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Natural Remedies for PMS

Got PMS? Try a Natural Remedy

Most women experience some sort of PMS, and certain symptoms can be easier to treat than others. Ibuprofen is great for cramps, and Midol can help with bloating, but battling PMS-related irritability or depression is more of a challenge.

I've been on the hunt for natural remedies, including vitamins and herbal supplements, that might help relieve my monthly moodiness. Of course, there's always good, old-fashioned exercise, but I've also found some other natural solutions that sound promising. To see the list, keep reading.

Of course, you should consult your doctor before taking any new vitamins and supplements, but here are some I plan to talk to my OB/GYN about:

  • Magnesium and B-6: Recent studies have found that this vitamin cocktail can help with bloating and moodiness. WebMD recommends 200 mg per day of magnesium combined with 50 mg of vitamin B-6.
  • Vitamin E: In his book Natural Health, Natural Medicine, Dr. Andrew Weil writes that vitamin E supplements can treat both PMS and painful or heavy periods. He recommends a supplement with 80 mg of vitamin E complex, taken once a day with your largest meal. Again, please talk to your doctor before starting any supplement program; vitamin E should not be taken if you have heart disease or diabetes.
  • Dong quai: Another of Dr. Weil's suggestions, this Chinese herb, made from the root of a carrot-like plant, is sometimes called "female ginseng," since it treats irregular periods, PMS, and menopausal symptoms. Weil recommends a two-month trial taking it two to three times a day.
  • Chaste tree berry: I've seen this recommended on several sites. According to an article on "a study published in the British Medical Journal involving 178 women with PMS found that chaste tree berry significantly reduced PMS symptoms over three menstrual cycles." It was especially effective treating irritability and depression.

Have any of you tried one of these natural remedies? If so, I'd love to hear if they worked, so please share in the comments below.


Join The Conversation
pixelsugar pixelsugar 9 years
I exercise and dance. Once I read that eating strong cheeses like feta would help ease cramps as well, so I do that. But that could have been disproved by now, I just really like feta!
Jennyusagi Jennyusagi 9 years
I get the used to get the PMS moodiness (if I'm already stressed/depressed it just makes that way worse, if I'm not, it makes me cranky/snippy) and still do if I stop taking my vitamins (as in get lazy and for get to refill my pill boxes). Most of the vitamins I take actually treat multiple things for me, so I can't recall which specifically were for that. I take a multivitamin (just the generic brand from Rite Aid), calcium, magnesium and B6. So the magnesium and B6 sounds right. I originally got the idea from looking up treatment options for PMS on, that's also where I got the idea to take the calcium & magnesium combo for my headaches. Fit, maybe you could do a post about good sites for health information? WebMD is the only one I currently know of that I trust, but somewhere for alternate ideas/opinions would be nice.
hexstatic hexstatic 9 years
Same PMS problem too, i think it's worse than ever, for been angry, sad and people gets on my nerve for nothing at all with back and neck pain. I have to find a natural remedy to help my PMS, i always feel depress too and tired of everything, and naturally i'm not a depressed person when i'm not on my period, its like a metamorphosis!
Sarsaparilla Sarsaparilla 9 years
I only use AB Calm it contains calcium and magnesium it even works for toothaches
EllasMom EllasMom 9 years
I can also sing the praises of raspberry leaf tea. I get really bad cramps, backaches, and fatigue and it helps tremendously.
Fooled Fooled 9 years
Fit, you forgot chocolate! :P
JessNess JessNess 9 years
I think Ill try some of these. My PMS depression has gotten really bad over the past year. Lately if I dont get depressed then I get extremely angry and tense. Add some cramps, water weight and knee pain Im a pretty miserable person
Keke84 Keke84 9 years
I have suffered from sever cramps since the beginning of my periods and have tried everything from exercise to BC(all kinds) to Prozac to Tums. I still have not found anything that works and have to pop at least 3 Aleve (Naproxen Sodium) at a time, several times a day, which I'm sure is killing my liver. I'm definitely going to check out this Chaste Tree Berry. Thanks for writing about this!
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
Good tips I guess...but I get insane cramps (and I am already on the pill). Usually I rely on advil every 5 hours for the day before and first day I get my period.
CoronaLove CoronaLove 9 years
I hope this helps. :)
CoronaLove CoronaLove 9 years
I have the PERFECT solution. My mom has always taken wild yam root for her major mood swings she has during her period. As her daughter I experience the same kind of mood swings and irritability times 3 so I take it as well. It is an herb in a capsule form. Wild Yam root is used by women going through menopause to balance their hormones. My mom has always taken it to ease her irritability before and during her period. You can also purchase it in a creme form. You are supposed to massage it over your uterus, below your breasts, and underarms. I prefer the capsule form. I feel like it last longer than the creme. Its an herb that you should take on a daily basis along with your daily multi vitamin. I don't recommend you take it the day before your period and expect some sort of miracle. I have been taking this since I was a teenager. When I went to college I stopped taking it and oh boy did I notice the difference in my attitude. I'm sure that was the main reason my roommate was never around before or during my period.
ellipsery ellipsery 9 years
Wow, this is just in time for me! Thanks for the tips, fitsugar and wackdoodle.
wackdoodle wackdoodle 9 years
I didn't try any of those recently - I tried Raspberry Leaf Tea. I have horrible PMDD and crippling cramps - usually I take vicodin for them but I didn't have any and didn't feel like calling my GYN for a refill. So I wander through Whole Foods supplement section looking for something - then the person there said Raspberry Leaf extract or Tea. I opted for the hot tea. It says it reduces the size of your uterus thus reducing your cramping and bloating and other side effects of your period. And I did online research before drinking the 3 cups. And shock of shocks, it worked period with no cramps, no breast pain, no back pain. No vicodin haze.
wren1 wren1 9 years
I've been taking magnesium, and I feel like it takes the edge off somewhat and is supposed to relax muscles(also good for a hangover). I've heard that inositol is good (1 teaspoon in water up to 6 times a day) but haven't gotten back to the health store yet to pick it up.
emalove emalove 9 years
I get cramps sometimes, but that's about it for me...I've never noticed the mood swings, etc.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 9 years
Oh. I forgot to add that I've always exercised regularly, but for me, that did not relieve my PMS.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 9 years
I suffer from intense PMS. It's gotten worse as I gotten older. I've been taking vitamin B6 and chaste tree berry (vitex) for over a year. They relieve my PMS (and keeps me very regular), but I'm still trying to figure out the right levels. Too much B6 and vitex cause other side effects for me, like acne, dry patches of skin, etc. due to the hormone adjustments. I'm still experimenting with different dosages to find the right balance for me such that I'm relieved of PMS, but do not suffer from new side effects. Hope this helps.
Baby-Girl Baby-Girl 9 years
I get PMS really bad. I found that when I take st. john's wort, lower my salt intake and exercise it lessons, the bloating and crazy mood swings I'm famous for.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
Great tips...
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