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Premenstrual Syndrome

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) is a condition faced by many a woman for a few days leading to the menstrual period. This syndrome is faced by millions of women worldwide and is characterized by different symptoms. While some women face the symptoms in relatively lesser degree, others find it debilitating. Nearly 3 of every 4 women would have faced some form of PMS at some point in time. Often PMS symptoms are noticed in women who are perimenopausal. The symptoms taper off once menopause sets in. PMS may be hereditary as it runs in families. The female hormone estrogen plays a significant role in water retention and blood sugar levels.


The symptoms of premenstrual syndrome are physical and psychological. These symptoms of PMS range from feelings of depression and uncontrollable crying to irritability and reduced libido. Women suffer from headache, migraine, food cravings, fluid retention and abdominal bloating. PMS affects the quality of life of millions of women to an extent that they suffer panic attacks and paranoia. Breast tenderness, muscle pain, fatigue, mood swings and difficulty in concentration are other common symptoms of women suffering from pre menstrual syndrome. Many PMS sufferers also experience hypoglycemia.

In severe cases of premenstrual syndrome, diuretics, antidepressants or birth control pills are prescribed. Lifestyle changes are instrumental in managing symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.

  • Avoiding excess salt, sugar, caffeine and alcohol, especially prior to the menstrual period
  • Supplements of multivitamins and minerals including folic acid and calcium
  • Relaxation techniques such as yoga
  • Seek social support
  • Regular exercise such as aerobics, jogging or swimming

Theanine

Theanine is an amino acid that is found in green tea. Theanine is used generally to treat anxiety, prevent Alzheimer's disease and high blood pressure. Many a times, it is prescribed in combination with cancer drugs so as to make the cancer drugs more effective. The chemical name for theanine is r-glutamylethylamide. Theanine is believed to reduce stress and anxiety without inducing a tranquilizing effect.

The chemical structure of theanine is similar to glutamate which is a naturally occurring amino acid in the body that helps to transmit nerve impulses in the brain. A few effects of theanine appear to be similar to that of glutamate. Scientific evidence points out that theanine stimulates the production of alpha waves in the brain. This induces a feeling of relaxation in the user. Theanine also aides the body in producing other calming amino acids, such as dopamine, GABA, and tryptophan and they in turn help the body to relax.

How does theanine work ?

Theanine passes the blood-brain barrier to enter the brain. As it enters the brain, it increases serotonin and/or dopamine concentrations considerably in the areas of striatum, hypothalamus, and hippocampus. Also known as the 'feel good chemicals', serotonin and dopamine make a person feel good when its concentration increases.

Theanine is supposed to have the following benefits:


  • Reduces the effects of PMS in women.
  • Relieves anxiety.
  • Used to treat high blood pressure.
  • Improves the treatment effect of cancer drugs.
  • Prevents dementia and conditions like Alzheimer's disease.
  • Heightens mental acuity.
  • Supports the immune system.
  • Improves or promotes concentration.
  • Improves learning performance
  • Promotes weight loss.

Anovulation

Anovulation indicates a situation where a woman is unable to get pregnant as there is no release of ripened egg from the ovaries. While often a woman might have her menstrual periods, ovulation may not be taking place. Often anovulation is a major cause for infertility in women. Anovulation can occur due to stress, reaction from drugs, over-exercising or problems in endocrine system such as progesterone imbalance, congenital adrenal hyperplasia or ovarian failure. Other causes include excessive weight gain, anorexia or bulimia. A woman suffering from PCOS is also likely to suffer to anovulation. Symptoms of anovulation include amenorrhea, absence of PMS symptoms and hirsutism.

Various tests such as Thyroidfunction test, Adrenal function test, LH and FSH tests and prolactin test are conducted to check for possible causes of anovulation. It may be accompanied by pelvic ultrasound, CAT scan and MRI. Treatment with fertility drugs usually solves the problem of anovulation. These include Clomiphene, Gonadotropin and Pergonal. The woman is required to maintain good body weight with right diet and exercise.

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Bibliography / Reference

Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: July 22, 2019