It’s that time of the month again…your PMS symptoms are driving you crazy!  Cravings skyrocketing through the roof?! We all know the feeling. You may also feel more tired and bloated than normal – and that’s a fact, it’s your hormones! This perfect trio of PMS symptoms that can lead you to feeling less than great about your current state. Fortunately, it doesn’t last forever, and there are some simple ways to combat common PMS symptoms, as well as body image issues during this time of the month.

It’s totally normal, and even biological, to feel more hungry during your premenstrual cycle.  I know I’ve personally been there…we all have! As levels of estrogen go down before your period, levels of the stress hormones, like cortisol, rise. This, in turn, lowers the levels of serotonin, which causes you to crave more carbohydrates and fats, like sweets and chocolate bars.  Ultimately, your body is trying to get serotonin levels to rise again.

Treating yourself a bit more during your menstrual cycle is normal and 100% OK to do. Outside your diet, here are a couple quick tips and tricks that will help you feel better during, before, and after your cycle.

  • Drink plenty of water! Water helps flush out the body and reduce bloating.
  • Try gentle exercise. If you’re not feeling something intense, even yoga or a long walk can do the body good and reduce stress (cortisol) levels.
  • Mediation can help reduce overall stress levels as well. Headspace or Youtube both have great guided meditations you can use.
  • Take a candlelit epsom salt bath. An easy self-care routine like this can leave you feeling refreshed.
  • Add a magnesium supplement. Lower magnesium levels have been linked to women who suffer from more PMS symptoms. A good magnesium spray can help reduce severe PMS symptoms.

PMS is also a good time to remember self love! Be kind to yourself during this time, not hard on yourself. PMS is normal, and everyone experiences it differently and with different levels of symptoms. If your PMS symptoms lead you to splurge more when it comes to your diet, tell yourself it’s okay – after all it’s temporary.  If your period makes you feel more bloated than usual, remind yourself it’s just water bloat and nothing to worry about long term.

When you’re making conscious decisions to better yourself from the inside-out, it might seem like all the snacks you are craving during PMS will completely derail your progress. Remember, to love yourself along the way, especially during PMS when it’s easy to get caught up in negative thoughts like, “I’m feeling fat and bloated.” But guess what, you’re not! Everyone’s body is different and will change at different rates. Stretch marks, cellulite, bad angles in pictures, and PMS cravings and bloat are totally normal parts of a woman’s life. If your daily focus is on what makes you feel good, creating better habits and surrounding yourself with positive people, a lot of the other pieces will fall into place along the way.

Now it’s your turn to spread the love.  We all experience it, combat it, and talk about – so share this article with a friend you know is currently battling those pesky PMS symptoms!