Eating for Your Period; Fighting PMS

Ahh food. Besides keeping our bodies going, what foods we eat can also affect our monthly cycles. For example, not eating will not your cycle, which is always a tell tale sign that something is going horribly wrong in your diet and body! The things we eat can actually help stave off PMS symptoms and help reduce cramping during ovulation. Read on to see how certain foods can make having your period, if not a more enjoyable experience, at least a little less annoying;)

Eat Many small Meals

Eating six small meals throughout the day, instead of three large ones – this can help to keep your blood sugar up and your mood elevated. What does this do for you? Well beside keeping your mood at a constant high, regulating your blood sugar so that it stays at a constant level throughout the day has also been shown to help speed up your metabolism and thus, help you lose weight. It will also lessen your body’s cravings for bad foods!

Reduce Bloating

  • Eat potassium rich foods such as cranberries, bananas, mangoes,melons, papayas, potatoes, spinach, tomatoes and other fresh fruits. Potassium triggers the kidneys to excrete more sodium.
  • Cut down your sodium intake to less than 2000 milligrams per day. Too much salt will cause water to be release into the skin, causing puffiness.
  • Drink plenty of water. This will help to flush salt and other electrolytes out of your body, reducing water retention.
  • If your bloating is really bad, water pills and diuretics could provide some relief also anti-gas pills.
  • Get some aerobic excercise such as walking, biking, jogging, aerobics. When you get your body moving, it starts to actually use the food you have eaten and will get your bowels moving as well.
  • Calcium pills, besides being a must for any women, will also help reduce water retention. You should be getting about 1,000 to 1,500 mg a day. So I would suggest getting the 1000mg pills and that way you won’t go over the limit with the foods you eat throughout the day. Do not go over 2,500mg a day! It’s also important to note that you need magnesium and vitamin D in order to absorb Calcium, so get calcium pills which include at leats one of these other vitamins.
  • Dandelion leaf is a remedy for bloating caused by water retention. Taken after meals, it can help kidneys eliminate excess fluid. Dandelion leaf can be found at health food stores.

Controlling PMS

  • Cut back on caffeine to feel less tense and irritable and to ease breast soreness.
  • Cut out alcohol. Drinking it before your period can make you feel more depressed.
  • Get plenty of sleep–about 8 hours a night.
  • Keep to a regular schedule of meals, bedtime and exercise.
  • Try to schedule stressful events for the week after your period. Okay, yes this is hard, but when you are faced with something stressful practice stress relieving exercises. These can be counting to ten, meditation, yoga, aerobic activity, or just doing something that relaxes you like painting, taking a bath, dancing, etc.
  • Magnesium-rich chow (spinach, whole grains) and foods with omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, sardines, walnuts) will steady your nerves.

Other Foods For PMS Symptoms

  • Vitamins A and D suppress the PMS symptoms of acne and oily skin. The food sources of vitamin A are cantaloupe, raw carrots, cooked sweet potatoes and spinach. In addition to getting Vitamin D from sunshine, it can be obtained from enriched milk and cereal.
  • Vitamin B6 helps relieve premenstrual cravings, fatigue, mood swings, fluid retention and bloating. Vitamin B6 can be taken in supplements and by eating fish, eggs, nuts, bananas, potatoes, and the white meat of turkey and chicken.
  • Valerian root is a remedy for mood swings, and irritability. Taken before bedtime, it can lower stress and promote sleep.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Foods rich in the nutrient are known to be able to curb the mood swings that you experience during PMS. As such, foods such as ground flax seeds, avocados, salmon and sardines are good foods to eat during this time. Sardines are actually jam packed with not only essential fatty acids but also calcium:)

Well there you go! Now you can see how different foods, depending on the vitamins and minerals that they contain, can help relieve not only PMS mood swings but also cravings, cramps and bloating! Hope this was helpful your all of you! If you have any personal remedies or things that you do to help you when you’re on or getting your period, don’t be shy to leave a comment telling me about them!

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