Managing PMS Symptoms

Apr 09, 2009
For many women premenstrual period brings in a whole range of emotional and physical disturbances, which affects women's quality of life. Women often report about nervousness and mood fluctuations, depression, fluid retention, headaches, constipation, breast tenderness and other symptoms. These symptoms usually appear one or two weeks prior to menstruation and stop when menstruation begins.

Though the causes of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) are still not well-understood, you can manage PMS symptoms with a help of certain dietary changes, supplements and other natural ways.

  1. Moderate exercising is known to reduce not only physical tiredness and boost your energy, but also helps to channel your emotional burden into a right direction. Try 30-minutes walk, swimming, yoga or other form of exercising that appeals to you.

  2. Many women have various food cravings during PMS due to increased energy demand. It was noticed that high fat and high sugary food are among the most common cravings during premenstrual phase. Women generally tend to eat more and gain weight during PMS.

  3. To control your PMS cravings you need to make sure your diet is nutritious enough. You should include all the food groups in your diet, like proteins, carbohydrates and fat. Cereals, dairy products, vegetables, fruits, lean meat and fish will provide your body with essential nutrients to manage a wide range of PMS symptoms.
  4. Try eating smaller portions but more often, like five or six times per day. Avoid high fat and high sugary food substituting them for your favorite vegetables and fruits.

  5. If you find it difficult to stop your PMS cravings, try having healthy snacks like dry fruits and nuts, cereals or yoghurt.

  6. Limit your intake of caffeine, alcohol and quit smoking. You should also avoid salty food as it contributes to fluid retention during PMS.

  7. Many vitamin deficiencies lead to aggravation of PMS symptoms. Some women will benefit from taking supplements to reduce PMS symptoms. During premenstrual phase you are at increased demand of calcium and magnesium, which work by regulating the levels of your hormones.

  8. Vitamin E is necessary if you tend to feel breast tenderness during premenstrual phase. Vitamin B6 and folic acid help to reduce depression, irritability and tiredness.

  9. Taking supplements with essential fatty acids may also help you relieve PMS symptoms, since they balance hormonal fluctuations.

  10. Some oils such as black currant oil, primrose oil or gamma linoleic acid help ease headaches and cramps.