This week I am going to look at another hormonal issue linked with PMS and which is also involved in problems like Polycystic Ovary Syndrome or PCOS, high androgen/testosterone levels.
Androgens and testosterone are most commonly thought of as male hormones but we all have them. However, as with anything, while we need certain levels of these hormones too many can cause issues.
Normally as we enter our 20s androgen levels should start to subside. However, this does not always happen and so can cause hormonal problems.
Common high androgen symptoms – due to the higher testosterone levels you might find that you feel aggressive, irritable and angry, especially before your period.
With higher androgen levels periods will tend to be quite erratic, you may find that you miss a bleed occasionally. When your periods do come your bleed will probably be quite light.
The other major issues with raised androgens include oily skin, acne, increased or heavy facial and body hair, head hair thinning, weight gain around the middle and sugar cravings.
These are the issues most commonly experienced by women suffering with PCOS which affects quite a large number of women. However, just because you have these symptoms, it does not necessarily mean you have PCOS.
If you think all of this sounds like you and your PMS issues, or if you know you have PCOS, there are some natural remedies which could be worth a try. The first is a supplement called Saw Palmetto, often used by men to help control excess testosterone. Recent research has indicated Saw Palmetto could also be useful for women exhibiting the signs of high androgens and raised testosterone, with some women trialling it reporting improvements in their cycle, mood and skin.
I suggested one lady suffering with PCOS try Saw Palmetto and a low sugar diet and she reported dramatic improvements after a few months, with her cycle returning to normal and her pre-menstrual mood swings calming down significantly.
On top of this, I would also suggest adding in the mineral chromium.
Chromium helps to contribute to the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels, which basically means that it helps to control the blood sugar dips, which tend to be associated with sugar cravings.