How to ease PMS symptoms with the right nutrition

It’s that time of the month. You have mood swings and your belly looks like you are 6 months pregnant. PMS or so-called premenstrual syndrome (also known as PMT) is the cause of various discomforts amongst most of the women, child bearing age.

PMS symptoms vary in intensity and women report experiencing slightly different symptoms, no woman is the same, but we all agree, PMS is not pleasant. During that time we turn into slightly crazy humans who cry easily and get angry for the smallest reasons (sorry guys, it’s not your fault!). But it doesn’t have to be like that.

Luckily, with some awareness and planning you can reduce your PMS symptoms or even totally make them disappear. Yes, it’s possible as I’ve experienced it. The key is to nourish your body with the right nutrition and you will see results in no time. In this article I show you how.

My PMS symptoms

My PMS symptoms normally start a week before my period or even earlier than that (some women can experience these symptoms  up to two weeks before). What I normally experience is bloating, mood swings, irritability, breakouts and breast tenderness. Sometimes I get cravings. 

I think my PMS symptoms are not a big deal and they vary from month to month. It’s a lot to do with how well I eat and whether I make sure I am getting all the nutrients my body needs that time of the month.

I used to get quite bad cravings in the past which made me eat lots of sweet things made with refined sugar but I don’t do this anymore. I rarely get cravings actually and that’s because I know what to eat in order to prevent them. I also supplement when needed.

How to improve PMS symptoms with a diet

Healthy, well-balanced diet containing plenty of wholefoods is especially important 1-2 weeks before your period. You need to ensure you get enough B vitamins through your diet as they are responsible for healthy skin and healthy functioning of the nervous system (something many women have issue with before their periods). 

brown rice

In order to get more B vitamins into your body, you should consume more wholefoods such as whole-grain rice, whole-wheat pasta and whole-grain bread, but also wheat germ, eggs, white meat and fish. Eating these will help you deal with PMS symptoms such as skin problems, mood swings and lethargy.

Also, try and eat more fish before your period is due, especially the oily fish (salmon, mackerel) as it’s rich in omega-3 essential fats. If you are a vegetarian you will find omega 3s in flaxseed oil, walnuts, avocado and hemp seeds. Omega 3s will help with skin problems and general well-being.

It’s also important to clean up your diet by avoiding refined flour, sugar, and processed foods; cutting out caffeine and alcohol.

Finally, try to increase the amount of magnesium-rich foods you eat. Include more nuts, buckwheat, rye, dried coconut, avocado, broccoli and dates in your diet.

Buckwheat and mushroom-soup

Here are some healthy recipes to help you eat better before your period:

Crunchy egg salad

Try to plan your meals in advance to make sure you have all the ingredients you need for the healthy meals which will help you tackle the PMS symptoms.

I do my best at eating really healthily before my period is due but many times I don’t have time to think about magnesium, B vitamins, omega 3 essential fats and other nutrients my body needs that time of the month. It’s actually quite a big challenge to get all the nutrients your body needs from diet alone, especially when you are busy and your meals are just quickly put together. 

When healthy diet fails…

I understand, it’s not always possible to plan ahead and cook from scratch to create healthy and nutritious meals which will help us fight PMS. This is where supplements step in.

When choosing supplements to help you deal with PMS symptoms you should ensure they are as pure as possible containing no nasties such as fillers, binders, talc and colourings. Viridian is one of the companies which produce such pure supplements which contain 100% active ingredients. I tried a few of their products to help me ease my PMS symptoms and they really worked for me.

viridian magnesium b6

I religiously took their Magnesium B6 & Saffron capsules every day for a week before my period. I also used their vegetarian Omega 3 oil in salads and porridge or muesli every day. These additions to my diet worked a treat for me. The first month I had almost no PMS symptoms at all, well the only thing I noticed was a few spots on my forehead, barely visible, and some bloatiness, but apart from that no indication my period was due! I was really surprised actually but happy to see that the good nutrition actually does work.

The second month the results weren’t the same as I did experience some other symptoms but very mild and no cravings. Magnesium is the key when trying to prevent cravings and supplementing works the best for me. I previously tried eating magnesium-rich foods but it’s difficult to get enough of magnesium from my diet. The problem is also in our food as it doesn’t contain amounts of magnesium it should because the soil it was grown in is mineral-depleted.

viridian omega 3, 6, 9 oil

viridian omega 3 vegetarian oil

Omega 3:6:9 oil is amazing for keeping my skin clear before the period. Something you really need to try and you will see what difference it makes. I highly recommend it.

There are some other supplements you may want to try for your PMS but these mentioned here are the most important and they do work, as experienced by myself.

Do you change your diet or take any supplements before your period is due? What are the PMS symptoms you normally experience and how do you treat them?

References:
http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Premenstrual-syndrome/Pages/Symptoms.aspx

How to Eliminate PMS in 5 Simple Steps

* This post includes PR samples

2 Comments

  1. This is really interesting, Petra. I get terrible cravings for sweets, chocolate and cake, which I would really like to get on top of. I have been doing quite well by changing my diet and cutting out sweet things and eating more fresh produce. But it only takes a bad week to fall back into bad habits. I’ll definitely be trying these tips of introducing more magnesium rich food and fish into my diet. I’m really interested to see if it makes a difference to my PMS.

    1. Yes, it’s really worth looking at your diet and see how you can improve it further to improve PMS. While I do my best to eat well before my period, many times I still don’t get enough of omega 3 or magnesium through my diet and that’s why I supplement. And I know I don’t get enough because my skin suffers and I get cravings for sweet things (I still get these sometimes). This is a definite sign of magnesium deficiency. Also to mention, raw cocoa powder contains magnesium so it’s good to use it every day if you can (in your porridge for example).

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