagina. These properties of the probiotic rich foods are an add-on to the list of best foods for vaginal health.
Nuts and seeds to improve vaginal health
Nuts and seeds are rich sources of omega –3 fatty acids which are considered as healthy fats. Omega-3 not only helps in one’s facial glow but also combats many vaginal issues.
- Flax seeds contain phytoestrogen which increases the estrogen levels, prevents vaginal dryness and reduces menopausal symptoms. Zinc present in these seeds reduces itchiness and burning sensation too.
- Almonds contain vitamin B and calcium, which helps in lowering inflammation and prevents vaginitis (inflammation of vagina).
- Pumpkin seeds are rich sources of zinc which helps in normalising menstrual cycle and regulating hormones.
- Walnuts and Hazelnuts are rich in Vitamin E which also helps in preventing vaginal dryness.
Nuts and seeds are an amazing addition to the list of best foods for Vaginal health as studies also reveal that women who consumed a diet rich in omega-3 were 22% less likely to develop endometriosis (usually pain developed near your abdomen, uterus and Vagina)
Other foods that are good for your Vagina
- Dark chocolate contains flavonoids which increases the libido and dark chocolate possess nerve soothing property which makes one feel good.
- Green tea contains polyphenolic catechins which are responsible for killing the bacteria that are responsible for Urinary tract infections. The caffeine present in green tea also helps in soothing Pre-Menstrual Syndrome (PMS) symptoms.
- Coconut oil is a natural product which possess antimicrobial and antifungal properties, which is commonly used to treat Vaginal yeast infections. It also helps in lubrication and prevents vaginal dryness.
- Oysters are full of zinc, and women with higher levels of zinc in their system have been shown to have a higher sex drive than those with lower levels. As an added bonus, zinc has been known to help vaginal dryness, regulating your menstrual cycle, and fighting vaginal infections. Makes oysters one of the best foods for Vaginal health.
- Water: Hydration is a key for overall health including vaginal health. Adequate hydration helps in lubrication and allows secretions to be released and helps in maintaining Vaginal ph.
Generally, good vaginal health is maintained by making sure you’re in good general health following a healthy diet and a good exercise regimen. Exercise helps maintain good vaginal function, like walking and running help the pelvic floor to tone up and ensure good general health. A healthy diet along with the exclusive list of best foods for vaginal health above is necessary to maintain diversity and variation in the diet to maintain Vaginal health.
To all the ladies out there, manage your vaginal health by consuming a healthy diet with a high intake of fruits and veggies and good amounts of plant-based fats, a diet rich in probiotics, prebiotics, and regular exercise. Apart from this make sure to follow proper vaginal care by not using any pH-based washes, safer sex, and regular check-ups with your gynaecologist play a very important role in improving and maintaining your Vaginal health.
Give your vagina some extra care!
Written by Aishwarya Deepika, ENHAPP Wellness Coach & Nutritionist