What are your PMS cravings/hunger like?

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  • GemimaFitzTed
    GemimaFitzTed Posts: 260 Member
    oat_bran wrote: »
    Most of the people I talk to about PMS say they mostly crave junk food and sweets when they are PMSing and also say that eating the foods they crave usually satisfies the craving. Am I the only one for whom PMS doesn't really cause cravings for particular foods? it makes me crave everything. It's insane some months! I literally want to just eat non-stop and it doesn't really matter what. Everything that isn't nailed down and a few things that are. I mean, sweet and starchy foods sound particularly tempting but anything goes really. And it's not just cravings, I feel RAVENOUS pretty much non-stop. And no matter how much I eat there's always lingering feeling of hunger. It's like I just ate a huge meal, and I can feel it still in my stomach and yet, there's this uncomfortable hollow-like sensation in my stomach like I'm still starving. I swear, there were days where I let myself eat thousands of calories and it was still there. I feel like I can't get full no matter how much I eat. I mean, even before eating I can already feel that I won't be able to satisfy it no matter how much i eat, if it makes sense? And still I can't really stop eating, it's almost a compulsive drive. I wake up several times throughout the night because i feel hungry and I wake up starving in the morning even if I ate at night! It drives me crazy. All I can think is food! The usual "just eat at maintenance", "drink more watre", "eat more portein/fat/fiber/more frequantly" etc. make me want to both laugh and cry at the same time... I hate how hormones can control our life so much...

    Please tell me I'm not the only one like that! It's not only about the fact ruins my progress every time, but I just literally can't focus on anything besides food for several days, 2 weeks straight sometimes, it's so frustrating!

    Nope - you're not the only one. I get more tired, more hungry and far more lazy one-to-two weeks before Aunt Flo arrives. I gain at least 1.5kg of water weight and my chest feel like two boulders. I have upped my protein intake, and it has helped my cycle cravings significantly (they were really low!), but for the most part - the cravings are still there and cause my angst. I have increased my calories slighty (roughly 150-200 cal) so I can satisfy my craving.

    But it is a guessing game, and my hormonal cravings are different month to month. I just remind myself that any gain is just temporary and will disappear as soon as Aunt Flo arrives.
  • stricklee11
    stricklee11 Posts: 217 Member
    I tend to crave chocolate, fatty foods and extremely salty foods. The week of my menses, I have no appetite so it normally evens out.
  • teranga79
    teranga79 Posts: 202 Member
    Yep, I swear there is no food out there that will actually make me feel full.
  • oat_bran
    oat_bran Posts: 370 Member
    leejoyce31 wrote: »
    Some women are more sensitive to hormonal fluctuations than others. Sometimes, this sensitivity can result in compulsive overeating and/or binge eating behaviors. Since not every woman experiences it, oftentimes they may advise you to do the usual 3 things that you listed.

    The only thing that resolved my food issues was to get my hormonal issues under control. After that was done, I no longer have food cravings. Sometimes, I may have a slight uptick in appetite in that my normal meals don't satisfy me. When that happens, I'll just put a tiny bit of L-glutamine powder on a spoon and take that. Then I'm fine. That may not work for you.

    Thanks for your advice, @leejoyce31 How did you manage to get your hormonal issues under control, if you don't mind me asking? I tried bringing it up with my GP and gyno the last time, but they both didn't seem too concerned and said the usual "eat more balanced meals/more protein/fiber/avoid sweets", which left me frustrated and made me fish I didn't bring it up at all.

    It's interesting what you're saying actually, because I've struggled with binge eating pretty much since puberty. At some point it turned into a binge-restrict cycle. For the longest time I thought, I was binging simply because I had no self-control or because I was too hungry from restricting my intake. Then when I realized that my eating patterns were disordered, I started thinking that the urges to binge were mostly psychological. When I finally broke the binge-restrict cycle and started to eat normally, I realized that it's definitely very physical and also isn't caused by undereating and that there's a certain pattern to it. But I was on the pill at that time and didn't think I could have a cycle or PMS since I wasn't ovulating. It took me a long time to connect it to hormones, because of the pill and because its pattern was never very regular. I had month where I didn't experience these bottomless-pit days and then other months it was almost non-stop, other times it would last for 4-5 days every 2-4 weeks etc. But this irregularity may be a symptoms of some hormonal issues, like you said.

    I went off the pill 6 months ago, had what appeared like 3 normal cycles (but probably was just withdrawal bleeding) and since then no period (no chance of pregnancy). At first the bottomless-pit days were gone so I thought they might have been caused by the pill. But then they came back in full force, if not worse! :s

    If my period doesn't come back soon, I will go see a gyno again, but not sure how to bring up the hunger issue... I feel somewhat ashamed talking about it, especially when people almost always say something along the lines of "yeah, most women have it! stop exaggerating, stop complaining, woman up and learn some self-control!". I'm expecting my gyno won't even be really concerned with me missing my period for so long as from what I've heard /read it's very common and doctors usually say to just wait it out.

    Most tips on the internet and books about stabilizing your hormones post-pill is about getting in proper nutrition and taking magnesium, B vitamins, Omega-3's and iron supplements. Tried all of this, no luck. Some advice herbs like Vitex Agnus, but from what I've read it seems like a powerful herb and I'm afraid to mess up my hormones even more with it. Not sure what else I can try...
  • oat_bran
    oat_bran Posts: 370 Member
    edited June 2019
    kshama2001 wrote: »

    I find this one very helpful:

    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."

    https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/is-pms-sabotaging-your-diet#1

    I usually feel very weak and fatigued on top of the cravings and hunger, but still I exercise and then end up even hungrier most of the time...

    But this article mentions eating carbs to up serotonin and it made me think of another article I found somewhat helpful. It recommends eating a snack containing 30-35g of starchy or sweet carbs (no fruit or fructose, less than 2g of protein and as little fat as possible) on an empty stomach. I can't say it's a magical solution, but it seems to work sometimes to take the edge off of the cravings. Thought the ravenous hunger and hollow sensation in my stomach is still there...

  • ghudson92
    ghudson92 Posts: 2,061 Member
    My PMS cravings are intense, I want to eat everything in sight! I have found going for a run helps and also making sure to have a high protein/high fat snack as carbs just don't satiate me in the slightest :/
  • sammidelvecchio
    sammidelvecchio Posts: 791 Member
    Mine are pretty bad. I mostly crave starchy carbs - potatoes, pasta, breads. But even above that, I just want to eat everything. It's similar for me to being on prednisone, if you ever have been put on that. Nothing will help satisfy me either. I do tend to try to distract myself a lot, but for a few days at least my cramps are so bad, i'm incredibly bloated and swollen and i'm so tired and irritated with the world I just want to lay around and watch tv with my cat LOL.

    I have tried several birth controls, and now I have an IUD, but nothing has ever been able to curb my PMS. It was worse being on nothing, so I am thankful at least for some improvement....but you are not alone.