Want to Reduce PMS?
Think Calcium and Vitamin D,
Get Some Sun and Take These Other Steps
© 2013 Health Realizations, Inc.
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS), the onslaught of physical and emotional symptoms that plague an estimated 40 percent of all women during the last one or two weeks of their menstrual cycles, may have met its match.
A new study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that a combination of calcium and vitamin D not only reduces the risk of PMS symptoms, but they may be able to prevent them all together. The study compared the diets and supplement use of 1,057 women with PMS (aged 27 to 44) to 1,968 women with no PMS for a span of over 10 years.
Letting the sun shine in could keep your PMS symptoms away.
Researchers found that women who ate four servings or more a day of a dairy product were less likely to develop PMS symptoms including anxiety, loneliness, irritability, tearfulness and tension.
"It seems that women who eat more foods high in calcium and vitamin D have less risk of experiencing PMS," said Dr. Elizabeth Bertone-Johnson of the University of Massachusetts, the study's lead author. "It's very exciting, and could end up being good news for many women out there."
Healthy Ways to Get More Vitamin D and Calcium
An excellent way to make sure you're getting plenty of vitamin D is by getting some sun. That's because your skin makes vitamin D when it's exposed to sunlight. So, take advantage of the summer weather and get outside as often as you can.
Two caveats: If you wear sunscreen or sunblock, you won't get the vitamin D benefits of the sun. So, make sure you get a little sun on your bare skin before putting on your sunscreen. And, while some sun exposure is healthy, overexposure, to the point where you burn, is not, so be sure to get some sun, but don't overdo it.
Regular exercise and a healthy diet, rich in calcium and other nutrients, is a one-two punch against PMS
As for calcium, dairy products like cheese and yogurt are ideal sources as most people know - we encourage you to try to consume the healthiest forms, such as from cows raised on their natural diets of organic grass. There are other excellent sources of calcium, too, such as leafy green vegetables like kale and spinach, beans, peas, almonds and fish like salmon and sardines.
Other Nutrients That Help With PMS
Poor diet along with vitamin and mineral deficiencies is a major contributor to PMS in many women. If you're concerned that a lack of nutrients may be contributing to your PMS symptoms, consider along with vitamin D, the dietary supplements DIM-Avail or FemGuard+Balance all-natural hormone balancing supplements specifically formulated to address the symptoms of PMS. FemGuard+Balance is rich in calcium, vitamin D, magnesium, B vitamins, vitamin E and much, much more.
Here's a breakdown of three other key nutrients besides vitamin D and calcium that have been shown to lessen PMS symptoms:
Magnesium. A study published in the Journal of Women's Health and Gender-Based Medicine found that modest amounts of magnesium (200 milligrams per day) helped to reduce water retention and bloating. A follow-up study found that combining magnesium with 50 milligrams of vitamin B6 reduced mood symptoms like anxiety.
Vitamin B6. A British Medical Journal study in which researchers reviewed nine published studies on vitamin B6 and PMS found that taking 100 milligrams a day of this nutrient may relieve a wide range of PMS symptoms, including depression. One should not take more than 100 milligrams a day of vitamin B6.
Lifestyle Changes Help With PMS Too
Though dietary changes are important, making minor tweaks in your lifestyle can also help relieve PMS symptoms. Here are some tips to try out today:
Exercise: Some type of physical activity three to five times a week is important. According to Carol Watkins, MD, "Women who exercise regularly have fewer PMS symptoms."
Avoid Dietary Culprits: The top dietary culprits to avoid during PMS include:
Get Plenty of Sleep. Use Insomnitol™ if necessary.
Manage Stress in Your Life. How you choose to manage stress is up to you--you may feel better from taking some time alone with your journal or going for a long walk outside. Others may prefer to call a close friend or listen to music.
Seek Out a "Support Group," whether it be a friend, sibling or significant other, who will be understanding if you're not feeling like yourself.
Archives of Internal Medicine;165(11):1246-52
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