Minimizing Risk Factors
Lose weight if you have to. Cut back on alcohol and work aerobic activity into your daily or weekly schedule. But how should you go about all these lifestyle-changing activities, exactly?
Weight-loss experts and physicians recommend a balanced diet, with nutritionally sound choices. For many women, this sounds boring and impossible. The recommendations don't usually include favorites like pasta, brownies, or cheese pizza, and overhauling your entire diet is overwhelming.
Instead of resigning yourself to a boring diet, or trying to change everything you eat, start small. Target one item in your diet and replace it with a better choice; then move on to the next. For example, cut out white bread and replace it with whole wheat, or switch your soft drink to a bottle of water and see how that works for a few weeks. You may be surprised to find that, having made only those two minor changes, you will feel more full (and therefore eat less), consume much less sugar, and have more energy. Then go from there.
The same goes for exercise. Don’t attempt to do everything once, but do try something: yoga, Pilates, walking, dancing, swimming, jogging, racquetball. Even once a week is a start, especially if you are sedentary all day. Take a power walk during your lunch break or walk the stairs in your building for ten minutes.
Read, ask, listen, and learn. Talk to your doctor and your friends with PMS. Find articles and books on your symptoms. Be your own health advocate. Chart your menstrual cycles and your PMS symptoms. Becoming informed will help you make the best decisions on how to treat your PMS symptoms. Should you go to a medical doctor or a counselor? Do you want to try prescription drugs, or do you prefer alternative remedies? Only you can provide the best answer these questions.