Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
John P. Cunha, DO, is a U.S. board-certified Emergency Medicine Physician. Dr. Cunha's educational background includes a BS in Biology from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, and a DO from the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences in Kansas City, MO. He completed residency training in Emergency Medicine at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, New Jersey.
Regular aerobic exercise and relaxation techniques have been shown in some studies to relieve many of the mood symptoms found with PMS. Muscle relaxation techniques and massage therapy may help.
Dietary restrictions have not shown to be beneficial in treating PMS, but following a healthy nutrition plan is always sound advice. Certain strategies may help with specific symptoms, and some dietary supplements may be of benefit:
To lessen bloating and water retention, avoid foods high in salt (sodium), especially in the week before your period.
An adequate vitamin and mineral intake may also help with PMS symptoms.
Vitamin E: Studies do not agree about how much vitamin E may be helpful, but 300-400 IU per day is a safe dose that may be of benefit.
Calcium: Some women get relief taking at least 1,200 mg of calcium per day, through a combination of normal eating and taking supplements.
Magnesium: Most studies that have evaluated magnesium have failed to show overall benefit. Some small studies of magnesium supplementation have shown that 200 to 360 mg of magnesium taken up to
three times per day may provide some relief. Food sources of magnesium include nuts, legumes, whole grains, dark green vegetables, seafood (oysters), and meats.
Vitamin B6: Some studies have shown doses of vitamin B6 up to 100 mg/day may be helpful, but this has not been proved conclusively.
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a recurrent luteal phase condition characterized by physical, psychological, and behavioral changes of sufficient severity to result in deterioration of interpersonal relationships and normal activity.