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Natural Ways to Make Your PMS Less Miserable

Sick of suffering for a week every month? Try these natural remedies to ease period cramps and combat PMS

Updated
Lifestyle
3 min read
Natural Ways to Make Your PMS Less Miserable

Is your period too cool to strike without its entourage of obnoxious comrades: bloating, cramping, ballooning breasts, and, of course, tears, in response to anything that doesn’t warrant them?

Overall my PMS (premenstrual syndrome) is killer. The misery descends a week in advance and lasts till the second day of riding the crimson wave! Everyone has a different experience, but for me, start of the periods are godsend - it’s the beginning of the end!

But if you are sick of PMS-ing for one week every month, hormone regulating birth control pills are not your flavour, and you avoid pain killers, then let me tell you there are natural remedies to deal with PMS and period pain. No, I’m not talking netflix, wine and pizza (though it obviously can’t hurt).

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Exercise Helps

Not all women suffer from severe PMS, but about 75 percent of women deal with at least some form of PMS symptoms (Photo: iStock)
Not all women suffer from severe PMS, but about 75 percent of women deal with at least some form of PMS symptoms (Photo: iStock)

A week before your period, the female body produces a lot of progesterone. Stress ups your cortisol levels and together these two create a hormonal imbalance. This can be naturally countered by yoga, meditation or any other cardio as they release serotonin or the “feel good hormones”.

Load Up on Dairy Before Your Period

PMS symptoms and calcium deficiency symptoms have a lot in common. Make sure you’re getting1200mg of calcium from food sources or supplements (Photo: iStock)
PMS symptoms and calcium deficiency symptoms have a lot in common. Make sure you’re getting1200mg of calcium from food sources or supplements (Photo: iStock)

Calcium is a PMS stopper. Studies have shown that calcium supplements help with mood swings, bloating and even pain. So add calcium rich foods like yogurt, milk and cheese to your diet before the chums or take a daily supplement depending on your doctor’s orders.

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Add Thyme to Tea & Lunch For a DIY Cramp-Reliever

Thyme helps in breast tenderness and relieves the stomach cramps (Photo: iStock)
Thyme helps in breast tenderness and relieves the stomach cramps (Photo: iStock)

Did you know that the thyme essential oil is just as effective as ibuprofen in relieving cramp pain? The ancient Romans used thyme as a remedy for melancholy. Now since the thyme oil is not readily available, the next best thing is to use the herb in tea, salads, sandwiches and even boil some water with thyme and drink it.

Eat Whole Foods

(Photo: iStock)
(Photo: iStock)

PMS can affect your body’s ability to regulate insulin, which affects your blood sugar and energy levels. Eating processed foods, which tend to contain more sugar and less fiber than whole foods, will only make things worse. (A study published in the Journal of Reproductive Medicine even found that women who consumed more sugary foods and drinks were more likely to experience PMS symptoms.)

Instead, reach for whole grains (like brown rice), vegetables, healthy fats (like avocado), and unprocessed proteins.

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Stop Smoking & Drinking

Cut down on caffeine, alcohol, and salty foods when you’re PMS-ing. If you get stomach pain, try eating smaller meals more frequently, rather than three large meals each day.  (Photo: iStock)
Cut down on caffeine, alcohol, and salty foods when you’re PMS-ing. If you get stomach pain, try eating smaller meals more frequently, rather than three large meals each day. (Photo: iStock)

In case you needed another reason to kick the butt: Research suggests that your least healthy habit makes PMS worse.

Don’t believe the voices in your head which says, PMS isn’t anything a drink can’t cure. A glass of wine might boost your mood for a bit, but only temporarily. When the buzz burns off, you’ll be left dehydrated and in a worse mood.

Swear Off the Salt

A diet that’s high in sodium from salt and processed foods promotes water retention that bloats you up (Photo: iStock)
A diet that’s high in sodium from salt and processed foods promotes water retention that bloats you up (Photo: iStock)

Difficult to implement. But would you rather eat a bag of chips or fit into something other than sweatpants? Because on your period, you maybe cannot do both. If you get particularly puffy when you PMS, doctors suggest cutting out salt a few days before your period, drinking tons of water, and exercising (since salt and water come out when you sweat).

Obviously, this doesn’t mean everyone with a vagina should swear off salt, but if you’re suffering monthly, it might be worth a shot.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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