It’s that time of the month again and you’re feeling it – the cramps, anxiety, bloated belly… irritable and in in need of consolation…….
Read this for more information and how to help yourself:
Did you know there are actually more than 200 documented symptoms for PMS? Not only that, there are four PMS patterns. Relief is available-knowing which pattern is yours is the first step to feeling better.
First, determine your pattern. Which of the following sounds like you? (Note: You likely have symptoms from more than one pattern.)
The Estrogen Effect. You experience anxiety, insomnia, irritability, aggression and general nervous tension, sometimes without knowing why you are so upset. You’re not alone! Up to 80 percent of PMS sufferers experience these symptoms. This is generally caused by an increase in estrogen, aka “luteal phase estrogen dominance.”
The Water Carrier. You experience weight gain, abdominal bloating, puffy hands, feet and face, along with swollen, painful breast. The second most frequent symptom group, this one affects as many as 66 percent of PMS sufferers. As many of you know, these symptoms often occur at the same time as the estrogen-dominant symptoms. They correlate with decreased dopamine and an imbalance in the hormonal system that regulates water and mineral balance.
The Carb Queen. You crave sweets, experience headaches, fatigue, dizziness, faintness, palpitations and shakiness-and you definitely need some blood sugar support. Take the glucose tolerance test to rule out polycystic ovarian disease (PCOS).
The Blues Sister. Those feelings that range all the way from simply being “down” to being suicidal are caused by excess progesterone. Imbalances in your neurotransmitters can add to the depression-and this is something that is usually easily corrected.
WHAT’S A GIRL TO DO?
Action Steps to Help Relieve:
THE ESTROGEN EFFECT
- Eliminate. Decrease circulating estrogen levels by caring for your liver and gallbladder-and improving detoxification and elimination. Our supplement PSM support aids your liver and biliary system to detox the extra hormones the right way. Making sure you have at least one bowel movement per day means food stays in your body for a shorter time, which cuts down on reabsorption of excreted estrogens.
- Fiber Up. Giving your body fiber through fresh colorful fruits and vegetables keeps your hormones balanced. Cruciferous veggies, beets and turmeric are some of the best choices. Flax seeds provide healthy water-soluble fiber that prevent reabsorption of hormones. Flax also provides healthy omega fatty acids and lignin anti-oxidants.
- Meat Down. Cut down on the saturated animal fat as it causes higher levels of estrogen. Eat healthy fish and plant fats for better hormonal balance.
- Choose Glass. Avoid exposing your food and drinking water to plastic. Phthalates used to soften plastic can mimic the action of estrogen in the body. Keep Moving. Regular aerobic exercise has shown to help relieve symptoms of estrogen dominance associated PMS.
- Vitamins and Supplements. Vitamin B6 (discuss dose with your physician, there is a too much with this one) can decrease estrogen levels and increase progesterone levels. Activated Vitamin B6 (pyridoxal-5-phosphate) is more effective and is thought to be a safer choice. Vitex agnus castus (Chaste Tree) stimulates the pituitary gland to secrete luteinizing hormone, which helps the ovaries produce progesterone.
- Ask for Premenstrual Relief, a well rounded formula, specifically formulated so it usually works within the same month you start taking it! Here’s to a happy next cycle.
- Vitamins and Supplements. Evening Primrose Oil and Borage oil has been found to bring relief to 2/3 of women if taken a few days before PMS symptoms begin. Vitamin E has been shown to especially benefit patients with breast tenderness. In higher doses, Vitamin B6 and Magnesium lower the hormone aldosterone, responsible for water retention. (Choose easily absorbed magnesium citrate, malate or taurate)
Along with a hormonal imbalance, those cravings also mean a nutritional deficiency.
- Eat More Often. Focus on frequent small meals. Your best diet is high in plant protein and whole grains. Relief lies in deeply colored vegetables.
- Stop Sweets. Avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates.
- Love your Liver. Liver health is extremely important for blood-sugar regulation and for hormonal balance (See Estrogen actions.)
- Balance Your Brain. Restoring and balancing dopamine and serotonin levels through amino-acid protocols will help stop the cravings. It’s also an invaluable weight-loss aid as it helps suppress the appetite.
- Vitamins and Supplements. You most likely are in need of omega three fatty acids, B-vitamins and minerals. Supplement with fish oil and/or evening primrose oil or borage seed oil to correct your blood-sugar instability. Consider taking extra magnesium, chromium and a good Vitamin B-complex like B Complex #6 caps or a well-balanced multivitamin like Ultra High (both are excellent values).
THE BLUES SISTER
- Love Your Liver. You need to increase your estrogen to progesterone ratio. Use daily liver support and flax to balance hormones (See Estrogen actions.) PMS support has everything your liver needs to cope with hormone loads.
- Balance Your Brain. Find a doctor who knows how to balance brain hormones with the use of amino acids. Your mood will be more cheerful and stable and your brain will be able to maintain healthier levels of hormones when it is better nourished. (Do not try to do this on your own.)
- Get The Lead Out. Test your body lead levels: Premenstrual depression has been associated with high hair-lead levels.
- Supplements. Black cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa) and other estrogenic herbs will help the ovaries increase estrogen production.
Come in for a hormone test at Restorative Health Clinic or call your doctor. Hormone tests will also enable your physician to accurately prescribe bio-identical hormones for fast and reliable symptom relief. If a well-rounded supplement like PMS support does not balance you out in three months, testing is really required to help trouble shoot. In many cases, temporary prescription hormonal support is very helpful in balancing hormones and removing clinical symptoms while the body heals.
And remember, no medicine can take the place of an active, fun-filled lifestyle and a healthy, high-fiber diet full of fresh fruit and vegetables and low in animal fat.