The Big Bad Wolf: PMS

Premenstrual Syndrome is said to affect 3 out of 4 women – and I’m assuming their boyfriends as well. Much like so many more bodily issues, nutrition can play a role in easing the symptoms before you decide to hit the medicine cabinet.

Here are a few items to stock up on at that time of month.

Dairy

Studies have shown that calcium-rich foods can fight the effects of PMS. These items include foods like yogurt, cheese, skimmed milk, and broccoli and white beans.  Other sources include almonds, sardines, and salmon (canned with bones), so you have plenty of options to choose from.

chocolateChocolate

Yes, there’s a reason many women crave chocolates during PMS – the magnesium content in those can help aid symptoms. BUT, there’s a catch – the added fat is not very helpful (honestly, you’re bloated and feeling iffy, do you really want to add weight gain to the equation?). Chocolates help release endorphines that make you feel calmer and all around “good”. Other good sources of magnesium are leafy greens such as spinach, beans and lentils, nuts and seeds, and whole, unrefined grains.

Salmonsalmon

This is a triple threat food item and a personal favorite of mine. Salmon is a good source of vitamin B6 which can help in reducing irritability and depression. Add to that the great benefits of omega 3(surprise surprise – this ALSO was found to give PMS relief) AND (yes there’s more) magnesium! If you want a forth and fifth reason, go for canned salmon with bones and you just added calcium to the mix, plus vitamin D. There’s a reason I LOVE this food! Other sources of B6 are whole grain breakfast cereals, chick peas, bananas and oatmeal.

Some extra tips:

  • Certain studies recommend adding vitamin D and E into the diet specifically for PMS. Vitamin E may reduce the production of prostaglandins (that $@### hormone that causes cramps and breast tenderness). Vitamin E is found in almonds, seeds, tomatoes and leafy greens ; where as Vitamin D is found in Salmon (as mentioned earlier), milk, and eggs.
  • Chamomile tea.This can help relieve muscle spasms and cramps. It also just adds a calming effect and leaves you less cranky overall (maybe a little more tolerant of the bf?).
  • coffeeCut down on caffeine – now I’m not saying don’t drink your morning cup, because you’re fussy as it is and if you’re going through caffeine withdraw, it can’t be good. Just be conscious of how many cups you’re consuming and try cutting down a few days before your due TOM (time of month).
  • There’s a lot of talk about supplementation for these vitamins and minerals, and while there is nothing wrong with using supplements (especially if you are not consuming enough in your diet), there is a general agreement that everything straight from the organic source is more readily absorbed by the body, so try to incorporate it into your diet before popping the pills.
  • Do NOT hang around guys who say “PMS is all psychological” – punching him might be appropriate but probably not socially acceptable?

Today is the 12th, so mark your calendar to hit the grocery store early next week and be prepared for battle week!

T

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3 thoughts on “The Big Bad Wolf: PMS”

  1. Does a woman who has gone past menopause, experience feelings similar to PMS, remnants to that time of her life, ex.tenderness and bloating, or is it just a figment of imagination?

    1. Actually from what I know, post menopausal symptoms can vary A LOT from woman to woman, and can range from the same PMS ones to even more difficult ones (vaginal dryness, more mood swings, hot flashes, insomnia etc..). Even more, the latest research I read showed that menopausal symptoms are lasting way more than before. However, I’m sure your medical physician can provide you with more “medical” details. 🙂

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