Some women may have a craving for certain foods before menstruation, such as fatty and sugary foods.
Premature Overeating, As a woman, you may have such an experience. Why is the desire to eat chocolate and junk food so much these days?
Read the rest of this article on “How” to find out what happens to your body when you have such a premenstrual craving and how you can control overeating before your period.
What is premature overeating?
Excessive premenstrual overeating, which sometimes indicates premenstrual disorder (PMDD), is a strong and uncontrollable urge to eat large amounts of food. It is a severe form of premenstrual syndrome that affects 5% of women of childbearing age.
This type of overeating most often occurs only in the premenstrual days and can be considered as part of the common symptoms of premenstrual syndrome that more than 90% of women have experienced at some point in their lives.
Other symptoms of PMS include:
As we have said, some people, in addition to the above problems, also suffer from temporary overeating, the symptoms of which include the following:
- Eating when the person is not hungry or even feeling full;
- Feeling upset and embarrassed after overeating;
- Stealthily or constantly eating throughout the day;
- Eat large amounts of food.
What causes premature overeating?
Studies have shown that overeating before menstruation is part of a person’s physiology. Ovarian hormones play an important role in this condition, according to research published in the International Journal of Eating Disorders. The researchers found that before menstruation, women had significantly higher levels of the hormone progesterone. This leads to overeating and cravings for foods rich in carbohydrates and sugars and overall body dissatisfaction.
There are several hormones in the body that control the body’s various functions. Leptin is one of the hormones that makes a person feel full. When we eat enough, this hormone begins to be secreted and we feel full. Hormone estrogen also affects the same effect on the body.
Therefore, the higher the amount of estrogen, the more the person’s appetite is suppressed; But the amount of estrogen decreases in the days before menstruation, and because of this, the brain receives more hunger messages, and as a result, the person is encouraged to eat more. Simultaneously with the decrease in estrogen, the hormone progesterone is released more than before, and as we said, this hormone stimulates the appetite and has a negative effect on a person’s mood.
Why Carbohydrates and Sweet Foods?
Carbohydrates and sugary foods usually reduce the tiredness and bad mood that usually occurs before menstruation. Sugar and starch also cause the body to release the hormone serotonin , resulting in a feeling of happiness . In addition, with regular consumption of sugars, blood sugar levels remain constant and the person’s mood swings are stopped during menstruation.
Overeating before menstruation lasts only a few days and this condition is not permanent and usually ends with the end of menstruation; But if you have this type of overeating (even when you are not in the premenstrual cycle), be sure to see your doctor. However, in some studies, there is a link between overeating and menstrual problems (such as irregular periods or interruptions).
How can overeating be controlled before menstruation?
The first step in preventing or controlling overeating before menstruation is to diagnose it. You also need to know when you are overeating. Once you know when you are overeating, you can use the following tips to solve this problem:
1. Eat wisely
Keep a notebook in the list of foods you eat during the day and write down everything you eat, especially when you overeat. Also, write down your daily calorie intake on paper or with an app. It teaches you to eat enough and stop the overeating cycle.
2. Eat healthy foods
Eat healthy foods throughout the month, especially before your period. Avoid foods that contain refined sugars. Eat high- fiber foods such as fruits, vegetables, beans, grains and whole grains, including brown rice and barley. Fiber gives you a longer feeling of satiety. Eat vegetables such as spinach , kale or cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, as they are high in fiber.
If you want to eat sweet foods, apples are a good option. In addition to sweets, this fruit also contains fiber. Do not eat salty and fatty foods from the days before your period, as it will make your bloating worse. Caffeine and dairy also cause bloating and stomach pain. It also interferes with your sleep.
3. Eat healthy snacks
Never buy a joke. When you do not have these types of foods at home, they become difficult to consume. Instead of buying these types of snacks, prepare ingredients with which you can prepare healthy snacks with different textures and flavors. Whenever you feel like overeating, have a glass of water with fresh fruit or mint. This will curb your cravings for food. Of course, chewing gum or eating candy is also a good idea.
If you crave sweet foods, eat a smoothie of fresh fruit and yogurt or a sweet potato with a little butter and a tablespoon of brown sugar rubbed on it. If you want salty or spicy foods, you can try thin slices of baked potatoes with paprika and salt.
4. Have a healthy lifestyle
Anxiety in the days leading up to menstruation can lead to emotional eating . Exercise controls relaxation exercise techniques, getting regular sleep, and maintaining a positive outlook on your anxious life.
Relaxation techniques include deep breathing , massage , meditation , yoga, and progressive muscle relaxation. In progressive muscle relaxation, by contracting and releasing all the major muscles in the body, the tension throughout the body is reduced.
You can join groups that have a problem like yours. Talk to people you think might help you, and you may be able to apply some of their successful treatment tricks.
5. Get help from a nutritionist
If you still can’t plan your diet, get help from a nutritionist. Nutritionists usually know the connection between overeating and the menstrual cycle and suggest specific tricks to control food cravings and hunger.
When should I see a doctor?
People who overeat before menstruation do not need treatment. However, you should see a doctor if you overeat on days when your period is not near or if cravings have caused you to gain weight and become emotionally anxious. In fact, you should seek medical help if you notice any of the following symptoms:
- Overweight due to overeating;
- Continued overeating during the month;
- Having depression , anxiety, or other forms of anxiety caused by overeating.
What are the treatments for overeating before menstruation?
According to experts, the treatment of binge eating disorder includes a variety of psychological counseling, including:
Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
In cognitive behavioral therapy , individuals are asked to change their destructive behaviors by dealing with their disturbing thoughts and feelings.
Interpersonal Psychotherapy (ITP)
In this method, the person is asked to focus on their relationships with others and improve their interpersonal skills.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)
Dialectical behavior therapy is a type of cognitive behavioral therapy that focuses on “emotion regulation” to control destructive patterns of behavior. In this way, instead of eating for relaxation, the person deals with his negative emotions and anxiety properly.
Medications for premenstrual binge eating
Appetite suppressants or other medications may also be helpful for a person with overeating.
If you have an excessive appetite for food in the days before your period, you can use the contents of this article to prevent overeating or reduce your appetite for food. If you have any experience in this area that is helpful, we’d love to hear from you. Then If you care about your loved ones’ health, you can send this to them.