The monthly subscription of menstrual cycle overwhelms every woman each month. While for some women, periods come and go without causing any havoc, others have a rather overwhelming experience. A large group of women suffers from Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) even before the start of the period. In this article, Dr Astha Dayal, the best gynecologist in Gurgaon, offers insights on how to deal with PMS by making some dietary changes. 

Dr Astha Dayal can be consulted at the CK Birla Hospital, the best hospital for women’s health in Gurgaon

Before understanding the dietary moderations, let us take a glance at what PMS is all about.

What is Premenstrual Syndrome?

Premenstrual Syndrome is a gynecological condition in which a woman experiences a set of changes in her physical, emotional and behavioural patterns. PMS, as the name denotes, affects a woman before the menstrual cycle. You can expect to undergo PMS one or two weeks before getting your period. 

Common symptoms of PMS are – anxiety, cramps, joint pain, mood swings, food cravings, headache, bloating, insomnia, acne, social withdrawal, constipation, diarrhoea, breast tenderness, poor concentration, crying spells and more. 

PMS affects every woman uniquely. The cause behind this condition is not yet known. However, a variety of factors impact PMS. 

Your lifestyle, levels of stress, hormonal changes, serotonin levels and underlying health conditions affect how you will experience PMS. 

How do dietary changes affect PMS?

PMS symptoms are triggered by the change in a woman’s hormone levels. The levels of estrogen and progesterone shift in your body before each menstrual cycle. This hormonal shift is the lead cause of mood changes and other symptoms. 

A nutritious diet can help you deal with the changing hormones and their effects. A well-balanced diet, especially during PMS, can help in significantly alleviating the symptoms. 

What dietary changes should I do to cope with PMS?

According to Dr Astha Dayal, a leading gynecologist in Gurgaon, you should make the following changes to your current diet plan to fight with PMS. 

Increase your intake of calcium-rich foods – You should eat food items higher in calcium proportion to deal with the mood swings of PMS. Low-fat dairy products are good sources of calcium. Milk, soy milk, cheese, yogurt and orange juice are some top choices. 

Make sure to get enough Vitamin D – Several studies have shown that Vitamin D has proven benefits on the emotional aspects of PMS symptoms. Red meat, egg yolks, fish, breakfast cereals and more are rich in Vitamin D. You should make sure to get enough sunlight which is the best natural source of Vitamin D. You can also ask your gynecologist to prescribe you supplements. 

Do not skip breakfast – With the continuous shift in your hormone levels, your body would require a sufficient amount of nutrients. If you skip your breakfast during PMS, your blood sugar levels will drop largely. This, in turn, will make you more moody and irritable. It is suggested that you eat a healthy breakfast and snack throughout the day to support the internal changes in your body. 

Limit your salt intake – An excess amount of salt in your meals can lead to bloating, cramping, swollen hands and feet and breast tenderness. It is because a large quantity of salt retains fluid in your body. It is necessary to keep a check on your salt intake to avoid these symptoms during PMS. 

Drink plenty of water – Water is the super beverage for fighting with PMS associated pain or discomfort. Water can help to reduce the severity of bloating and cramping. 

Limit your intake of caffeine and alcohol – You may want to have your favourite drink to feel relaxed from PMS symptoms but caffeine and alcohol can further aggravate PMS. The hormonal transitions induced during PMS already affect your sleep patterns. Caffeine and alcohol can add to the disruption of sleep and be problematic. 

Since every woman’s body is different, they all respond distinctly to the dietary changes. You can ask your gynecologist to help design a customised plan specifically for you. 

To learn more about PMS, you can visit Dr Astha Dayal – Best gynecologist in Gurgaon at the CK Birla Hospital, the best hospital for woman health in Gurgaon.