Picture this: You’ve just had a horrible day. Every little thing just ticks you off, but you just don’t know why. A week later, you get your period and everything suddenly makes sense. Chances are, you’ve likely experienced some premenstrual syndrome (PMS) at one point or another. The most common symptoms include mood swings, tiredness, bloating, breast tenderness, and changes in appetite and sex drive. Basically, it is a series of symptoms you may experience before your menstrual cycle, and it varies from person to person.
While experts still aren’t sure about the exact causes of PMS, it might be linked to our hormonal fluctuations. When we start ovulating, our estrogen and progesterone levels drop, which affects our serotonin levels. And as you might’ve guessed, low serotonin = sad and irritated feelings. But don’t fret, because there are some ways that can help you manage it.
Eat more calcium
Sometimes, it’s hard to keep track of what you’re eating, especially when you’re feeling all the feels. A study found that calcium supplements helped with PMS mood swings. However, you can also go for foods that are rich in calcium, such as milk, yogurt, cheese, green vegetables, and so on. The symptoms will improve gradually over time, so don’t be discouraged if you don’t see results immediately!
Sometimes you feel so lethargic that you just want to lie in bed the whole day, and we totally get it! However, it’s always good to be active and sweat it out sometimes. It’s believed that endorphins, which are feel-good brain chemicals, are released during exercise. So a short walk around your neighborhood can help with your PMS-related feelings such as anxiety, sadness, and irritability.
This one’s pretty self-explanatory. We all get a little grumpy when we’re not getting enough sleep, not to mention how much worse it’s gonna feel when you’re experiencing some PMS symptoms! So, SLEEP, SLEEP, SLEEP. Your sleep affects your mood so much more than you think!
Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and sweets
Your eating habits will have a huge effect on your mood. Caffeine increases anxiety, nervousness, and insomnia, while alcohol acts as a depressant. Sugary foods, especially during the week leading up to your period, can cause blood sugar fluctuations, which can influence your mood. So, eat healthy, ladies!
Manage your stress levels
Stress management is always crucial, because it might worsen PMS mood swings. Stress can be triggered by many things, but the most important part is to take a deep breath and try to see things from another perspective. You can do this by trying different breathing exercises, yoga, or meditation.
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