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Gaining weight during your periods is normal. Here’s why

Published on:11 October 2020, 10:00am IST
Not just cramps or mood swings, but periods can also add a few pounds to your body. Here’s why
Nikita Bhardwaj
You can’t escape weight gain during periods, or can you? Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Do you know what’s the most common symptom of PMSing? It’s water retention. That’s exactly why you see a sudden surge in your weight during that period. The good news is that it’s temporary, and vanishes once you are through with your cycle. Bad news is that every time you get your periods, weight gain will happen for sure.

According to Dr Swati Gaikwad, consultant obstetrician & gynaecologist, Motherhood Hospital, Pune, it is normal to experience sudden weight gain during your menstrual cycle.

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“A weight fluctuation of 0.5 to 2 kg is seen during periods”, she said.

Now before you get all that worked up, you need to understand the reason behind this whole weight gain saga.

Dr Gaikwad pointed out four major reasons behind weight gain during periods:
1. Hormones wreak havoc, of course

The entire game of periods is about hormonal fluctuations in our bodies. Whatever we feel in our body is all because of the play of our hormones, especially, progesterone.

“Progesterone gives you water retention, commonly called as bloating or fullness in thighs. This leads to a rise in weight, but is not responsible for the change in fat increases”, she explains.

gaining weight during periods
Yes ladies, binge eating is an outcome of  impulsive feeding behaviour and hormone fluctuation. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Also, during PMSing you face major mood swings and cravings. Due to this, you tend to overeat, which again gives you more empty calories and fat gain.

2. You are avoiding gym

As soon as periods knock on your uterus, you tend to bid adieu to your gym sessions. But why? Do you know according to experts, doing a low intensity workout during your periods helps you get rid of bloating, as well as improves your flow?

And yes, if you are avoiding exercise and indulging in overeating, then weight gain is inevitable.

3. You are constipated

“Due to progesterone and other hormones, the gut goes into a relaxed phase. Due to this, your digestive muscles become slower, and it further slows down the whole digestion process. This leads to gas formation and sometimes constipation and therefore, weight fluctuation can also be seen”, she explains.

4. Your body is lacking magnesium

Magnesium is a very important nutrient for your body as it regulates the hydration level. If your body is deficient in it then you tend to get sugar cravings. Lower levels of magnesium leads to dehydration and due to which hunger bogs you down every now and then.

Again, you tend to overeat which results in weight gain.

“But there is no need to panic at all as this will be only for a week or so. Fifth day onwards bloating and water retention will go completely. What remains is fat gain due to overeating and overthinking”, says Dr Gaikwad.

Also, watch:

Dr Gaikward has got some easy hacks for you to handle your period weight gain

1. Eat a natural high fibre diet, and drink lots of water. Limit your salt intake and go on a low fat, low carbs, high protein, and high vitamin diet.

2. Don’t skip exercise. “But if you want you can change the exercise pattern, that makes you feel comfortable during periods”, she suggests.
So, use these tricks ladies and don’t let those periods make you go out of shape.

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Nikita Bhardwaj Nikita Bhardwaj

Six-pack abs are all that Nikita needs, along with her daily dose of green tea. At Health Shots, she produces videos, podcasts, stories, and other kick-ass content.