If you have a period, chances are you’re well acquainted with premenstrual syndrome (PMS). By some estimates, more than 90% of women have experienced some form of PMS. And because there are as many as 150 physical, behavioral, emotional, and cognitive symptoms associated with PMS, that means you can expect to experience some combination of symptoms like irritability, depression, uncontrolled crying, bloating, breast tenderness, headaches, cramps, acne, brain fog, and muscle aches … Every. Single. Month.
These are pretty major symptoms, and for many women, they’re severe enough to impair normal daily functioning. PMS causes real suffering for a lot of women, and yet, it continues to be minimized and treated as a joke. Even doctors are often dismissive of it.
News flash: What if we told you it doesn’t have to be this way? Although PMS is extremely common, it isn’t “normal.” We’ve been told it’s just part of being a woman, but in truth, there are a lot of things you can do to alleviate PMS symptoms, starting with taking a good PMS vitamin.
What causes PMS?
First, let’s take a quick look at what causes PMS. A lot of it comes down to abnormal fluctuations in hormones or sensitivity to chemical changes in the brain.
Have you ever heard someone describe a woman with PMS as “being hormonal”? I’ve said it myself: I’ll tell my husband I’m hormonal so that if I start crying for no apparent reason, he won’t be alarmed (or think he’s done something wrong). But when we say a woman is “hormonal,” what we really mean is, she’s emotional, irrational, or downright crazy. These negative connotations around the word “hormonal” aren’t just dismissive — they’re inaccurate.
All humans are hormonal, in the sense that our bodies are full of different hormones that are necessary for good health and well-being. Abnormal fluctuations in these hormones can cause all kinds of health issues — and not just for women. Throughout the menstrual cycle, which lasts roughly 28 days, hormones are constantly changing. And the changes in mood and other symptoms that occur during PMS aren’t caused by excessive hormones, but rather by a sudden drop in hormones.
But PMS isn’t just about hormones. Neurotransmitters also play a role. These molecules — which include serotonin and dopamine — transmit messages throughout the body, and also help control mood and regulate emotions. Neurotransmitters are naturally produced by the body, but many factors (like digestive issues or the use of some prescription drugs) can impair the body’s ability to build them. And what happens when neurotransmitters are low? The risk of depression increases.
Diet, lifestyle, and stress management can all help balance hormone levels and neurotransmitter production. That’s where PMS vitamins come in.
What vitamins are best for PMS?
Research shows that numerous vitamin and mineral supplements can help relieve PMS symptoms.1 These vitamins and minerals help in different ways. Some help balance hormones. Others aid in the production of neurotransmitters, which can make those PMS mood swings less severe.
Some vitamins and minerals that can help with PMS symptoms include:1
- Vitamin B
- Vitamin D
What’s inside Pixie Balance (and why)
We’ve formulated Pixie Balance with some of the best research-backed ingredients for alleviating common PMS symptoms. This PMS supplement contains magnesium, vitamin B6, and a combination of plant-based ingredients to help make that time of the month more tolerable.
Each ingredient in Pixie Balance has been carefully chosen to help relieve PMS symptoms and balance hormones for women in all stages of life.
Magnesium Glycinate, 12mg
Used for: menstrual cramps, PMS migraines, stress relief
What it is: Magnesium, also known as the “miracle mineral for periods” is a mineral needed for hundreds of biochemical reactions in the body. In fact, every cell in the body needs magnesium to function properly. You can get magnesium from the foods you eat, but many people don’t get enough.
What it does: Magnesium is necessary for proper muscle function. Low levels of magnesium can lead to muscle twitches, tremors, and cramps. Yep, that includes those dreaded menstrual cramps.2 When taken daily, magnesium can help relax the muscles of the uterus and ease period cramps.2
Vitamin B6, 20 mg
Used for: Mood swings, cravings
What it is: Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, is a water-soluble vitamin found in many foods. It’s needed for many processes in the body, including helping the body turn food into energy. It’s also important for a healthy brain and a strong immune system. Because water-soluble vitamins are not stored in the body, they must be replenished daily.
What it does: Vitamin B6 helps regulate mood, and may improve symptoms of depression. That’s because vitamin B6 is needed to create neurotransmitters. Studies have shown that low levels of vitamin B6 are associated with depression.5
Chaste Tree Fruit Extract, 400mg
Used for: Hormonal acne, mood swings, breast tenderness
What it is: Chasteberry, AKA Vitex agnus-castus or monk’s pepper, is the fruit of the chase tree, which is native to parts of Asia and Europe.
What it does: Chasteberry may help balance hormones, and has been traditionally used to treat many hormone-related gynecologic conditions.7
Dong Quai Root Powder, 350 mg
Used for: Cramps, muscle pain, depression
What it is: Also known as Chinese angelica root, dong quai is a fragrant plant related to carrots and celery.
What it does: Dong quai has been used in traditional herbal medicine for more than 2,000 years. It’s also referred to as “female ginseng” due to its purported ability to relieve symptoms of PMS and menopause, including depression and painful periods.11
Maca Root Powder, 300 mg
Used for: energy, mood, postmenopausal symptoms, sex drive
What it is: A plant native to Peru, maca is related to broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage. It has been used medicinally in Peru for centuries.13
What it does: Maca has long been used to balance hormones, enhance fertility, and increase energy, but more research is needed to confirm these claims. Some small studies have shown that maca may help improve symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes, sleep disturbances, and mood swings.14
Lemon Balm, 250 mg
Used for: Cramps, digestion, stress relief
What it is: A lemon-scented herb from the same family as mint, lemon balm has been used medicinally for more than 2000 years.
What it does: Lemon balm is a well-researched plant that may be useful for alleviating a variety of PMS symptoms, including stress, cramps, headaches, and digestive issues.
Black Cohosh, 300 mg
Traditionally used for: Mood, cramps
What it is: An herb native to North America, black cohosh goes by many names, including black bugbane, black snakeroot, or fairy candle.
What it does: Black cohosh has long been used in traditional medicine to help with menopause symptoms, PMS symptoms, and hormonal balance. Most of the scientific research on black cohosh has focused on its ability to relieve menopause symptoms, such as hot flashes and sleep disturbances.21
When to take PMS vitamins
For most vitamin, mineral, or herbal supplements to be effective, they have to be taken on a daily basis so the active ingredients can build up in your system. In most of the studies referenced above, participants took the supplements for 2-3 months before seeing noticeable improvements in their symptoms. If you wait until your PMS symptoms start before taking a supplement, you aren’t likely to see results. We suggest giving Pixie Balance 2-3 full cycles to experience the full effect.
Order Pixie Balance PMS vitamins
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Note: Some herbal supplements may not be safe during pregnancy, while breastfeeding, while taking fertility medications, or for those under the age of 18. Women with hormone-sensitive conditions, such as breast, uterine, or ovarian cancer, should consult their physician before taking herbal supplements. Certain supplements may also interact with some medications, such as birth control pills, drugs used to treat Parkinson’s disease, and drugs used to treat psychosis.
Disclaimer: We recommend consulting your doctor before use. Use during hormone therapy should be done under the supervision of a physician. Consult your healthcare professional before use if you are undergoing hormone therapy, have a thyroid disorder or other medical condition, or are taking prescription medication. Keep out of reach of children.
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