Raging hormones can lead to a flagging libido, foul moods and a craving for anything covered in sugar. If these symptoms are all too familiar, read on for tips to combat the monthly curse. We all know the symptoms of PMS which include bloating, breast tenderness, acne, and mood swings.
Premenstrual tension can occur up to two weeks prior to your period; that’s potentially a whopping 26 weeks of the year that you may be suffering from symptoms, but this need not be the case. Nutritional therapy can help you to take charge of your hormonal health. Hormonal problems are caused by an imbalance at cellular level, dietary and supplementary measures can be used to restore this hormonal balance.
Dietary changes: Simple changes to diet include increasing your intake of fibre and essential fats, dealing with any imbalance with blood sugar level and avoiding any foods that you may be intolerant to. It is important to eat foods that have a hormone balancing effect on the body such as fibre. Fibre is important because it helps to bind excess hormones and excrete them from the body. Good sources of fibre include oats, lentils and fruit and vegetables. Phytoestrogens also have a hormone balancing effect on the body these include chickpeas and flax seeds.
Skin Health: Hormonal changes and an imbalance in your hormonal health can also lead to an outbreak of spots. If you suffer from spots around your time of the month increase your intake of Zinc. Zinc is a key nutrient for skin health; 30mg taken last thing at night can help breakouts associated with hormone imbalances. Increasing your intake of essential fats from food such as oily fish and flaxseeds will also help reduce any redness caused by inflammation of the skin and will also help to reduce breast tenderness.
Cramping: To ease the pain that can be caused by cramps try having a hot bath with Epsom salts which contains magnesium. Magnesium is known as nature’s tranquilizer as it can have a calming effect on the body and helps to prevent muscle spasms. Magnesium oil can also be sprayed directly onto your skin to help relive pain and tension.
Cravings: Chromium is a supplement that can help you to manage cravings. Chromium has been shown to help control sugar cravings and reduce physical hunger by having a positive effect on blood sugar levels. Adding a pinch of cinnamon to a breakfast of porridge can help with chronic sugar seeking.
Mood: Foods that have been shown to improve mood include turkey and bananas because they contain tryptophan which is needed by the body to make serotonin. Oily fish such as salmon contain omega 3 fats which have also shown to be beneficial in lifting our mood. If you are feeling particularly low try taking a supplement of 5HTP, to help increase levels of the happy hormone serotonin.