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~Seek first to understand, then be understood~
If you're looking for information on a particular topic, type that word in the search box below. If I have written about that subject, a list of posts will appear. If no posts come up, I haven't written about it...yet. Emails, and questions in the comments section for possible posts, are welcome.
I have a "friend" who shows up once a month. She turns my world upside down, over and over again.
I am a good person, caring and sweet, but when she comes to visit, I could rip off your head.
She takes no prisoners, foul words she does spout, I try to keep the words in, she lets them come out.
People don't understand me, or what this is about, to have this creature inside my head.
I despise who I am, half of the time, I feel sorry for my daughter, family and friends.
There's no way to describe it, for those who don't know, it's a living nightmare, she really needs to go.
~Neysia Manor, Rest in Peace

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A Summary of What A PMDD Woman Needs to Avoid So Far...

Today I’m going to do a summary of the past few blog posts. I’ve chosen to start with sharing what NOT to do if you want to feel better as opposed to starting with what you CAN do to feel better. Why? Because even if you do the kinds of things which in a perfect world should make anyone feel better--such as eat whole foods, drink plenty of filtered water, exercise, and get plenty of rest—as long as you’re still doing the kinds of things that can make your PMDD worse all your positive efforts won’t matter. At best you’ll be canceling out the good with the bad and will still feel miserable and won’t have any idea why. You only get even more frustrated because your well-intentioned efforts to the good don’t seem to make any difference, and you might want to give up on trying, and then give up on hope.

Never give up hope. Never. This disorder can be managed, and it can be done without surgery or drugs.

You just have to be very careful about the way you live your life. You have to increase your awareness of the world around you, and you have to make conscious choices as to what to accept and what to avoid. If you don’t make your own health and wellbeing a priority, nobody else will, and that’s a fact. That much is true for anyone with any kind of condition. Nobody is going to do the hard work for you. You have to do it for yourself. PMDD is no different from any other disorder in that regard.

Fortunately, a lot of what contributes to overall health and wellbeing—and what detracts from it—is the same no matter what your condition. But in the case of a PMDD woman, since we are extra sensitive to just about everything, we need to be extra careful with what we eat, drink, and ingest.

That said, just a few of the things we need to avoid in order to feel better are listed below:

1. Chlorinated pools
2. Alcohol
3. Caffiene—this includes energy drinks as well as caffeinated coffee, tea, and cocoa
4. Chocolate—with the exception of a small piece of dark chocolate daily
5. Nicotine
6. Refined sweeteners—including sugar, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, or any processed sweetener.
7. Sugar-Free Food and Drinks
—including Splenda (Sucralose)—(you know what gives Splenda that lovely granulated look that reminds you of sugar? Chlorination!)--Nutrasweet and Equal (Aspertame)
8. Prescription Drugs in General, but especially
9. Anti-Depressants
10. Birth Control Pills, Yaz in particular (see video at the bottom of the page)
11. Artificial Hormone Replacement Therapy
(not bio-identical hormone replacement therapy)
12. Over The Counter Drugs in General
13. NSAIDS in particular
14. Processed food—anything containing sugar, corn syrup or high fructose corn syrup in particular
15. Low Fat Everything -- just eat less instead of buying all that low-fat stuff—studies show it doesn’t work to help you lose weight anyway
16. Artificial Anything

This is impossible, you say. I can’t avoid all of that. Fine. Don’t. Keep putting stuff in your body that makes you feel rotten, then going to doctors for drugs that aren’t helping and in fact make you feel even worse. It’s your choice. All I’m here to do is make you aware that you do have other choices. They are hard choices, to be sure, and confusing choices at times, because of all of the conflicting information out there, but you know the truth. Your body tells you the truth every day. It tells you by the way you feel. Your body knows you CAN live without all these substances you’ve come to depend on to get you through your day, and you CAN feel better.

Put it this way:
What do you have to lose by giving up any or all of the things listed above?
What do you have to gain?

Think about it. Awareness is the key. I can’t say that enough. I still drink an occasional diet soda, take the occasional ibuprofen, eat the occasional piece of pie. But I do it knowing what I’m putting into my body, and knowing I will pay for it later. I make that choice consciously and as time goes on, the longer I am away from any of the substances listed above, the worse it makes me feel if I one day decide to have something I know I shouldn’t.

I’m not here to tell you what to do. I’m writing this for the women who don’t even know or realize these things are a problem, and are contributing to their misery. For women who want to understand what’s wrong with them and want to find out things they personally can do to feel better.

Sometimes it’s easier to give up something (like cookies or wine or NSAIDs) than to start something new (like meditation or exercise or taking a daily nap). So pick something to give up, just one thing for now, and let me know how it goes. In time, you’ll be able to pick another, then another. But for now start slow. Doing so gives you a much better chance of success. Too much change at once will only overwhelm you until you feel deprived and cranky and throw up your hands in defeat and frustration. Been there, done that. Who hasn’t?

If you have any questions, please ask them here (in the comments section) or send me an email at info (at) livingwithpmdd.com. I will address your question either privately via email or here in general (no names mentioned) in a future blog. I want to know what you want to know about.

Have a blessed week, and if you do nothing else, simply take a moment to stop be aware of what you reach for in the course of a day.

1 comment:

  1. I've also been living with PMDD for many years. Unfortunately only been diagnosed about 4 years ago. One of the things I have been using is Venlor which has absolutely changed my life for the better. It is an anti-depressant which has changed me from the wicked witch of the east to a normal person. Another thing I have been doing for the last few weeks is to completely cut out sugar from my diet. And thank goodness I did. Immediately I stopped feeling tired. I do not get an energy slump at noon anymore. I have so much more energy. I only use Xylitol. Hope this is helpful. I am only still struggling with the weight gain and food cravings after ovulation. Now desperately looking for an answer.