Prostaglandins are lipids that are released by cells at specific sites in your body in response to infection or injury. They act like hormones, responding to a variety of issues and shapeshifting to trigger opposite reactions as needed. They help mobilize the body’s healing mechanisms, promote blood flow and clotting, help soothe the gut, and widen or constrict blood vessels and airways. While it is known that these lipids are responsible for contractions during birth, it is believed they might also be the culprits behind painful period cramps. Prostaglandins are broken down after use.