PMS and Your Diet: Food Cravings & Weight Loss (cont.)
Avoid processed sugar
Try foods high in essential fatty acids
Drink plenty of water
Limit coffee and cola
Cut meals in half
Abstain from alcohol
Get plenty of sleep
Have a routine
Tackle Food Cravings With Exercise
Any physical activity, from swimming to running, that gets the heart going will raise serotonin and lower cortisol levels, Peeke says. Though most experts recommend working out for 30 minutes, four to six times a week, even a 10-minute walk will put a serious dent in your cravings, she says.
Plus, if you sweat a lot, you'll get rid of water and feel less bloated, Wurtman says. And once you get going, anger dissipates, "so you may not feel like murdering your colleagues."
Some studies suggest that mind-body activities such as yoga and tai chi can help calm a woman while lowering cortisol and increasing serotonin levels, Peeke says. And a massage by an experienced therapist evokes the same benefits. "That's also why a good massage makes you so sleepy."
Supplements Combat Food Cravings, Too
While there's no proof that taking supplements can help curb food craving per se, studies have shown that certain vitamins and minerals can help improve your mood and make you more amenable to a healthy diet, Peeke notes. All Weight Loss Clinic members are encouraged to take a daily multivitamin/mineral in addition to eating their nutrient-dense diets.
Published July 11, 2003
SOURCES: American College of Ostetrics and Gynecology web site. Judith Wurtman, PhD, director of the women's health program, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge. Stephen Goldstein, MD, obstetrician-gynecologist , New York University. Pamela Peeke, MD, MPH, assistant professor of medicine, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore. Susan M. Lark, MD, clinician, Los Altos, Calif. American Association of Family Practitioners web site. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, August 1998. Journal of Women's Health, November 1998. Darlene Parks, Ohio.
Last Editorial Review: 4/15/2005 4:11:38 PM
Get the latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox FREE!