Self Help for PMS

by Ed

Chinese Medicine has an excellent success rate in treating PMS and other disorders related to the menstrual cycle, including menopausal symptoms. PMS, however, can usually be treated with lifestyle changes. It is related, to a large degree, to stress. So, many of the recommendations I give here are generally applicable to most people in our society today.

In Chinese Medicine the various energy systems are named after one of the internal organs they are related to. So when I am talking about the Liver throughout this post, don’t think I am necessarily talking about the actual Liver organ.

The Liver, according to Chinese Medicine, is responsible for the free flow of energy throughout the body, and it is responsible for cyclical events in the body, including the menstrual cycle. Stress, frustration, and emotional suppression are the main disruptors of the Liver. Deep relaxation is probably the most important antidote. Ideally you should spend 20 minutes twice a day in deep relaxation, especially if you are having symptoms. Once a day is fine for maintenance. To the meditators who are reading this: although meditation is a great way to de-stress, it is not usually a great way to attain a deep state of relaxation. Try different forms of guided relaxation. Some people respond best to visualizations, and some best to conscious relaxation of each muscle. If you are interested, I have made a CD with three different, 20 minute guided relaxation sessions on it. Most likely, one of the three would work for you. Contact me at edward@prhealthworks.ca.

The second most important thing you can do for yourself is exercise. 20 to 30 minutes of aerobic exercise, 3 days a week, will improve the Liver’s ability to maintain a free flow of energy.

The third thing is make a few dietary changes. Avoid difficult to digest foods, as well as foods that affect the Liver, such as caffeine, alcohol, greasy foods, and processed foods with preservatives, and other artificial ingredients. Also most drugs, including over the counter medicines and recreational drugs, have a heavy impact on the Liver.

Following these guidelines, most women will be symptom free, within 2 months. If you are not symptom free within 3 months, I suggest you find a competent acupuncturist or practitioner of Chinese herbology.