Every month, billions of women get their periods and for many, it’s a dreaded event.
In fact, a whopping 75% – 90% of women experience some sort of premenstrual symptom.
If you’re reading this, then you’re most likely one of those 75 – 90% of women.
And you want relief. Right. Now.
So, in this post I’m sharing 4 powerful strategies that you can use to get get rid of PMS at home. Also, there are additional, free resources mentioned throughout this article that will help you dive deeper into each of these strategies. Please take advantage of them to bring more balance to your cycle 🙂
4 NATURAL TIPS AND REMEDIES FOR PMS SYMPTOMS
1. Take a Detox Approach by Syncing Your Food and Exercise With Your Cycle
In some ways, your menstrual cycle is like a regularly scheduled elimination or detoxification process because it’s getting rid of something that it does not need (i.e. the uterine lining).
And we know that holding on to anything the body doesn’t need or anything that doesn’t serve the body, often leads to all sorts of health issues.
So, why not help your body by giving it foods that will make it easier to shed that uterine lining and have a struggle-free cycle?
This is where the idea of “eating for your menstrual cycle” comes into play!
Overall, in the days leading up to your period and during your period, you want to:
- eat whole, unprocessed foods.
- avoid alcohol, caffeine, processed sugar and artificial sweeteners.
- eat more organic, non-GMO foods (if your budget allows it).
- avoid strenuous exercises (particularly during those initial heavy flow days). Instead enjoy more low to moderate intensity activities like yoga, tai chi or walking.
For a deeper dive into this topic, please use this guide on what to eat during each phase of the menstrual cycle. It gives you an overview of the hormonal shifts that occur throughout the month, and the foods that can support you each step of the way.
2. Eat More Healthy, Unprocessed Fats to Support The Gut
Naturally fatty foods are very filling, which helps to curb those period cravings. In addition, healthy fats are an important part of gut health.
This is significant because:
- the gut is where a lot of hormones are made but conditions like leaky gut syndrome, can lead to hormone deficiencies. Healthy fats help to improve leaky gut, which will subsequently lead to better hormonal harmony.
Some healthy fats to load up on include:
- raw nuts.
- chia seeds.
- organic, antibiotic-free butter or ghee.
- coconuts and coconut oil.
- olive oil.
This guide on gut health and hormones is a good resource you can use to understand more about how the gut regulates hormone production.
3. Flush Out Waste with Water and Herbal Teas
The right type of herbal tea can go a long way toward making that time of the month a whole lot more comfortable.
- ginger is an excellent anti-inflammatory and in a tea form, it’s an effective detox agent that you can sip on all day.
- red raspberry leaf tea is full of vitamins and minerals, and it also has an affinity for the reproductive organs.
- dandelion tea supports liver health and the liver happens to play an important role in the production and detoxification of hormones.
If you’re not yet a regular tea drinker, I encourage you to consider it. You can learn more in this article on the best teas for menstrual cramps. You can also use this simple, 3-ingredient hormone-balancing tea recipe to get started.
4. Load Up on Fruits and Veggies
Eating more fruits and veggies during your cycle does wonders for soothing your symptoms.
I particularly like to focus on water-rich fruits and veggies (watermelons, cucumbers, oranges, and so on).
Their high water content and living enzymes help with cleansing the body, while the fiber (particularly from the veggies) heals the gut, satisfies hunger and keeps your regular.
If the idea of eating plain old fruits and veggies sounds too boring, then start with these PMS smoothies. They’re an easier and tastier way of adding more healthy foods to your diet.
THE ROOT CAUSE OF PMS
During the menstrual cycle, there’s a fluctuation of hormone levels, with estrogen increasing and progesterone decreasing.
This fluctuation is naturally designed to occur. But it is not designed to make your life a living hell every month.
Instead, how the body reacts to those fluctuations, is what determines whether not things like PMS occur.
So, you might be wondering: what affects how the body reacts? Well, the answer lies mainly in our diet.
HOW DIET AFFECTS PMS
Estrogen is one of the hormones that undergoes significant increases (and drops) during the menstrual cycle.
And these days, we are all exposed to some amount of external, synthetic estrogens (aka xenoestrogens). If these xenoestrogens build up in the body, we can become estrogen dominant.
So, where to these xenoestrogens come from? Some common sources include:
- pesticides in food (pesticides are estrogen based).
- processed oils, processed sugar and processed food in general (some contain estrogen-based chemicals and/or chemicals that interfere with proper hormone function).
- plastic bottles (they contain compounds like BPA, which is estrogen-based).
- unfiltered water (common water pollutants interfere with our hormone-regulating processes).
- cosmetics (contains chemicals that disrupt our hormone production system).
Okay, so the above list might leave you feeling overwhelmed and frustrated. But also keep in mind that you don’t necessarily have to avoid all plastic or only drink filtered water.
Instead, the best thing you can do is support organs and systems like the liver and gut. They do a lot of heavy lifting when it comes to protecting you from xenoestrogens.
Just by following the strategies and resources I provided at the top of this article, you will be addressing all of this.
When it comes to PMS symptoms, always remember to work with your body’s natural ebb and flow.
As you understand what your body is doing – and why! – you can make choices that make your flow days seem like just another day!