OK - today's topic is PMS - not exactly a topic that people discuss often. Yet 75% of women are affected by it!
Certainly PMS can be the cause of loads of fights, arguments, unhappiness, and short fuses in a marriage/relationship. In severe cases, PMS symptoms can last for 2 wks of the month and then the remaining 2 weeks of the month could be spent trying to repair the relationship damage. Yikes. Let's talk. This is serious business.
Like many, I grew up thinking that it was just normal for women to get signs of PMS once a month. I guess I got that message from - well - everywhere. And sure enough, for most of my adult life, I did experience PMS - including moodiness, cramping and headaches (I would often go to sleep with a headache, wake up the next day with headache, and have it last well into the next day or longer.) Heaven forbid there were any underlying emotions that were still lingering from during the month (i.e. hurt and sadness in my marriage; insecurity about the state of my marriage; anxiety over infertility; etc.) At that time in my life, I didn't know how to handle these trials or how to heal or do all the things I talk about now on the blog. So there were emotions lingering...and you can bet they came to the surface and were magnified during PMS. Does that happen to any of you or your partners?
BUT - - - I have to let you in on something that happened to me which has been quite a miracle...
As I started taking better care of myself physically, my hormones balanced and I had the energy/clarity/ability to become healthier emotionally. The combination of the two forces led to such thorough healing that since then, I have had nearly ZERO PMS!! We're talking hardly even a smidget of it for about 6 years!!!! This began even when I was in my first marriage. It was soooo empowering to heal my life in that way and to see how connected our mind/spirit are to our physical bodies. And, I can tell you that no longer having PMS is off-the-charts amazing. It is a HUGE, HUGE blessing to my life, Danny's life, and to our dear marriage. I just thought I'd share some more details about what I did, in case it's helpful to anyone...
OK, so I did 9 things that literally eradicated my PMS.
(I still do all these. I marked in RED the things that were absolute game changers that I could notice even within days/weeks):
1. I stopped eating gluten, refined sugar, and dairy (THESE WERE KEY!!!) See these posts: Dairy & Mood Swings, (4) Strategies for Kicking a Sugar Addiction, The First Steps of Reclaiming My Health.
2. I ate mostly whole foods instead of processed/packaged foods.
3. I ate more evenly throughout the day.
4. I started taking multi-vitamins and 1,000 mg of EPA/DHA Omega 3 Fish Oils (it's important to get a high quality fish oil and this brand is great.)
5. I already did not drink caffeine or alcohol. (These are major causes of PMS as they screw up your hormones. Please don't fool yourself into thinking you should drink caffeine to soothe your PMS headache! See this article here.)
6. I drank lots of water.
7. I exercised more. Mostly walking and some running. (The key: working up a sweat to get my blood moving.) See: What Exercise Does To Me
8. I did the work to manage my energy (see the post on Managing Energy.) Doing this prevented any hurt feelings or emotions from "lingering" around and coming to the surface later.
9. I took more time for myself, worked fewer hours. (See: Making Time for Myself)
Certainly your list might look a little different. But if you have PMS, please, please know that there are SO many things you can do to improve the situation. **Look at this amazing article by Dr. Mark Hyman...he outlines the steps to eliminate PMS without drugs.** (He talks about everything above and so much more). I also love the info. in the book called "Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom" by Christiane Northrup, M.D. Every woman should own this book!
And now, I'd love to hear about your experiences with PMS...do you have it? What's your experience? Have you done anything that has helped you to reduce your symptoms? I would LOVE to hear! This is SUCH an important topic for women & marriage/relationships/families...and I don't think it's discussed enough. I say let's help each other by swapping ideas.
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