Q: Dear Dr. Mao,
What should I take for the unbearable menstrual pain I have monthly?
A: There is some evidence that the supplements fish oil and magnesium may help reduce menstrual pain. The herb cramp bark has traditionally been used to relieve menstrual pain. Unfortunately, it has not received any significant scientific attention.
Herbs with possible anti-inflammatory properties may be helpful as well, including bromelain, turmeric, and white willow. Other potentially helpful treatments include black cohosh, Coleus forskohlii, dong quai, and manganese.
Consult with your physician before beginning a new health regime; it is important to seek advice from an authority and not self-medicate.