Call it what you want – Psychotic Mood Shift, Pass My Snacks, Pardon My Sobbing, Punish Men Severely or just plain old PMS. It’s a powerful spell that good old Mother Nature likes to put most of us under once a month during which we can become extremely emotional crying at everything and anything. We tend to want to eat everything in sight normally of the chocolate or cake variety, we obsess about how bloated we feel moaning that we can’t fit in to our skinny jeans yet again and usually have breasts as tender as your bikini line felt the first time you got it waxed!
But ladies, don’t fret, we have back up. Before you consume that whole cake or family size chocolate bar, scream at your partner for no reason at all or cry at the latest Tesco advert (yes it has been known) have a look at these foods that will not only put Mother Nature in her place by satisfying your cravings and alleviating your symptoms, but also provide you with some healthy nutrients too.
These foods are great for fighting the grumps and boosting the feel-good hormone known as Serotonin. They are also loaded with B vitamins, especially B6 which helps to reduce irritability and they provide a steady supply of energy so that you don’t feel ravenous an hour later. Ideal sources include: Sweet potato, Lentils, Whole-wheat pasta, Steamed brown rice, Bulgur wheat and Quinoa.
Although this is known to fill you up, high-fibre fruits and vegetables can actually ease bloating helping to get rid of the puffiness, gas and discomfort that you may feel. It also helps to balance your blood sugar levels and take the stress off of your liver, which plays an important role in metabolising hormones, including oestrogen. Ideal sources include: Broccoli, Brussel sprouts, Green beans, Cabbage, Kale Strawberries and Blackberries.
Fish, flax or chia
Containing the mood boosting Omega-3 fatty acids known to boost your mood and sharpen your thinking. Not a fish lover? Why not try walnuts, flaxseed or chia seeds. These are also great sources of Omega-3s. Try sprinkling ground flaxseed or chia seeds on your morning whole grain cereal. Ideal sources include: Tuna, Trout, Salmon, Mackerel, Sardines and Herring.
Magnesium rich foods
PMS can lower magnesium in blood levels causing emotional stress and cravings. The nutrient has also been found to help relax blood vessels, which can cause headaches. Ideal sources include: Pumpkin seeds, Bananas, Spinach, Peanuts, Cashews and Tofu.
Caffeine in any form can seriously alter your mood and when your hormones are all over the place, that’s not always a good thing. Try a decaf version of your favourite tea or coffee or even try herbal tea. Chamomile tea is great at reducing tension and easing anxiety.
Vitamin B12 found in lean meats provides energy to help fight that sluggish feeling that we tend to experience. The protein meat also helps you to stay alert. Ideal sources include: Lean Beef, Turkey and Chicken.
Hurray! Chocolate can really help to boost your mental state thanks to good old Serotonin. It’s a proven source of healthy, powerful antioxidants and may even contain chemicals that mimic the ones your brain makes when you’re in love. Opt for a couple of squares of dark chocolate with a high cocoa percentage as it offers more of the healthier chocolate benefits, and less of the sugar.
Get shopping, it’s time to stock up on the food weapons to fight PMS!