Many women, but men also, have experienced what it’s like to suffer from a pre-menstruation syndrome. Even though it’s not easy to diagnose it exactly, it is known that it begins some seven days before a menstruation. Women in that period are very emotional and can feel depressed, tired, quick-tempered even. Also, they may have hunger attacks like craving sweet foods. Moreover, they may experience other physical discomforts like bloating and a headache. Of course, these symptoms vary from woman to woman, in both duration and intensity. Why some women suffer from PMS and others don’t, remains a mystery. Some experts agree PMS is a result of the hormonal imbalance between estrogen and progesterone. Imbalanced hormones cause a change in the balance of the chemical substances in our brain responsible for mood and pain. This hormonal dance is precisely the reason why women behave differently or crave sweet foods in this period. Furthermore, hormonal imbalance is related to the elevated blood prolactin levels causing pain and tension in woman’s breasts. However, other physicians claim PMS is the result of low serotonin level, a brain neurotransmitter that communicates information throughout our brain and body. Even though this hasn’t yet been scientifically proven, many women would confirm their PMS symptoms were relieved upon establishing normal serotonin levels. Nevertheless, increased serotonin levels are not only useful in treating PMS symptoms, but for depression as well. Naturally, there are other ways to tackle this problem, and that is eating adequate food, i.e. avoiding certain food so as not to aggravate the symptoms.
This food has mostly a bad reputation, still it is for women to consummate it, particularly during the period, since red meat is an excellent source of iron, which increases serotonin. Since women lose iron during the period, they need to compensate it with food. Additionally, a research made on several thousand of women has shown that women with normal iron levels in the blood have significantly less severe PMS symptoms in relation to those suffering from iron deficiency. Read meat is also an excellent source of B-group vitamins that helps the liver to disintegrate estrogen, induces progesterone, but brain serotonin levels too.
This is a naturally gluten-free food, rich in vitamins, minerals, and magnesium, in particular, since it wards off moodiness and reduces water retention, which is one of the key issues women face with during PMS. Some other food is also rich in magnesium like spinach, pumpkin seed, almond, and potato.
Chickpea is a legume of the family Fabaceae (bean family). It has a beautiful nutty taste and a creamy texture. It is very rich in iron, magnesium and vitamin B6 that helps women treat a bad mood.
Finally, what can be more soothing that a nice warm cup of tea? Chamomile, as an excellent relaxation aid in general, will help relax sore muscle tissue and also relieve cramps. Moreover, since it does not contain caffeine, it is a perfect choice for relieving PMS symptoms since caffeine has proved to aggravate them.
Of course, being a stressful period for any woman, it would be good to ensure enough sleep during PMS, but you can also do some relaxation exercises like yoga. Follow these tips and you will surely relax better and cut the awkward PMS symptoms to a minimum.
Translation: G. Dujmović