As women, we have the incredible capacity to nurture every aspect of our being, including our intimate health. Vaginas are a delicate part of our bodies that need special attention and nourishment.
I like to think of looking after down there as a beautiful act of self-care.
Read on for my top tips to keep your vagina healthy and happy:
Incorporate vagina-friendly choices: Consuming probiotic-rich foods like yoghurt is a wonderful way to promote the growth of good bacteria in your gut and vagina. These are key to maintaining your vagina’s delicate pH balance as they contain live and active cultures to support your vaginal flora. Additionally, cranberries contain powerful compounds that can prevent harmful bacteria from adhering to the urinary tract, helping to prevent cystitis, or urinary tract infections (UTIs). Try my Gut-Loving Papaya Boat packed with live cultures especially designed for female wellness, plus a glass of unsweetened cranberry juice!
Add in healthy fats: Healthy fats such as Omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats from sources such as oily fish, avocado and nuts are an essential part of any diet but may be particularly beneficial for vaginal health. These fats help to keep inflammatory conditions like Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) at bay.
Take a probiotic specifically for vaginal health: Probiotics are an excellent way to keep your vagina healthy and balanced. The vagina is home to trillions of bacteria, and probiotics can help restore the balance of these good bacteria. Look for a formula containing the Lactobacillus reuteri RC-14 strain – this is one of the most widely studied probiotic strains that helps to support healthy vaginal flora. In combination with Lactobacillus rhamnosus, these benefecial bacteria have been shown to colonise the vaginal mucosa, positively affecting the composition of vaginal microbiota for a thriving environment*. As always, it’s best to consult your health professional before starting any new supplement regimen.
Gentle cleansing: Use warm water and mild, fragrance-free soap designed especially for the vagina to keep it clean and fresh. Opt for a pH balanced wash that supports a healthy acidic environment of around 3.5-4.5 to protect the natural environment of your vagina and help keep bad bacteria at bay. Avoid harsh cleaners, perfumes or douches that can disrupt this delicate pH balance.
Care for your pelvic floor: A strong pelvic floor is essential for optimal vaginal health. The muscles of your pelvic floor form a hammock-like structure, supporting your uterus, bladder and other organs inside your abdomen. Attending regular pilates or yoga classes can help to strengthen these muscles. Kegel exercises are also a great option, as they strengthen the muscles to help support your bladder and uterus.
- www.optibacprobiotics.com. (n.d.). Lactobacillus reuteri RC-14® | Database. [online] [Accessed 5 Sep. 2023].