You know those people who tell you PMS is all in your head? They're assholes. And they're also wrong. Of course PMS is real. I know, because I feel so amazing when I DON'T have it. Exercise probably helps. At least, I'm assuming it would be much worse if I didn't exercise (shudder). Drinking does not help. But what about eating? I don't mean feeding the PMS monster chocolate donuts. I mean, sure there's some kind of food that would tone down the Incredible Lady Hulk.
Well! There! Is! Maybe. Look, I don't know for certain if these foods really do cure PMS or just take off a little bit of the edge. But if I can eat my way out of that monthly hell, and if it's actually delicious, I'm willing to try. PMS-curing foods? Tell me whatcha got.
Okay, first off, there's steak. Yay, steak! A recent study shows that getting enough (more?) iron into your system can help curb PMS symptoms. So lay on the burgers, the meatloaf, the pot roast. Oh, okay, and if you're vegetarian, supplements will work, too. Supposedly it's also in dark chocolate. And we all know Popeye was strong to the finnach 'cause he eats his spinach. That whole cartoon series was a commercial for spinach. So that's a biggie: Iron.
Chocolate, of course. Why do so many of us crave chocolate when we have PMS? (I do, in a huge, noticeable way.) It could be that we're craving magnesium. Or maybe we're just in a shitty mood. Either way, dark chocolate is your friend. Or, you can get the mineral from beans or brown rice.
And then there's ice cream. Supposedly, calcium levels drop when we're ovulating, so the logic goes that if we eat a little more of the mineral, we'll be more balanced. You'll need some vitamin D to absorb that calcium, and some fat. Duh: Ice cream! Oh all right, also yogurt and any high-calcium veggie with loads of butter.
"Healthy" fats. Speaking of fat, omega-3 fatty acids are also supposed to help. And yes, there are healthy fats. Long live healthy fats! Try fish, avocado, nuts, and olive oil. You know, the expensive fats. You're worth it -- just call it your "medication."
What not to eat: Bananas. That same study that says iron is key to fighting PMS also found that high levels of potassium are linked with PMS symptoms. Weird. So no Gatorade! I'm sure it's still fine to have a banana or two -- just maybe not lots of them. Of course, the authors of the study advise against tinkering with your diet and say we should just "eat a balanced diet." Whatever, doctors. Get away from my steak and hand over that chocolate.
Do you have any special food cravings during PMS?
Image via jeffreyww/Flickr