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losing weight & menstration

I've heard mixed things about how your weight fluctuates when you have your period. Some say you gain because of bloating and some say you lose because of the... "loss" :) I've also heard that you perform better on your workouts during your period... anyone know the truths to these things?

Tue. Mar 21, 12:16am

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There are ~150 symptoms, both emotional and physical, associated with PMS (Pre-Menstrual Syndrome). The good news is that most of us will only experience a relatively small subset of those. Some women experience a host of symptoms and some almost none, and the degree and severity can differ radically within the same person from month to month.

No wonder you've heard mixed things.

Weight Gain: Levels of estrogen begin to rise after menstruation and peak mid-cycle, then rapidly drop only to slowly rise and fall again prior to menstruation. Elevated estrogen levels may be associated with either fluid retention or cravings (which may include salty food), or both, and although the amount may vary, most medical literature notes that many women report weight gain of up to 5 pounds. However - this is the result of studies over statically signifigant populations and most medical experts will readily note that PMS symptoms are anything but uniform across women.

The 'loss' is more likely caused by your body ridding itself of retained fluids than the insignifigant amount of blood and tissue (ex: 1/2 cup would be considered abnormally heavy - not enough to really affect your weight). if you do have heavy periods, then the main concern should be the possibility of low iron which itself carries a host of symptoms.

Exercise may alleviate symptoms of PMS because it is a mood elevator and helps reduce tension. You also benefit from increased blood circulation and the endorphins that your body releases when you exercise. You will also lose salt as you sweat. As for better performance? That I've not heard.

The Mayo clinic is often a great resource for women's health issues. They have a great overview of these symptoms and others.

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/premenstrual-syndrome/DS00134/DSECTION=1

Personally I experience very few symptoms. I have some fluid retention prior and some minor cramping, but nothing like some of my friends experience.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006, 2:01 AM

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Oh, I wish I had "very little symptoms".... :-(

For me, I experience extreme Bloating and some months the cramping is so bad that I literally have to take a day off of work--and lay in a fetal position and curled up under mounds of blankets...I almost always get bloated-- and finally had my doc prescribe me some water pills to relieve some of the excess water-- it's really helped...(I try not to use them if at all possible..)

I can tell when I crave Iron, because around that time of month, Beef looks yummy as well as chicken livers or liver sausage (I'm not usually a red meat or liver fan during other times of the month.)

I think I need to remember to eat veggies that are high in iron, so that I don't go looking for the nearest burger to gnaw on!

Motrin and those little adhesive heating pads really help to relieve my cramps, but the problem is that wearing a heating pad on my belly also causes me to get extremely hot and flushed.... but it DOES feel good! (and I REALLY enjoy the heated seats in my car during this time of month!!

Thursday, March 23, 2006, 1:57 AM

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We women, we powerful beings

In the first 2 weeks of your cycle, you can handle endurance exercise best, like cardio.
In the latter 2 weeks of your cycle, you can do better at strength training exercises. The fatigue some women experience at this point in the cycle hinders their cardio performance.
Different parts of the cycle can also burn fat more effectively- here's the link to the article, below.
We women, we wonderful creatures!

Link

Thursday, March 23, 2006, 8:32 AM

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