Do you experience mood swings? One moment you’re good, the next you’re anxious or angry or depressed. You have a great productive morning and then a low, moody afternoon. Your partner, your family, your friends might have started tip-toeing around you, not sure which “you” they’re with at any one time – the happy, calm one or the sad, on-edge one. Does any of this sound familiar?
Mood swings can be tough on you and those around you. You have heard me say before that PMS, including mood swings, is not “normal” – it’s the sign of a hormonal imbalance. Whether your mood swings are monthly or daily, it’s not just part of being female and you don’t have to live with it. Getting down to the root cause of your mood swings can help you to get passed them and prevent them happening in the future. Calm, collected, happy days here we come!
If your mood swings only happen during your pre-menstrual or luteal phase as a part of your PMS symptoms then I have a wealth of information ready for you on sleep hygiene, morning routines, and PMS-fighting foods. If you think you suffer with depression or PMDD, I have previously shared my thoughts on alternative strategies to antidepressant medications. If your mood swings are anxiety-specific with spikes of nerves, I’ve laid out my favorite natural remedies for you.
The 3 causes of your mood swings
There are 3 main root causes of mood swings – and, thankfully, 3 natural remedies that will deeply treat these problems. With the FLO Living protocol as a foundation these solutions will have more of an effect and be more powerful in their treatment of your specific issue. Just using these suggestions alone and trying to spot treat your mood swings won’t have the results you’re looking for – especially if you are otherwise self-medicating with hormone-toxic alcohol, coffee, and sugar.
Root Cause #1: Bouncing blood sugar
If you feel cranky, agitated, easily annoyed, irritated or find yourself getting into arguments without really knowing why, you could be coping with bouncing blood sugar. This is most likely if you skip meals, don’t eat breakfast, don’t eat enough (I’m talking just a green juice and salad until 6pm), or subsist almost entirely on coffee and sugary treats or white carbs when at the office. Your blood sugar should stay at a stasis point for the majority of the day, because if it soars and then crashes you will feel it as a mood swing. When your liver is spending all its time and energy coping with crazy blood sugar shifts, it doesn’t have time to detoxify your body and process and eliminate excess hormones – leading to hormonal imbalance including bad PMS symptoms.
Natural remedy #1: Sweet potatoes
These are the good kind of carb and so satisfying – they give you that sweetness you might crave, but also that carb density. They are also nutritionally packed with everything your hormones love. A sweet potato for lunch, as a late afternoon snack, or even for breakfast (this amazing sweet potato toast trend took over Instagram last month) will help to stabilize your blood sugar.
Root Cause #2: Sleep deprivation
A lack of sleep, especially chronically night-in-night-out, will cause your stress hormone levels (cortisol) to go haywire. Recent research showed that sleep-deprivation has a profound affect on women, more so than men, and can lead to mood destabilization or mood swings. A lack of good quality sleep leads to suppressed adrenals, which brings about lowered serotonin (the happy hormone). You think less clearly, can’t concentrate as well, and can’t focus – a recipe for snappiness and irritation if ever there was one!
Natural Remedy #2
Holy Basil tea is adaptogenic, which means this herb helps your body adapt to stressors. A cup of this tea daily will sooth your adrenals and bring down your cortisol levels (it also helps to regulate your blood sugar). Holy Basil is highly researched and an ancient remedy with proven health benefits.
Root Cause #3: Not enough good fats
We need good fats in our diet to help our hormones move around the bloodstream (they are stabilized by and travel in lipid fat rings). We also need them for the production of serotonin (that happy hormone). Omega 3 fatty acids act as mood stabilizers. Although more people are coming to understand that low-fat diets can be damaging to your health, there still lingers this suspicion of fats – but I’m here to tell you, we need them! At least the good kind that contain omega 3 fatty acids and medium-chain triglycerides (like coconut oil, avocados and oily fish). Your brain is almost 50% fat and it needs that fat store to produce neurotransmitters and serotonin. Omega 3 fatty acids are amazing in that they also actually block harmful chemicals that can distort and disturb your mood.
Natural remedy #3
Fermented cod liver oil (I like the “cinnamon tingle” variety, it tastes really good) is an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids. I am very specific about the brand I buy, because not all fish oils are processed in a way that avoids the transference of toxins and prevents the destruction of their nutritional value. Fermented cod liver oil has been shown in research studies to improve mood in those with depression and to improve overall brain function.
Always remember, that once you have the right information about how your body really works, you can start making health choices that finally start to work for you! You can do this – the science of your body is on your side!
to your FLO,
Good things come in threes:
I want to hear from you!
First, do you get mood swings?
Second, do you think you have PMDD?
Third, everyone you know is hormonal – spread a little good period karma and share this article on social 😉
Is Your Period Normal?
How do you know if your hormones are healthy? The answer is in your 5th vital sign – your period.
The color of your flow, frequency of your period, and symptoms you have each month can tell you a lot about your health. There are 5 different V-SIGN TYPES, and knowing which one you have will help you get healthy now and prevent disease in the future.