Psychological projection is a defense mechanism that people use unconsciously to deal with emotions they…
How to Manage Mood Swings Naturally: Tips and Strategies
Natural Ways to Manage Mood Swings
If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed and like you’re losing your grip on your emotions due to the behavior of your family, friends, or coworkers, you might be experiencing mood swings. Mood swings can make you feel powerless and hypersensitive to every sensation, touch, look, and word. However, you’re not alone. According to the American Medical Association, more than 75% of women experience emotional distress between the onset of menstruation and the culmination of menopause.
Symptoms of mood swings can include irritability, depression, fatigue, and insomnia. A hormonal imbalance, specifically the effect of estrogen and progesterone on serotonin levels in the brain, is the primary cause of mood swings. This hormonal imbalance can disrupt your cognitive abilities, making it difficult to think clearly, process information, and manage stress effectively. Traditionally, treatment for mood swings has focused on reducing the rollercoaster-like symptoms with narcotic drugs such as lithium and valium. However, with new understanding of the cause of mood swings, more natural therapies have emerged, such as botanical enhancements, diet, and exercise.
The Healing Power of Herbs for Mood Swings
Mood swings can be difficult to manage, and for many women, they are a common occurrence during menstruation and menopause cycles. Hormonal imbalances, particularly in estrogen and progesterone, can lead to rapid fluctuations in serotonin levels, which are responsible for regulating our moods. While synthetic hormone treatments have been traditionally used to manage mood swings, natural herbs and plants may provide a more holistic approach.
The Role of Serotonin
Serotonin is a crucial brain chemical that helps modulate mood. High levels of serotonin are associated with positive emotions, while low levels can lead to a drop in mood. Mood swings occur when serotonin levels rise and fall rapidly, causing the emotional roller coaster that many women experience during their menstrual and menopausal cycles.
Natural Hormone Therapy
While synthetic hormone treatments have been traditionally used to manage mood swings, natural forms of estrogen and progesterone can be found in several herbs and plants that are readily available. Mexican wild yam (diascorea villosa) is a common root that contains a substance that when metabolized, converts to natural progesterone. The substance is best absorbed through the skin, making it a perfect enhancement to skin creams and lotions. Products containing “natural progesterone” can be found in most natural health stores.
Phytoestrogens, which affect the body in the same way as natural estrogen, can be found in many plants. Soybeans are one of the richest sources of phytoestrogens, making them especially potent in the fight against mood swings. Tofu, both cooked and raw, is an abundant source of phytoestrogen, as are fresh soybeans, known as Edamame. Other plants containing phytoestrogens include black cohash (cimicifugaracemosa), dong quai (Angelica sinensis), red clover (Trifolium pretense), alfalfa (Medicago sativa), licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), as well as legumes like peas, beans, lentils, and peanuts.
Managing Mood Swings Naturally
Mood swings can be managed naturally with the help of herbs and plants that contain natural forms of estrogen and progesterone or phytoestrogens. These natural remedies can be incorporated into your diet and skincare regimen, making them a convenient and holistic approach to managing mood swings. Consider visiting your local natural health store to explore the variety of natural hormone therapy options available. By incorporating natural herbs and plants into your daily routine, you can take control of your mood swings and start feeling more balanced and centered.
Optimizing Mood with Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins and minerals are essential for optimal hormone and cell function, particularly when experiencing mood swings. These nutrients facilitate vital chemical reactions necessary for producing hormones and chemicals like serotonin. To treat mood swings, magnesium, zinc, and iron are especially crucial as they help relax muscles, reducing cramping and pain that lead to lower serotonin levels. In addition, vitamins B5, B6, B12, and C have a significant effect on the nervous system by reducing stress, a key factor in mood swings. Taking the daily recommended dose of a complex multi-vitamin with minerals, as well as additional B-complex supplements can help alleviate mood swings for many sufferers and significantly reduce severe mood swings in others.
Food Choices and Mood Swings
The foods you consume could be the reason for your mood swings and, in turn, lead to overeating. Eating a diet rich in complex carbohydrates such as whole grains and legumes (mentioned earlier) can help eliminate mood swings by increasing serotonin levels.
Legumes are an excellent source of phytoestrogens that can help women maintain acceptable hormonal balance, especially during natural fluctuations during menopause or at the beginning of their monthly periods.
