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Period Bloat: The Silent Killer of Your Skinny Jeans?

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a condition that affects many women in the days leading up to their menstrual period. Symptoms can vary widely, but may include mood swings, bloating, and fatigue. One symptom that is often reported by women with PMS is weight gain. But is there really a link between PMS and weight gain? And if so, what can women do to manage this aspect of their menstrual cycle? In this article, we’ll explore these questions in detail.

 

First, let’s look at the science behind PMS. PMS is thought to be caused by hormonal fluctuations that occur during the menstrual cycle. Specifically, it is believed that changes in levels of estrogen and progesterone can contribute to the symptoms of PMS. Estrogen levels typically rise in the first half of the menstrual cycle, while progesterone levels rise in the second half. These hormones can have a wide range of effects on the body, including affecting mood, appetite, and energy levels.

Is it normal to gain weight?

It is common for women to experience a weight gain of three to five pounds during their menstrual cycle, which usually disappears after a few days of bleeding. This weight gain is a common physical symptom of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), which encompasses various physical, emotional, and behavioral symptoms that can affect women from a few days up to two weeks before their period.

 

These symptoms are caused by hormonal changes in the menstrual cycle, which are a natural part of the reproductive process. PMS is a prevalent condition that affects more than 90% of women who have menstrual periods.

Overall, weight gain during menstruation is a normal occurrence, and there are several reasons why this happens.

How is PMS related to weight gain?

1. Hormonal changes

During menstruation, the levels of estrogen and progesterone in the body fluctuate. These hormonal changes can cause water retention, which can lead to weight gain. Additionally, hormonal changes can also affect your metabolism, making it easier for your body to store fat.

 

2. Increased Appetite

Many women experience an increase in appetite during their menstrual cycle. This can be attributed to hormonal changes, as well as changes in blood sugar levels. Eating more food than usual can lead to weight gain, especially if you are not exercising enough to burn off the extra calories.

3. Stress

Stress can also contribute to weight gain during menstruation. When you are stressed, your body releases a hormone called cortisol. High levels of cortisol can lead to increased appetite and can cause your body to store more fat.

 

4. Decrease in magnesium

When your period begins, magnesium levels gradually decrease. This drop can provoke sugar cravings and contribute to weight gain. Magnesium is a mineral that regulates your body’s hydration status. Low levels of magnesium can cause dehydration.

However, dehydration can mask itself as hunger. It can also make you desire sugary foods when you’re just thirsty.

So, what can women do to manage weight gain related to PMS?

1. Exercise

Regular exercise can help manage weight gain during menstruation. Exercise helps to boost metabolism, which can counteract the effects of hormonal changes. Additionally, exercise can help to reduce stress, which can also contribute to weight gain.

 

2. Supplements

Certain supplements can also help manage weight gain during menstruation. Magnesium, for example, can help to reduce water retention and bloating. Additionally, vitamin B6 can help to regulate hormones and reduce cravings.

3. Diet

Eating a healthy diet can also help manage weight gain during menstruation. Focus on eating nutrient-dense foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Avoid processed foods, sugary drinks, and excessive amounts of caffeine.

 

4. Hydration

Drinking plenty of water can help to reduce water retention and bloating, which can contribute to weight gain. Aim to drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.

Conclusion

Weight gain during menstruation is a common experience for many women. The causes of weight gain during menstruation can vary, but hormonal changes, increased appetite, and stress are common culprits. Managing weight gain during menstruation can be done through regular exercise, a healthy diet, proper hydration, and the use of supplements. By taking a proactive approach to managing weight gain during menstruation, women can maintain a healthy weight and feel their best throughout their menstrual cycle.

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