Looking for PMS symptom relief? Try a vitamin B rich diet. The key word is diet; in fact, vitamin B supplements had the reverse effect. A recent study looking at a subset of women from a large cohort study involving 116,678 women nurses found that those with diets rich in dietary thiamine and riboflavin were significantly less likely to experience premenstrual syndrome.
PMS affects an estimated 15 percent of women and causes physiological symptoms in the second half of the menstrual cycle. B vitamins are responsible for the formation of brain chemicals that may have a role in PMS.
The researchers asked participants about symptoms, their severity, and how much symptoms interfered with their lifestyles. Women reporting symptoms were asked about intakes of thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, B6, B12 and folate from food sources and supplements. The risk of premenstrual syndrome was 35 percent lower for those with the highest intakes of riboflavin and 25 percent lower for those the highest intakes of thiamine.
B vitamins are water-soluble. Since Vitamin B dissolves in water your body does not store the vitamin, instead it is they are eliminated in urine. This means the best way to get your vitamin B is to eat it in your foods on a regular basis. Interestingly, taking vitamin B supplements was associated with a higher risk of PMS symptoms, according to the same research.
- Red meat
- Legumes (beans)
- Enriched bread and rice
- Oranges (thiamine)
- Green leafy vegetables (riboflavin)
While more studies are needed, the results look promising. Take that, PMS!