It is estimated that between 8% and 20% of all women suffer some form of moderate to severe premenstrual syndrome (PMS) one to two weeks before the start of their period.  PMS has long been blamed for a variety of issues–everything from mood swings to insomnia and between.  But the reality is, that PMS is a very real, and sometimes disabling condition for those who meet it head on every month.

Despite the introduction of prescription anti-depressant type medications to the market several years ago for management of PMS and it’s more severe form known as premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), women have been able to find some relief, but now more promising research could be turning women to nature–and a healthier diet for management.

For many years, medical professionals have long understood the role of calcium in preventing breast tenderness, promoting sleep and improving the function of many general body systems.  Because calcium is a key component within the body for cell function, it only makes sense that this key nutrient could throw a wrench in the system when levels become too low.

Researchers from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst have found that taking between 700 and 1200 IU’s of calcium daily may help suppress symptoms of PMS by helping to alleviate anxiety symptoms in the brain while it’s counterpart–the essential Vitamin D helps to lower depression rates.

Calcium may come in several forms and may be taken either by supplementation or obtained through the diet by consuming three to four servings daily of low fat milk, cheese, or yogurt. Not everyone has time in their day for four servings of dairy–and some people simply cannot tolerate dairy due to allergies or lactose intolerance issues.  If this is the case, opting instead for a dietary supplement may be a better route to choose.

Dr. Hessel makes high quality vitamins and minerals that she trusts available to her patients online.  Of course, before taking any vitamins make sure to see Dr. Hessel for an evaluation and physical.  Remember that all vitamins should be assessed for interactions with your regular medications before you begin taking anything to avoid drug-drug interaction side effects.  If you are tired of struggling every month with mood swings, cravings, anxiety and depression, make your appointment now and see if supplementation could help get you back in the swing of things.

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