Women's Wellbeing > Coffee and PMS
Women who love coffee be warned!
Studies have shown that caffeine poses genuine dangers for women.
Caffeine apparently elevates estrogen levels in women, which in turn
increases the risk of breast cancer and ovarian cancer, as well as
for fibroid tumors, endometriosis, heavy menstrual bleeding, benign
breast cancer, and PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) among others.
Based on research, the more coffee a woman consumed, the higher the
level of estrogen produced. Women who consumed four to five cups of
coffee per day (500 milligrams of caffeine) produced nearly 70
percent more estrogen than women who consumed less than one cup of
coffee a day (100 milligrams of caffeine).
Caffeine, which is found in black tea, cola drinks, cocoa,
chocolate, and some over-the-counter drugs act as a diuretic that
decreases discomfort and bloating. On the other hand, caffeine also
causes a fall in blood sugar which increases symptoms of PMS. In
fact, there can be a three-fold increase in PMS by drinking more
than three to four cups of coffee a day.
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists,
up to 40 percent of menstruating women complain of some form of PMS.
Most of these women have symptoms that are fairly mild and do not
PMS symptoms vary among women. But it commonly includes painful
menstrual cramping, or dysmenorrhea, breast swelling or tenderness,
food craving, appetite changes, binge eating, bloating, upset
stomach, constipation or diarrhea, joint or muscle pains, mood
swings, irritability, anxiety, depression, fatigue, trouble
sleeping, trouble concentrating or remembering, headaches and
women who are experiencing PMS are cautioned to avoid or decrease
their caffeine intake, rather gradually. Immediate caffeine
withdrawal, alternatively, can cause unpleasant withdrawal symptoms
such as headaches, depression, and fatigue. Substitutes for coffee
such as water-processed decaffeinated coffee, green tea, and herbal
teas like peppermint, chamomile, and ginger should likewise be
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