PMS – Don’t let it cramp your style!
I am particularly excited about this post because it’s the first time I am sharing a success story that I’ve had with a friend who I have been helping out with some hormonal problems. At first, I was going to write it myself, but then I thought it might be better for you to hear it straight from her. So, over to her!
I was sitting talking to Mandy one day and I was complaining that I was going to have to go back on the pill. I went on the pill as a teenager to help with my periods because I would get really bad cramps – to the point that I would feel like I was going to pass out. I missed a lot of days of school because I was hunched over a hot water bottle watching the Price is Right wishing I could numb the pain! Going on the pill did make a drastic difference; but, fast forward ten years and I had been on the pill for quite a long time and was worried that I had been on it too long. I was starting to get migraines so I wanted to go off for a bit of time to sort of ‘reset’ my body. I was always told that when you get older your periods regulate and become easier so I figured I’d be fine. Well, I went off the pill and within a few months I was back to experiencing that same searing pain. I started missing work again, and was spending more and more time hunched over a hot water bottle with the Price is Right (it’s just not the same without Bob Barker). Every month this is what I’d go through:
- Searing pain throughout my upper thighs that would make me want to just rip them out
- Massive cramps
- Gross bloating
- Lower back pain
- Trouble sleeping (because of the pain) which would lead to tiredness and irritability (that’s always great for relationships)
- Mood swings (also great for relationships!)
- Crazy knee pain the day after working out
- (Given all this I was popping Aleve like it was candy)
I needed to go back on the pill again because I couldn’t handle the pain and was worried that taking a day off work every month would impact my career – people don’t expect 26 year olds to need to take a day off work for their periods each month.
As Mandy and I discussed it, she asked me if I would consider finding a natural way of dealing with the hormones. My first reaction was a bit of skepticism (Mandy I never told you this but I mean if the doctor suggested the pill that had to be the best option I figured that was because it had to be the best option) but given that I didn’t want to go back on the pill if I didn’t need to, I told her that yes, I’d love to figure out another way of making a change.
Here are the changes Mandy helped me implement:
- I introduced ground flax seed into my daily diet
- I increased my protein intake (this was part of a lifestyle change that I was making)
- I cut down my sugar intake (cutting sugar in my twice daily coffees was easy but candy was my crutch)
- I started paying attention to eating healthier fats (this was easy because I love avocados, nuts, and olives)
- I cut down my soy intake (almond milk is now my milk substitute)
- Taking a vitamin B supplement every morning, a magnesium pill at night (this has been amazing for helping me sleep through the night on a regular basis) and I take a different magnesium pill only when I start to have cramps
So it’s been about six months and just last week I had my period, the improvements I noticed felt pretty drastic:
- I didn’t notice any bloating
- I had minor cramps but when I popped a magnesium pill I felt better within half an hour and was able to fall asleep with no problem
- I had no searing ovary, thigh, or lower back pain!
- Because I didn’t feel like absolute shit for five days I was still able to workout at the gym (which made me feel even better) and have a social life!
(This is Mandy again…)
This story makes me incredibly happy, and I hope it gives you some motivation to try and deal with any health concerns that you have naturally. No one person is the same, so what worked for my friend may not work for you, but by getting in touch with a Holistic Nutritionist, they can figure out a plan that works best for YOU! 🙂