Happy Healthy Hormonally Balanced Woman
Natural care for PMS is something many of our patients seek. Fortunately, the cause and symptoms of PMS can be addressed using a combination of diet changes, essential fatty acids, vitamins, homeopathic medicines and herbal medicine.
Any natural protocol for PMS and other hormonal disorders is best used for a minimum of three to six months for optimum results.
Mood swings and depression experienced around the time of menstruation can be relieved using herbal medicine and flower essences.
Irritability, nausea, headaches and migraines associated with PMS can often be due to a congested liver. If any of these symptoms occur around the time of your period, it is most important to support the liver using dietary changes and natural remedies. Balancing the hormones and cleansing the liver may also help balance blood sugar levels, help with weight loss and reduce food cravings.
Diet for PMS
- Dietary changes as a natural choice for PMS have been shown to effectively reduce PMS symptoms in many women. Excessive intake of sugar, salt, honey, dairy products, white flour and fatty foods can sometimes aggravate PMS symptoms. Instead, eat more fresh fruit and vegetables, wholegrain bread and cereals as per your blood type diet.
- Avoiding caffeine is particularly important in the prevention and care of PMS. Research shows that women who regularly consume caffeine are up to four times more likely to experience severe PMS symptoms. Caffeine is found in cola, black tea, green tea, coffee and chocolate. Give up coffee slowly to avoid withdrawal symptoms and aim to drink six to eight glasses of fresh filtered water each day.
- If you really can't give up a cup of tea, choose a low caffeinated cup of black or green tea.
- You are not going to want to read this, but chocolate needs to go. Although there are initial mood benefits to eating chocolate (thanks to the happy mood altering effects of theobromine), the long-term effects on your PMS symptoms and waist-line can be far-reaching. If you are the type of woman that can stop at 2 squares of chocolate, then a compromise would be choosing 2 squares of dark chocolate!
- Avoiding refined carbohydrates such as soft drinks, cakes, biscuits, sugar, honey and white flour will help conserve magnesium levels and balance blood sugar levels, reducing mood swings and blood sugar swings.
- Refined sugar can increase the excretion of magnesium, making the cravings worse. It can also be useful to decrease your intake of dairy products at this time, as excess calcium may impair the absorption of magnesium.
- Decrease your intake of saturated fatty acids found in animal fats, as well as dairy products and fatty red meat as these can increase inflammation and pain associated with period cramps.
- Eat more tryptophan-rich foods during the luteal phase (day 15 to onset of menses): turkey, ripe bananas, cottage cheese, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and legumes. A depletion of tryptophan has been shown to increase aggression in women during the premenstrual phase.
- Increase your intake of unsaturated fatty acids found in fish, avocado and raw unsalted nuts and seeds and their cold pressed oils, as these have an anti-inflammatory action and also help maintain proper hormonal balance.
- Many women find that including foods rich in phytoestrogens (or isoflavones) in their diet helps prevent PMS. The best dietary sources are flaxseed, alfalfa seeds and fermented-only non GMO soy products such as miso and tempeh.
- Decrease your intake of refined salt, as this can contribute to fluid retention. Rather choose real salt. Dr. Carolyn highly recommend Celtic Sea Salt. Excess fluid retention contributes to breast tenderness and abdominal bloating and can contribute to headaches.
- Make sure you drink two liters of filtered water a day, as this will reduce fluid retention.
Lifestyle Recommendations for PMS
- Make regular moderate exercise a habit. PMS symptoms tend to be more severe in women who do no exercise.
- To relieve cramps, try applying heat to the pelvic region by using a hot water bottle or taking a warm bath. This improves blood flow and relaxes muscles.
- Castor Oil Packs and Flaxseed Packs provide tremendous relief from period pain and menstrual cramping and bloating.
- Acupuncture – to facilitate the free flow of energy through the body.
- Aromatherapy - can assist and support the reproductive system, and gently contribute to rebalancing your hormones. Ask your Trinity Holistic Wellness professional for expert guidance.
Severe PMS symptoms may indicate an underlying health condition such as endometriosis. If your PMS symptoms are severe, or are not relieved by the natural care for PMS suggested above, consult your healthcare professional.