are a few fortunate women who know nothing about PMS but 80-90 %
of us have a bad time, anything between 5-10 days before a period.
There are some 150 PMS symptoms but the most frequently experienced
is a feeling of bloatedness, suddenly you feel huge and heavy and
the second is some food craving. The craving can be chocolates sugar,
large amounts of carbohydrate foods (bread, rice, biscuits) or very
spicy, salty, fried foods.
For some these
symptoms are mild, and manageable. For others it can be so severe
that their whole life, routine and control is thrown completely
out of gear. Before I explain how to deal with it I would first
advice you to try and share what you go through with your husband
or a good friend who understands so that you atleast have a hand
to hold and support you through those days. I would also like to
point out that those suffering from PCOD (Polycystic Ovarian Disease)
or a hormonal imbalance may experience all the symptoms at a more
intense or magnified level and may require help from a gynecologist
first step is to keep a calendar and track your menstrual cycle
exactly every month so you know when the bad time is coming and
can be prepared for it. What is happening is there is a fluid retention
in the body at this time due to a change in hormones. This makes
you feel dull, lethargic and depressed. Then you want to comfort
yourself and you tend to reach out for chocolates, sweets, larger
quantity of bread, rice, roti or spicy food or munch stuff like
chips and fries. Sometimes its also a result of a message from the
body that there is break down of tissue and blood so replacement
of that needs more food.
are some safe choices and guide lines :-
The first step is not to cut down water intake.
Infact try and drink more water which will pump out the extra
water in your body, flush out toxic wastes and keep you fresh.
salt and sugar intake down as well as avoid canned foods and
Chinese foods at this time as they are high in their salt content
and will increase the bloated feeling.
in to sweets but you may increase your fresh fruit intake at
this time. Also control that urge to take more and more rice
or roti. Eat the regular quantity and immediately follow it
with a fruit.
also make a fruit milk shake with skimmed milk. Or if you must
have your chocolate taste use a teaspoon of drinking chocolate
in skimmed milk but resist the chocolate.
avoid rice items like idli, dosa, rice, avalakki (poha) and
puffed rice (bhel) at this time as they increase the bloating.
Stick to whole wheat bread, cornflakes, oats and wheat roti
at meals for these few days.
who want some thing crisp and spicy I would suggest toasted
whole wheat bread with spicy green chutney, coriander and mint,
with some grated salad to top it up. Green chutney on cucumber
or carrot sticks to munch on is also good idea. Strictly avoid
papad and pickles as they are very high in their salt content
and will increase the bloating.
popping toffees or polo mints into their mouth. Each toffee
is 3 teaspoons of sugar at a time, so avoid.
which are 12 tsp of sugar for 300ml and similarly alcohol, must
be avoided as the sudden increase in sugar concentration causes
more water retention and bloating.
protein intake up as this keeps you feeling full and strengths
and builds tissue. Try to eat an egg or 2 egg whites at breakfast.
Even an egg white sandwich with whole-wheat bread in between
as a snack can help. Gram flour cheelas (chapatti), adai, channa
dhal curry etc. and plenty of skimmed milk is helpful.
not the least is "Never miss your WALK". Due to the
bloatedness and heaviness many are tempted to skip their walk.
Please force yourself to go as walking relieves stress, helps
you to sweat out some water and most of all balances your hormones.
A 20-30 minutes walk is a must during PMS.