I don’t want to gross you all out, but last night I was experiencing two awful things. 1. I was constipated (It was horrible) and 2. my period started (that was worse). I found myself craving sugar I kept looking in the cookie cupboard for anything chocolate so I was fighting with myself I want that but I can’t, I want that but I can’t, I want that but I can’t. The end result was I had a decaf coffee with stevia and whipped cream on top with Baileys in it (a shot of Baileys is 7g compared to chocolate a bar which can be 27g or more depending on when you have decided to stop eating it). That seemed to stem the tide of my need to eat.
Research shows that a 50/50 ratio of fat to sugar stimulates the greatest rush of endorphins which is the feel good hormone, and that is the exact proportion of fat to sugar found in high quality chocolate. (those bastards)
So the chocolate craving is not only because of the fat and sugar but also because it contains caffeine which increases energy (theobromine) and phenylethylamine which acts like an opiate (I wanted to copy and paste that word but I had to type it from a book, please appreciate me). So what happens in those premenstrual days food cravings increase because estrogen levels suddenly drop. Premenstrual symptoms of water retention, irritability, moodiness, and constipation occur. The thought is that the sugar and fat cravings are actually for the purpose of increasing those feel good hormones in order to counter the feelings of fatigue and mood swings.
Unfortunately increasing the sugar intake seems to be the cause of the constipation. (I just can’t win) And, if you have a high fat/low fibre diet the fatty food increases estrogen levels so when that drop comes it comes down hard. I had ribs last night with BBQ sauce, I know I had a lot of sugar and a lot of salt, and I paid for it. Low fat foods and fibre intake maintains lower levels of estrogen so that when that estrogen drop occurs it’s not as severe.
I don’t actually track my monthly cycles, but I can feel them and now that I realize that there is a correlation of how I’m feeling and my sugar intake I realize that when I find myself going towards the cookie cabinet I need to remember how uncomfortable I was UNTIL 5 IN THE MORNING.
And that there are hormones at play beyond my control, so having low fat and sugar alternatives within reach is really important.
On the quest to lose 50 pounds in a year. Can she do it? Only time will tell....with the help of this blog.