PMS

Updated 29 March 2016

Quick PMS busters

Weird cravings, mood swings and weight gain? It's PMS-time again. Here's how to beat it.

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Feeling as if you could hit someone? Or as if you could eat anchovies and strawberry jam on one sandwich? Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) affects one in three women a couple of days before the onset of a period. You could be one of them.

Here are some quick and simple things you can do to make things better - for yourself, and all those around you:

  • Make sure you eat at least three portions of fruit and vegetables (preferably green leafy ones) every day. More would be better, but three is better than nothing.
  • Avoid eating large amounts of refined sugar (sweets, cakes and biscuits) Rather stick to dried or fresh fruit.

  • Keep salt consumption to a minimum as salt makes your body water-retentive. Check labels for the salt content of foods - salt often lurks where you least expect it.

  • Make sure you eat a diet rich in magnesium, iron, zinc and chromium, essential fatty acids and vitamins B, C and E. Eat fish at least twice during this time. Some liver or lentils could only do you good.

  • Never skip meals. To maintain your blood sugar levels, it is better to eat small amounts more often. When you are premenstrual, your calorie requirements increase by 500 Calories a day.

  • Eat two snacks per day in addition to your usual three meals. Plan ahead for these by taking some fruit to work.

  • Eat protein at both lunch and supper. These could include eggs, chicken, meat, fish or legumes.

  • Avoid caffeine, which is found in coffee, tea, cola drinks and chocolate. Switch to rooibos tea for a few days.

(Information from Every Woman's Health Guide by Maryon Stewart and Dr Alan Stewart)

 

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