Monday 19 January 2015

Hormones Play Role in PMS but Healthy Choices Help, Says Marla Ahlgrimm

Weight gain, bloating painful cramps, headache, and sleeplessness - these are just some of the discomforts that millions of women experience every month due to PMS. While largely misunderstood by the medical community until the 1970s, Marla Ahlgrimm stresses that PMS is a real condition and says a few lifestyle changes may help reduce some of its symptoms.

Q: How does a woman’s sugar intake affect her body?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Sugar not only causes the body to store fat but may also be partly to blame for the water retention that many women experience due to PMS. And, women who eat a diet high in sugar actually have less energy than those who tend to focus on healthy foods such as lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables.

Q: Why is water intake important to a woman experiencing PMS symptoms?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Contrary to popular belief, water does not cause bloating. Instead, a woman who intakes the recommended 48 to 64 ounces per day may actually have less bloating. This is because water helps wash away impurities in the body and promotes proper bowel function.

Q: Should a woman exercise while she has PMS?

Marla Ahlgrimm: Exercise is important for a number of reasons but even more so to a woman in the throes of premenstrual syndrome. Physical activity increases blood flow to all of the vital organs, allowing them to function properly. Many women also find that they sleep better when they partake in a regular exercise routine. Staying active is also essential for maintaining a healthy weight.

Q: What causes a woman’s fingers, toes, and midsection to swell?

Marla Ahlgrimm: During the second half of the menstrual cycle, a woman’s estrogen levels tend to rise. This is often the reason for swelling as hormone fluctuations seem to play a major role in water retention.

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