Premenstrual Syndrome

Premenstrual Syndrome

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) affects up to 50% of menstruating women and peaks among women in their 30s and 40s.

  • Hormonal imbalance is thought to be the main contributing factor
  • It usually occurs in the second half of the menstrual cycle, when oestrogen and prolactin levels are high
  • It normally disappears once the period begins and levels of these two hormones subside.

Symptoms of PMS

  • Backache
  • Bloating
  • Breast fullness and pain
  • Changes in appetite
  • Constipation
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Skin problems, such as acne
  • Swelling of hands and feet
  • Weight gain
  • Irritability
  • Mood swings

How to manage PMS

Your lifestyle can have a significant bearing on the severity of symptoms. Regular exercise and relaxation techniques like meditation can relieve nervousness and agitation.

Diet is equally as important. Limiting consumption of saturated and polyunsaturated fats and sugar, caffeine, chocolate and alcohol can all help reduce symptoms.

Increasing consumption of fruit, vegetables, legumes, whole grains nuts and seeds, soy foods and essential fatty acids can also minimise the symptoms of PMS.

Always check with your health care professional before taking supplements with other medications.

If symptoms persist, seek advice from your healthcare professional.