PMS. Is it normal? or have we accepted it?

    PMS. Premenstrual Syndrome, or is commonly referred to Premenstrual Stress. As a society we have collectively started to accept this as a normal process, a once a month, "everyone watch out", annoying part of nature. Here at drinkbar, we are here to tell you, it is not true. Having this life altering, hunched over, jeans too tight, week, is not something you HAVE to endure, or even suffer through.

PMS affects many women seven to ten days prior (pre) to menstruation. Symptoms can vary but often include most of the following:

  • abdominal cramps
  • abdominal bloating
  • acne
  • anxiety, backache
  • breast swelling
  • breast tenderness
  • cramps, depression
  • fainting spells
  • fatigue
  • cravings
  • headache
  • insomnia
  • joint paint
  • nervousness
  • water retention
  • drastic mood swings
  • and even thoughts of suicide. YES, these are medically classified as COMMON symptoms of PMS.

While there are no hard statistics, it is estimated that over 75% of women experience some premenstrual symptoms at one time or another. Nearly 8% of these women have incapacitating symptoms (called premenstrual dysphoric disorder). These symptoms are so severe it interferes with their daily life and an inability to complete normal tasks.

One of the reasons for severe PMS is an increased surge of hormonal imbalance. This is usually caused by an excessive level of estrogen, and inadequate levels of progesterone, as well as month long sensitivity to hormone fluctuation. 

So what do we do with this research? We know, that diet plays a huge role in hormone balance. We also know that unstable blood sugar, is a huge contributing factor as well. PMS also has been greatly linked to food allergies, changes in carbohydrate metabolism, hypoglycemia, and nutrition malabsorption. 

Can we eat differently for better PMS? According to these studies, you can!

drinkbar do tips for reducing PMS and regulating hormones.

 

  • Eat plenty of raw fruits and vegetables the week your typical PMS occurs. Keeping the blood clean, and the G.I. tract moving is an important role for your liver, the hormone power house. The more fiber, the easier it is for the body release toxins and stored estrogen. Say no to the oreos, and yes to large salads, fruits and nuts.
  • Say No to Salt, Red meat and processed foods( drinkbar duh). Reducing sodium intake to prevent bloating and water retention. When our bodies bloat, we retain TOXINS with that water. The more toxins we are releasing the better for our entire body will be.
  • So NO to dairy. Dairy products block magnesium absorption and increase urinary secretion (which can make your body dehydrated, and thus causing more bloat as the body attempts to rebalance). There are a number of fruits and vegetables that supply the body with proper, non-toxic forms of calcium and vitamin D. Put the ice cream down, and reach for those bananas.
  • Avoid Caffeine and xanthine-containing foods. Caffeine, although it makes us feel like super woman, is linked to breast tenderness, and is a central nervous system stimulant which can increase nervousness and anxiety. It also acts as a diuretic, which can deplete the body of nutrients and cause, bloating, as the body again attempts to over-compensate for the forced loss water and electrolytes.
  • Eat foods high in phytoestrogens, such as soy, flaxseeds, nuts, ( RAW and preferably soaked, unsalted), apples, fennel, celery, parsley, and alfalfa. 
  • Do not reach for wine. Yes, we said it. Wine or sugar(and all alcohol). These foods cause valuable electrolytes to be lost through urine. Particularly magnesium which is an important nutrient for hormonal balance and digestion.
  • Drink fresh juices. Yes, we said it. Juicing helps to nourish the body and allow for proper nutrient absorption as the be body prepares for the menstruation cycle. Preparing a high quantity of juice at home, or purchasing it in store, will insure you have it on hand. Check out our blog on making a great balanced green juice at home.

We do not have to be a victim of these signals our body is trying to give us! PMS is not something you HAVE to suffer through, or those around you either, for that matter. Eat your way to freedom, and get back those days that interrupt your life, every month.