PMS (premenstrual syndrome) is a condition that occurs before your monthly menstrual cycle. PMS is a wave that can hit you with various symptoms, including mood swings, bloating, fatigue, and many more.
It is believed that every 3 out of 4 women globally suffer from this syndrome every month.
These symptoms can be emotionally and physically draining because they vary from average to intense every month. It becomes a concern when you do not know how to manage them.
Apart from the other measures, diet modification is one of the most long-lasting and effective natural ways of dealing with PMS.
1. Dietary Changes That Help You Fight PMS
2. Foods That Help Fight PMS
3. Do’s and Don’ts Of Diet To Ease PMS
4. The Final Say
The reason behind PMS is still unclear; after much research, it is suggested that PMS might occur due to the fluctuations of hormones during our menstrual cycle.
These symptoms usually start 1-2 weeks before your menstrual cycle begins. The process comprises a lot of physical and emotional symptoms.
2. Abdominal Pain
3. Diarrhoea Or Constipation
4. Tender Breasts
7. Muscle Pain
8. Water Retention/Swelling
9. Acne Breakouts
2. Mood Swings
3. Crying Spells
5. Food Cravings
6. Change In Appetite
7. Social Withdrawal
11. Changes In Libido
Stating an honest opinion- many females do not know that diet and PMS are related.
Diet has a stronghold in controlling your symptoms and relieving you from all the worries, easing your PMS and even the menstrual cycle.
Let us understand how to manage your diet accordingly:
Excess salt in diet during PMS can cause;
Try to consume light and less salty food, and avoid processed and junk food to overcome bloating issues.
To avoid fatigue, you should consume more fresh fruits and vegetables, which contain a good amount of Vitamin B and iron. More the colours in your diet, the more nutrients.
Try to consume more spinach, kale, fresh fruits, etc.
You should drink at least 2-3 litres of water to avoid bloating and digestive issues.
Consuming calcium during PMS helps to reduce mood swings. Consume dairy products like yoghurt, low-fat cheese, milk and soy products.
One study reported that having more vitamin D can reduce PMS symptoms, and it can be consumed naturally through-
Besides these, getting enough sunlight and consuming good dairy products are essential.
Avoid consuming salted snacks like chips and other snacks; opt for nuts as they are rich in nutrients and omega-3 fatty acids, which help to keep you fuller for longer, as well as help to provide energy and reduce fatigue.
You can consume nuts like walnuts, almonds, and figs.
Complex carbs are rich in fibre and natural sugars, which will not raise insulin levels in excess and manage mood swings by controlling the cravings.
Eating more rolled oats, sweet potatoes, and pumpkins are an excellent source of complex carbohydrates.
The disturbing levels of oestrogen and progesterone can lower the serotonin level (a hormone which affects moods) and increase anger, irritability, and anxiety due to the consumption of processed grains like white bread. So, replacing these with whole grains can uplift the mood during PMS.
Alcohol and caffeine consumption disturbs sleep, aggravating the hormones and making you feel restless.
Try avoiding coffee for 4 to 6 hours before you sleep.
Increasing iron in your diet can help to produce more blood to substitute for what you lose every month.
Foods like meat, green leafy vegetables, and fruits can help boost the body's iron and prevent anaemia.
PMS elevates your craving level, from salty/sweet to fried junk food. But it is essential to maintain the amount of food you eat.
All food groups plan a vital role in managing PMS symptoms. Let us tell you how;
The University of Massachusetts did a study at Amherst and other institutions that analysed the risk of PMS decreased by 40% in 3000 women with a calcium and vitamin D-rich diet.
Yoghurt is a good source of calcium, providing 25% of the daily calcium requirement.
The research by the University of Massachusetts also suggested that women who had 100 IUs of Vitamin D daily reported fewer symptoms of PMS.
You can add sardines, salmon and oysters to your diet as they are rich in Vitamin D and B6.
MD, a professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and an expert in women's health and nutrition, says, “to have a good source of fibre in your diet, eat broccoli; it helps to regulate oestrogen levels in your body and is also suitable for the digestive system.”
Broccoli contains vitamins A, B6, C, and E and calcium, which help to lower the PMS symptoms and other minerals like potassium and magnesium.
Pumpkin seeds provide 85% of the daily manganese and 75% magnesium requirement, which helps manage irritability and stress. Magnesium helps lower water retention and boost mood.
Eggs are a complete protein and are excellent sources of vitamins E, D, and B6, preventing symptoms of PMS.
A study showed that a diet rich in vitamin D & B could also reduce the symptoms; Vitamin E is another nutrient that can bust PMS symptoms.
Peanut butter is rich in magnesium and vitamin B6; magnesium helps increase serotonin levels, uplift mood, and lowers bloating.
Bananas are high in potassium and can ease cramps. One banana can replace the potassium lost during exercise. Oranges are a good source of potassium.
8. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile is consumed to lower stress. Chamomile helps to reduce anxiety and sleep issues. It also relieves the severity of cramps and lower hormonal shifts due to PMS. Avoid drinking tea or coffee, which triggers irritability and tenderness of breasts due to caffeine.
Note: Taking B-6 and magnesium at these levels may tone down mood changes and reduce water retention.
PMS is a complex but highly treatable disorder. However, some diet and lifestyle changes like increasing calcium, magnesium, vitamin B6, and potassium intake can help prevent its symptoms. Other than that, consuming fresh veggies and fruits with whole grains and practising physical exercise can also assist in overcoming this premenstrual syndrome.
1. Is premenstrual syndrome dangerous?
PMS is not fatal because you can manage it with lifestyle and diet changes. However, the severity depends on person to person.
2. What is the exact age of PMS?
PMS usually starts when a woman hits puberty till her menopause (15-45/47 years of age), the most usual age when it takes a toll is early 20 to early 30.
3. How is PMS diagnosed?
There are no tests conducted or available to diagnose PMS. However, if a female suffers from bloating, breast tenderness, backache, acne breakouts, or fatigue, it is a sign of PMS.
4. How long does premenstrual syndrome last?
The symptoms usually go away four days before the actual menstrual period starts; however, it depends on individuals.
5. Is PMS normal?
Most women get very mild levels of PMS, while some women at their childbearing age can get severe PMS, also known as Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder(PMDD).
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