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5 Reasons You Experience Weight Gain During Your Period

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Like most things menstruation-related, the perception that your period may cause weight gain isn’t all in your mind. In fact, there are various psychological and physiological reasons why menstruation adds weight that may last longer than the week of your period. The big news: With some understanding of the why and how you don’t need to grin and sustain it. Here’s everything you need to know:

1. Constipation

Your period influences how well your gastrointestinal tract strives to push out waste from your body. Progesterone causes some relaxation of smooth muscle, leading to a drop in gastrointestinal movement, which may cause constipation and bloating in some women. To overcome both, raise the amount of fiber in your diet, especially in the second half of the menstrual cycle.

2. PMS

For a majority of women, their monthly “cycle” starts with at least one of the plenitude of traits known as premenstrual syndrome, or PMS, about one or two weeks before their exact period begins. Bloating, food cravings and weight gain are amongst the most typical symptoms.

A research of 259 normal healthy women with normal menstrual cycles revealed significant increases in protein intake, appetite, and total cravings, including those for sweets, chocolate, candies, and salty flavors during the luteal, or premenstrual, phase before menstruation commences.

Encountering depression or anxiety are also signs of PMS, which is believed to be caused by cyclic changes in the brain chemical serotonin. For some women, these mood indications can also lead to increased food intake. Approximately 3 to 8 percent of women may encounter a stringent form of PMS known as premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD). Food cravings or binge eating are some of the symptoms of PMDD.

See a health professional if you encounter notable depression or anxiety during PMS as they can be linked with binge eating or eating disordered behaviors. To counteract the weight gain during PMS or the second half of your cycle, increase exercise and focus on consuming healthy, nutrient-rich foods.

3. Fluid Retention

Experiencing bloating is a usual complaint during the menstrual cycle when elevated levels of the female reproductive hormones progesterone and estrogen lead to a change in the body’s set point for sodium and begin fluid retention. This may be the most noticeable to women during the second half of their menstrual cycle when both estradiol the most significant and common of the three estrogen hormones and progesterone levels are at their highest.

To keep the fluid weight away, avoid salty foods during the second half of your menstrual cycle. In severe cases, some women may be prescribed them, but that should be something done in association with your gynecologist.


If you encounter irregular periods and weight gain, there may be a reason for caution. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, or PCOS, is an imbalance of reproductive hormones that causes metabolism obstacles. It afflicts one in 10 women of childbearing age.

In obese women with PCOS, losing weight may help improve their menstrual cycles. Fat itself can generate estrogen which can cause hormonal imbalances that can affect the cycle. Irregular cycles do not cause weight gain. Weight gain can cause irregular cycles.

5. Food Intake

Progesterone plays an added weighty role during the second half of the menstrual cycle. It raises appetite, causing you to eat more. Constant overeating that is not compensated by an increase in physical activity can lead to permanent weight gain.

To keep from gaining weight, avoid foods that reduce overall well-being. Sadly, you want to avoid things you really desire, like sugary foods, like lots of carbohydrates. You need to avoid alcohol and caffeine, and salty foods.


For most women, weight gain during menstruation is only short. Maintaining an overall healthy lifestyle and diet will keep those extra fluctuating weights from becoming resistant.

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