Chinese Herbs for PMS Crawfordville FL
Port Saint Lucie, FL
Boynton Beach, FL
West Palm Beach, FL
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Altamonte Springs, FL
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By Jake Paul Fratkin, OMD, lac
Q Are there alternatives to hormone therapy for PMS? I have been using birth control pills, but am curious about more natural methods.
A Progesterone-estrogen therapies can be effective for controlling PMS (premenstrual syndrome), but seldom provide a cure. The Chinese approach is different. We treat premenstrual syndrome successfully without outside hormones.
PMS is caused by stagnation of qi (energy) and blood in the liver. In Chinese energetic physiology, the liver, after cleansing and detoxifying the blood, distributes blood smoothly to the muscles. If there is stagnation, the body becomes tense, leading to irritability. The Chinese refer to this condition as “premenstrual tension,” signifying low-level muscle tension. Because the liver channel courses through the breast and to the head, liver stagnation leads to breast distension and headache, two other symptoms of PMS.
Why does premenstrual syndrome occur? Historically, Chinese medicine recognized that liver stagnation originates with internalized emotional stress or anger. In modern times, we find that it is also due to over-accumulation of chemicals, drugs and hormones in the food chain. This overwhelms the liver’s ability to detoxify. One reason the symptoms occur before menstruation is that a woman’s body heats up naturally between ovulation and menses. Heat aggravates liver stagnation and manifests in the symptoms of PMS: irritability, breast distension and headache.
Chinese herbal treatment or acupuncture is used to move qi and blood stagnation out of the liver and to clear liver heat. Chinese medicine, and particularly acupuncture, can regulate endocrine function, helping to normalize hormone production.
While it is always best to find an experienced practitioner, many women in China self-medicate with one herbal formula that is remarkably successful. It is called Jia Wei Xiao Yao San, which means “added ingredients free and relaxed powder,” and is available from various GMP companies as Free and Easy Wanderer Plus or Bupleurum and Peony Formula. This formula dates back to the 11th century, which attests to its popularity and endurance. It is recommended that you take the pills beginning at ovulation and stop once your period begins. Complete cure is possible within four months, but some women will need to take it monthly. This herbal formula is safe and without side effects.
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