Foods that Aid Liver Function
Foods that aid liver function are also effective treatments for mood swings. The liver helps balance estrogen levels and, in doing so, minimizes mood swing symptoms. Vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, spinach, pumpkin, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower can boost liver function and ward off mood swings. Tomatoes, cooked or raw, are also a great choice. Sweet potatoes are a rich source of liver-friendly enzymes and are ideal for a quick and healthy pick-me-up when topped with a low-calorie spread. To reduce mood swings, it is important to avoid toxic foods such as refined carbohydrates, high sugar desserts, alcohol, caffeine, and anything with trans-fat, as these foods can stress the liver and increase symptoms.
Managing Mood Swings through Physical Activity
Introduction: Mood swings can be debilitating, but there are several natural remedies that can help manage them. In addition to the herbal remedies and dietary changes discussed earlier, physical activity is also an effective way to reduce the symptoms of mood swings.
Section 1: The Benefits of Physical Activity
Regular physical activity has several benefits, including lowering blood pressure and improving the body’s ability to handle stress. It also helps to improve bone density and muscle strength, which can contribute to overall health. Engaging in physical activity is a natural way to manage mood swings.
Section 2: Types of Physical Activity
Walking is a great way to get started with physical activity. Practicing relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, and massage therapy can also be effective. Yoga breathing exercises are known to lower blood pressure, while meditation exercises leave the mind clearer and better equipped to respond to changing brain chemistry. A good massage is always welcome, especially when feeling stressed.
Section 3: The Connection between Relaxation and Hormone Levels
Although the connection between relaxation and hormone levels is not yet proven, maintaining a calm perspective or having calming strategies in your arsenal does give your body additional tools to handle mood swings when they do arise.
Conclusion: Physical activity is an effective natural remedy for managing mood swings. By incorporating relaxation techniques and regular exercise into your daily routine, you can take control of your emotions and bring your mood swings under control.
Solving the Puzzle of Mood Swings
Mood swings can affect women of all ages, and finding the right treatment can often feel like putting together a puzzle. Understanding your body’s hormonal balance and addressing the underlying causes of your mood swings is key to finding a solution. Standard drug therapies alone are often not effective and may even be harmful. Instead, a holistic approach that includes diet, exercise, and hormonal balance may be the key to managing your mood swings.
Examining Hormonal Balance
Hormonal imbalances can cause mood swings, and understanding the cycle of your life is important for finding effective solutions. If you are experiencing symptoms of low estrogen, consider incorporating phytoestrogens into your diet. These plant-based compounds can help boost estrogen levels and provide relief from mood swings. There are many herbs and plants that contain phytoestrogens, including soy, red clover, and flaxseed.
The Role of Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins and minerals play a crucial role in regulating mood and reducing the symptoms of mood swings. Magnesium, zinc, and iron are important for reducing cramping and pain that can contribute to low serotonin levels. Vitamins B5, B6, B12, and C also help reduce stress and support the nervous system. Taking a daily multivitamin with minerals and adding B-complex supplements to your routine can help reduce the occurrence of mood swings.
Diet and Liver Function
The foods you eat can also have a significant impact on your mood swings. A diet rich in complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains, peas, beans, peanuts, and lentils, can help raise serotonin levels and reduce mood swings. Legumes are also an excellent source of phytoestrogens, which can help maintain hormonal balance in women. Foods that support liver function, such as broccoli, carrots, spinach, pumpkin, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower, can also help reduce mood swing symptoms.
Exercise and Relaxation Techniques
Regular exercise can help lower blood pressure, improve stress management, and boost bone density and muscle strength. This can all contribute to improved overall health and reduced symptoms of mood swings. Practicing relaxation techniques, such as yoga, meditation, or massage therapy, can also be effective. Yoga breathing exercises can lower blood pressure, while meditation can help clear your mind and better equip you to handle changing brain chemistry. Massage therapy is a great way to relieve stress and relax your muscles.
Just as no two women are alike, no two treatments for mood swings should be alike. By examining your overall hormonal balance, incorporating vitamins and minerals into your diet, and practicing regular exercise and relaxation techniques, you can find the right combination of treatments that work for you. Taking time for yourself on a regular basis and making your health a priority can help put your mood swings in the past.