Natural Ways to Treat PMS
PMS is one of those unpleasant facts of life for many women-over 90 percent of women experience PMS on a regular basis. For more than half of those women, the pain and discomfort is moderate, while another third experience severe pain.
The remaining number say that the pain is crippling or debilitating.
Regardless of where you fall on this spectrum, it’s important to find ways to get through it as comfortably as possible. You can do a number of things to keep your PMS symptoms under control.
Some of the common (though unhealthy) options many women go for is to pop a pill or head for the ice cream box. Both of these have unwanted side effects, and other methods may actually be more effective.
Here Are A Few Natural Ways To Treat PMS:
Take a Hot Bath
Draw a hot bath for yourself and add some drops of essential oils. Jasmine, geranium, lavender, and chamomile are considered some of the most soothing. Get into the tub and soak for at least 30 minutes.
Not only does this help prevent the muscles from cramping throughout your abdomen and uterus, it also allows you to unwind. Stress can make PMS pain significantly harder.
Get Some Gentle Exercise
Exercise routines like Pilates and yoga are particularly good at helping to treat PMS symptoms. For the best results, you should be working out a few times of week regularly.
Care2.com recommends that women try to make exercise as much a habit as possible. The reason that exercise helps is that it promotes healthy blood flow and increased circulation. It also encourages healthy muscle development, making it easier for your body to deal with the influx of emotions and inflammation.
Since stress often adds additional pain and discomfort to the PMS cycle, remember that you may need to sleep a little more. If you can’t get any more sleep at night, try to sneak in a nap if you can.
It can make a tremendous difference. Just remember not to sleep for more than 45 minutes or you will wake up groggy. The best power naps are generally only 20 minutes long.
Avoid Inflammatory Foods
A number of foods cause inflammatory responses. These range from stomach cramps to joint pain to worsened PMS symptoms. When your uterus and intestines are inflamed, you will feel significantly worse. This means that you’re going to have to cut out a lot of those favored comfort foods. Chocolate cake and strawberry ice cream are both going to have to go.
Banana splits don’t count as a healthy option just because they have a banana. Drastically decreasing (if not eliminating) caffeine and alcohol can also be helpful as well.
Instead, focus on eating lean proteins and fiber rich cruciferous and green leafy vegetables. These foods will go a long way in reducing your inflammatory responses as well as providing the energy you need to get through the day.
Reduce Sodium Levels
It’s challenging when you start to bloat. All of your hard work can look as if it was for nothing. Instead of letting this get you down, make sure that you start reducing your sodium levels.
Bloating can add anywhere from 3 – 7 pounds. If you are struggling with pain from bloating, you can sip a cup of dandelion tea. It helps to reduce the effects of bloating as well as the discomfort.
Just make sure to drink plenty of water afterward. Even though that may seem counter-intuitive, you make it more likely that your body will release the water weight if you drink enough water.
The above tips may not all-out eliminate the symptoms of PMS, but when performed in moderation, have been shown to help.
Becky Striepe, “10 Ways to Treat PMS Naturally,” http://www.care2.com/greenliving/pm.html?page=2 (2012).