Most women experience premenstrual symptoms, like bloating and water retention, leading to weight gain that can make them feel heavier before and during their period. But when does period weight go away? And what are the causes of PMS weight gain?
PMS weight gain can be such a buzzkill. It leaves us feeling bloated and uncomfortable in our own skin, and often comes with cravings for junk foods that we know are bad for us. But the good news is that there’s no need to worry – because period weight usually goes away a few days after your cycle ends.
Let’s explore weight fluctuation during period, and its causes, and understand how to minimize the amount of bloat and regain your normal weight during your periods.
Also, read how to lose weight fast as a busy mom.
Table of Content
- How Much Weight Do You Gain On Your Period?
- Causes of PMS Weight Gain
- When Does Period Weight Go Away?
- How To Prevent PMS Weight Gain
- Final Words
How Much Weight Do You Gain On Your Period?
The answer to the age-old question of how many pounds you gain on your period will vary for each person, even on the same period cycle.
The changes in hormone levels during a menstrual period can lead to occasional water retention and bloating. This retained fluid may cause temporary raise in pounds, the average weight gain during the period typically ranges from 1 – 10 pounds in extreme cases. Hence, it’s normal if you feel fat during your period.
Weight can also increase due to calorie intake so if one has cravings during their period they should pay attention to how much they’re consuming.
Take note that this weight isn’t fat and will usually drop within a few days of your period ending. It is therefore important for women not to obsess over minor fluctuations in weight that occur periodically.
However, if you notice yourself weighing more than normal and think it is from the time of the month, focus on healthy eating habits by opting for lighter meals like salads or broth-based soups, and increase your physical activity to help bring down the excess weight more quickly.
Causes of PMS Weight Gain
According to the US National Library of Medicine, more than 70 percent of women gain weight during their premenstrual cycle. This is because of the following reasons:
1. Hormonal Changes
During the luteal phase of your cycle, progesterone and estrogen levels rise, which can lead to increased appetite and water retention. This can cause bloating or puffiness in some of your body parts – mostly the breast or stomach.
A few days before your period, progesterone and estrogen levels drop, and both these hormones control fluid regulation in your body and once they decrease, they command the body to store water, resulting in water retention.
This increased water in your body leads to an increased number in your weight, however, it’s not fat and will go away after your period end.
2. Changes in Diet and Cravings
Apart from hormonal changes, what you eat and how much you eat can also lead to weight gain. Cravings for unhealthy foods like salty snacks, processed carbs, or sugary treats are common during PMS.
Studies suggest that it’s because of the hormonal changes that can affect the serotonin levels in your body that trigger a need for comfort foods.
Also, increased consumption of caffeine and alcohol can exacerbate water retention further.
Bloating is one of the most common PMS symptoms and can cause your stomach to look larger. This is because of two reasons:
- Hormones increase the production of prostaglandins which causes spasms in the intestines, leading to bloating.
- Your body may retain more water before your period due to hormonal changes, causing more puffiness and bloating.
4. Less Physical Activities
During your periods and PMS, you are more likely to avoid physical activities due to cramps, feeling lethargic, or fatigue. This also leads to skipping exercising, leading to fewer calories burned and more calories stored as fat, causing weight gain especially when you are experiencing an increased craving.
5. Decrease in Magnesium
Magnesium helps to balance hormones and control cravings, but during PMS your body’s magnesium levels can drop.
Magnesium is a mineral that is responsible for maintaining water balance, fatty acid metabolism and reducing cramps in the body. When magnesium levels drop during PMS, it can lead to dehydration, causing water retention and weight gain.
When Does Period Weight Go Away?
Period weight gain timeline usually starts a few days before your period and can last for a few days after it ends. On average, it takes around 3-5 days to lose PMS weight gain.
Most of the period weight gain is caused by hormones released, which affect the body’s salt balance, and promote water retention causing bloating, which usually goes away a few days after your period ends.
As soon as hormone levels get back to normal, your body will start releasing the excess water from your system, and increased appetite and bloating will balance out again – so you should be back to your regular weight in no time.
How To Prevent PMS Weight Gain
Contrary to popular belief, there are ways and means of combatting PMS weight gain. Here’s what you can do:
1. Choose Healthy Diet
Bingeing on salty snacks or sugary treats is not a good idea when you are pre-menstrual. Instead, opt for foods like lean proteins and complex carbs that will help keep your energy levels up. Including healthy fats such as nuts, avocados, olive oil, and MCT oil can also help reduce cravings, support metabolism, and improve nutrient absorption.
In addition, eating calcium and magnesium rich foods also prevent water retention and bloating. According to the American Dietetic Association, foods rich in magnesium can help reduce PMS symptoms like bloating and water retention by balancing out hormones.
2. Take Essential Supplements
Taking the essential vitamins and minerals that your body needs can be very beneficial in keeping PMS symptoms at bay.
Magnesium supplements, for instance, are known to reduce muscle cramps and water retention. While Vitamin B6 helps with energy metabolism and supports hormone regulation.
3. Stay Hydrated
Staying hydrated can be a great way to flush out excess water retention. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day will help reduce bloating, as well as keep your energy levels up.
Other healthy fluids like herbal teas and fresh juices can also provide essential vitamins and minerals to support hormone balance.
4. Increase Physical Activities
Getting regular exercise during the premenstrual phase can help keep your hormones in balance and reduce PMS symptoms like cramps, cravings and bloating. Also, working out reduces water retention and bloating by burning off calories and releasing endorphins, keeping you fit and healthy.
Exercise also helps to improve sleep quality, which can further alleviate PMS symptoms like fatigue and mood swings. Remember to start off with low-intensity exercises like walking, that don’t exert too much pressure on your body.
In addition to this, try practicing relaxation exercises like deep breathing, stretching or yoga can also be beneficial in reducing PMS symptoms. These exercises focus on calming the mind, body and spirit to reduce stress levels.
5. Increase PMS Fighting Foods Intake
Certain foods are known to support hormone balance and reduce PMS symptoms. These include magnesium-rich foods like avocados, nuts and dark green leafy vegetables. Foods high in calcium such as yogurt, broccoli and fortified orange juice can also be beneficial for balancing your hormones during this time.
In addition, Vitamin B6-rich foods like bananas, chickpeas and lean proteins can help with energy metabolism.
You can help prevent PMS weight gain by following the above-mentioned tips. With the right diet and lifestyle changes, you will be able to get through your premenstrual phase feeling fit and healthy.
Weight gain during the premenstrual phase is a common issue that affects many women. However, this temporary weight gain during the period will go away in 3-5 days after your period end.
While it can be frustrating, there are ways to reduce PMS symptoms and prevent period weight gain. Eating healthy foods and exercising regularly can help keep your hormones in balance and flush out excess fluids. Additionally, certain supplements like magnesium and Vitamin B6 can also help reduce symptoms like cramps and cravings.
Frequently Asked Questions: (FAQs)
How long does weight gain from period last?
Weight gain from the period typically lasts between 3-5 days and will go away after the end of your cycle.
How do you get rid of period weight?
To get rid of period weight, it’s important to support your body with a healthy diet and lifestyle. Eating foods rich in calcium, magnesium and Vitamin B6 can help reduce PMS symptoms like bloating and water retention. Additionally, exercising regularly and staying hydrated will also help flush out excess fluids.
Supplementing with essential vitamins and minerals can also be beneficial in reducing PMS symptoms.
Is period weight gain permanent?
No, period weight gain is not permanent. It typically only lasts a few days and will go away after your cycle ends.