Every female’s body is different. While there are some girls and women who may not bloat at all during their menstrual period, others may feel like a stuffed turkey. How much weight gain is normal during PMS? Can you reduce the amount of weight that you gain? Here are some of the things that all women should know about this uncomfortable PMS symptom.
How Much Weight Gain is Normal During PMS?
In general, most women gain between three and five pounds. This weight gain usually begins at the same time as their menstrual period, but it may start slightly sooner. It generally goes away a few days after the period has ended. Note that three to five pounds is just the average. There are some women who may gain less weight each month, while others may gain more.
How Can You Reduce Premenstrual Syndrome Weight Gain?
It is important to keep in mind that the main reason women gain weight during PMS is due to water retention. Women who gain a significant amount of weight during their monthly period are likely experiencing this problem because of the choices they make. Here are some tips on how to reduce PMS-related weight gain.
1. Stay away from foods which are high in sodium. Lunch meats and soy sauce, which are both very high in sodium, should be avoided until after your menstrual period is over.
2. Reach for water instead of soda. While Sprite or Ginger Ale may seem to relieve cramps, the high levels of sodium and carbonation can cause you to retain more water. If you drink water instead, you’re likely to feel much better.
3. Don’t pig out on chocolate. Most women crave chocolate when Aunt Flow comes to town, but this doesn’t mean that you need to overindulge. If you do want to eat chocolate, consider making healthier choices – such as chocolate yogurt or chocolate covered strawberries.
4. Eat foods which beat belly bloat. Pineapple, bananas (and other potassium-rich foods), yogurt, parsley and peppermint tea can all help reduce belly fat. Since peppermint tea can help treat an upset stomach, it may help relieve your stomach cramps.
5. Exercise. Working out can help relieve your cramps, give you an endorphin boost and may help reduce PMS-related weight gain. Exercising at least 30 minutes three to five times a week – even during the week of your period – is ideal.
While weight gain due to PMS is never fun, it is something that every woman can cope with. If you make healthy choices and still continue severe water retention, it is ideal to talk to your doctor. For some women, the birth control pill can help reduce this and other PMS-related symptoms. There may also be another health problem to blame. Hypothyroidism can cause symptoms which seem like PMS, while endometriosis causes women to experience severe cases of Premenstrual Syndrome.
MayoClinic.com, “Water retention: Relieve this premenstrual symptom.”
WebMD.com, “Your Guide to Premenstrual Syndrome, or PMS.”