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PMS and You

An Affliction Caused by Malnourishment and Poor Health

pmsFrom about the the age of about twelve to fifty, women experience their menstrual cycle. In the course of a healthy woman's life, this cycle rarely causes problems or discomfort.  But unfortunately today, many women find the process difficult or even distressing as many physical and emotional symptoms collectively known as premenstrual syndrome (PMS),  [premenstrual tension (PMT) or stress (PMS)], appear in the days prior to bleeding.

PMS may include abdominal cramps, constipation, painful joints, backaches, bloating, breast tenderness, craving, moodiness, headaches, migraines, water retention, fatigue, acne, decreased work or social performance, altered libido, anxiety, depression and other symptoms.

PMS is a fact of many women’s lives and is a problem which no medication which can adequately cure or prevent, and there is a growing amount of information that symptoms of PMS can be reduced or even eliminated by altering one's dietary intake.

Herbal medicines and nutritional supplements such as evening primrose, maca, flaxseed oil provide relief supporting the view that PMS may be caused by a nutritional imbalance or toxicity. PMT is also relieved with massage which helps women cruise through their cycle with ease and this is helped with diet and lifestyle adjustments.

Symptoms

PMS symptoms can include abdominal cramps, constipation, painful joints, backaches, bloating, breast tenderness, cravings, moodiness, headaches, migraines, water retention, fatigue, acne, decreased work or social performance, altered libido, anxiety, depression and many other symptoms.

A Modern Disease

PMS is a fact of many women’s lives and is a problem which no doctor or medication which can adequately cure or prevent.

There is however a growing body of anecdotal evidence supporting that symptoms of PMS can be reduced or even eliminated by altering one's dietary intake. Herbal medicines and nutritional supplements such as evening primrose and flaxseed oil provide relief supporting the view that PMS may be caused by a nutritional imbalance or toxicity.

Functional Whole foods: Certain foods when eaten can help to relieve the severity of symptoms associated with PMS and some foods when restricted have a positive outcome.

A healthy diet which includes complex carbohydrates - whole-grain breads, cereals, pasta, potatoes, beans, rice, and whole grains helps to regulate blood sugars eliminate sugar cravings.

Fresh vegetables such as kale, collards, mustard greens, carrots, turnips, parsnips, broccoli, Brussels sprouts are high in nutrients that reduce PMS-related blood sugar and mood swings, and Fruits such as apples and pears contain fiber and less sugar all help ease heavy menstrual bleeding and premenstrual symptoms.

Calcium:
Abdominal cramping and muscular contractions which can occur as PMS can be relieved by eating high calcium foods such as Broccoli, Black Beans, Navy Beans, whole grain cereals, soybeans, spinach, bok choy, kale, corn, fish, tofu, almonds & oysters.

Magnesium:
Mood swings and food cravings are also known to be alleviated by magnesium which facilitates the absorption of calcium. Green vegetables such as spinach are good sources of magnesium as are legumes (beans and peas), nuts and seeds, and whole unrefined grains. Try eating spinach, avocados, barley, oysters, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, brazil nuts, buckwheat and almonds.

pms1Vitamin B6:

Is often taken as a supplement to reduce depression, relieve cravings, fatigue, mood swings, fluid retention and bloating during periods. Foods rich in vitamin B6, include fish, tuna, chicken, turkey, pork, brown rice, barley, soy foods, broccoli, sweet potatoes, bananas, avocados, mangoes, cantaloupe, sunflower seeds, and spinach.

Zinc.
Low zinc levels in women prone to PMS suggest that a diet rich in this important mineral may prevent PMS symptoms. Leading food source of zinc include barley, wheat, crab, oysters, beef, lamb, chicken and turkey.

Vitamin E.
Is often taken as a supplement to reduce breast tenderness, nervousness, depression, headache, fatigue, and insomnia. Vitamin E can be taken as a supplement and is found in broccoli, almonds, sunflower seeds, Brazil nuts, peanuts, safflower oil, corn oil, olive oil, mangoes, avocadoes, apples, and blackberries.

A healthy diet with a normal eating routine helps overall good health. Besides diet, regular exercise and relaxation decreases premenstrual symptoms. Vitamin supplements or herbal preparations offer relief for many women experiencing menstrual difficulties.

PMS is no fun. It screws with your body and mind, and if you can sail through them without being affected, then you are in a fortunate minority.

Massage
This natural and time-tested method can be applied on a weekly basis to release stress and prevent unpleasant symptoms from arising. But even during the most uncomfortable periods, massage can still provide a great deal of relief, sometimes more than taking painkillers. See massage relieving period pain

Know your menstrual cycle

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8 comments to PMS and You

  • Hi, from what I’ve learned, research indicates that PMS is caused by unhealthy and chronically inflamed hormone receptors caused by stress, smoking, and eating certain foods are all causes of inflammation
    Cutting inflammatory foods can result in dramatic improvement in PMS. My diet works to keep you helthy

  • Rose

    Hi, irritability is another symptom that can drive a wedge between us and our loved ones. It’s not a case of simply being bad tempered; rather it’s triggered by fluctuating hormone levels and is nearly always out of our control.

  • Phylis

    Hello, I’ve said this to many girls and many puritans disagree, but having really good physical sex over the few days before my period arrives nearly always guarantees me plain sailing and an easy period, but if I miss out on that sex when I need it most, my periods can be so bad I need to take a day off work.

  • Karen

    Hey there, a study of 10 years of health data from more than 3,000 women showed that those who smoked were more than twice as likely to develop moderate or severe PMS symptoms than those who never smoked. So not smoking or quitting could improve or even prevent PMS.

  • Jess

    My periods are a nightmare and I just want to crawl away and hide for a week. I tried diet which didn’t help although for some reason I can’t eat a lot of what some people call healthy food and the idea of massage sounds absolutely awful. Is anything else a girl can do?

    • Dianna Dianna

      Really honey, you have to take responsibility for yourself and get real about your body. You need to give your body what it needs and be less concerned about your likes and dislikes. If you don’t and am guessing you’re still fairly young, you got a lifetime of misery to look forward to

  • Irene

    Hey, right from the get go at age 10 I had very unpleasant periods and I really hated the female side of my life. I tried all sorts of medications but nothing really worked and I was to stubborn to try yoga or massage. Most often I used painkillers and a hot water bottle that provided some relief but I couldn’t go to school.
    I was 12 when I discovered sex and somehow I noticed that having sex in the few days before my period seemed to relieve some of my unpleasant symptoms, but I couldn’t always arrange that and I started self massaging which of course ended in masturbation. But it helped. Anyhow I am 16 now and way more grown up. Over the past couple of years I’ve experimented with what I eat and noticed that if I stop eating rubbish food the symptoms are not so bad. I’ve also found that exercising and in particular yoga type of stretching also helps.
    My last few periods have been almost completely pain-free because I ate well, exercised, had sex and massaged myself over the few days before my period was due.

  • Pamela

    Hi, you’re so right about that. In my early teens I used to be a really picky eater and I hated my body in a large part because of PMT. In the week before my period I’d be in agony and because it was my body, I thought the new best and they ignored Mum and other people telling me to eat more sensibly. When I was 15 I discovered evening primrose oil which helped and then I started forcing myself to eat more vegetables which made my cycle more comfortable even though it was still uncomfortable if you know I mean. Anyhow I read on some websites I see you have some information as well about massage for PMT and although I was sceptical I was totally blown away by the treatment. For a whole year from when I turned 16 I had regular massages about a week before my period was due and by about the third treatment, I had no PMT and my periods became a breeze.

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