You might cry when you find out how to treat PMS.

The cause of Pre-Menstrual Syndrome (PMS) has FINALLY been discovered.

Hey, at least they eventually got around to looking into it, you know, it being a “female” problem and all.

The cause of PMS is inflammation, more specifically, a particular kind of inflammation that occurs in the days leading up to your period and causes mood swings, bloating, weight gain, fluid retention, back pain and breast pain.

But not the headaches. They can’t be blamed on this kind of inflammation.

Researchers at the University of California have identified it through a bio-marker for inflammation called “high sensitivity C-reactive (Hs-CR) protein”. In a study of almost 3000 women – reported in The Sydney Morning Herald – higher levels of the Hs-CR protein coincided with mood swings, abdominal cramps, back pain, breast pain, cravings, weight gain and bloating.

90 per cent of women reportedly suffer from one or more of these symptoms of PMS, linked back to Hs-CR protein.

Headaches couldn’t be linked to the protein.

Do you avoid using the word ‘period’ and in which case, what do you call that time of the month? Article continues after this video.

More research is needed to identify exactly what is going on with this PMS-inducing inflammation but considering it has taken this long to even look into PMS when over half of the world’s population has suffered from it at one stage or another since the dawn of time, don’t hold your breath that more research is being planned.

All is not lost though.

The researchers who made the connection between PMS and inflammation have some tips and tricks to help alleviate it until more is discovered.


Thank goodness!

The results were published in the Journal of Women’s Health where researchers explained that further study is needed but at this stage they can recommend women avoid certain behaviours that are known to cause inflammation in an attempt to help prevent and reduce symptoms of PMS.

'All the foods you want to eat in the lead up to your period are the ones you should probably avoid.' Image: iStock

To start with there are a whole bunch of foods thought to cause inflammation and as you read it you will weep because unfortunately it reads as a list of the exact foods we all want to eat in the days leading up to our periods. The foods are white bread, pastries, chips, fried foods, processed meats, burgers, sugar and dairy.

Put the chocolate down...

However in good news these are the foods you can eat more of in order to reduce inflammation. They are tomatoes, olive oil (so spaghetti sauce without the pasta), green leafy vegetables, celery, bok choy, kale, nuts, fatty fish, strawberries, blueberries, cherries, oranges and pineapples.

So in other words the foods you don't really feel like eating in the few days leading up to your period.

It's hard being a woman.